Hans Baghs Vej 21
Tlf. (+45) 98 44 51 88
Fax. (+45) 98 44 53 62
1st May - 31st May: Saturday and Sunday only,11am-3pm
1st June - 30th September: every day,11am-3pm
National holidays, the autumn holiday and the day after Christmas
Adults: 50 kr (crowns)
Children (accompanied by an adult): free
Groups: 40 kr (crowns) per person (minimum 15)
Guided tours: free.
During the winter the museum is only open by special arrangement
The writer and marine painter Holger Drachmann was born on October 9th 1846 in Amager Square in Copenhagen. He showed an early talent for both writing and drawing, and in 1866 he was accepted at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts. With C.F. Sørensen as his teacher he trained as a marine painter.
In 1872 he visited the town of Skagen in northern Jutland with the Norwegian painter Fritz Thaulow, and he visited the town frequently during the next 30 years. He only bought a house in the town, however, in 1902; a house built in 1829 that had been owned by a baker by the name of Høm, in the area of the town known as “Vesterby”. By then Drachmann had long since established his reputation – not as a marine painter but as a writer of poetry, novels, short stories, plays and newspaper articles.
At this time he was preparing for his third marriage, to Sofie Lasson. He extended the house by adding a studio with a large, four-sectioned window, and called the house “Pax”.
Drachmann died only six years later at Einer Brünniche’s Nerve Sanatorium in the town of Hornbæk, and on January 26th 1908 an urn containing his ashes was placed in a burial chamber on the famous sandspit to the north of Skagen that forms the northern tip of Denmark.
Immediately after his death the idea arose to convert “Pax” into a memorial for him. Concerts were held and collections made, and in 1910 a committee, formed for the purpose, was able to buy the house for just over 16,436 Danish kroner (crowns).
A condition of the purchase agreement was that the property and its contents should be kept together and used as a museum for Drachmann. On October 1st 1916 the “Trust for Drachmann’s House at Skagen and the Thereto Attached Bursary for Authors” was set up. The house was opened to the public on June 4th 1911. The bursary was awarded for the first time to Johannes Buchholtz in 1917, and has been awarded every year since then.
The museum’s collection of oil paintings consists mostly of Drachmann’s marine paintings, but there are also pictures by many of the painters from the artists’ colony at Skagen: P.S.Krøyer, Laurits Tuxen and Anna and Michael Ancher. There are also paintings by August Tørsleff, Agnes Slott-Møller, Alfrida Baadsgaard, Julius Paulsen and Carl Sundt Hansen.
In the annexe to the museum there is a photographic exhibition about Drachmann.
Drachmann’s House is the setting every year for the popular “Drachmann evenings”, at which there are readings, music and talks about the author’s life and works.
People in Holger Drachmann’s life
Anders Georg Drachmann (1810-1892) was Holger Drachmann’s father and a doctor. He married Vilhelmine Marie Stæhr (1820-1857) in 1844. Apart from Holger (Henrik Herholdt) Drachmann (1846-1908) they had three other children: Erna Drachmann (1845-1922), who became an author and married the educational writer N. Juel-Hansen (1841-1905); Mimi Drachmann (1849-1940), who married Vilhelm Boye (1837-1896), an archaeologist; Johanne Vilhelmine Drachmann (1851-1915), who married Johan Friis, a priest, and Harriet Augusta Drachmann (1854-1858).
Drachmann’s father married for the second time in 1859, to Clara Josephine Sørensen (1836-1895). They had three children: Anders Bjørn Drachmann (1860-1935), who became a language scholar (philologist); Harriet Vilhelmine Drachmann (1861-1945), who married Poul Bentzon (1858-1943), an engineer, and Martha Drachmann (1866-1912), who married Dr. Viggo Bentzon (1861-1937), a professor of law.
Holger Drachmann himself married Vilhelmine Charlotte Erichsen (1852- 1935) in 1871. They had a daughter, Eva Drachmann (1874-1954), who became an author and married Holger Federspiel, a lawyer. Holger and Vilhelmine were divorced in 1878.
In 1877 Polly Culmsee (who was married to the landowner Charles Thalbitzer) gave birth to a girl, Gerda (1877-1913). Drachmann was the girl’s father, and he adopted her just before he married Polly’s sister, Emmy Culmsee (1854-1928). Emmy was the daughter of Frederik Leopold Culmsee (1811-1895), a paper manufacturer. The wedding took place in 1879. Holger and Emmy had four children: Jens Drachmann (1880-1929), who became a painter; Svend Drachmann (1881-1887), who died of scarlet fever; Lisbeth Drachmann (1884-1969), and Povl Drachmann (1887-1941), who became an author and politician.
In 1903 Drachmann was divorced from Emmy and married Sofie Lasson (1873-1917) at Skagen town hall. Soffi – as she was known – had been married to Paul Drewsen (1866-1907), an engineer, when she met Drachmann. She was the daughter of Christian Otto Carl Lasson (1830-1893), a government lawyer. Her sisters, Oda (1860-1935) and Alexandra (1862-1955) were married to Chr. Krohg (1852-1925) and Frits Thaulow (1847-1906), respectively. A third sister, Bokken (1871-1970), was also very close to Drachmann for a time.
In 1887, between his last two marriages, Drachmann had made the acquaintance of the variety hall singer Amanda Nilsson (1866-1953), who he called Edith. In 1901 he had also met the young Ingeborg Andersen, known as “Skagen’s Rose”, (1886-1969), who later married the author Poul Østergaard (1882-1914).
Translated by David Slater