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Japan & South West Scotland

Trade and Industry

Trade and Industry

Jardine Matheson and Company, and William Keswick

William Jardine (1784-1843), the co-founder of Jardine Matheson and Company was born near Lochmaben.  William Keswick (1834-1912) was a descendant of William Jardine's sister and worked for Jardine Matheson.  His father, Thomas Keswick, lived in Annan.

Jardine Matheson was the first foreign trading company in Japan after William Keswick established an office in Yokohama in 1859.  Further offices were set up in Kobe, Nagasaki and other ports, where the company operated a broad range of trades including tea, textiles, shipping, and railway construction.

Many of the items in the 1935 exhibition of Chinese and Japanese art at Dumfries Museum were loaned by local families with connections to Jardine Matheson and the Keswicks.

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