The Archive Society of Emmaboda

(Re-)learning the Archive talks to Pähr Gustavsson, one of the initiators behind Emmabodabygdens Arkivförening (The Archive Society of Emmaboda) which originally went by the name of Vissefjärdabygdens Arkivförening (the Archive Society of Vissefjärda). He is still very much involved in the archive’s activities.

Can you tell us a bit more about the background behind the Archive Society?
The society was founded in 1983 as the project I Glasriket – Människan, miljön, framtiden (In the Kingdom of Crystal – Humans, Environment, Future) came to an end and we wanted to create something more permanent. There were some old premises in Vissefjärda that we turned into a society archive. From that we have slowly grown, increased our activites and improved our premises. Among other things our members came together to finance mobile archive shelving. In 2006 we got better digital and visual archives.

We keep accumulating more archives. The project Kris i repris (Rerunning crisis) had collected older note sheets from music societies. The eldest ones were notes from Lessebo from the late 19th century. When Torsten Jansson bought the glassworks he wanted to sell the collections at auction. The municipality then came in and bought them. All the items ended up at The Glass Factory, but there were many archives around. We came to an agreement with Emmaboda municipality that we would take care of these archives. There are pictures, accounts, staff lists, sketches. And there are films, among others a film about Boda from the 1960s which must have been shown on American TV.

Voluntary work has been crucial in building the archive. The material we received from Kosta weighed 17 tons. It was transported to the archive by volunteers from the local folk museum, among others. Seventeen people worked without any pay because they thought it was important to safeguard the material.


(Re-)learning the Archive

is a three-year long development project run by Designarkivet in Pukeberg with support from the Swedish Arts Council and Region Kalmar län (Kalmar County Council).

Christina Zetterlund
Project Manager

Maija Zetterlund
Project Coordinator  

In collaboration with

Virserums konsthall
Linnaeus University
Kalmar Konstmuseum

Designer in residence:
Evelina Mohei
Design and webb:
Mika Kastner Johnson

With support from 

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Kulturrådets logotyp