We the Puigcerdà family have become quite well known throughout Ibiza Townas merchants in the salt trade, as well as capable privateers on the sea. Salt has become astaple trade good of Ibiza, although we merchants are largely under the management ofthe great Genoese in this part of the Mediterranean.1 Since roughly 1450, the Genoesehave reaped the rewards from our salt, which they exchange for Lombardy steel and wheat.2 The Basques have also become partnered with the Genoese in order to exploit the profits which the salt of Ibiza brings.3 Being under the thumb of these foreign merchantsm has meant that the Puigcerdà family has had to resort to privateering on the seas merely to supplement what little we actually came away with by participating in the exchange of salt. However, to say our family has plundered those on the sea indiscriminately would be a false charge indeed. For example, Jews have long been prominent members within Ibiza and its salt trade, acting as tax collectors, shippers, and even merchants. Thus, it is often a popular practice by us privateers to give Jews a pass, and even help them steer clear of the Inquisition. In fact, the Puigcerdà family itself helped five young Jewish men to safety on one occasion.4 So, with these closing words, I urge future generations to continue to strive for wealth, the good of the community, and respect for the Puigcerdà family name.
1 Michel Balard, “A Christian Mediterranean: 1000–1500,” in The Mediterranean in History, ed. David Abulafia (London: Thames & Hudson, 2003), 211-212.
Entry by Manuel Puigcérda
Today I was scouring over old family records in my spare time and came across a very interesting note. It was a dispute over one of my ancestors trading partners, a certain Greek merchant named Zykanthos Marmaretos. While transporting a load of salt and wine to Tunis his ship was attacked by Knights of St John from the island of Malta. The ship he was on was flying the flag of Saint Andrew’s Cross, and was boarded for suspecting trade with the Turks. Since he was working with the Turks in a trade deal his goods were taken and he was imprisoned on their ship. He suspected the Captain to possibly be doing a deal with the corsairs, because they did not pay him (nor did he request, as was his right) a sequestro nor did the captain inquire about a compensation for the goods taken by the fancily-named pirates. According to this note our friend was taken to court at his request on the island of Malta. The details of his trial are unknown to us, but he was not released and this loss of a good merchant partner as well as a large chunk of our investment gone upset my great great great grandfather deeply. According to our families financial records the arrest and confiscation of our goods set us back significantly, which my great great great grandfather was never able to recover from. Perhaps it was this inability to rebound is part of the reason why there is no mention of him trying to seek restitution from the church or the local governor.
 Molly Greene, Catholic Pirates and Greek Merchants (Princeton NJ:Princeton University Press 2010), 61.