School days

With her mother’s help, Birgit learned to read before she started primary school in 1925. She like school and graduated with top grades in every subject, not least in song.


Elementary school. Birgit is sitting in the middle row, number 6 from the left, in a light-colored dress. Private photo.


Classphoto from the school in Ljungkile. Birgit on the far right of the middle row. Private photo.

Birgit loved to write and wrote numerous small stories, essays and notes in small journals that she carried with her everywhere. The essays were about everything from her garden and home town to school outings and Christmas parties. In her journals, she wrote down all the lyrics to songs that she came across. They were songs she had learned in school, from her parents, and the hired help of the farm. Birgit continued to fill these music journals with texts even after graduating. While Birgit attended secondary school in Svenstad, she took over teaching parts of their singing lessons. Even after she graduated, she was asked to help out, above all with graduation ceremonies in the spring. There were jolly spirits and happy songs with Birgit as choir leader. In 1940, Birgit began a course in home economics in Ljungskile. Besides the normal studies, there were often evening programs where Birgit often sang. But her studies came to an abrupt finish. The school was closed due to the war in Finland, since the building was needed to serve as a hospital.