Torp och backstugor i Länghem : en studie av bebyggelsens förändringar från 1600-talet till början av 1900-talet.

Research output: Book/ReportBook


The paper is based on an inventory of crofts and
cottages that was made in the parish of Länghem in
the southern part of the province of Västergötland,
Sweden at the end of the 1950ies and the beginning
of the 1960ies. The parish of Länghem has both
manors (the medieval Torpa and Hofsnäs and the
17th century Sällerås) and independent villages.
The inventory was made quite traditionally. We
tried to identify the locations of the crofts and cottages.
We traced their history where it was possible
and made a commented register of them. Besides
the field material we used parish registration books
of different kinds (sw. husförhörslängder, födelseand
dödböcker) as source material. It was possible
to get a rather good picture of the 19th century settlement
in this way. For older periods the material
was later supplemented with other kinds of source
material, above all taxation assessment rolls (Sw.
mantalslängder), which in this case go back as far
as the 17th century. An official national report on
the croft settlements made in 1911 is among other
things based on parish statements, which have been
of great value for our study.
Some central questions among others in the
paper concern how these kinds of settlements are
spread over the surface of the parish chronologically
and which spatial variations there are within
the parish. The study covers the period from the
17th century to the beginning of 20th century. This
was a period involving many political, social, economic
and demographical changes. Through the
enclosures that occurred mainly in the 19th century
the spatial structure of the countryside was entirely
reshaped. Which consequences did this changing
structure of the landscape have for the crofts? Did
some of the croft settlements have their roots in older
farm sites, that have been deserted farms, or
through transformation of a taxed farm into a croft?
How the picture of the development of the non-freehold
settlements fits in with the general settlement
patterns is another question to discuss.
The study is presented mainly in a series of
maps, which begins in the year 1695. The result is
that the general picture, which one can find from
other parts of the country, can also be seen in Länghem,
even if there are differences, especially if you
study the situation on the village level. In my paper
I assume that there are different villages, which
have different strategies.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Archaeology


  • backstuga, Sverige, Västergötland, torp, bebyggelsehistoria
Original languageSwedish
PublisherAlmqvist & Wiksell
Number of pages60
ISBN (Print)978-91-22-02165-0
Publication statusPublished - 2007
Publication categoryResearch

Publication series

NameLund Studies in Historical Archaeology
ISSN (Print)1653-1183