Some profiles from Kosia at Möckeln

“Of course there have been a lot of strange people living here at” Kosia “next to Möckeln, said the cannon detail cutter, singer and primeval forester Frank Holmstrand when we talked to him the summer before he passed away, and came to talk about some famous and preserved names in the history of the area. profiles, who lived next to Möckeln’s eastern shore, popularly never called anything other than “Kosia”.

Among the most famous from this side of the lake are of course “Trôllskötten” and “Skener-Israel”, continued Frank Holmstrand, who himself was 80 years old and who for many years lived by the narrow winding road between Karlskoga and Degerfors. He lived at the time of his death in the municipality of Degerfors, but he constantly pointed out that he was born and raised on the right side of the border, ie in Karlskoga municipality.

– Since I belong to the famous Nytorp family, one of the most genuine Karlskoga families, I must feel like a Karlskoga man, he also emphasized.

The “Trôllskötten” made skates, or rails, as they said. “Skener-Israel” he squatted and ran faster and longer than anyone else, faster than many horses could.

It is alleged that Gustaf Fröding wrote a poem about “Skener-Israel”. It’s not unbelievable. There was talk of “Skener-Israel” achievements as runners far outside Karlskoga.

“Det var en gutt som di kalla Skenerkutt.
Denne va värst på hele jola å kutt å kappränn…”

This is how Gustaf Fröding begins his poem about a Värmland sprinter and long jumper. The poem further tells about how “Skenerkutt” ran to catch up and past a mare. The horse was owned by rich man Strutt. After the runner-up, according to Fröding, “Hele gårn och Strutt’s daughter Lena” became the profit “Skenerkutt” took home for his record run.

Throughout his remaining life, “Skenerkutt” lived carefree.

Ran with horses

– Now, of course, it is not known whether the crofter “Skener-Israel” from Kosia by Möckeln, from the border area between Karlskoga and Degerfors, won his beautiful wife Maria by catching up with horses, which he had evidently done on some occasions.

– Another event agrees with Fröding’s poem. “Skener-Israel” married a miner’s daughter from Östra Nytorp, said Frank Holmstrand, who in his childhood had heard a lot about “Skenern”, as he was also called, and about his wonderful running contributions.

Sometimes it happened that he ran to catch up and passed horses, which took part in the winter trotting competitions on Möckeln’s ice. He was faster than the church boat from Karlskoga church village to Östervik, even though he had four times as long a distance to run as the one the 12 rowers had from the pier at Näset in the church village to the pier at Östervik.

“Skener-Israel” he was called after he caught up with and past a couple of running horses. He came so far before the frightened horses that he could stop them by closing a gate across the road at Brickegården in eastern Karlskoga.

His real name was Israel Jansson. He was born in 1830 at the snow mountain hut in northeast Karlskoga, not far from the ore mines in Dalkarsberg. After getting married, he settled at Dalbacken next to Östervik between Karlskoga and Degerfors. He got a job as a construction worker at Degerfors Ironworks.

The Recordlap

One working day at the Ironworks, after a dinner break at Strömsnäs manor, Israel was asked by builder Sjökvist to start red-staining one of the mill’s houses after the break, which was an hour long.

Israel had not expected that work order. He had, in fact, borrowed the red paintbrush for painting his own house. Now good advice was expensive. There was no time for reflection. Israel immediately rushed to the home, which was just over a mile from the workplace. Before the break was over he returned to his work and now he had the brush with him.

– We know that the story is true. We have measured the distance and in total “Skener-Israel” ran 20,500 meters in less than an hour, wrote in 1957 Paul Sarwe, before his death known sports leader in Degerfors Idrottsförening, who the same year, in connection with the association turned 50, took the initiative to a memorial race called “Skener-Israel’s memorial race”, which then gathered the Swedish long-distance running elite.

Despite the fact that the track at the memorial race measured 19,500 meters, and despite the conditions being different and better than when “Skenern” himself covered the distance in his work clothes, no one managed to beat the record from Israel’s run after the red brush.

"Kosidan's" Names and Profiles

At least as famous as “Skener-Israel” was “Trõllskötten”, whose bourgeois name Karl A Jansson few know, although he belongs to the line of legendary profiles from Karlskoga.

– He lived here next to the lake before he moved further into the forest, to Lake Ölen, Frank Holmstrand said that summer day, when we spent several hours talking about “Kosia” and the area east of Möckeln.

– Some out here, who do not really like that with the designation “Kosia” squeeze with “Kosidán”, which they think sounds French and nice, jokes Frank Holmstrand and you were unwittingly reminded of his revue player acts from his youth. Then he played and sang the Italian song “Gondolsång” so that the colleagues at the Milling Department in Bofors claimed that their wives promised Frank butter coupons if he wanted to come and sing at the next women’s club meeting in the Folk’s House.

– Yes, you see. “Kosia” was because the farmers on the west side of the lake every summer took over the young animals for summer work on the lake meadows on the east side. There were only small farmers here and they needed an extra splash of milk every day, which they also received as payment if they looked after the cows from the rich sea farms west of the lake.

But it was “Trõllskötten”. He became nationally known as a skate manufacturer. A self-hardened iron rail was cut into a foot-shaped wooden holder, which could then be tied to the winter footwear with leather straps.

Everyone in the area around Möckeln of course went on “Trõllskötter”, as the skates were called. They became so popular that they came to be sold all over the country, even abroad because they were exported after some foreigners visiting Bofors were convinced that better skates than those from “Trõllskötten & Co”, as his company was called, did not exist few in the skating school country Sweden.

“Trõllskötten” was also called Jansson. But he was not at all related to “Skener-Israel”. That the dialect word “rails” can stand for both skating and running on foot is only a coincidence, and has nothing to do with the reputation of these two historical figures. The only common denominator they could invoke was that they both belonged to “Kosia” by Möckeln.

Nationally known village smith

The farmers went to “Trôllsköttens” smithy more than once to get a new scythe forged or an old one hardened and ground. “Trôllskötten” was hired by a village blacksmith on the east side of Möckeln before he became nationally known as a skate manufacturer.

He eventually moved to the area of Östervik. His skating factory “Trôllskötten & Co” then had the postal address Valåsen.

In his old age, he moved back to Brännebacken, which is closer to Degerfors. He died there on November 11, 1909. He was then 85 years old.

When skate production reached its peak, one could find advertisements in the newspapers around the country with the following wording:

Ice skating will be a pleasure
first with Trôllsköttens
unusually easy-going skates.
Sent by cash on delivery 4: – per couple.
“Trôllskötten & Co”, Valåsen
Cut out the ad!
Will not return.

Knives and files could also be requisitioned by mail order from “Trôllsköttens” smithy in Östervik. It is said that he started working in his smithy at three o’clock in the morning on the days he was not out hunting in the woods. His boats were large, and he often seemed to leave home with a rifle and a hunting bag. The name “Trôllskötten” had something to do with some of his incredible hunting activities.

A poem about an evening with spring fires, a Valborg fair evening at Hyttfallet in Immetorp, gossip about what the men had up there over in the forest areas around Östervik and Ölsdalen. This is one of the verses in the poem:

“Since they cheered for the spring, the young people rushed to the dance. Valås-Karl tells about the work on the cabin wreath, how the people had to toil with ore from Snöbergshult, when Immetorphyttan was blown too full every spring. Good on stories is Anton Frisk from Östervik, the one about “Trôllsköttens” hare hunt no other corpse. The laughter rises high up to the height of Hyttfallet when he draws it about Finn-Pål’s home-burning joy.”

A few weeks after “Trôllskötten” passed away, an auction was held of his estate in the cottage at Brännebacken. He had brought life to nine children and some of them settled in the area east of Möckeln.

The “Trôllskötten Skates”, which are now museums, were used for ice skating well into the 1920s. Then came better steel skates. First a model called “cooker hooks” and which was very reminiscent of the “Trôllskötten” model.

The next development phase in the skating area was “The Figures” and then came pipe skates, which were mounted directly on boots. Steel of the quality needed for skate production was made at the steel mills in both Bofors and Degerfors for a long time.

With the village blacksmith Karl A Jansson, “Trôllskötten” called for time and eternity, it was over with Karlskogabygden as a center for ice skating known throughout the country. It was something like that during the years when ads in newspapers around the country talked about the easy-going skates from “Trôllskötten & Co”, Valåsen, Karlskoga.