Norrkoping - Encyclopedia

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NORRKOPING, a town and port of Sweden, in the district (ldn) of Ostergotland, 113 m. S.W. of Stockholm by the Malmo railway. Pop. (1880) 26,735; (1900) 41,008. It occupies both banks of the Motala, the wide and rapid emissary of lake Vetter, close to its outlet in the Bravik, an inlet of the Baltic. Having been burned by the Russians in 1719 and visited by further fires in 1812, 1822 and 1826, the whole town has a modern appearance, with wide and regular streets. Among the more conspicuous buildings are St Olaf's church (erected by Gustavus Adolphus in 1616 and rebuilt in 1765-1767); St Hedvig's, built by the German colony in 1670; the town hall, dating from the beginning of the 19th century; the high school (1868), and technical and weaving schools. Norrkoping is the fourth town in population and industrial importance in Sweden. The falls in the river afford motive power to the cloth and cotton mills (spinning and weaving)-the staple industries-and to factories for sugar, paper, lithography, tobacco and carpets, joinery works and breweries. There are also shipbuilding yards and docks. Fine granite is quarried at Grafversfors, 71 m. N. The inlet of Bravik affords excellent harbour accommodation, with from 33 ft. to 171 ft. of water below the bridges in the town. The town returns two members to the second chamber of the Riksdag (parliament).

A bull of Pope Lucius III. shows that Norrkoping existed in 1185. At the meeting of the states in 1604 Duke Charles assumed the Swedish crown as Charles IX.; and not long afterwards Duke John of Ostergotland introduced German craftsmen into Norrkoping, and thus originated its industrial activity. Under Charles XII. the town suffered not only from war but from pestilence, 2700 of its inhabitants perishing in 1710-1711. After the Russian invasion of 1719 the population was only 2600.

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