Saturday, July 9, 2011



It’s Beginning & Ending

By Eugene H. Halverson

Annons I Vasabladet for den 19 juli 1873 (sale)—by C.J. Solfwin, Kronofogde.  The industrial revolution had taken the peasant laborers from the farm to industry.  The whole world was rapidly changing and everyone wanted to better them selves.  Many large farms in Finland were up for sale.  Serfs and Masters alike were going to the New World.  A great famine had already killed tens of thousands of the poor people in Finland.  It was advertised that the larger buildings were reconstructed for a better class of people.

Farmers Johan Simonsson Kock and Mickel Raback/Holms then purchased Holms.  The six topare/crofts (rental farms) on the property it said were later sold to sons and other relatives.  Besides the Kocks there were Hagglofs, Nygarsd/Norrgards, Hoijers and others.  Johan had 12 children and the others all had large families to work the farm.  There were still servants and maids from local families working there too.  I do know about, Johan J. Kock, Erik J. Kock and Mickel J. Kock going back and forth to America to earn money to purchase parts of the farm but I don’t know what part. 

Johan Johansson Kock/Holms and his eldest son, Johannes J. Holms returned to Holms.  They bought their portion of the farm in 1885.  Johan was the oldest son living at Holms.  He was listed as the last farmer of Holms and lived in a house near Holms.  He was also a seller and a donator of Holms when in 1907 it became the people’s school. 

Erik Johansson Kock/Holms made two trips, returned  and died at Holms soon after.  Erik’s only son Johannes E. Holms made one or two trips but eventually stayed in America.  They bought their portion of Holms in about 1884/5.  Erik’s wife, Brita Murkais/Hagglof/Holms lived at Holms in her stuga near the Windmill on Holms hill until 1934 when the house burned down.  She died in 1939.  Just how much our family still owned  to donate or sell to make the Vora Folkhogskola possible is still unknown.  Edith said she and her mother, Lisa Antbrams Holms lived in the big house.

Mickel Johansson Kock/ Holms returned from America twice with money for his Part of Holms but was killed in a Park City, Utah mine.  He had no children and I have no idea what happened to his land.

Matts Hoijer’s (wife Maria) was listed as an owner of Holms too.  His son, John Holmes (Johannes Verner Hoijer) said both Matts and Erik were leaded (poisoned in the mine).  Maria Hoijer/Holms lived at Holms until 1954 when she died.  She lived by Holms hill below Brita’s stuga until it burned down.  She had a place of honor at the school as a symbol of the family who allowed the school to be founded on the property.  She was called “Holmsvardinnan (Holms-hostess).  I have a picture of this huse/house.

Holms was divided many times after it was purchased in 1873.  Then in 1907 parts were sold again before the buildings and some land was donated to make it the proud home of the Vora Folkhogskola.  The government still maintains the “Old Manor House”, with its many old heirlooms.  It is quite impressive in size.  It had been freshly painted a bright yellow with white trim.  I lived in the “peasants house” which was also a bright yellow.  I usually ate breakfast at Norrvalla, lunch and supper was always at one of many relates homes.  Herman Holms had a store on the edge of a great lake that was now a fancy restaurant.  We had a fancy meal with about 30 members of the Holms family.

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