Titus Vincentius Röslein and Lotten Ulrich’s fencing lessons

Last summer, I wrote about Augusta’s first love.

In the summer of 1845, Augusta turned 18. She had just finished her schooling in Stockholm and maybe her mother Anna thought it was time for her to meet a suitable young man. Why not at the most fashionable seaside resort on the Swedish west coast, Gustafsberg?

Well, did Augusta meet someone at Gustafsberg? Yes, she did fall in love but with someone not to her mother’s liking. At least, that is what comes across in the correspondence between Augusta and her best friend Lotten Westman. Who was he? Augusta and Lotten never mention him by name.

A couple of weeks ago, I found an 1845 newspaper announcement listing the guests who had arrived at Gustafsberg’s Spa at the same time as Augusta. I have been searching for some of those guests – maybe finding Augusta’s first love. Last week’s blog entry was about the family Salomon who arrived with two daughters and a son. Unfortunately, the son turned out to be only 14 years old.

This week, I decided to look up a Secretary T. Röslein from Stockholm.

Titus Vincentius Röslein

This time, I started my search for T. Röslein in the contemporary diary of Marie-Louise Forsell. And of course, Marie-Lousie knew him. His full name was Titus Vincentius. What a name!

Marie-Louise first mentioned meeting him and his sister Pellan at a dance hosted by Chamberlain Carl Henning Lützow d’Unker on 4 November 1845. Then, a month later, she invited the d’Unkers and four gentlemen to her home to celebrate Mrs. d’Unker’s birthday. But in addition to the guests, “the rather nice Titus Röslein came by himself.”

So now I knew that he was a rather nice guy and had a sister, Pellan. It was time to search the archives.

What I found in the archives

Titus was the only son of krigsrådet (royal military counsel) Carl Henric Röslein (4 March 1774 – 27 October 1840) and his wife Maria Charlotta Ericsson (8 Nov 1788 – 28 April 1877). Carl Henric was wealthy and had spent more than 20 years in England, Germany, and France in business and trade before, in 1814, he was hired by the Swedish crown prince, Carl Johan Bernadotte, in the prince’s private office.

The Röslein family lived close to the royal palace in Stockholm but spent the summers 1820-1829 at the bucolic Djurgården, at a house named Ludvigsro. In 1852, Ludvigsro was bought by Wilhelm Davidson, who renamed it Hasselbacken and opened a restaurant there. Kerstin has previously written about Davidson.

The siblings with the coolest names

But Titus was not the only child. There were 3 children born to Carl Henric and Maria Charlotta. And they were all given fantastic names:

  • Titus Vincentius (4 Jan 1824 – 19 April 1855)
  • Leontina Ebba Charlotta (? April 1825 – 22 May 1826)
  • Peregrina Maria Petronella (“Pellan”) (16 May 1828 – 15 June 1859)

Sadly, all children died early in life. Titus and Pellan both died at age 31 from tuberculosis while the cause of death was not specified in the church record for Leontina – only that she was 11 months old. They all belonged to Klara parish.

There are no digitized portraits of the children and the only thing we know of Titus was that he was nice and that he was a secretary at the central bank (Rikets Ständers Bank). Oh, and he was inducted into the Order of the Innocence in January of 1847. Augusta had already been a member since 1844. Being a member allowed one to attend the most prestigious balls in Stockholm. So at least, by the age of 23, Titus became a member.

Titus Rösling’s signature on the ledger for the new members of the Order of the Innocence in January 1847 (last row).

Could Titus have been Augusta’s first love?


  • In the summer of 1845, Titus was 21 years old and Augusta was 18
  • He was from a very wealthy family in Stockholm
  • He belonged to the social elite in Stockholm
  • He was nice

Possible Cons (in the eyes of Augusta’s family): Who knows? Maybe Titus’ father had been too controversial which could have affected the family name? A lot was written about him after his death in 1840, and there is a rather interesting biography of him in the national archives (in Swedish).

Carl Henric Röslein, miniature by J A Gillberg

Titus’ Father

Despite all the controversies about Titus’ father, there is a rather sweet entry about him in another contemporary diary. Augusta’s acquaintance, Lotten Ulrich – whose father was the king’s private secretary and therefore also worked with Titus’ father – wrote the following in her diary in March of 1831:

”Alb. Åmansson said that when she visited us a couple of years ago, I was dressed to fence, that is, in a riding coat and green bombazine pants, holding the foil and in the en garde position, because I was going to have a fencing lesson, which I had every day with krigsrådet Röslein. Oh, how fun these lessons were! He always made me laugh out loud, even though the positions and the lunge etc. were so grueling that I could hardly move after the lessons.”

Lotten Ulrich’s Fencing Attire

I have searched for paintings or illustration of girls fencing in the 1820s but found little and then only from the late 1800s. Those pictures show women fencing in skirts. Maybe Lotten Ulrich was just lucky that Carl Henric Röslein was interested in teaching her fencing. How common was that in the 1820s?

And then, how did they decide on the appropriate attire for a girl? What did a ”riding coat” look like?

A riding coat, or a bonjour, was simply a short jacket suitable for riding (see picture below).

18th century women’s riding coat

And the bombazine pants?

They were probably knee-breeches, like those men wore when fencing, but made of bombazine fabric.

And since I didn’t find any pictures, I made an illustration of how I think Lotten Ulrich might have looked during her lesson.

Lotten Ulrich’s fencing attire


Östman, Margareta. 2015. Systrarna Ulrichs dagböcker – från Stockholms slott, Djurgården och landsorten 1830-1855. Stockholm: Carlssons.   (Translation of title: The Ulrich Sisters’ Diaries – from Stockholm’s Palace, Djurgården, and the Countryside 1830-1855).

Heijkenskjöld, Syster, ed. 1915. Sällskapslif och hemlif i Stockholm på 1840-talet: ur Marie-Louise Forsells dagboksanteckningar. Stockholm: Bonnier.   (Translation of title: Social Life and Home Life in Stockholm in the 1840s: From Marie-Louise Forsell’s Diary Notes).

In Search of Sophia Charlotta Salomon and her Family

Last week, I was reading the Swedish newspaper, Bohusläns Tidning, from 1845 and found an announcement listing the guests who had arrived at Gustafsberg’s Spa. The list included Augusta, her mother, and her brother. I got curious about the other spa guests. What could I find out about them?

I decided to start with what seemed to be an important family, the family of Krigsrådet Carl Jacob Salomon (A krigsråd was one of four civilian members of the Royal War Council. The other three members of the council were military leaders). Carl Jacob was not visiting the spa, only his wife and their two daughters and a son.

I assumed that it would not be difficult to find out more about this family. But it was!

Google was of no use. I didn’t even find the krigsråd himself! And Salomon is a very common name, both as a first name and as a surname.

Then I searched on free genealogy sites and in some books of important Swedish families and found only limited information.

I decided to get serious and turned to the census records of Stockholm for 1845. There I found the whole family with names and birth dates and an address: Regeringsgatan 38. That is where the famous department store NK is now located.

  • Husband: Carl Jacob Salomon, born 9 December 1784
  • Wife: Ulrica Sophia von Seltzen, born 24 April 1802
  • Daughter: Charlotta, born 28 January 1827
  • Daughter: Hilda Jaquette, born 7 June 1828
  • Son: Ernst Carl Victor, born 13 May 1831

Now that I had names and birth dates, the search got easier.

Hilda Jaquette

Next, I turned to published contemporary diaries – those of Marie-Louise Forsell and Lotten Ulrich. They were both well-connected in Stockholm and both mentioned meeting up with the Salomon family.

“Maybe Carl has already told the news that our old dancer, the honorable man Wrangel at The Artillery, is engaged to the youngest Miss Salomon.” (Sällskapslif och hemlif i Stockholm på 1840-talet: Ur Marie-Louise Forsells dagboksanteckningar).

Jaquette married Count Tönnes Wrangel in 1848 and lived a long life and had 4 children.

 Ernst Carl Victor

Ernst Salomon

Ernst was even easier to find. He even had his own Wikipedia page. He became a medical doctor and specialized in psychiatry. He also married and lived a long life.

Sophia Charlotta

The only thing I could find about Charlotta was that she had died in 1856. Or at least, that is what two sources stated. I checked the church records for the Jacob parish in Stockholm, but there was no record of her having died in 1856. I searched the digitized newspapers for 1856 and there was no obituary either. I was running out of creative ways of finding her. Had she moved?

Yes, had they moved?

I realized that there was an online digitized card catalog of property deeds in Stockholm between 1675 and 1875!

Using the information from the census records, I started flipping through the cards until I got to Salomon’s address. Carl Jacob Salomon had bought the house in 1827. Then, every time someone in the Salomon family died, there was an inheritance record regarding the change of ownership of the house. The first one was when his wife died in 1846. Then he himself died in 1850 and, finally, Charlotta’s death was recorded as the 3rd of October 1855. At that time, Jaquette and her husband Tönnes bought the remaining share from brother Ernst.

I never knew that this archive existed or how useful it could be!

So Sophia Charlotta died in 1855 and not in 1856 as reported. Now I could find her death in the church records – she died from tuberculosis, just like our Augusta, at age 28. And I also found her obituary in the paper. She died at Harfva Gård in Ed parish northwest of Stockholm.

Carl Jacob and his wife Ulrica Sophia

Likewise, I could now find mother Ulrica Sophia’s death in the church records. She died at age 44 on 4 July 1846 from edema. Her passing was also mentioned in the daily newspapers.

The death of Carl Jacob at age 65 on 6 February 1850 was announced in the papers but for some unknown reasons, there was no church record of his death in Jacob’s parish. Did he possibly belong to some other parish?


So what else could I find? What about portraits of the family members? In the 1840s, it was popular to have the artist Maria Röhl sketch you. Did the Salomon family commission her to sketch them? I searched on the Swedish Royal Library’s website and sure enough, found them all in 1847. That was the year after the mother had died.

Carl Jacob Salomon 1784-1850. Drawing by Maria Röhl 1847.
Charlotta Salomon (1827-1855) and Ernst Salomon (1831-1880) . Drawing by Maria Röhl 1847.
Jaquette Salomon (Jaquette Wrangel) (1828-1911) Drawing by Maria Röhl 1847.


And then, Google just decided to surprise me. I don’t know what I searched on, but there it was – a daguerreotype of the family taken in the interior yard of their house with a sheet hanging as a backdrop. The picture must have been taken in 1848 or 1849 as Hilda’s husband Tönnes is included (they married in 1848) and before 1850 when the father died.

Daguerreotype of family Salomon, 1848 or 1849, sold at auction.
Family Salomon, 1848 or 1849. Front row: Charlotte, Carl Jacob, Jaquette. Back row: Ernst and Tönnes.

Gustafsberg in 1845

In the summer of 1845, when the family was arriving at Gustafsberg, were they excited to spend some time socializing at this fashionable spa resort? Were the girls curious about meeting young men that might be suitable spouses? Or was their mother, Ulrica Sophia, already sick and hoped that drinking water at the spa would help restore her health? Was Charlotta, who was the same age as Augusta, already ill with tuberculosis?

Unfortunately, Augusta had not started keeping a diary yet so we don’t know if she already knew the Salomon girls from Stockholm and if they socialized at Gustafsberg. The only correspondence we have, where she alludes to the stay at Gustafsberg, is a letter to her best friend Lotten about a young man she met and fell in love with. Nothing came of it, but it would be fun to know who he was.

Ernst Salomon can be easily be written off, he was only 14 years old.


The Victorian Zoom Room

In our family, we now have a “Zoom Room”. We have always Skyped with family members and had professional conference calls using a variety of platforms. Now, with the coronavirus pandemic, Zoom has become the popular way to connect. And with Zoom, one needs a room with the right lighting and some decent background. No more kitchen table conference calls with family members walking in the background.

TV hosts and their guests have also started to broadcast from home and it is interesting to study their choice of backgrounds – bookcases and artwork and portraits of family members.

So how would one decide what to have in the background and what would it signal?

Bohuslän’s Newspaper

Last night I was reading a Swedish newspaper, Bohusläns Tidning, from 1845. I had searched on Augusta’s family name and found an announcement in this paper that Augusta’s family had arrived at Gustafsberg’s Spa. In itself, it was a fascinating find and I will continue to follow that thread. But what else did the paper cover that day?

Well, there was a ball to be held at the spa the forthcoming Sunday and the tickets could be purchased at Anton Ahlbom’s for 24 skilling banco.

And Carolina Charlotta Bruhn was advertising her café where she served tea, coffee, and lemonade daily. One could also order all kinds of baked goods and especially the not-so-well-known meringues with rose-, punch-, vanilla-, or chocolate flavoring. Not to mention, ice-creams!

The Real Gentleman

And then, Hallman’s Book & Music store listed the arrival of the latest prints, musical notes, and books. There were prints of the Swedish opera singer, Jenny Lind, and pianoforte notes for a selection of songs from the opera La fille du régiment by the Italian composer Gaetano Donizetti.

And what about the books? The book with the most interesting title was The Real Gentleman, or Principles and Rules for Decorum and a Keen Sense under Special Conditions of Social Life. The actual title, once I found this book online, had the additional subtitle: A Tutorial for Young Men to make them liked in Society and by the Opposite Sex. The book was originally written in German by Professor J. G. Wenzel and now translated to Swedish.

This book is a gem for anyone who wants to understand the societal rules of the mid-1800s. I scanned the topics: The Beauty of the Body, The Gaze and the Countenance, Body Positions and Movements, and so on. Then it got to a very interesting chapter: Furnishing of the “Reception Room”.

Furnishing of the Reception Room

During Victorian times, visitations were important and visitors would be received in the reception room (or drawing room, or parlour, depending on the regional differences in naming this room). According to the author, the furnishing of the reception room was of utmost importance if you wanted to be liked in Society and by the opposite sex!

And these were the important considerations for furnishing the reception room:

“…Everything here should betray a purified taste as well as knowledge of the world and times. Paintings, household utensils, and ornaments must make it clear to the visitor that he is in a house where understanding, taste, and fine customs abide.

…This room, designed for the reception of strangers, should be suitably furnished so that neither cabinets, dining tables, desk, dressers, toilet mirrors, nor beds are visible. Chandeliers or lamps, game tables, ottomans, divans, sofas, canopies, or so-called bouncer, etc., are the things that belong in a reception room…

…Well-polished tables and chairs of mahogany or good native tree species and in a modern style make a favorable impression.

…If there are several wide walls in the room, then it is necessary, between the chairs, to set appropriate tables with a vase, a clock, a beautiful alabaster figure, etc. To decorate the tables in the reception room with glass, porcelain, or other everyday objects is of low taste, even as it has often been fashionable.

…If one wants to hang paintings or etchings in the reception room, then they should be made by a master artist and have a suitable subject. Naked figures are obscene, even if they were made by the greatest master. Family portraits, mostly of the present owners, also do not fit in the reception room. One should not want to place one’s dear self everywhere.

Finally, it is obvious that the room should be tidy and free of dust.

Furnishing of the Zoom Room

Today’s Zoom Room is what the Victorian Reception Room was, a room where you will meet your friends, discuss, debate, and share stories. So what can one learn from The Real Gentlemen’s principles and rules? What should be the background in your room when you greet your visitors on Zoom?

  1. The room should be suitably furnished so that dressers, toilet mirrors, and beds are not visible.
  2. Everything should betray a purified taste as well as knowledge of the world and times.
  3. If one wants to hang paintings, they should be made by master artists.
  4. No paintings of nudes even if they were made by the greatest master!
  5. No family portraits.
  6. Keep it tidy, and no dust!

What about bookshelves? It seems to be popular today. Did the gentlemen of Victorian times not read a lot?

I am sure the author would have suggested a bookshelf if the books betrayed a purified taste and knowledge of the world and the times, if there were no nudes on the dust jackets, and if there were no dust on the shelves.

Victorian men using Zoom