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Rauma History, Finland

Rauma is a tranquil seaside town located in Finland. Immersed in culture, this town provides its near 40,000 residents with top quality modern services. The town’s center is the Old Rauma, recognized as the largest maintained wooden town from the Middle Ages found in the Nordic Region. One of the notable events in Rauma History is when UNESCO selected the area as one of the World Heritage Sites in 1991.

Rauma History – Founding of the Town

Based on records, Rauma was founded in 1442 and is the third oldest town in Finland. The document which recorded the existence of Rauma was the trade between Knight KarlKnutsson and the townsmen. The knight validated the trade with the use of his seal dated April 17, 1442.

At around the same time, the town charter established a number of rights to the residents of Rauma. It continued to be the region’s center of commerce and clergy due to a monastery built in the town. Franciscans populated the town in the 15th century after the palace in Eurajoki was deserted.

Rauma History – The Town as a Trade Center

It has been said that Rauma and sea traffic are indivisible. The town was recognized as a very significant trade center because of the sea and its natural harbor. Many roads lead to the town and other countries had traded with Rauma on the shores of the Baltic Sea. The town’s trade center had turned into a cultural center.

The residents of Rauma were exceptionally active. Many rights were written to their advantage and were used in business and trade pursuits. Rauma’s ships sailed to places like Germany, Stockholm and the Baltics to export their products such as seal oil, timber, dried pike, wooden dishes, and butter. On the other hand, goods such as salt, corn, and wine were brought to Rauma.

Rauma History – Time of Recession

During the 16th century, Rauma was struck with the Plague twofold devastating majority of the population of the town. For this reason, a decree handed out in 1636 made Rauma lose its privilege for international maritime which it held for 130 years. Products were delivered only to Stockholm and Turku.

As if the Plague and the decree were not enough, Rauma was also ravaged with a great fire twice, which almost destroyed the whole town. The old Church of the Holy Trinity was completely annihilated.

Rauma History – Rising from the Recession

During the Crimean War, particularly in the summer of 1855, foreign ships docked in Rauma. The town experienced two bombings and its harbor and timber storeroom were burnt down. After the war and after nearly two centuries of recession, Rauma had once more progressed into a significant seaport. The commercial and business industries in the town were quickly restored.

By the end of the 19th century, Rauma was known as the only town in Finland to have its own full-gauge railway. Add to this, a teacher’s college was established in the town. Both these major projects of Rauma had greatly improved the economical and spiritual life in the town.

Looking into the events that transpired in Rauma History, one will never fail to admire the strength of its people. Its humble beginnings and the numerous twists and turns brought the city to what it is today. For more events pertaining to Finalnd’s existence, Pori History and Turku History are of great help.

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