Oktorp Farmstead

​The Oktorp farmstead (Oktorpsgården) from Halland shows what a farmstead in the flat countryside there looked like in the 1870s. As the room appears at Skansen it has been decorated for a festive occasion.

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15/12 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM
16/12 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
17/12 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
18/12 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM
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The walls and the ceiling have been draped with painted hangings and woven linen cloths. Normally the room did not look like this at all but in southern Sweden it was not usual to have a separate room for parties. Instead, the living room was appropriately decorated for special occasions. 

Long painted hangings were fixed to the walls above the benches. Tapestries were woven by the women of the farm. The painted hangings, with Biblical motifs, were bought at markets or from itinerant salesmen. Behind the living room there are two further rooms, one of them furnished for the elderly grandmother Ingeborg. A tiled stove was erected in the room in the 19th century.

At that time most of the farms were built round all the sides of a square. Cultivating crops was the primary occupation. This is reflected in the two ranges of threshing barns where the grain was threshed and stored. During the second half of the 19th century harvests increased greatly in Halland through the increase in arable land as meadows were ploughed, wetlands were drained and more ef-ficient tools were brought into use. Today the farm is as it was when the Lundqvist family, Åke and Christina and their daughter Hanna, aunt Beata, grandmother Ingeborg and their two farm-hands lived there.

The Halland forests consisted mainly of oak and beech. Most of the houses are built using slotted boards which saved timber and made it possible to use boards from twisted hardwood trees. Only the dwelling cottage and the storehouse to the right are built of fir logs which were probably purchased from further inland where there were more extensive forests. The roofs are thatched with straw.

The dwelling cottage is a low building sandwiched between two taller storehouses One enters through a hall that extends across the width of the house. The door is a “stable door” which was practical as the upper half could be opened to let in the light and fresh air while the lower half kept the animals out. The door to the right leads into the weaving room and the guest room.
To the left is the living room with its exposed roof-beams. It was here that the family lived out its daily existence and slept at night. A single small window in the roof lets in a little daylight. Close by the door from the hall is the “kitchen” with shelves and cupboards for kitchen equipment. This part of the room is marked off by a special beam beyond which beggars or other uninvited guests might not venture. Opposite the hall door is the farmer’s own seat, the high seat.
In front of the high seat there is a table and in front of the table a movable bench. But it was only on festive occasions that people ate at this table. On ordinary days the food was set out on a so-called chair-table close to the stove.
There are two built-in beds with curtains in the room, separated by a cupboard. It was here that farmer and his wife and the younger children slept. In winter the farm hands slept on benches in the kitchen quarters while in the summer they had their own sleeping quarters. Beneath the bed cupboard there was a space enclosed by a grill in which the ducks and hens were kept in the winter.

There are two built-in beds with curtains in the room, separated by a cupboard. It was here that farmer and his wife and the younger children slept. In winter the farm hands slept on benches in the kitchen quarters while in the summer they had their own sleeping quarters. Beneath the bed cupboard there was a space enclosed by a grill in which the ducks and hens were kept in the winter.

The farm buildings consist of two ranges with threshing barns and a row of stables. In the eastern lodging there is a servant’s room which could only be used in the
summer as it lacked a fireplace. There is also a barn for animal fodder. This barn communicates directly with the cowshed which has room for horses as well as cows.
In the western range there are quarters for the sheep and a pigsty. The pigsty is now occupied by a native breed of pigs known as Linderöd. The hens are Åsbo hens, a native breed from north-western Skåne where the land is rough and the soil poor. Åsbo hens are very tough, are assiduous in searching for food, and are good at incubating their eggs.

Beyond the farm is the well which is surrounded by a wall. There is also a little brewing shed close by where beer and spirits were made. At a distance from the farm is the brook mill. The flowing stream drove the millstones that ground the corn. It was common for several farms to have mills along the same stretch of a suitable stream. Normally the mills could only be used in the spring and autumn when there was sufficient water in the stream.

The brook mill
At a distance from the Oktorp farm is the brook mill. The flowing stream drove the millstones that ground the corn. It was common for several farms to have mills along the same stretch of a suitable stream. Normally the mills could only be used in the spring and autumn when there was sufficient water in the stream. 

The Oktorp farmstead was moved to Skansen in 1896 and was the first farm to be erected there in its entirety.



1870-1913

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