Mekanisk Museum Sønderjylland near Krusau
I like old functioning mechanics just as much as old construction machines or tractors. Now we have heard about the Mekanisk Museum Sønderjylland near Flensburg, pack children and skittles and set off. With it the new Leica SL APO Summicron 1: 2 75mm asph., With which the pictures of the Mekaniks Museum Krusau, as it is also known, are created.
Somewhere seven kilometers north into the forest
How many times have we passed the small sign to Mekanisk Museum Sønderjylland without really noticing. And then drove there and it had just closed. But today we checked and see, the door is open.
Furniture was once sold here, but who strays to buy furniture in the forest? The building stood empty. At the same time, Ans and Gerrit lived on a family-owned farm in the Netherlands for 300 years. And wanted to found a museum.
Tractors, oldtimers, agricultural implements, they had collected all of them in 35 years. But you didn’t want to tolerate a museum on a farm in your home country. The German side of the common border was just as lacking in ideas.
Geritt and his wife Ans wondered why not found a museum where they have collected their collections over the years: namely in Denmark. There was only one condition in the room – the museum should be somewhere quiet in the country, not squeezed into an industrial area with its soulless halls.
In Krusau, everyone was impressed and suggested this empty furniture store. The museum could come. But: now all the vehicles and objects, laboriously transported from Scandinavia to the Netherlands, had to be brought back to Denmark. And I’ll tell you – there are a lot of vehicles. A transporter was already happy about the potential cash blessing of such an order, but then there would have been no Mekanik Museum Sønderjylland in Krusau after the transport to Denmark.
Gerrit, a practitioner and man of action, bought his own truck and drove 13,000 kilometers back and forth until all of his tractors and vintage cars found their place in their new home.
of tractors, oil cans and farm equipment
Gerrit’s passion for collecting started in the 1960s. He couldn’t keep his hands off vintage cars and old motorcycles. He drove to Denmark again and again, for example to the cattle markets. Denmark had survived the war quite well, there was almost no destruction. But a few years later, people had put money aside and modernized their fleet.
They were grateful if the Dutchman reappeared and gave them a little more money for their junk. In his homeland they were highly sought after vehicles and so the prices rose. But the collection grew steadily, laying the foundation for today’s Mekanisk Museum Sønderjylland near Krusau.
Then the tractors came
But if you live on a farm, at some point you can’t keep your hands off agricultural equipment. So it went on with the purchase of old tractors and drives. At some point a small smithy was added and a shoemaker was set up.
Even original furnishings from Grandma’s parlor in the Netherlands can be admired today in the Mekanisk Museum Sønderjylland.
However, the focus is clearly on the vehicles. Like the legendary Ford T, with which Dick and Goof tried to get along in their films. Or a real Plymouth from 1934, which caused quite a stir at the time.
Real treasures and curios
A tractor from 1937 was added from Gotland. It is powered by a wood gasifier and can only be “fueled” with beech wood. Bad luck for farmers: there is no beech wood on Gotland. And he fetched the wood from the mainland twice. Luck for the Mekanisk Museum Sønderjylland – the farmer wanted to get rid of his wood gasifier quickly.
Many today’s farmers with biogas plants envy another copy of the Mekanisk Museum Sønderjylland: the Minneapolis Moline G1000, a giant of the 1960s, is powered by gas. So a farmer could not fill up cheaper today if he could only have this rare specimen.
There are real pieces of jewelry and original curios in the collection, for example the Danhorse with a small car engine – too weak to tear up the ground with a plow. Or the Ruhrstahl tractor, of which only 49 priceless copies were produced, completely bypassed the practical and financial needs of a farmer. But it drives nicely, but is otherwise useless.
During his tour of the Mekanisk Museum Sønderjylland, Gerrit has a story of its own for each vehicle and I don’t want to stop giving them here again.
With so much dedication, it is not surprising that such passion is contagious. Every year in July people from all parts of Europe meet here in the Mekanisk Museum Sønderjylland with their rare vehicles to exchange ideas, to rave about them and to supply each other with spare parts.
But the Mekanisk Museum is also the starting point when it comes to old rolling monuments. Today came one of the calls, in which a man from Hamburg offered a car from 1909. You can feel Gerrit itch in his fingers. But he really chooses the cream pieces and so the Mekanisk Museum Sønderjylland is a wonderful collection of vehicles that complement each other and show the whole variety, especially in agricultural engineering from the first two thirds of the last century.
But the coffee is from today
A small café, without any frills, but with a relaxed informal charm invites you to linger in the middle of the Mekanisk Museum Sønderjylland and soak up the sensible scent, these impressions of the old patina, this muff of barn finds and indulge in your own memories . And to share them with Ans and Gerrit. Even a guest room, bed and breakfast, is available. In a wonderful, quiet location, just eight kilometers to the border to Flensburg or four kilometers to the nearest beach. Here, in the middle of the forest, beyond the fast pace, an old tractor can still be a tractor and a man a dreaming child. What would be today without earlier? We have arrived – in the Mekanisk Museum Sønderjylland, in Hokkerup near Krusau.
What, when, where – in the Mekanisk Museum Sønderjylland
Mekanisk Museum Sønderjylland is open between March 15th and October 15th. Every day except Mondays and Fridays between 10 a.m. and 4.30 p.m.
It can be reached on the route Krusau – Aabenraa (Kruså – Abenraa) exit Hokkerup on the eastern side at the large silos. Always follow the sign.
Lundtoftvej 6A, Hokkerup