(Road Trip 2018, Part 5)
On Tuesday morning (17th July), after having checked out from the hotel, but before leaving Växjö, we visited Smålands Museum, The Swedish Glass Museum and The House of Emigrants – all situated in the same park.
Established in 1867, Smålands museum is Sweden’s oldest county museum. Its permanent exhibitions include objects and historical items from the Stone Age and onwards. The museum also displays temporary exhibitions.
▲Old buildings in the museum park.
▼Sceneries and objects from inside the museum
Old bicycle with a steering wheel
Old luggage trunks, often called “American trunks” here, because of so many people emigrating to America in the 1800s and early 1900s.
Church organ built in 1690 by organ- and keyboard instrument maker Hans Heinrich Cahman Cahman, Stockholm (c. 1640-1699)
The Swedish Glass Museum
The Swedish Glass Museum has been collecting glass and documents from Swedish glassworks for over 80 years, making up one of the largest and most extensive collections in Europe. Today, the collection includes around 40,000 items of glassware, from 105 Swedish glassworks, dating from the 1580s up to the present day. The Swedish Glass Museum also runs research and documentation programs concerning glass and glass handling.
Looking down from above into the gift shop.
Ulrica Hydman Vallien (24 March 1938 – 21 March 2018) was a Swedish artist who specialized in stained glass and decorative painting. In Sweden, she became best known for her vases with motifs of sinuous snakes, tulips and wolves. She was married to Bertil Vallien, who made the altar-screen in Växjö Cathedral (see my previous post). There was a special exhibition of her works just now, as she died earlier this year:
(There will be more glass art in future posts as we also visited four glassworks on our trip.)
The House of Emigrants
The House of Emigrants also features a reconstruction of the author Vilhelm Moberg’s study, with his authentic furniture and other belongings.
Moberg is best known for his Emigrants series. The individual titles of the four novels are: Utvandrarna (The Emigrants), Invandrarna (The Immigrants), Nybyggarna (The Settlers) and Sista brevet till Sverige (The Last Letter to Sweden). They have all been translated into English, and are generally considered to be among the best pieces of Swedish literature. They were also made into two films by Jan Troell back in the early 1970s (starring Max von Sydow and Liv Ullman). In the 1990s, the musical Kristina från Duvemåla* by former ABBA members Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson also became a great success, both in Sweden and abroad. *(Later on the same day of our trip, we also visited the real Duvemåla.)
The main characters of the novels, Karl-Oskar and Kristina (emigrating from Småland to Minnesota), have kind of become national symbols in Sweden for the whole period of emigration to North America back between the mid 1800s and into the early 1900s. I think that in our time (with lots of immigrants coming to Europe rather than emigrants leaving), we do need to be reminded every now and then, that it’s really only been a century or so since the situation was reversed…
Postcard of a painting from 1872 showing “emigrants arriving at Göteborg/Gothenburg” (to take a ship from there to America)
(Coincidence: Just after I got home from our trip, Swedish Television started sending reruns of the 1970s Emigrants films as TV-series… So I’ve been watching!)