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Around the World

by John and Jan Nichols

Hi Members,

Well, our annual “SKI” (Spend Kid’s Inheritance) pilgrimage to Estonia and the land of Ericsson (Sweden) was on again this year although a bit shorter due to my NSW Dragon Boat commitments (only 2nd in the Australian Nationals in my age group) so this is all we could fit in this year.

I did not do so well in Tallinn (the capital of Estonia) as I had another holiday in hospital for a few days whilst there. But I did manage the car trip to Siedler Moise (about 100 Km from Tallinn) and picked up an Ericsson extension bell set. Just before finally leaving Tallinn I picked up an 1896 AB Telefon Fabriken wall phone, complete and in good original condition. It was sitting in the shop for two months before I decided to buy it. This company was in opposition to Ericsson but was later purchased bu Ericsson. That was all for Estonia.

Next stage of our trip was over to Ericsson Land (Sweden) and, well, you would not guess it but we met fellow ATCS member Kjell Arvidsson from Melbourne for tea with Henrik and Birgitta Lundin at Soluntuna. Next day we all visited Skansen and the newly installed pole route (this story in another issue). (Thats me, host Henrik and Kjell, pictured left with some of Henrik’s telephones).

Next day we all visited the historic village of Skansen and the newly installed pole route (this story in previous issue). (picture on right shows one of the poles pictured with our host Henrik Lundin).

Henrik had planned a 4 day trip to the south of Sweden visiting various museums and telephone collections. The first day of the trip was to visit Anders Joelson who owns and runs the Virserum Mobile Telephone Museum which is open from 1st June to 31st August between 11am and 5pm daily. A great museum to visit and whilst there you can also visit a working water wheel and line shaft woodworking factory museum. Coffee and snacks are also available.

Then on to Jonkoping to visit collectors Denny and Irene Wahlstrum. Denny’s excellent collection contained one of three known Brunius Hakon phones. Brunius Hakon manufactured the first phones in Sweden with Ericsson coming later (on a more commercial basis). Picture at right shows Denny Wahlstrum with the rare Hakon phones. What a great time spent at Jonkoping, our first night stop.

Second day we were off to visit the home of Ove and Rosemary Svensson at Molndal (near Goteborg). Another fantastic collection to feast your eyes on and we also caught up on things since our last visit 10 years ago. Gee, time goes fast when you are having fun. Picture at left below shows Ove Svensson and Henrick Lundin with part of Ove’s collection. Time is short so on to Bosse and Marita Munkhammer at Vanersborg to see another great collection and to catch up on the past 10 years. Pictures at right shows Bosse and his unusual miniature metal fiddleback phone. If my memory serves me, both of these collections have grown and gotten better and now they are near perfect! We stayed the second night at Vanersborg.

Third day, off to Trollhattan and collector Christer Lanhage and his wife. Another excellent collection which includes the oldest Ericsson Skeletal swingarm (not numbered). Then on to the town of Granna beside Lake Vattern. Great place to stretch your legs and enjoy the scenery. Next, on to Norrkoping and Hotel Kneippen for the night. What a pleasant stay and relaxing time. Picture at left of Christer with some of his phones.

Final day we were off to Mariefred to visit Gripsholms Slott (Old Castle), had an English tour at 1pm then back to Stockholm for the night. Next day visited the regular collector shops and then made it to the Opera L’orfeo at Drottingham Theatre which is 250 years old and built by Royalty. We also made a quick trip to Stockholm’s Tecnic Museum (4th floor) which now has an excellent telephone display (replacing the Telemuseum) and we managed to visit their archive warehouse. The whole museum is well worth a visit and one should allow about 4 hours. There are some rare phones on display including a Brunius Hakon and several phones from this museum are shown in pictures below.

Back in Australia and were were honoured to have member John Newgrain and his wife Jackie visit from Adelaide. We showed them around Sydney a bit and there's a picture below of me with John and Jackie at the Penrith Dragon Boat site. There is also some more pictured of phones I saw on the trip.

Jan and I wish to thank everyone in Sweden for their hospitality and friendship and we hope we can reciprocate in the near future.

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