Hedvig Charlotta Cronstedt was born in 1795 and raised in Stockholm and probably in the fortress Suomenlinna outside Helsinki, since her father Carl Olof Cronstedt was the commander of the fortress in the early 19th C. Hedda was named lady in waiting at the court in St. Petersburg in 1811. Many young noble women in Finland got this honor due to the fact that the Russian emperor thus wanted to honor their fathers. Finland had become a granddutchy under Russian rule in 1809 after the so called Finnsh War (1808-09) against Sweden.
Hedvig Charlotta as a child. National Museum of Finland.
In praxis only a few Finnish noblewomen lived in the court in St. Petersburg – the others lived in Finland and only served when the emperor visited the granddutchy. Hedda probably lived from time to time at her parent’s manor Herttoniemi. In our museum we have a washing bowl and jug in silver that Hedda got when she was appointed to lady in waiting. The pieces are made in Stockholm in 1811.
Jug and bowl in our collections. Made in 1811.
In 1819 Hedda married Johan Abraham Stjernschantz (1787–1864). Eventually Herttoniemi manor passed on to them. The pair was childless. After many years they sold Herttoniemi manor to the burgher Carl Bergbom in 1859. Hedda passed away in Myllylä manor in Elimä in 1868.
Hedda, Beata Sofia and many other ladies in the history of our manor are in focus in our tour on historical women. The price of the tour is 150 euros (0 % moms.) and can be booked by mail or phone (+358-401526185). You are welcome to contact us!
The team behind creating the special tour about historical women in Herttoniemi Manor Museum has consisted of Eva Ahl-Waris, Astrid Nurmivaara and Ralf Palmgren among others.