Painter Petter Anton Holmqvist

Picture taken at the corner of Koulukatu (formerly Mentzerinkatu) and Palokunnankatu (formerly Aitakatu), on the right is the premises from where a children's home operated.

Daft - Pekka

Petter Holmqvist (1830-1872) came from Sweden. He was a tall, black and sinister-looking man who lived at the corner of Aitakadu and Mentzerinkatu. He was the real player of the game, named Pensseli Pekka, Sika-Pekaksi and Homppa-Pekaksi, according to the situation.

In addition to his painting business, there was a blacksmith, smelting kilns and workshop, where iron and bronze were cast and forged. Holmqvist had other things to do. He bred pigs in a cage in the courtyard and took them to Sweden in his own small boat.

He was a master cat breeder, which he skinned and sold to Sweden. In his house sometimes there were about twenty cats who sometimes left terrible scars. The cats had their own names as well. They were Chilli, Pappili, Mammili, Pissili, Caky and the most handsome Herr-Pookel.

The last penny

Herr-Pookel was able to take the bottle caps in his teeth and throw them up in the air. Amused, drunkards bounced the caps to Herr-Pookel while he was in the drinkers house. For Homppa-Pekka kept in his house a spirit shop, which was said to be the last penny, because you could get a small shot with your last penny.

Last Will and Testimony for the children's home

Homppa-Pekka led an ungodly life, he spit on and cursed the priests when they visited and talked about the soul. On his death bed, Pekka became conscientious and as an unmarried man, in his last Will and Testimony he left all his property for a children's home. The kindergarten was founded by Raahe Rouvasväenyhdistys for the poor children of the town in 1867.

A sincere and good-hearted Master Painter

During the sailing ship era many craftsmen lived in Raahe.

As a painter, Holmqvist was a master in his class. In 1860, he was given the task of decorating the banquet and meeting hall of the town's newly purchased property from the Brunow estate. The property would serve as Raahe's new Town Hall.

The halls's colouring became a more sophisticated style. The walls were covered with limescale, on which columns were painted and mirrors between them. The ceiling made of wide boards was also decorated. These paintings by Holmqvist were revealed when the wall and ceiling facades of the town hall's hall were renovated in 1986.

Petter Anton Holmqvist

  • Born on February 20, 1830 in Sweden.
  • Piteå is marked as either the place of birth or the place from where he moved to Raahe.
  • Master Painter, Blacksmith, Bar Landlord.
  • Unmarried and childless.
  • His estate was left to a children's home.
  • Died on May 7, 1872 in Raahe.
  • Buried in the Haarla cementery.
  • The Childrens' Home operated in Holmqvist's house until 1981, when it was abolished.
  • In 1982-1995, the town's newspaper Raahelainen operated from the house.
  • Today the house is a private residence.

A work in Progress

This website is a real-time and living project. These pages are being actively translated into English and you will find many missing texts and possibly even a few mistakes. We have decided to make all the current information available as and when.