History

Tradition dictates that nineteen laterally flapped countrymen saw the need to stick together, in a more or less organized fashion, in 1639 and – to that end – conceived of Västmanlands and Dala landskap, today known as Västmanlands-Dala Nation. The year can be questioned, as can their motivation, but this story has been etched upon the hearts of our members and has long been considered true by most. Here, the accessible and popular chronological succession has been employed for your convenience. Consider it enjoyable and relevant!1639

  • Already dealt with! The foundation! V-Dala creates its own treasury and bylaws. Anders Andersson from Sala and Johan Otto from Falun are appointed Curators – i.e. Treasurers. Academic enthusiasm regarding the nations is small, and the University outlaws them.

1647

  • The Curators decide to start keeping records. Still luke-warm interest from the Academy regarding nations, which are still outlawed.

1663

  • Instead branding the nations as outlaws, the University decides to use them to keep the students in line, and thus professors Olof Rudbeck and Johan Sundell are appointed Inspectors of V-Dala.

1667

  • Academic insight into the greatness of the idea of using the nations – membership in V-Dala is made compulsory for all students from its homelands.

1680

  • The first history of V-Dala, Annales societatis Nationalis Studiosorum et Westmannia Dalekarliaque Upsaliae degentium, is published.

1692

  • The Nation decides to start taking notes during Landskap meetings.

1694

  • The Nation’s last major feast before the drudge and dreariness of the 18th century.

1695

  • To create some form of regular feast-less entertainment, the Nation starts hosting academically connected orations and thesis defenses which came to dominate nation life for the next 200 years.

1703

  • Margareta Tersera donates funds for the Nation’s first scholarship.

1714

  • His Majesty’s Governor in the province of Västmanland, baron Ludvig “generous Ludvig” Fahlström, donates a load of books to the Nation. Today, these books are considered the foundation of the Nation’s library.

1748

  • The Nation abolishes the earlier rule that younger members must wait on the older. To compensate for the subsequent lack of manpower a “landskapsgosse” is hired.

1754

  • The Nation quickly adapts to present circumstances and hires a caretaker to replace the “landskapsgosse”.

1761

  • Senior members Gustav Anton Boudrie, Olof Rabenius and Per Niklas Christiernin are honored by the Nation with continued membership, which is thought to be the foundation of the Nation’s honorary membership.

1785

  • Gustav Adolf Schilling is appointed caretaker of the library, and is now said to be the first Librarian.

1816

  • The Nation decides to only appoint one Curator at a time.

1823

  • The Nation feels that an organisation of its dignity and with such a magnificent library should have its own house, and therefore starts a building foundation.

1824

  • The Nation realizes that its affairs should be in better order, especially with the building foundation to look after, and organizes a building committee.

1826

  • The Nation acquires Lutgården from Uplands Nation at a cost of 633 riksdaler 16 skilling banco. As Lutgården was a bog, we are said to have been tricked – starting the feud with the Uplanders.

1831

  • The new Nation house in Lutgården is inaugurated with feasting et rejoicing.

1832

  • Mrs. The Lord Steward of the Royal Household Montgomery of Ekerö donates a giant portrait of the Duke of Västmanland to commemorate the 200th anniversary of his death. The painting quickly became, and still is, something of a graphical profile for the Nation.

1837

  • Countryman Johan Olof Wallin is appointed archbishop of the Realm. The Nation’s residential poet Carl Wilhelm honors the prelate with a poem. Wallin is so touched that he pens Westmanno-Dala sång, whichis our national anthem to this day, and also initiates the tradition of having a ceremonial landskap every year by donating the first grant.

1840

  • The Nation realizes that an organisation of its dignity and grace – with its own town house – should have a chairman and a treasurer instead of vesting both offices in one person. Thus, Curatorship was split in two, creating the First and Second Curators’ offices.

1843

  • The Nation receives its first banner.

1855

  • The Nation decides to better organize its parties, creates club-bylaws and appoints members Tengman and Nordeman its first Club masters.

1857

  • The Library commission, later the Library committee, is formed, and assumes the Senior members’ college’s responsibility of purchasing books.

1866

  • Dalpelle arrives.

1869

  • New bylaws are passed, abolishing the mandatory orations and thesis defenses, and the building committee, with new and greater responsibilities, is renamed the Maintenance committee.

1870

  • The Nation’s first singing tour of the homelands to gather funds for the upkeep of the Nation house.

1873

  • The Landsmål association.

1883

  • The heirs of honorary members Hans and Carl Thomas Järta donate large portions of the illustrious gentlemen’s private libraries to the Nation, which has contributed greatly to the Library’s good standing in the world of libraries.

1888

  • Lilly Bergstrand and Lydia Wahlstöm are the Nation’s first female members.

1890

  • It is discovered that the Nation tomb is almost full, wherefore a new plot is acquired and a monument is erected at the old one.

1898

  • Inspector Wilhelm Erik Svedelius is laid to rest in the in the new Nation tomb, which is decorated with a huge monument topped with a bust of Svedelius.

1906

  • The National portrait gallery is published for the first time.

1908

  • Carl Larsson donates the concept art for his fresco “Gustaf Wasa entering Stockholm” to the Nation.

1912

  • The Nation conducts its first spex tour of the homelands, the programme includes “Erik XIV” and “Cleopatra”.

1915

  • The Nation house is inaugurated after major rebuilding. A festschrift is published commemorating the occasion.

1920

  • Honorary member Anders Zorn finds it unpleasant that Uplanders can see him from their garden whenever nature calls, and donates funds for a wall to be built around Lutgården.

1921

  • The Nation publishes its first song book.

1922

  • The Nation believes that the organisation must be expanded to cope with the demands of maintenance, and thus, Rudolf Andersson is elected the Nation’s first Treasurer.

1924

  • The Preparatory commission is constituted.

1928

  • Certain alumni cause the first part of the Nation’s chronicle to be published.
  • As the Nation’s parties need further guidance, the first Club hostess is elected.

1930

  • Premiere of the spex “Frithiof och Ingeborg”

1931

  • Inauguration of Nils Sjögren’s statue depicting Finn Malmgren.

1945

  • Delayed by six years by the war, the Nation celebrates its 300th anniversary in Uppsala castle’s great hall.

1949

  • The Nation has no further need for committees for every foreign university from which exchange students arrive, and institutes the International association, later known as the International committee.

1951

  • The Västmanlands-Dala Nation Student Home foundation is instituted. It acquires two lots on Övre Slottsgatan, but the municipal building committee refuses to grant building permits.

1956

  • The first public debate regarding the Nation’s crisis. The Nation will purchase a television apparatus to attract new members. To finance this contraption, an unusual party will be held – Stora Stöten – where a slide borrowed from the municipal parks department replaces the entrance. Dancing in the great hall is so vigorous as to melt the varnish on the painting of Gustav II Adolf, which needs to be sent for restoration. Instead of buying a TV, the Nation donates the proceeds from the party to Hungarian refugees. Later, a TV is purchased with funds acquired by more conventional means.

1959

  • The Nation’s first residential area, Triangeln, is inaugurated.

1960

  • Anders H Pers is elected the Nation’s first editor, and begins publishing Landskapsposten.
  • On Håkan Gezelii initiative ab Kruthornen is founded.

1961

  • Premiere of the spex “Gustaf den Adolf”
  • Alvar Aalto is asked to design the new Nation House.
  • The Svartmangatan housing complex is inaugurated.
  • The Nation string band, now the Folk music group, is founded.

See Alvar Aalto talk about the new Nation house in 1964 here (on SVTplay)

  • Demolition of the old Nation house is started on April 6th.
  • The Nation throws a topping out-party at Smålands Nation on November 19th.

1965

  • Curt Nyström is elected the first Bar master as the new Nation house is inaugurated on September 3rd.

1967

  • Foundation of Letta Gardet.

1968

  • A Nation Rally is conducted for the first time.

1971

  • Lo and behold, V-Dala was bequeathed Ofvandahls in a time when its income was meager – as a Providential gift or a kringle from Heaven – we’ve sold it now but it was fun while it lasted.

1972

  • V-Dala salongskör, later known as the V-Dala Choir, is started.

1975

  • For economic reasons, the Nation is forced to reorganize. The bylaws are abolished, a hired excecutive director – later the Economy and property manager – replaces the Second Curator as keeper of funds and keys, making the Second Curator head of entertainment, the Club master is replaced by a Third Curator and the Librarian no longer draws a full-time salary.

1976

  • The Nation is back on its feet after its worst economic crisis ever.

1978

  • New bylaws are created on May 16th, written by former First Curator Bo Aulin, in which the Nation’s present-day organization with a board, commissions and committees is defined. The Third Curator reverts to being titled Club master and the Second Curator’s responsibility for the so-called program activities – i.e. entertainment in general at the Nation – is well defined.

1980-1981

  • The open colonnade under the Nation house is walled in to allow for new tenants.

1989

  • The Nation’s 350th anniversary is celebrated with a ball at the castle and a celebratory performance of “Gustav den Adolf”.

1990

  • Two countrymen hoist the V-Dala banner in the Uplanders’ flagpole.

1991

  • The Culture Club is started.

1993

  • The Nation’s summer restaurant Taket is inaugurated on the new rooftop terrace.
  • The Housing foundation starts renting buildings on Döbelnsgatan from the County council.

1995

  • Summer council in Idre with a subsequent march – known as the V-Dala march – to Uppsala. As a consequence of the march, the Harald Riesenfeld fund for restoration of the Nation house becomes popular among municipalities, counties and corporations in the homelands.

1996

  • The Nation’s PR-work is reorganized; our website is launched and the office of Information secretary is created  – with Gustaf Brandberg as first incumbent.