Nykøbing Falster


Nykøbing Falster is an old market town and the largest town on Falster with 16,940 inhabitants (2020), incl. satellite cities 25,488 (2019). The town is via Frederik d. 9's Bro connected with Sundby on the Lolland side as well as Tingsted on Falster and the village Nagelsti on Lolland. Nykøbing Falster is the capital of Guldborgsund Municipality, which belongs to Region Zealand. Today, the town is an educational, commercial and industrial center for Lolland-Falster with a sugar factory, shipping companies, fisheries, several educational institutions and a large selection of shops.

Among the city's landmarks are Klosterkirken, which was completed around the year 1500, and the city's water tower, which was completed in 1908 as the country's first reinforced concrete building. The city's biggest attraction is the experience and experiment center The Medieval Center, which is located just north of the satellite town of Sundby, and focuses on the Danish Middle Ages around the year 1400. In addition, Nykøbing has a city museum and several other smaller museums. The city also has many other cultural offerings in the form of theaters, festivities and sports associations. Nykøbing has a well-developed pedestrian network, and Torvet can be traced back to the Middle Ages.

Nykøbing Falster is a hub for public transport on Lolland-Falster, and there is thus a train and bus connection to both Copenhagen, Germany and surrounding cities.


The Middle Ages
Nykøbing Falster was founded at the end of the 12th century in connection with the establishment of the castle, which later came to be called Nykøbing Castle. The castle was located on the narrowest point by Guldborg Sound and was to protect the area from Wendish pirates. Gradually, a city grew up around the castle.

The city was granted trade-like rights by Valdemar Sejr (1170-1241), but did not become a real market town until 1560. In 1253, troops from the Hanseatic city of Lübeck attacked and the castle was captured and the city burned down. The castle then served as a widow's seat for Margrete Sambiria with the nickname Margrethe Sprænghest. After the nobleman Marsk Stig had murdered Erik Klipping and had been made an outlaw and a fugitive, he returned with an army to attack Danish port cities, including Nykøbing Falster. Supported by the Norwegian king Erik Præstehader, he burned down Nykøbing Castle in 1289 with soldiers from his army. However, the castle was subsequently rebuilt and occupied by Christoffer II in 1329, and after his death in 1332 it was mortgaged for a number of years, after which Valdemar Atterdag redeemed it in 1365 and made peace with the Hanseatic cities.

After Erik of Pomerania had founded a convent at St. Nicolai Chapel in 1419, a Holy Spirit house was built in the city in around 1440, and this building served as home and hospital for many sick and poor in Nykøbing. The Gray Brothers held a chapter here in 1482. In 1486, King Hans donated the church of the neighboring town, Idestrup Church, to the hospital in exchange for him and the royal family having jus patronatus for the Holy Spirit Chapel in the future, which was fulfilled. The Gothic church, Klosterkirken, was built at the turn of the century and was part of the Franciscan monastery until 1532, when it became a parish church. In 1507, King Hans once again made peace with the Hanseatic cities during the Peace of Nykøbing, but two years later the peace was over.

Klosterkirken located by Klosterstræde and Rådhusstræde. It was completed around the year 1500 and was originally a large extension to a Franciscan monastery founded by Erik of Pomerania in 1419. The monastery church functioned as a castle church under Queen Sophie Amalie in the 17th century. A large part of the monastery is preserved and is used today as a nursing home.

The Renaissance
The Count's Feud broke out in 1534. During this civil war, Nykøbing chose to stand on Christian II's side, and the castle was then taken over by Frederik I's widow Sophie of Pomerania and later by Sophie of Mecklenburg, who married Frederik II on the castle in 1572. After the king's death in 1588, she ruled for many years over the whole of Lolland-Falster until her death in 1631. During this period, Nykøbing Castle had almost the status of a royal castle, as several royals, such as Christian IV, often stayed on the site due to the good hunting conditions on Falster. At the same time, it is believed that the moats and fortresses around Nykøbing city were built. These were further repaired and reinforced by Sweden's King Karl 10. Gustav during the Swedish Wars in 1659. A legend says that a local priest named Jesse Jessen prevented the Swedish king from burning down Nykøbing, which was to be initiated due to the city's non-payment of fire tax. During a sermon in the monastery church, he spoke loudly to the king, and he was so influenced by the priest's speech that he spared the city from bonfires and fires.

Under the dictatorship
In 1667, Charlotte Amalie married Christian V at the castle, and at the king's death, the estate was once again the widow's seat. Queen Charlotte Amalie owned Nykøbing Castle until her death in 1714, and after the Russian Tsar known as Peter the Great had visited Nykøbing in 1716 and preferred to eat at the inn (hereinafter referred to as the Czar's House) in front of the castle, the estate was gone. heyday. The square's bear statue is today a reminder of the tsar's stay in the city. In 1767, the royal family's connection to Nykøbing Castle was finally put up for auction, which was subsequently put up for auction and sold. Citizens and tenant farmers then demolished the castle, and its materials were recycled for the construction of several manors in the area and also for buildings in Nykøbing itself. At the end of Slotsgade there are a few ruins left of the once mighty Renaissance castle.

The first time a city council is mentioned is in 1678, where they are referred to as "the 12 brokers". In 1710, 12 men were appointed from the four roots of the city.

In 1803, Lolland-Falster was separated from the Diocese of Fyens under the independent Diocese of Lolland-Falster, with headquarters in Maribo. Thus, the clerical administration came significantly closer to Nykøbing.


Like many other places in Denmark, Nykøbing benefited from industrialization in the 19th century. The population increased steadily throughout the 19th century, and Nykøbing also developed as a trading town. Around 1834, about one-fifth of the city's population lived by trade. In 1840, 18,185 lived on Falster, and about 10,000 applied to the merchants in Nykøbing. In 1840 the town had only 9 merchant ships, and 12 years later there were 18 ships and 239 merchant cargoes. In comparison, there were also 18 ships in Stubbekøbing with 630 commercial cargoes and 34 in Nakskov with 491 commercial cargoes. The city thus increased its position as a trading city, despite having significantly larger port cities nearby.

The industry began to slowly increase in the first half of the 19th century. In 1828, the first savings bank was established in Nykøbing. In 1835 E. Nobel tobacco spinning company of the same name in Nykøbing. Five years later they had 11 employees, in 1844 there were 40 men employed at his factory and in 1850 the number was up to 50. Tobacco products were produced here for Nykøbing and the surrounding area, but also other parts of the province. E. Nobel later merged with De Danske Cigar- & Tobaksfabrikker to Skandinavisk Tobakskompagni. During these years, up to several ships were also produced for customers in e.g. Stubbekøbing and Copenhagen at various shipyards. In 1842, a distillery with steam distillery was established, and an iron foundry was also founded and this year is considered the actual start of industrialization in Nykøbing Falster. The foundry could already the following year produce plows, railings, ship and machine work. In 1847, a cotton weaving mill, a cotton factory, a dyeing mill and a lime factory were established. About 100 people were employed in the industry in 1848.

All the way up through the 19th century, the harbor was expanded as the city developed. The volume of merchant ships also increased considerably especially from about 1840 onwards. The channel in the strait was deepened to allow larger ships access to the harbor. Likewise, the city got a railway connection with Gåbense around 1830 and in 1837 Nakskov and Copenhagen.

The town received its first newspaper in 1835, which was published under the name Stift-Tidende, after it was moved from Maribo to Nykøbing. It was established as early as 1806 under the somewhat longer name Kongelige allernaadigst privileged Adresse-Contoir's Intelligence for the Diocese of Lolland-Falster.

In 1846, the civic corps was abolished, and an actual fire and police corps was established in the city instead. At the outbreak of the Three Years' War, several young men traveled from the city to participate and defend the homeland. A number of townhouses were built during this period, including Staldgården built as a working - class neighborhood in the early 1800s and Købmandsgården from 1860. The same applies to several houses in Slotsgade.

At the beginning of 1853, it was decided that an actual hospital should be built in Nykøbing, which had been financed by a loan. It was still under construction in Jernbanegade when a cholera epidemic came to the city in June with sailors from Copenhagen. Several sick people were placed in magazines at the harbor, made available by local merchants, and the free school in the town was used as the hospital. D.G. Monrad, who had been appointed bishop of the Diocese of Lolland-Falster in 1849, visited the sick almost daily. A total of 87 died of cholera, corresponding to about 3% of the city's population. The hospital was opened in January 1854 with five hospitals.

The early industrialization
The trade was given free rein when the city got a new business law, which was approved in 1857. As a result, the old city unions ceased to be protected in the city, and all citizens could therefore sell, for example, carpentry work without being a member of the carpenters' union. The craftsmen's guilds complained, but it still came into force at the beginning of 1862. This meant that all the town's craftsmen's guilds were abolished quite soon after, and the tailors' guilds were closed down as the last in April this year.

The city's street network changed a lot when the area around the old castle began to be included. Around 1860, this entire area was bridged or built on. As early as 1820, the moat had been filled up. During the Second Schleswig War, money was collected and sent, among other things. bandage for the victims of the war. Many young men left to support the war effort, but Nykøbing was not as hard hit by the defeat as elsewhere in the country.


In 1865, the city got a gasworks, which i.a. improved the street lighting considerably, as the city's street lamp had hitherto been very sparse. City gas was first phased out again in the 1960s.

After many years of discussions, a pontoon bridge was built in 1867 with the road Christian d. 9´s Bridge over Guldborg Sound to Lolland, which at the inauguration was the longest in Denmark. Previously, the crossing had taken place by boat, which had become more and more cumbersome as more and larger quantities of goods were brought in and out of the city. In 1875, a railway bridge was built so that the railway lines on Lolland could reach Nykøbing. Both the pontoon bridge and the railway bridge had a swing section in the middle that could open for passing ships. These two bridges existed - with several rebuilds - until 1963, when the current bridge was opened, which was located somewhat further south than the two original bridges. Suddenly, Nykøbing's catchment area had become twice as large. When the cultivation of sugar beet on Lolland-Falster had begun at the same time, a sugar factory was established by landowner Edward Tesdorpf in 1884. The number of beets at the factory increased steadily, and was thus expanded as early as 1890.

At Stormfloden 1872, Nykøbing Falster, like a large part of southern Denmark, was hit by major floods. However, the town was not hit as hard as the rest of Lolland-Falster, and despite major floods, as far as is known, there were no deaths in Nykøbing.

The first cooperative slaughterhouse on Lolland-Falster was established in Nykøbing in 1889. There was already a pig slaughterhouse in Maribo at this time, but this was owned by shares.

In the 20th century, Nykøbing's industrialization gained further momentum with the establishment of a margarine factory, a steam mill, a cooperative pig slaughterhouse and other industrial plants. Although Maribo owned the area's cathedral and had given its name to Maribo County, it was in Nykøbing that the bishop and the county governor lived. The city was by far the largest and most important administrative and industrial city in Falster and eastern Lolland. In addition, it was the only port in Guldborg Sound.

From the beginning of the 20th century, the city also began to expand to the north, in the new district called Nørrebro and to the east Østerbro. Especially in the 1920s and 1930s, the house was built and new roads established here.

In 1907, Lollands Handels- og Landbrugsbank was established in Nykøbing. Especially after the First World War, the bank entered a recovery. In 1908 a new water tower was built for the city. The new Nykøbing Water Tower became the city's largest at a total of 43 meters and was the country's first reinforced concrete building. Until 1976, it provided the city's water supply.

In 1912, the Danish rowing four with helmsman won gold. The five men came from Nykøbing Falster Roklub and the helmsman Poul Hartmann, was himself born in Nykøbing. In previous years, this team had also won several medals. Several sports clubs were established during these years, including B1901 and B1921, both of which did well nationally.