Dag Hammarskjölds Backåkra
Dag Hammarskjöld - a modern peacemaker
He travelled the world in his efforts to secure peace, security and guarantee human rights. He met kings and presidents and established a retreat far from the madding crowds at Backåkra, an old farmhouse on the coast between Kåseberga and Sandhammaren. Today it is home to an exciting museum.
Dag Hammarskjöld was the UN Secretary-General from 1953-1961; he passionately believed that his presence was necessary when negotiating for peace. No other Secretary-General has travelled so far and wide in their endeavours to solve differences.
When he bought the farm in 1957, he wanted a retreat where he could relax. Destiny had other ideas and in September 1961 Dag Hammarskjöld died in an aeroplane crash in Africa.
Many of Dag Hammarskjöld’s private possessions are on show in the farmhouse along with a comprehensive collection of photographs. The farm was left to the Swedish Tourist Authority, of which he was vice president for many years.
On the pastures surrounding the farm, horses and cows graze as they did when Dag Hammarskjöld was alive and in 1969, a place for meditation was established high on the hills overlooking the Baltic Sea. The site is a popular place for marriages, christenings and ceremonies of remembrance.
Each summer the UN arranges talks by leading experts. The traditional Midsummer festival is another highlight; thousands of visitors come to watch and dance round the maypole to traditional Swedish folk music.