June 8, 2016

2600 SWEDEN (Blekinge) - Naval Port of Karlskrona (UNESCO WHS)

The city of Karlskrona is spread over 30 islands in the eastern part of Blekinge County, in the Baltic Sea, Trossö being the main one. It was founded in 1680 when the Royal Swedish Navy was relocated from the Stockholm area to the Trossö island, because at the time Sweden was the dominant military power in the Baltic sea region, but needed a better strategic location against Denmark, since southern parts of Sweden had been conquered only a few decades before.

The Swedish fleet tended to get stuck in the ice during winter while located close to Stockholm and was therefore moved south. The city name means Karl's Crown in honour of King Karl XI of Sweden, the name being inspired by the name of the city Landskrona. The city grew quickly as one of the biggest cities in the country. Most of the baroque buildings from this era are still standing, which is why the city centre is architecturally uniform.

The shipyard in Karlskrona was established almost at the same time as the city, and in 1711 it was Sweden's largest industrial employer with 1,100 workers. The oldest dock, the Polhem dock, is cut in the cliff itself and is still in use. The original plan and many of the buildings have survived intact, along with installations that illustrate its subsequent development up to the present day. Since the streets all follow a grid pattern the winds can blow freely from the sea right into the heart of the city.

Björkholmen is a small neighborhood, with narrow streets and old wooden houses, located near the old naval base on the west side of the island Trossö. It was formerly inhabited by the shipyard workers, so the streets are named after types of ships or admirals. Many of the small houses are from the 18th century and were built by ship carpenters for themselves and their families. They are still in such good condition, because for construction was used only oak wood, "diverted" from the shipyard.

About the stamp

The stamp, designed by Henrik Karlsson and issued on May 8, 2014, depicts the Swedish flag.

Karlskrona - Wikipedia
Naval Port of Karlskrona - UNESCO official website
Björkholmen, Historical District in Karlskrona - Guidebook Sweden

Sender: Krystyna Betiuk (direct swap)
Sent from Karlskrona (Blekinge / Sweden), on 02.06.2016
Photo: Patrik Flyden 

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