Burman´s sailing ship

Koppargrudet Luoto


In front of Koppargrundet, in the island municipality Luoto, a sailing ship owned by Anders Burman, a Tornio magistrate and merchant, was wrecked probably in November 1722. The Great Wrath unrest had settled, and the ship was transporting refugees from Stockholm back to their homes in Finland. About twenty people drowned in the shipwreck. In addition to the crew, they included townspeople from Tornio with their children. The story goes that sealers from Luoto found the ship stuck in ice, together with four half-dressed bodies, early the following spring. As far as is known, the bodies were buried in Pedersöre graveyard. Some items from the ship were found the following summer.


The ship contained various belongings of the passengers, which divers and museum authorities have later discovered, conserved and collected for an exhibition. The finds include two gold ducats, clay pipes, large copper plate coins, roof tiles and everyday utensils. The golden coins that have been found were minted during the 1718 to 1720 reign of Queen Ulrika Eleonora of Sweden. According to the University of Oulu archaeologist Risto Nurmi, the find is historically and culturally significant. The remnants of the ship and its contents have naturally been dispersed over a large area during the last three centuries.


In the early 2010s, Kaamos Productions made a two-part TV documentary on the hypothesised foundering and the wreck. The documentary, featuring captivating dramatic narration, is based on expert interviews, local stories, historical documents, the efforts of researchers and divers, and discovered ship items.




A father who served as a deacon in Northern Finland waited impatiently for his missing daughter Chatarinaa to return home, but during the winter months it became obvious that she had perished in the shipwreck. The father’s wish was to find the daughter’s body so that she could receive a Christian burial. He described the daughter’s possible clothing with touching meticulousness to ease her identification. The daughter was lost for ever, but one of her trunks was found. It seems, based on the trunk’s contents, the daughter had been thinking about her family when preparing for the journey. For her father, she had a silk scarf, a Bible in Finnish and a package of Dutch tobacco, for her mother a decorated bonnet and a red apron. (Björkman: Pedersöres julblad 1923)




Sword´s hilt (Jeanette Edfelt, Pietarsaaren kaupunginmuseo)


Silver spoon (Jeanette Edfelt, Pietarsaaren kaupunginmuseo)


Pony (Jeanette Edfelt, Pietarsaaren kaupunginmuseo)


Copper plate coins (Jeanette Edfelt, Pietarsaaren kaupunginmuseo)