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Blogginlägg

Världsutställningen i Paris 1889

Paris är idag en av de populäraste städerna att besöka i världen. Frankrikes huvudstad har en lång och rik historia från medeltiden till franska revolution och till den moderna tiden. I staden finns också många kända sevärdheter som t.ex. Louvren, Notre Dame de Paris, Triumfbågen, Versailles palatset och förstås Eiffeltornet. Världsutställningen 1889 är känd för att ha introducerat Eiffeltornet. Men vad har Paris 1889 och Eiffeltornet med Hertonäs gårds museum att göra? När jag gick igenom olika fotoalbum i Hertonäs upptäckte jag att Helene Bergbom (f. Gripenberg) har lämnat efter sig ett album med bilder från världsutställningen 1889 och det fanns många intressanta bilder i albumet. Läs mera nedan!Läs mera »
Karl Heikkilä
12.01.2022 kl. 19:02

Pariisin maailmannäyttely 1889

Tänään Pariisi on yksi maailman suosituimmista paikoista, jonne matkustetaan. Ranskan pääkaupungilla on pitkä ja rikas historia keskiajasta ranskan vallankumoukseen ja moderniin aikaan. Kaupungissa on myös monta kuuluisia nähtävyyksiä kuten taidemuseo Louvre, Notre Dame de Paris, Riemukaari, Versailles palatsi ja tietenkin Eiffelin torni. Pariisin maailmannäyttely 1889 on kuuluisa siitä, että Eiffelin torni esitetiin siellä. Mutta mitä Pariisilla 1889 ja Eiffel tornilla on Herttoniemen kartanon museon kansa tekemistä? Kun olin käynyt erilaisien valokuva albumeiden läpi Herttoniemellä, huomasin että Helene Bergbomilla (os. Gripenberg) on valokuva albumi maailmannäyttelystä 1889 ja albumissa oli monta kiinnostavaa kuvaa. Lue lisää alla! Läs mera »
Karl Heikkilä
12.01.2022 kl. 18:57

Exposition Universelle 1889

Today Paris is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. The capital of France has a long and rich history from the medieval period to the French revolution and to the modern age. There are many famous attractions in Paris such as the Louvre, Notre Dame de Paris, Arc de Triomphe, Palace of Versailles and of course the Eiffel Tower. The Exposition Universelle (world’s fair) 1889 is known for introducing the Eiffel Tower. But what has Paris 1889 and the Eiffel Tower got to do with Herttoniemi Manor Museum? When I went through different photo albums at Herttoniemi I discovered that Helene Bergbom (born Gripenberg) has left behind an album with pictures from the world’s fair 1889 and there were many interesting pictures in the album. Read more down below!Läs mera »
Karl Heikkilä
12.01.2022 kl. 18:48

Sytning – bondens pension, den välbärgades möjlighet II

De så kallade sytningsavtalen fanns kvar ända in på 1900-talet – ett faktum som visar hur viktiga de var för många människor på landsbygden. De sista sytningshjonen, det vill säga äldre som ”tagit sytning” hos sina barn, upplevde också de första folkpensionerna på 1930-talet innan pensionssystemet och urbaniseringen förpassade sytningssystemet till historien. Också borgarna slöt sytningsavtal med sina föräldrar. Läs mer nedan!Läs mera »
Ida Karlgren
21.12.2021 kl. 16:13

Syytinki - maanviljelijän eläke, varakkaan oikeus II

Syytinkisopimukset säilyivät 1900-luvulle asti. Tämä osoittaa, kuinka tärkeitä ne olivat monille maaseudulla asuville. Myös viimeiset syytingillä olevat kokivat ensimmäiset kansaneläkkeet 1930-luvulla ennen kuin eläkejärjestelmä ja kaupungistuminen siirsivät syytinkijärjestelmän historiaan. Porvarit solmivat myös syytinkisopimuksia vanhempiensa kanssa. Lue lisää alla!Läs mera »
Ida Karlgren
21.12.2021 kl. 16:08

Retirement Contracts – On Aging as a Farmer and a Burgher II

The signings of retirement contracts (Swe. sytning) remained important up and into the 20th century – a fact that proves their importance to the denizens of the Finnish countryside. The last people living as so called sytningshjon lived to experience the birth of the national pension system in the 1930s, before national pensions and urbanisation eventually made the retirement contract system redundant as a primary form of retirement. The contracts could also be signed by burghers and their relatives. Read more below!Läs mera »
Ida Karlgren
21.12.2021 kl. 15:59

Sytning – bondens pension, den välbärgades möjlighet I

Genom tiderna har många hemman varit föremål för sytning, även Hertonäs gård. Men vad är sytning? Andra namn för fenomenet är bland annat undantag eller födoråd, samt en mängd andra regionala varianter – men oavsett vad man kallar det vet få vad ordet betyder mer. Att syta någon eller något betyder ursprungligen att ta hand om, sköta, och kom att beteckna en typ av pensionsarrangemang som existerade i Norden i flera hundra år. Läs mer nedan!Läs mera »
Ida Karlgren
13.12.2021 kl. 17:25

Syytinki - maanviljelijän eläke, varakkaan oikeus I

Kautta aikojen monet kodit ovat peritty syytingin kautta, myös Herttoniemen kartanolla. Mutta mitä on syytinki? Ilmiöllä on monta nimeä, kuten ruokahuolto, sekä joukko muita alueellisia muunnelmia - mutta kutsutaan sitä miksi tahansa, harvat tietävät nykyisin mitä sana tarkoittaa. Syytinki tarkoittaa alunperin huolehtimista ja tuli merkitsemään sellaista eläkejärjestelyä, joka oli olemassa Pohjoismaissa useita satoja vuosia. Lue lisää alla!Läs mera »
Ida Karlgren
13.12.2021 kl. 17:21

Retirement Contracts – On Aging as a Farmer and a Burgher I

Through the ages many homesteads have switched hands via something called sytning/syytinki, amongst others Hertonäs manor. But what is sytning? It’s a phenomenon that has had many other names, depending on what Nordic country and region you’re from, but no matter what it is called few know it’s meaning and importance nowadays. Originally, the meaning of the word is to take care of something or someone, but it came to mean much more - as a form of retirement contract, sytning was the main form of pension for most property-owning farmers for centuries. Read more down below!Läs mera »
Ida Karlgren
13.12.2021 kl. 17:16

Antikt formspråk på Hertonäs gård

Tidigare på hösten rapporterades det tyvärr i nyheterna om flera vulkanutbrott på vulkanön La Palma på norra Kanarieöarna i Spanien. Historiskt sett har det funnits flera stora vulkanutbrott i världen. I flera av dessa fall har de haft en avgörande påverkan på historien. Ett sådant vulkanutbrott skedde år 79. Då var det vulkanen Vesuvius 10 km sydöst om staden Neapel i dagens södra Italien som hade ett utbrott. Händelsen influerade bland annat det formspråk som nu finns till påseende för besökare på Hertonäs gård. Hur syns vulkanutbrottet i de existerande utställningarna? På vilket sätt påverkar antiken fortfarande idag det som finns tillgängligt på Hertonäs gård? Det här kommer jag nu att behandla i denna bloggartikel. För mer information om Vesuvius och antikens influens på Hertonäs gård och utställningarna se texten här nedan.Läs mera »
Ralf Palmgren
29.11.2021 kl. 07:33

Retirement Contracts – On Aging as a Farmer and a Burgher I

13.12.2021 kl. 17:16
Through the ages many homesteads have switched hands via something called sytning/syytinki, amongst others Hertonäs manor. But what is sytning? It’s a phenomenon that has had many other names, depending on what Nordic country and region you’re from, but no matter what it is called few know it’s meaning and importance nowadays. Originally, the meaning of the word is to take care of something or someone, but it came to mean much more - as a form of retirement contract, sytning was the main form of pension for most property-owning farmers for centuries. Read more down below!

In the archives at Hertonäs manor, there’s a photograph of a so called sytarstuga, a retirement cottage, taken by photographer Irene Wahlberg at the turn of the century in 1900.


The Guss homestead, Martinkylä/Mårtensby. Retirement cottage.  In front of the cottage sits Vilhelmina Hellman 66. Her daughter Emilia Blomqvist, nee Hellman, 29, is standing in the centre. To the right sits Vilheminas granddaughter Edit, whose mother Alexandra Josefina died aged 29 in 1889. The photo is number 24, collection 101, Helsinge 1900.

A retirement cottage was often built by a couple before they signed over their farm, or by the new owner who had it constructed for his elderly parents (or unrelated contract signees, perhaps as part of the retirement agreement). It might have been very attractive for an elderly couple to have their own smaller building to live in – a smaller space is easier to heat, and distances are shorter. The cottage was probably close to the main building as well, making it easier to ask for assistance.

The arranging of this new living situation wasn’t all smooth sailing though – studies of surviving diaries and other materials reveal that some elderly parents weren’t happy with food provided them, thought they were being disrespected by their children and/or their partners, or just disagreed with how their family farms were being run. Management of the farm, the status and roles of its inhabitants, and the treatment of the elderly seems to have been sore points that potentially caused friction between family members. Sometimes, especially towards the end of the 19th century, the elderly did not have their own building to live in but stayed in the main house with the new head of the household – which probably didn’t help matters. Retirement contracts simply weren’t a black and white issue, and the formalisation that aimed to make things easier did not always facilitate a transfer of property and shifting of roles enough to avoid conflict in the family. Family matters seem to always have been a complicated and nuanced thing, just as they are today.

Vilhelmina Hellman from Guss homestead in Martinkylä (Swedish: Mårtensby) might have been involved in signing a retirement contract, but sadly, we can’t know for certain – just like with the Wetters, enough documents aren’t available for us today to draw any definitive conclusions. Vilhelmina, née Frostell, was born in 1834 in Kirkkonummi (Swedish: Kyrkslätt). At age 23, she married lay judge and farmer Adolf Hellman, 40, who owned Guss homestead. Their daughters Alexandra Josefina and Fanny Emilia were born in 1860 and 1871, before the death of Adolf in 1873. Vilhelmina seems to have run the farm for many years, before her younger daughter Fanny seems to have taken ownership in 1894. One might guess that Vilhelmina, then 60 years old, might have moved into the smaller retirement cottage to allow her daughter, and her son-in-law, to live in the main building.


Guss, Martinkylä/Mårtensby. A part of the main building, photographed by Irene Wahlberg in 1900. Number 23, collection 101, Helsinge 1900.

These forms of retirement contracts, called sytning in Swedish, survives as a legal term in Finnish law, but as a concept its relevance for modern Finns is minimal. In the old days, a family farmstead was just that – family property, which had been handed down through generations and would probably continue to be so. As society changed, land was increasingly commercialised as urbanisation and industrialisation created possibilities for different lives and lifestyles for the children of the countryside. The conditions of life changed, the inheritors of farm property had other options, and so the power and influence of the land-owning parents had waned. Thus, retirement contracts were rendered less important for the younger generation. It became increasingly common to only rent out property to grown children or non-relatives, which left control and ownership still in the elderly couple’s hands.

From being an integral part of country life, retirement contracts were reduced to a historical phenomenon during the 20th century. If you asked a modern Finn on the Helsinki streets today what sytning meant, they’d probably have no idea – even though their grandparents might remember their old relatives, who lived on the side-lines of rural family life in their small retirement cottages.

Literature

Hannikainen, M. & Vauhkonen, J. 2012: Arbetspensionernas historia inom den privata sektorn i Finland. Sammanfattning av verket Ansioiden mukaan. Yksityisalojen työeläkkeiden historia. Helsingfors, 28.11.2021.
Holmgren, S. 2020: Med tacksamhet förbinder jag mig. En diskussion om formalisering utifrån 20 undantagskontrakt. Uppsala, 28.11.2021.
Moring, B. 2006: “Nordic Retirement Contracts and the Economic Situation of Widows.” Continuity and change 21.3. Cambridge, 383–418. 
Haggrén, Georg 2014: Wetter, Abraham, Biografiskt lexikon för Finland, Svenska litteratursällskapet i Finland, 28.11.2021.
Bergbom, J. G. 1910: Hertonäs anteckningar. Helsingfors.
Jonasson, F. 1931: Suomen maatilat. Borgå, 28.11.2021
Svenska Akademiens ordbok (SAOB), syta, (2001),  28.11.2021.
Charpentier, A. 1896: Om sytning. Helsingfors.

Ida Karlgren