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Erik Gøbel

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Welcome to my website.

I am a Danish historian who has been a Research Fellow at the Institute of Economic History at the University of Copenhagen for a couple of years and a Senior Researcher at the Danish National Archives in Copenhagen for 36 years until my retirement in 2017.

My research has centered upon Danish shipping and trade in the 17th and 18th centuries, with a specific interest in the former Danish tropical possessions in India (Tranquebar and Serampore), on the Gold Coast, and not least in the Caribbean (St. Thomas, St. John, and St. Croix, today known as US Virgin Islands). I have also carried out research into aspects of Danish economic, social, and administrative history.

My research results are based on the very fine archival records kept in the Danish National Archives, which contain a unique wealth of information. First and foremost the archives of the tropical trading companies and the Sound Toll Registers, which both possess such research potential that they have been included in UNESCO’s prestigious Memory of the World Register.

I have published several articles in English and other foreign languages. My two books in English are:

A Guide to Sources for the History of the Danish West Indies (U. S. Virgin Islands), 1671-1917 (Odense: University Press of Southern Denmark, 2002, 350 pp.)

The Danish Slave Trade and Its Abolition (Leiden and Boston: Brill, 2016, xiv+305 pp., also published as e-book, and in 2021 as paperback).


The contents of my website are as follows:

  • Ekspert-områder (i.e. expert subjects)
  • Danmarks tropekolonier (i.e. Denmark’s former tropical colonies)
  • Dansk Vestindien (i.e. the former Danish West Indies)
    Slaveri og slavehandel (i.e. slavery and slave trade)
  • Søfartshistorie (i.e. maritime history)
  • Administrationshistorie (i.e. history of Danish public administration)
  • Foredrag (i.e. lectures)
  • Rejser til Vestindien (i.e. travels to the former Danish West Indies)
  • Publikationer (i.e. my publications)
  • Redaktionsarbejder (i.e. publications I have edited)
  • CV (i.e. my curriculum vitae)
  • Links (i.e. links)
  • Kontakt (i.e. my contact information)