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Kalmar War, 1611-1613
The Kalmar War was one of a series of wars between Sweden and Denmark. It was caused by rivalry between the two powers in the Baltic and by Swedish efforts to gain control of Finnmark, the area to the north of Lapland (it should be remembered that Norway and Denmark were united at this period, giving Denmark a presence in the arctic north.
Christian IV of Denmark had been in favour of a war with Sweden for some time. He had been unable to convince the Danish Council of his case in the previous decade, but in 1611 convinced them to support him by threatening to declare war in his role as duke of Holstein.
Christian commanded a small professional army and a powerful navy. The Swedes were distracted by events to their east, where Muscovy was suffering her “time of troubles” (1604-1613), a period of political chaos, and had been involved in a war with Poland since 1600. In the 1611 campaign Christian was able to capture the city of Kalmar, on the south east coast of Sweden, with an army that contained on 4,580 infantry and 645-700 cavalry. The same campaign saw the death of Charles IX of Sweden. He was replaced by the young Gustavus Adolphus.
The campaign of 1612 was dominated by inconclusive border warfare. The Danish navy had control of the sea, allowing Christian to capture Öland, and in June 1612 the Danes captured Älvsborg, on the west coast of Sweden.
The war came to an end in January 1613 at the Peace of Knarod, which saw Finnmark go to Denmark and Älvsborg ransomed back to Sweden (Finnmark is now the northernmost part of Norway). Despite his victory in the war, Christian recognised the problems with his army, and in the following years made an attempt to strengthen it.
History of Scandinavia
The history of Scandinavia is the history of the geographical region of Scandinavia and its peoples. The region is in northern Europe, and consists of Denmark, Norway, and Sweden. Finland and Iceland are at times, especially in English-speaking contexts, considered part of Scandinavia.
In the early 17th century, the rulers of Denmark-Norway sought to pursue dynastic expansion aspirations into northern Germany and to protect the country and its hegemony over the Baltics from Sweden. From 1563 to 1570, Sweden and Denmark fought in the Northern Seven Years' War. In 1607, King Charles IX of Sweden, seeking to avoid paying Denmark's "Sound Dues", began collecting taxes on Danish territory in Norway, planning to create a new trade route through sparsely-populated Lappland. Denmark protested against Sweden's evasion of their taxes, and, in 1611, they declared war in order to regain control of Lappland.
The Danes attacked from Kristianopel towards Kalmar, from Halmstad towards Jonkoping, and from Norway towards Alvsborg, and, while a 6,000-strong Danish army took Kalmar, the Swedes stormed Kristianopel and blunted the Danish assault. In the summer of 1611, the Swedes invaded Norwegian Jamtland and Harjedalen, both of which fell without much resistance. However, the locals eventually rose up against the Swedes and expelled them in the fall of 1612. In 1612, the new Swedish king Gustavus Adolphus was defeated by the Danes in the Battle of Vittsjo and nearly drowned during the surprise attack, and the Danes also took Alvsborg and Gullberg in Gothenburg. The Danish attempts to assault Stockholm, however, failed due to the Swedes' scorched earth policies, and the Danes were soon unable to pay their mercenaries. On 20 January 1613, pressured by King James I of England, the two sides made peace, and, while the Swedes had to pay a large indemnity and forfeit their conquered lands, they were exempted from the Sound toll.
The History of Kalmar Castle
Around 1180 a defense tower was built on the site where Kalmar Castle now stands. The intention was to protect the area from attacks by pirates and other enemies. By the beginning of the 1200s, Kalmar was established as a city.
During the reign of King Magnus "Barnlock", additional towers and a ring wall were built on the site. The Guard Tower to west contained the original main entrance. At the time the fortress was the most advanced of its kind in Sweden.
For a long period the castle was a powerful defensive compound, primarily through its strategically important location. The Swedish-Danish border was not far to the south. Scania, Blekinge and Halland were Danish territories until 1658.
The Kalmar Union
Arguably, the most significant political event in Kalmar during the Middle Ages was the formation of the Kalmar Union in 1397 in which Sweden, Norway and Denmark were members. Queen Margareta was the mastermind behind the union which unified the countries, through a common monarch and common foreign policy. The union also worked as a counterweight to the German Hanseatic League. With the coronation of Gustav Vasa in Sweden in 1523, the union was formally dissolved.
The Vasa kings
During the time of the Vasa kings Gustav I, Erik XIV and Johan III, the castle was redesigned into the building it is today. During the 16th century the medieval fortress was made into a Renaissance palace after European fashion. Both Erik XIV and Johan III hired artists and carpenters from Europe to modernize the castle architecture and decorations, according to the preferences of the day. In the King's Chamber one finds one of the oldest preserved pictures of the castle, in intarsia, placed on the door that leads to the privy and the secret passage through which one could escape to other sections of the castle. In the Golden Hall one finds an entirely unique gilded ceiling.
The Kalmar War
During the Kalmar War, the governor Krister Some gave up the castle to the Danes on 3 August 1611. He was branded a traitor and according to tradition his face is the one engraved on the staircase before the eastern section of the castle. The Danes held the castle until 1613. After the Treaty of Roskilde in 1658, the castle was no longer needed to protect the old border and it lost its strategical location. Thus it was no longer needed for military defense. Royal visits became increasingly rare and the grand halls were used for other purposes. There were prison cells and even a distillery.
A vibrant castle
Kalmar Castle is a symbol for Kalmar. The castle's history features international politics, court intrigues, fiery sieges and fierce battles. Today the castle is vibrant and lively place where many people visit.
Military history of Norway
The military history of Norway commences before the Viking age with the internal wars fought between regional kings to obtain the supreme kingship of the whole of Norway. The most famous period of Norwegian history and thus military history is the Viking age, but the early Middle Ages was the era when Norwegian military power in Europe reached its peak. Since then the Norwegian military has experienced long periods of neglect, but also rearmament and victories.
4. Peak and decline
1262–1266 The Scottish–Norwegian War concerning the control over the Hebrides and the Isle of Man. The Battle of Largs in 1263, which was the only major battle, had an inconclusive result, but over time Scottish profited and gained control over the Hebrides in return for recognising Norwegian rule in Orkney and Shetland.
In 1295, Magnus VI of Norway forged an alliance with France and Scotland against England, whereby Norway undertook to supply the King of France with 300 ships and 50 000 troops. It is clear that Norway could not have the manpower to fulfill the terms of this treaty, however, it was never put to the test.
In 1299, King Haakon V of Norway took the throne, and moved the capital of the country to Oslo. Haakon led an active foreign policy, aimed at increasing Norways influence in Scandinavia. These policies, which included complex dynastic ties between the Nordic royal houses, were to lead Norway into several centuries of unions with her neighbours. Over time Norways position in the unions would be increasingly weak. The Black plague came to Norway in 1349 and raged until 1351, severely weakening Norways military abilities.
5. Union wars 1434–1523
The union wars are a period of constant struggle of dominance of the union between Denmark and Sweden. Norway for the most part keeps out of the struggle. In 1501 The Swedes attack Norway but are forced back. However, when the Swedes eventually defeats the Danes and secedes from the union it leaves Norway the sole weak partner in a union with a much stronger Denmark. The elite in Norway was so weakened that it was not able to resist the pressures from the Danes. More and more decisions were taken in Copenhagen and the Norwegian Riksråd was eventually disbanded. The Danish crown was represented by a governor styled Statholder, but it was always important for the King to maintain Norways legal status as a separate hereditary kingdom. The Norwegian Army would remain a separate body, but a common fleet was established in 1509.
6. Seven-Year War 1563–1570
1563, 15 September – A Danish army moves into Sweden and occupies Alvsborg
1571, 25 January – A peace treaty is concluded and terminates the war between Denmark and Sweden. Denmark gives back Alvsborg in return for 150.000 daler Danish coin.
1565 – The wars only big battle stands at Axtorna. Rantzau defeats a numerically superior Swedish army
1563, 31 July – Ambition and a fight over the right to each others national weapons, war breaks out between Denmark and Sweden
1564, 30 May – A Danish fleet under the command of Herluf Trolle defeats a Swedish fleet between Oland and Gotland
7. Northern wars
The Northern Wars 1596–1720 were a period of almost continual war and preparation for war, including the Kalmar War 1611–1613, the Thirty Years War 1618–1648, the Northern War 1655–1658, the Gyldenlove War 1675–1679 and culminating in the Great Northern War 1700–1721.
8. Kalmar War 1611–1613
1613, 20 January Denmark-Norway and Sweden sign a peace treaty. Denmark becomes an uncontested power nation in Scandinavia
1611, 11 June The Swedish Army is defeated at Kalmar.
1612, The Battle of Kringen was an ambush perpetrated by a Norwegian peasant militia against Scottish mercenary soldiers who were on their way to enlist in the Swedish army for the Kalmar War.
1611, 4 April War between Denmark-Norway and Sweden breaks out when Sweden attempts to break the Danish monopoly on trade with Russia
9.1. 30-Year War 1618–1648 Thorsteinson War 1643–1645
In December 1643 war with Sweden breaks out because of a long dispute over the dominance of the Oresund, and dissent over the Oresund toll. On 1 July 1644 the Royal Dano-Norwegian Navy meets the Swedish Fleet at Koldberg Heide. The battle ends in a decisive Danish victory, and the Swedish withdraw to the Kiel Bay.
Norway, which was then governed by Christians son-in-law, Statholder royal governor Hannibal Sehested, was a reluctant participant. The Norwegian populace opposed an attack on Sweden, correctly suspecting that an attack on Sweden would only leave them open to counterattack. Their opposition to Statholder Sehesteds direction grew bitter, and the war was lampooned as the "Hannibal war". Understandably, the Danes cared little for Norwegian public sentiment when Denmark itself was seriously threatened. Hence Jacob Ulfeld initiated an attack into Sweden from Norwegian Jemtland. He was driven back out of Sweden and Swedish troops temporarily occupied Jemtland as well as advancing into the Norwegian Osterdal before being driven back.
Sehested had made preparations to advance with his own army and a similar army under Henrik Bjelke into Swedish Varmland, but was ordered to relieve the King in the Danish attack on Goteborg. Upon the arrival of Sehested the King joined his fleet and performed heroically, even though wounded, preventing Torstenssons army from moving onto the Danish islands.
On the Norwegian front, Sehested attacked the newly founded Swedish city of Vanersborg and destroyed it. He also sent Norwegian troops under the command of George von Reichwein across the border from Vinger and Eidskog as well as troops under Henrik Bjelke into Swedish Dalsland.
12 October 1644 a combined Swedish and Dutch fleet defeats a Danish fleet at Fehmarn. This effectively decides the outcome of the war. In February 1645 peace negotiations are started in Bromsebro and on 13 August Denmark and Sweden conclude the peace of Bromsebro. Denmark is forced to hand over Gotland, Osel and Halland South Sweden as well as the Norwegian province Jemtland, Herjedalen and Idre & Serna. This peace was highly unpopular as the Norwegian Army had performed well and was conducting the war on Swedish soil. The Norwegian provinces had not been lost in war, but was sourrendered by the king during negotiations.
12. Great Northern War 1700–1720
During September 1709 Norwegian forces were ordered to mobilise, and by the end of October 6.000 men were assembled on the Swedish border at Svinesund while 1.500 were congregated near the border at Kongsvinger.
In August 1710, Baron Lovendal arrived in Norway as governor and commander of a country much drained in resources by the wars of the past century. The governor threw himself into building the civil and military leadership in the country just a short march from Sweden. When he left Norway in 1712, he had instituted reforms that served to create a civil service in Norway, and proceeded to document state activities to a degree never before seen in Norway, as well as being a strong military leader.
Baron Lovendal raised and equipped a Norwegian army to invade and recapture the former Norwegian province of Bohuslan under the leadership of General-Lieutenant Caspar Herman Hausmann. In parallel he proposed a strong fleet to provide protection and transportation to seaward, and Frederick IV committed to providing such a force under Vice Admiral Sehested in June 1711. In August, the Norwegian army marched into Bohuslen. But by late summer the fleet Vice Admiral Sehesteds fleet had not appeared offshore, having been ordered by Frederick IV to return to Baltic waters. Without naval support, the Norwegian Army was forced to return to Norway.
Kalmar castle got its present appearance during the 16th century when the Wasa kings, Gustav, Erik XIV and Johan III, rebuilt the medieval caste into a grand palace. Even earlier the castle had played an important role in scandinavian politics, including being the meeting place for the signing of the Kalmarunion.
|Already by the 12th century a round defence tower and a harbor had been built in Kalmar, and a city grew up around the harbor. At the end of the 13th century the Swedish king, Magnus Ladulås, had a new castle built, with a concentric wall, round towers in the corners and two square gatehouses. The new castle was built in limestone. The city was expanded at the same time and got a ring wall with towers now the castle and the city were one connected defensive unit. The city with its ring wall became a concentric part of the castle because if an attacker was to have any chance of taking the castle he would have take the city first, because only from the city could the castle be attacked effectively the exception is in the winter when the moat froze.|
Extra taxes and disbanded soldiers were some of the reasons for general dissatisfaction with the Kalmar union which, during the 15th century, became stronger and stronger in Sweden. The second half of the 15th century was characterized by political anarchy and many union fights between Sweden and Denmark. The man who in the end would make the union stop and give Sweden self-government was king Gustav Eriksson Wasa.
The Wasa Time
|When Gustav Wasa became the Swedish king in 1523, he found Kalmar castle decayed and badly damaged by war among other things the fortifications were out of date. Building contractors who knew what was needed to withstand the new fire weapons were engaged, but lack of money and materials meant that in the first twenty years of Gustav Wasa&rsquos reign only small progress was made. In 1540 a period of great rebuilding was started and, by the end of the 16th century, Kalmar castle had become a grand palace.|
|In 1542 the so called "Dacke feud" began. In 1543 Nils Dacke and his supporters besieged Kalmar castle and blocked the castle and the town from land and sea, but king Gustav Wasa succeeded in striking down the revolt.Gustav Wasa learned something from the Dacke feud and planned and started extensive fortification works for both the city and the castle.|
The castle was provided with a new more powerful sand bank at the western part of the castle and a cannon tower these fortifications were mainly finished in the year of 1553. During the reign of Erik XIV and Johan III these fortifications were expanded with sand banks to the north and south of the castle. The castle&rsquos new fortifications were finished in 1610 with a sand bank and two cannon towers at the east of the castle.
Kalmar castle is from many angles a symbolic monument of the late 15th century in Sweden.
The Time of Great Power
The city was at the same time burned to the ground. The city and castle were rebuilt during the reign of Gustav II Adolf. There were plans to move the city away from the castle, and when the city was destroyed by fire the plans were carried out. The new city grew up on an island some km away from the castle, and had a strict ruled street net behind strong fortifications. The movement of the city took a very long time and the fortifications of the old city were still there at the end of 1670.
The Time of Decay
|After Sweden&rsquos border with Denmark had been moved further south, Kalmar castle&rsquos time as a border outpost, "the key to the kingdom" was over and with that the castle&rsquos time of greatness. The medieval times&rsquo greatest fortress and the Wasas&rsquo grand palace during the 18th century was used as a grain storehouse and a prison. The decaying continued through the 19th century the cannon towers were mainly collapsed and on the sand banks there were cattle grazing. In 1852 a new prison was built in Kalmar and the castle&rsquos time as a prison was over as well. At this time they started to realize the castle&rsquos great historical value and the first restoration was started during the 1850s.|
|During the 20th century several sweeping restorations, combined with several investigations into the history of the building of the castle, have been carried out restore the castle to its former brilliance.|
A historical monument of highest rank like Kalmar castle needs continual maintenance work to survive.
The war's beginnings
The Danish side planned to attack Sweden on three fronts from Kristianopel towards Kalmar, from Halmstad towards Jönköping and from Norway towards the fortress of Älvsborg and thereafter further into Västergötland. Ώ]
A force of 6,000 Danish troops laid siege on the city of Kalmar, ultimately taking it. Norwegian forces, although stationed on the border, were instructed not to enter Sweden. On June 26 a Swedish force carried out the Storming of Kristianopel.
In the summer of 1611, Swedish forces under Baltzar Bäck were ordered to invade Norwegian Jämtland. They did so, and armed Swedish peasants marched into Härjedalen. Both Jämtland and Härjedalen were conquered without much fight. However, Bäck's lack of ability, or will, to stop excesses against the population meant that the locals eventually rose up against the Swedish occupants. In the end, the Swedish troops could not handle the situation and were forced to leave Jämtland/Härjedalen in the fall of 1612. Ώ]
On October 20, 1611, King Charles IX of Sweden died and was succeeded by his son, Gustavus Adolphus. On ascending the throne, Gustavus Adolphus sued for peace, but Christian IV saw an opportunity for larger victories, and strengthened his armies in southern Sweden. In response, Gustavus began conducting raids along the border between Denmark and Sweden. In a February raid, Gustavus nearly drowned at the Battle of Vittsjö after being surprised by a Danish army. ΐ]
In early 1612, Denmark attacked and eventually conquered two fortresses on the border between the fighting countries, Älvsborg and Gullberg, both in present-day Gothenburg. This was a major setback for Sweden, as the country now lacked access to the sea in the west. Having achieved this success, and aiming to end the war as soon as possible, the Danish command ordered an attack deep into Sweden, towards the capital of Stockholm. However, this proved to be a failure. Scorched earth methods and guerrilla warfare from the Swedish side made this a very difficult task and many of the mercenaries in the Danish army deserted since they did not receive their pay. Thus, the Danish army could never mount a serious attack on the capital itself. Ώ]
1200- : The Middle Ages
Population Boom: 1000-1300
The population booms from 150,000 to a total of 400,000.
1200: Norway's Golden Age
Norway's Golden Age took place during the 1200s, 13th Century. Trade increased and peace was spread throughout. Trade with the British Islands increased dramatically, imrpoving the economy of both nations.
Various plagues throughout the years devastated the country, cutting the population by half of what it grew to be. The Black Death especially did major damage to the population.
1380: Olaf Haakonsson
Olaf Haakonsson inherited not only the Norwegian throne, but also the Danish throne, which created a union between the two nations. Bergen joined the union.
The Victual Brothers, a group of pirates and privateers, raid three ports, the last being the raid that took place in 1427, on the port Lubeck.
1397: The Kalmar Union
Margaret I created the Kalmar Union, which joined Bergen, Denmark, and Denmark.
1500-1502: The Alvsson Rebellion
Knut Alvsson starts a rebellion in Norway to make Norway purely independent from the Danish and ended on August 18th, 1502, where the rebellion was stopped.
1523-1536: War, Martin Luther Reformation, and Norway's Demotion
Over time during this period, Sweden gained independence. Norway disapproved of the Martin Luther Reformation, where the Church was a single national institution.
War broke out in the nation after Frederick died. The war was a three way conflict.
Protestism was about to be passed. However, the change was not passed. This occured in 1529.
Norway was demoted to a small Danish Province by Christian.
Kalmar War, 1611-1613 - History
During prehistoric times the two prime kingdoms in Sweden were the Svea and Göta kingdoms. Many wars were fought between the two kingdoms. Svea is remembered as being generally victorious.
Sweden has the strong heritage history of brave Vikings, conquering other lands. The culture of the Vikings was to operate plundering expeditions and set up a great reputation for wider trade. Since those times of the Vikings, the country has participated in various wars. Yet at the beginning of the 1990s Swedes began to become more neutral. Today Sweden is a country that is involved in various peace-keeping operations through the UN. Yet it has a record of wars it has been involved in that are noteworthy in history.
•Sweden has had a long history of wars with Russia, known as the Russo-Swedish Wars. In 1495 to 1497, there was a major war that was initiated by an alliance between Russia and Denmark to overthrow and gain power of the Swedish throne. Ultimately at the end of this war, Denmark did gain power of the Swedish throne.
• The Swedish War of Liberation from 1521 to 1523 was the time when Sweden became independent and free and since that time has been.
• Polish-Swedish Wars was a series of conflicts between Sweden and Poland from 1563 and 1721.
• De la Gardie Campaign 1609 to 1610, when Sweden aligned with Russia
• The Kalmar War from 1611 to 1613 began when Sweden was establishing alternative trade routes and ignoring the protests of Denmark as Sweden infringed on the Danes main source of income in other territories. This led to Denmark declaring war on Sweden. As sea trade routes were part of the power struggle, other countries of England and the Dutch Republic had an interest to have Danish power reduced. In the end the Swedes gained free trade along the Sound Strait and the Danes gained Lapland to be included into Norway and ultimately under Danish rule.
• The Ingrain War from 1610 to 1617 was a time that would contribute to Sweden’s Age of Greatness. The war was initiated by a desire to establish a Swedish duke on the Russian throne. The war concluded with Sweden having gained a large amount of additional territory for a period of time.
• The Thirty Year’s war from 1618 to 1648
• Torstenson War from 1643 to 1645, a brief conflict between Sweden and Norway with Denmark which occurred towards the end of the Thirty Year’s War.
• Charle’s X’s War from 1655 to 1659
• Dutch-Swedish (also known as the Dano-Swedish) War from 1658 to 1660
• The Scanian War from 1675 to 1679
• Great Northern War from 1770 to 1721
• The Russo-Swedish war from 1741 to 1743
• Pomeranian War from 1751 to 1771
• Gustav III’s Russian War from 1788 to 1790, was a war fought between Sweden and Russia
• The Finnish War from 1808 to 1809
• War with Norway in 1814 as Norway was awarded to Sweden under the Treaty of Kiel but Norway resisted this agreement of being ruled under Sweden, but then did form a personal union with Sweden under the Convention of Moss.
• World War I and World War II, Sweden was officially neutral
• Cold War, Sweden took the policy of non-alignment yet a plan of total defence was organised with bomb shelters and on standby troops. The Swedish Air Force became highly reputable at this time in history.
• Congo Crisis from 1960 to 1965, Swedish Air Force did have a role under the UN against rebel forces.
Short history of Jämtland
During the Viking age, Jämtland was an autonomous peasant republic with one of the world’s oldest parliamentary assemblies called ‘Jamtamot’. At one point during this period Jämtland came under the control of Denmark which proceeded to officially ban the Jamtamot, however it continued to operate under a veil of secrecy.
During the Middle Ages, Jämtland became part of the Kingdom of Norway, but continued to operate with a degree of autonomy (semi self-governing region) along with the ability to generate its own local laws.
Jämtland’s position through time is further captured in its Coat of Arms which depicts a Moose (symbolizing Jämtland) being attacked from the west by a Dog (symbolizing Norway) and from the east by a Falcon (symbolizing Sweden).
In 1523, King Gustav Vasa of Sweden desired that Jämtland be allied with his Kingdom but his request was rejected. Twenty-eight years later in a retaliatory move, Gustav Vasa therefore banned Jämtland from buying copper from Sweden.
In 1575, Jämtland’s official State Seal which had endured since 1274 was abolished and a new seal unveiled depicting a Shield with two Norwegian Axes-of-Olov (Olovsyxor). Later in 1614 however, the King of Denmark withdrew this seal from Jämtland.
Between 1178 and 1645 Jämtland was considered part of Norway. This did not, however, prevent Jämtland from officially changing allegiance 13 times between 1563 and 1677. For example, from the autumn of 1563 to the winter of 1564, the Jämtar (people of Jämtland) swore allegiance back and forth between Sweden and Denmark no less than four times.
The Kalmar war between Sweden and Denmark-Norway, referred to as ‘Baltzarfejden’ (the Balthazar Conflict) in Jämtland, took place between 1611 and 1613. Following the war, 1,300 of Jämtland’s 1,470 farmers and homesteaders had their land confiscated due to behavior considered ‘disloyal’ during the war. It was not until 1647 that the Jämtar were able to retrieve their land along with all that had been confiscated.
In 1645 Jämtland became officially Swedish, but it was not until 1699 that Jämtar were considered Swedish enough to be bestowed with Swedish citizenship. Therefore, the people of Jämtland are the last ‘group’ of people in what is considered present day Sweden to receive Swedish citizenship.
In 1657 and 1677 Jämtland was twice occupied by Denmark for a short period, and both times was freed by Norway. During this period, the Jämtar also pursued guerilla warfare (snapphaneverksamhet) against Sweden.
In 1688, the Jämtar legislated an agreement and issued a statement that the forces of Jämtland could only be used in defense of homeland, and must not be used to wage war. King Karl XII who ruled Sweden between 1697 and 1718 was very displeased tore up the agreement . A force of 5,800 Jämtar therefore had to participate in the Armfeldt campaign against Trondheim during 1718/19. This military campaign became known as the Death March of the Carolinians (Karolinernas Dödsmarsch) as 4,273 men died crossing the mountains between Sweden and Norway, including King Charles XII himself.
Östersund was founded in 1786, and in 1810 both Jämtland and Härjedalen counties were reunited under the county reformation act, thereby becoming Jämtland County with Östersund as its capital city. At the time, Östersund was the smallest city in Sweden with only 200 inhabitants.