HISTORICAL BIT OF CLAYHILLS
Clayhills is a Scottish family name from Dundee. In seventeen century the Clayhills boys arrived to the Baltics through the linen trade. The family had made their way to Tallinn, a prominent city of Hanseatic trading league, and it is here that Thomas Clayhills successfully, and we hope happily, married to an only child of a local powerhouse Thomas von Drenteln.
Von Drenteln had his own trading company, which Thomas went to inherit from his father-in-law and after renaming it into “Thomas Clayhills & Son” with a true flair went to build it up into one of the most important trading companies of the region. “Thomas Clayhills & Son” bought our building in 1729 and opened a merchant store here.
The Clayhills were a very powerful and successful merchant family and their company is possibly the oldest trading company in the history of Estonia, trading for more than 300 years from 1633, building steam boats and railways and owning cement factories, right up to the arrival of the Soviet army in 1940/41.
Some Clayhills clan members ended up in Russia, serving the Tsar, and one particular character – general Nikolai Clayhills, a notoriously infamous governor of Saint Petersburg who managed to organize a “disappearance” of a certain city river tram onto his personal lake among other things – was an inspiration behind our IPA General Nikolai beer.
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