W. G. Palmqvist designed the cowshed at Joenniemi, 1927

Gösta Serlachius and his wife Ruth shared a common interest in the development of the manor. Joenniemi had wide fields and diverse livestock. The Serlachiuses first built an imposing stone cowshed in 1927. They constructed also the estate manager’s house and other outbuildings. The plans for the cowshed had been commissioned from a well-known Finnish architect W. G. Palmqvist. 

According to the blueprints, the size of the entity of a cowshed and a horse stable was 26 metres x 13 metres. Under its roof were 20 stalls for cows along with four stalls and two boxes for horses.  The pigsty had three stalls. The stableman’s dwelling and a carriage house stood in the eastern wing of the building. In addition to the stableman, the manor’s agricultural operations employed at least an estate manager, a gardener, orchard workers and a dairymaid.

Joenniemi Manor with its cowshed was, in fact, an important breeding centre of Western Finncattle. The farm presented its cattle at agricultural shows. in addition, it sold young cattle were also to other farms. Therefore, it was not uncommon for the proud owner of the estate to first show the best breeding bull of Joenniemi cowshed before other business affairs were discussed. The cowshed was consequently demolished as redundant in the 1970s.

Serlachius established the Joenniemi estate in 1918 on the site of Joenniemi croft. The croft had belonged until then to the Koskela estate. The aim was to develop a manor-like habitat for Gösta Serlachius and Mrs Ruth Serlachius.

A university graduate of Zootechnic and Agricultural economics, Ruth Serlachius focused especially on the breeding of livestock and farming. From 1927 on, Joenniemi manor was a well-known model farm. It introduced new agricultural methods and varieties for the farmers of the locality as well as participants of field trips organised from other parts of Finland. Moreover, an orchard that became known for its apple trees started to operate. The purpose was to make the farmers of the locality to purchase their berry bushes and fruit and ornamental trees at Joenniemi.

Tarja Haikara
Planning Officer

The cowshed at Joenniemi. Serlachius Museums' picture collection.
The cowshed at Joenniemi. Serlachius Museums’ picture collection.