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Carl Gerhard Bolinder

Carl Gerhard Bolinder was born in 1818. He began his studied at the Cathedral School in Uppsala in 1827, but it took him ten years to complete his education there – with results that were not particularly brilliant. When Jean was hired by the Royal Mint, he wrote to his brother Carl and suggested that he come to Stockholm to learn engineering. With the help of his elder brother, Carl found a place as a carpenter's apprentice in a workshop run by Samuel Owen, one of the most prominent industrial names in Stockholm at that time. Carl enjoyed his work and soon demonstrated his technical talent.

In 1833, he was accepted as the Ironmasters' Association trainee in Motala, where he worked in the foundry. According to his schedule, he was to work about 200 hours per month and spend the rest of his time on technical studies. His working hours were, however, considerably longer, and Carl and some of his fellow apprentices lodged a protest.


Good student
Carl was a good student, however, and when Kockums foundry in Malmö was looking for a Master Mechanic, Motala Verkstad's Board recommended him. In 1840, he began working in Malmö with an annual salary of 1000 Riksdaler.

After just one year, he was permitted an extended study trip to Denmark and Prussia, and when he came home he left his position at Kockums. He sent a book of drawings to the Ironmasters' Association as proof of his know-how. The book contained drawings of cupola furnaces, cranes and tools. The Ironmasters' Association awarded him 200 Riksdaler for the book – money that Carl used to travel to England together with Jean.


Scant income
The two brothers had hoped to gain employment in England, but this was harder than they had anticipated. For several months, they had to live on the capital that Jean had scrimped and saved. In November 1842, however, they were found jobs in Birmingham – Carl in a foundry, while Jean worked as a draughtsman. Six months later, Carl found a position in a foundry in Manchester. His income was limited and Jean had to help him out more than once with money for the bare essentials. However, he stayed in England when Jean returned to Sweden. In September 1843, however, Jean thought it was time for Carl to come home and sent him ten pounds for a ticket back to Sweden.

Together, Jean and Carl founded their little workshop in Stockholm. Since Carl was well acquainted with foundry work, he took over that area while Jean took care of the other departments.



Sister as housekeeper
The two brothers did well together and when the workshop began to expand, they divided up the duties. Carl dealt with technical aspects while Jean dealt with the customers and created new ideas on the drawing board. The two other brothers, Per and Anton, dealt with the finances – with somewhat less success. Their sister Erika took care of the housekeeping for the brothers and their mother.

In 1861 Carl married and had three children, who eventually took over the management of the company. Jean was childless. Like Jean, Carl withdrew from the management of the company in 1881 but returned for a short time in 1888. Due to illness, he retired finally in 1892 and died in 1894. Like Jean, Carl was decorated with the Order of Vasa for his contribution to Swedish industry.