Saturday, October 9, 2010

Fredericia - Garrison Town , Redoubts

Fredericia: Defense Outpost and Colony
Then Redoubts built by the Prussians
Schleswig Wars

Fredericia:  Haven for Invited French and Jewish Immigrants -
Frederick IV

View from Fredericia battlements, to the Kattegat 

Fredericia is the first main town on Jutland, reached after crossing the Little Belt Bridge,  from Funen. It was founded by Frederick III in about 1660 as a fortified encampment against invasion; to encourage settlement there and in other areas of Denmark, he offered freedom of religion.  Many Jews responded, and by 1719, there was an active Jewish communitiy here.  They were allowed to own businesses, and prospered. 

The main waterways are the Baltic Sea, that empties into the "Kattegat" Sea, by way of the "Oresund" between Copenhagen and Malmo, Sweden.  The Kattegat empties into the Skagerrak Sea, and that empties into the North Sea. Are the Kattegat and the Skagerrak really seas?  What else?

The connecting waterways help explain Denmark's exposure to invasion (and its ease of invading elsewhere).

German ethnic groups, Prussians, sought to secede from Danish rule in 1848 (unsuccessful) and 1864 (successful).  They invaded and built battlements and redoubts at Fredricia that are old now, rounded humps in a long, winding trail, showing where walls and cannon places were.

Battlements, redoubts, Fredericia, Denmark

Battle of Fredericia 1849, in the First Battle of Schleswig Holstein. Some 61,000 soldiers from Schleswig-Holstein, supported by Germany in their effort, invaded.  Schleswig-Holstein is at the southern end of the peninsula of Jutland, and its boundaries came in disput often.  The Danes withdrew north, leaving some 7,000 Danes to defend.   won this time, but ultimately lost its hold on Schleswig-Holstein.  In 1849, however, the Schleswig-Holsteins built several redoubts from which they shelled the town, and much burned.

The museum there is elegant in surroundings, and refined in presentation. What else for this era of fine clothing, bows, snuff, white stockings and elegance in the ruling classes?

And the church: Trinitatis Kirke

Find the life of the common man in the back:  here, an original tobacco barn.  Hang the leaves to let them dry.
Old tobacco barn, ordinary life at Fredericia Museum, Fredericia, Denmark

From 1783-1874, Fredericia was the only town producing tobacco - King Frederick wanted this area to produce all that Denmark needed, and opened up Fredericia to French Reformists, who settled there as Huguenots, fleeing persecution.  See ://

The reformed church;  families have little areas just like home, complete sometimes with the family dog holding court.  Little outdoor rooms. Immaculate care. Gravel raked, smooth.

There is a mass grave there, some 40 unknown soldiers as we recall, and believe this was the 1848 war.  Am checking.

Jewish History in Denmark. In the 1600's, Christian IV saw that the Danish economy and trade were both flagging for lack of marketing skills; so he invited Sephardic Jewish merchants and their families to come settle.  Back in 1492, Spain expelled all its Jews.  See the history at :// Many came here to Fredericia.

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