Augusta’s First Love

Augusta’s First Love

“They are not long, the days of wine and roses: Out of a misty dream Our path emerges for a while, then closes Within a dream.” (Ernest Dowson, Vitae Summa Brevis) The Summer Sejour to Gustafsberg, 1845 In the summer of 1845, Augusta turned 18. She had just finished her schooling in Stockholm and maybe her mother Anna thought it was time for her to […]

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Augusta’s friends, Emma and Ebba Almroth, who assisted Florence Nightingale during the Crimean War

Augusta’s friends, Emma and Ebba Almroth, who assisted Florence Nightingale during the Crimean War

I am back to reading Lotten’s letters. Lotten, Augusta’s friend from school, wrote long letters to Augusta, updating her on the latest gossip from Stockholm. “You have to tell me if you once in a while get letters from Mrs. Edgren. Let me know how she and her husband and children are doing. Emma Almroth has had 4 letters from Mlle. Dethmar and also answered […]

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Augusta Holmqvist and Childbirth Fever

Augusta Holmqvist and Childbirth Fever

Kerstin and I are planning a trip to the Swedish west coast this summer. In July 1850, Augusta and her family went to Gothenburg where her brother August was to board the brig Mimer for a journey to Cape Town. But first, they decided to make an excursion by boat up along the west coast. An excursion from Marstrand, 1850. Drawing by John Georg Arsenius […]

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Mrs. Brandt, the seamstress who left few threads to follow

Mrs. Brandt, the seamstress who left few threads to follow

Today, on the International Women’s Day, I thought about Mrs. Brandt. A sought-after seamstress who didn’t leave many historical threads to follow. All her handiwork is long gone – dresses and shirts all worn out. The only traces of her are a few sentences in Augusta’s diary and in letters between Augusta and her mother Anna. Mrs. Brandt in Augusta’s diary and correspondence Mrs. Brandt […]

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Fritz von Dardel paints Augusta’s lieutenants – and tags them

Fritz von Dardel paints Augusta’s lieutenants – and tags them

I was actually going to write about Augusta’s first love. Then I got curious about all the young men who were interested in her. In 1845, Augusta was 18 and her admirers, who had just started their military careers, were in their late 20s. Augusta and her best friend Lotten Westman met them at balls, theatres, and concerts. After Augusta left Stockholm, Lotten wrote letters […]

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