Friday, September 28, 2012
Nostalgic Architecture 23.8.2012
This nice FDC dated 23.8.2012 depicting Nostalgic architecture on each of the three stamps on the cover was sent to me by my friend Ella.
This booklet represents high level nostalgia. The three stamps feature memorable and beloved buildings all to be found in Mariehamn in past times. Former town architect Folke Wickstrom has drawn the motifs.
1. The first stamp shows the Badhotellet (spa hotel). Launched as a spa resort at the end of the 1800s, Mariehamn was to become one of the most modern resorts in Europe. At the turn of the 20th century, the establishment was at its largest with facilities for hot baths and swimming, a restaurant with assembly room, a medical centre, a gymnasium, a doctor's house and a spa hotel. The end of the 1914 season also saw the end of the spa era as World War I broke out. The hotel burnt down to the ground in February 1916, probably due to an overheated heater.
2. Originally, Societetshuset (a club house generally known as Socis) was a school building that was dismantled and moved to Mariehamn in 1870. From the start, the building served as a hotel, town hall and restaurant. During Socis' more than 100 years of existence it had several periods of golden days and many different owners. Regardless of many protests, the demolition of Socis was carried through in June 1975, the then town architect and current stamp artist Folke Wickstrom being one of the protesters.
3. Miramar was erected in 1890 as a summer house for Nicolai Nystrom, son-in-law of Nicolai Sittkoff, a well-known tradesman in Aland. Commandeered by soldiers during both World Wars, first by the Russians and later by the Finns, Miramar was turned into a soldiers' gambling home. In the 1930s, the house served as a dance palace and meeting place and was later to become a restaurant. Inspections performed by the authorities found inadequate fire security as well as spa and sanitary defects, and the house was demolished in October 1973.