An old industrial community
Rydal is situated on the banks of the river Viskan, north of the town called Kinna. Due to the well preserved remains of an old industrial community, Rydal is of national interest. The factory, along with several other buildings, has been declared historical monuments. The museum tells the story of how the Borås region became the textile epicenter of Sweden.
A museum in a spinning mill
The old spinning mill now houses a public museum, a conference center, the handicraft boutique Akleja as well as several private businesses. The museum mainly focuses on the heritage of textile industry but also exhibits a variety of art, design and textiles. The spinning machines in the old spinning hall at the museum represent the production of a kind of novelty yarn that became the main product of the company in the 1920´s. It was used in the weaving of rugs, furniture fabrics and as knitting yarn. Production ceased in 2004 but one machine is still up and running for public displays.
From domestic manufacture to industrialization
The initiator of the spinning mill in Rydal was industrial entrepreneur and textile baron Sven Erikson.
He had already founded a weaving mill nearby, called Rydboholms Mekaniska Konstväfveri in 1834. The new factory in Rydal was a collaborative initiative along with fellow entrepreneurs in the area and was founded in 1853 with the name Rydahls Manufaktur AB. The history of the Spinning mill in Rydal is bound to the deeply rooted tradition of home weaving in preindustrial Mark. The location of the mill was highly dependent on the access to water power.
The first industry with electric lighting in Sweden
At first the spinning mill was powered by a waterwheel, mounted in an artificial channel which led water straight through the factory. The waterwheel was later substituted with an electric generator. It was the water power that gave the factory its electric lighting in 1882. This was the first time in Sweden that indoor lighting was produced by water power. Before the introduction of electrical lighting, the spinning mill was lit by kerosene lamps, which was very dangerous due to highly flammable cotton materials.
The Mark of Possibilities
In the permanent exhibition The Mark of Possibilities you can learn about the history of the region of Mark and tag along on a journey from the beginning of the days of industrialization, exploring the textile heritage up until today. Both children and adults can try on clothing, discover artifacts, play games as well as learn about local history through film and slideshows. There is also an audio section that offers local music and dialects.
c/o Rydals museum
We are especially proud of our c/o exhibitions. This part of the museum can be used by anyone in the area of Mark who wants to produce their own exhibit. This adds a spirit of an inviting, living and friendly environment to our museum.