History of Stockholm The first mention of the city of Stockholm dated back to 1252. The city was confined to the small island of Gamla Stan (Old Town). It was founded by Birger Jarl in order to protect Sweden from invasion by foreign fleets and to end the looting of cities such as Sigtuna on Lake Mälaren. The first building was a strong maritime traffic monitoring station to monitor traffic between the Baltic Sea and Lake Mälaren. Under the influence of Magnus Ladulås, Stockholm thrived on its trade relations with Lübeck. It later became part of the Hanseatic League. In 1270, Stockholm was described by documents to be like a real city. In 1289, it had already became largest city in Sweden. It was not until 1419 that Stockholm was proclaimed capital of Sweden. Its strategic position and its economic weight made it an important place in relations between the Danish kings of the Kalmar Union and the Swedish independence movement during the fifteenth century. In 1521, Gustav Vasa arrived in Stockholm and the early signs of a new era for Sweden began. Stockholm grew and extended beyond Stadsholmen on Södermalm and Norrmalm. In 1600, it had ten thousand inhabitants. In the seventeenth century, Stockholm became a major European city. Between 1610 and 1680 its population had multiplied by six. In 1628, the Vasa sank in Stockholm, shortly after the rules giving a monopoly on trade between the traders and the Scandinavian territories. During that period many castles and palaces were built, including the home of the nobility (Riddarhuset) and the royal palace.turkeyarena.com After the North War, which caused the partial destruction of the city, Stockholms growth slowed down. It retained its role as the political capital of Sweden, and under the reign of Gustav III of Sweden it asserted its cultural superiority. In the early nineteenth century, Stockholm lost its economic influence. Norrköping became the main industrial city in the country, and Gothenburg port became invaluable due to its location on the North Sea. In the second part of the century, Stockholm found its leading role in economic terms with the emergence of new industries, and became an important center for trade and services, as well as the main gateway to Sweden.