24: The Toll House


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Bomhuset fra Langeskov, nu i Den Fynske Landsby.


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Intro

The Toll House originally stood by the two-mile stone on the "new" highway between Nyborg and Middelfart, which opened in 1820. This was the place where payment was made on the new and improved highway.

The owner of the Toll House was merchant Aagaard from Odense, who rented it out to shoe-maker Niels Andersen Møller. Møller both manned the toll-bar and plied his craft. In 1850, 27-year-old Jørgen Hansen was the toll man. He lived with his 45-year-old wife, Charlotte Hedvig Veis, her three children of 13, nine and four years of age and their common daughter aged two in the Toll House. Jørgen was a tailor, and when payment on the roads ceased, they lived by his trade.


The Toll House was built in 1821 and is, very unusually, of cob (compacted clay/earth) construction. It is unclear why. A few cob buildings are known from the 19th century, but whether they were cheaper to build, whether it was thought they were better or this was just an experiment, we simply do not know. The house was valued at 130 rigsdaler in1833, which was not very much. When it was built, it comprised an approximately square building, four bays wide and 11 alen (c. 7 m) deep. The house contained entrance hall, living room, bedroom and kitchen. There were “English windows and simple doors”, as it states in the fire insurance assessment from 1833. In 1849, it was again valued due to alterations. Now the cob of the north and west sides was replaced with timber-framing with fired bricks filling out the panels. Out from the east wall, a single bay of “lean-to” in pine timber-framing had been built as a pigsty and fuel store. The main house's living room had floorboards. The other rooms – entrance hall and bedroom – had brick floors. The kitchen had both boards on the floor and the ceiling. The other ceilings were plastered with clay. Later, the remaining cob walls in the house were replaced with timber-framing. In 1890, and again in the 1920s, small peat stores and wash houses were added. The house from 1920 was originally of brick, roofed with roofing felt. On being dismantled and reconstructed, this was changed to timber-framing. Consequently, the building now appears as a three-winged, timber-framed house. The woodwork is not exactly resplendent. Mostly slender softwood timber. The building had always had a thatched roof.