History of Håkansböle, part III

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The Sanmarks were the last private owners of the manor. The current manor house was built for them in the Jugendstil style (the German equivalent of Art Nouveau). The family modernized agriculture practice. The city of Vantaa has owned the manor since 2005.

The current manor house was built for the Sanmarks in the early twentieth century.
Photo: Pekka J. Heiskanen, Vantaa City Museum

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Sanmark as lord of the manor, 1905–2005 

Arvid and Emilia (Lilli) Sanmark purchased the manor in 1905. The first thing they decided to do was to have the old main building renovated. They hired the services of the architect Armas Lindgren, who convinced them that it would be better to build an entirely new building instead of renovating the old one. The Jugendstil manor was finished in 1908 and is still standing today.

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The children of the Sanmark family, Beate-Sophie, Carl, Emelie, and Per-Kasten, are sitting on the steps of the main entrance to the Håkansböle manor in 1908. The building has just been finished and is yet to be painted.
Photo: Vantaa City Museum 

Arvid Sanmark had intended to dedicate himself to agriculture. However, this was not to be due to poor health. Arvid Sanmark died in 1908 before the new main building had been completed. His widow, Emilia Sanmark, continued managing the farm with the help of her cousin, Axel de la Chapelle and Alfred Malmgren, a steward hired under the Andelins. 

Per-Kasten, the youngest son of the family, became lord of the manor in 1922. During his time, the manor focused on large-scale farming. A milking machine and new tractors were purchased, and new houses were built for the workers. Håkansböle was one of the first farms in Finland to switch to entirely mechanized agricultural production. In the 1920s, Per-Kasten purchased several standardbred horses, the foals of which were sold to the Helsinki mounted police. 

 

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A John Deere tractor transports manure at the Håkansböle manor in 1930.  
In the background to the left is a stable, and to the right of it a garage (originally a dairy) and below that a henhouse.  
Photo: Vantaa City Museum

Per-Kasten got married in 1932 to Astrid Belfragen, who was Swedish. During the Second World War, the family fled to Sweden, where they settled permanently. After the war only Per-Kasten lived in Håkansböle year-round, while his wife and children would stay only for the holidays.

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Per-Kasten Sanmark sitting in front of the bay window of the main building of the Håkansböle manor in 1945. 
Photo: Vantaa City Museum

In late 1940, the manor began to focus on oil crops, getting rid of livestock entirely by 1951. Sanmark sold parcels of land from the manorial estate between 1937 and 1942, to become a housing area for the district of Vaarala, in 1950, among others, to Karl Fazer Ltd in 1960, Keskus-Sato Ltd, to be developed into Hakunila district’s new housing area. 

Per-Kasten died in 1983, and the ownership of the manor passed to his heirs. The Sanmarks used Håkansböle as a holiday home up until the 1990s. The manor was put up for sale in the autumn of 2002 by the heirs. The city of Vantaa decided to purchase the manor, along with its grounds, on 18 April 2005, and it came under the ownership of the city in August of the same year. 

The source material for this blog is Elina Riksman’s book Håkansbölen kartanossa - På Håkansböle gård (‘At the Håkansböle Manor’). 

The blog was translated by English students Julia Lehtinen, Anniina Levo, Emmi Linnakangas, Neea Mantere, Django Monto, Sante Ngiesi, Tino Nirkkonen and Leena Ravi, under the supervision of John Calton, lecturer in English, University of Helsinki.

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