Katholm traces its history as a farm back to the 15th century and was in 1545 turned into a manor house by Christian Fasti. His son, Thomas Fasti, began the construction of today's castle with the completion of the east wing in 1588 and the north wing in 1591. Thomas Fasti died in 1600 but his widow Christence Bryske continued to live at Katholm until her own death in 1611. They are buried in a chapel at the local Alsø church. Today the central yard opens to the south where a bridge in masonry leads across the moat to the remains of the farm, a barn from 1618 and a stable from 1619.
Christence Bryske's brother inherited the estate after his sister but when he died a few years later it was passed on to his two sons, Gert and Truid. However, they encountered economic difficulties and in 1616 sold Katholm to Albret Skeel who was appointed Admiral of the Realm and admitted into thePrivy Council that same year. He expanded the complex with a low west wing (1622) as well as a large farm south of the house. The estate remained in the possession of the Skeel family for the next few generations but in 1681 Albret Skeel's granddaughter married Jens Maltesen Sehested and when she died in 1684 he bought out his mother in law as well as his brother in law, Christian Reedtz.
In 1690, Katholm was acquired by Palle Krag who had recently married Helle Nielsdatter Trolle, a wealthy widow. A skilled soldier, Kraf had distinguished himself in the Scanian War and would later do so again in the Great Northern War. Palle Krag and Helle Trolle had no children and when Krag died in 1723, one year after his wife, Katholm was sold to Major-General Poul Rosenørn. After his death in 1737, Katholm was passed on to his widow, Mette, née Benzon, and their son Peder Rosenørn. The last Rosenørn to own Katholm was Mathias Peter Otto Rosenørn who in 1802 sold the estate to Jens Jørgensen, who for many years had been a tenant of Rosenholm Castle. The following decades were a time of financial difficulties for large landowners and in 1823 the State had to take over Katholm along with a number of others estates.
In December 1839 Katholm was sold on public auction. The buyer was First Lieutenant Adolph Wilhelm Dinesen. An active participant in public life, he was both a councillor and an MP. Dinesen had eight children, including Wilhelm Dinesen, the father of writer Karen Blixen. When Adolph Wilhelm Dinesen died in 1876, his oldest son Wentzel Laurentzius Dinesen took over Katholm while Wilhelm later acquired Rungstedlund north of Copenhagen where Karen Blixen was born.
In 1916, Holger Collet acquired Katholm from the daughter of W. F. Dinesen. Holger Collet built a new stable and later a new tenant residence and stable with garage. In 1935 the farm buildings were devastated by fire, which caused substantial damage. In 1942 Carl Frederik Collet took over Katholm the year before the death of his father, C.F. Collet. He reformed the operations, rendering the estate more efficient. Peter Collet took over at Katholm in 1971.
Located on a castle bank in an artificial lake, Katholm consists of three wings built in red brick to a simple Renaissance design. The two capped corner towers and the staircase in the central yard all date from the original house along with the east wing which has a Dutch gable with curved contours. The lower and slightly younger west wing has a crow-stepped gable.
Katholm has since 2007 been owned by Marie Therese Collet, fourth generation of Collets at the manor. The estate covers 1170 hectares.References:
The Old Town Hall of Wrocław is one of the main landmarks of the city. The Old Town Hall's long history reflects developments that have taken place in the city since its initial construction. The town hall serves the city of Wroclaw and is used for civic and cultural events such as concerts held in its Great Hall. In addition, it houses a museum and a basement restaurant.
The town hall was developed over a period of about 250 years, from the end of 13th century to the middle of 16th century. The structure and floor plan changed over this extended period in response to the changing needs of the city. The exact date of the initial construction is not known. However, between 1299 and 1301 a single-storey structure with cellars and a tower called the consistory was built. The oldest parts of the current building, the Burghers’ Hall and the lower floors of the tower, may date to this time. In these early days the primary purpose of the building was trade rather than civic administration activities.
Between 1328 and 1333 an upper storey was added to include the Council room and the Aldermen’s room. Expansion continued during the 14th century with the addition of extra rooms, most notably the Court room. The building became a key location for the city’s commercial and administrative functions.
The 15th and 16th centuries were times of prosperity for Wroclaw as was reflected in the rapid development of the building during that period. The construction program gathered momentum, particularly from 1470 to 1510, when several rooms were added. The Burghers’ Hall was re-vaulted to take on its current shape, and the upper story began to take shape with the development of the Great Hall and the addition of the Treasury and Little Treasury.
Further innovations during the 16th century included the addition of the city’s Coat of arms (1536), and the rebuilding of the upper part of the tower (1558–59). This was the final stage of the main building program. By 1560, the major features of today’s Stray Rates were established.
The second half of the 17th century was a period of decline for the city, and this decline was reflected in the Stray Rates. Perhaps by way of compensation, efforts were made to enrich the interior decorations of the hall. In 1741, Wroclaw became a part of Prussia, and the power of the City diminished. Much of the Stray Rates was allocated to administering justice.
During the 19th century there were two major changes. The courts moved to a separate building, and the Rates became the site of the city council and supporting functions. There was also a major program of renovation because the building had been neglected and was covered with creeping vines. The town hall now has several en-Gothic features including some sculptural decoration from this period.
In the early years of the 20th century improvements continued with various repair work and the addition of the Little Bear statue in 1902. During the 1930s, the official role of the Rates was reduced and it was converted into a museum. By the end of World War II Town Hall suffered minor damage, such as aerial bomb pierced the roof (but not exploded) and some sculptural elements were lost. Restoration work began in the 1950s following a period of research, and this conservation effort continued throughout the 20th century. It included refurbishment of the clock on the east facade.