National Geographic : 1949 Feb
2,000 Miles Through Europe's Oldest Kingdom At Jutland's northern tip we stood amid the sand dunes. Through a bare, flat coun try we had traveled that morning from Aal borg. Pasture had given way to heath; pine woods bound the sands. Near the village of Skagen we had found amid the pines the drowned tower of St. Laurentius' church, overwhelmed by a great sandstorm which swept this coast in 1775. Half-hidden in the blue sea grass beside us crouched the low memorial to Denmark's lyric poet, Holger Drachmann. Artists were the first to discover the windswept charm of Skagen, now a popular summer resort. The King of Denmark has his summer villa, "Klit gaarden," near by. Denmark can give points to most countries in her care for the aged. The Ministry for Social Affairs built more than 4,000 small modern apartments for their accommodation in Copenhagen, and almost every town of any size has its Old Folks' Home. Returning to Aalborg, we visited one which is unique. It is housed in an old monastery of 1430, which has been completely recon ditioned, though it still retains on the walls of the chapter house remarkable 15th-century murals. The old people occupy pleasant single-room homes in the upper story. "The old folk usually become so attached to their homes," the warden told us, "that they don't want to leave them. When one old man in a Randers home inherited a large fortune, he gave all the money back to his 'asyl' for a new extension so he wouldn't have to leave his single room!" Castle Walls Hid Smuggled Weapons Motorists in a hurry can travel the length of the Jutland peninsula in a long day. We went more slowly, passing once more through Viborg and Skive. Near there, accompanied by a historically-minded waiter (who would accept no reward save the satisfaction of showing his country to strangers), we visited the famous castle of Sp0ttrup. Denmark's finest example of medieval mili tary architecture, Sp0ttrup stands amid marshes which were once sea. Castle walls, eight feet thick, hid weapons smuggled over from England during the war. "Sp0ttrup," explained the caretaker, "shows Denmark's history in a nutshell. It has passed from bishops to nobles, from nobles to large farmers. Now the State has bought it and split it into small holdings for many farmers. That is good; that is Danish de mocracy-all very happy." All except the storks, who are not, perhaps, democrats. Though the rusty wheel where Her Nest Egg Is Based on Tel. and Tel. With the draining of swamps, Denmark's stork population is decreasing. This high-placed nest at Br0ns in Jutland is known throughout Denmark.