Nils Olsson Dalahästar
In 1928, when the brothers Nils and Janne Olsson were 13 and 15 years old, they started a small factory and then took up the old craft of Dalahäst production. They took a loan of SEK 400 to buy their own band saw. On this occasion, their mother cried with concern and wondered how they could pay such a tremendous amount. The brothers mixed the colors and the brushes were made of tail hair from squirrels. Now there are Dalahästar scattered all over the globe and many come from the company that was founded by the Olsson brothers.
It wasn't really until the 1939 World Expo in New York that the Dalahäst became world famous. The Swedish exhibition architect got an idea. You could place a giant Dalahäst outside the Swedish pavilion! What an eye catcher it would be. It was a success. The World Press sent home photographs and articles about the marvelous horse, and during the year after the exhibition, about 20,000 Dalahästar were made, an impressive amount at that time, to ship to New York. Nils Olsson's valley horse 'Dalahäst' has now become a symbol of Sweden. Children and grandchildren of Nils and Janne Olsson today continue to carry along the traditional cultural heritage.
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