Historical Content

Aaron Chittilappilly

A time period that we are trying to focus with our test tube project is the last few years of WW2. Margareta was in Sweden at that time and war ended when she was only five. She couldn't remember a lot things about the war but she recalled that her family suffered from the lack of food. They would receive ration cards in order to obtain a small portion of food from the government and sometimes they would even eat rabbit meat for survival. During the war, Margareta's father served in the Swedish army and he hung a rifle in the hallway after his service. When the war ended on September 2, 1945, the news was everywhere in the world and Margareta still recalled her excitement after hearing from the radio. From that moment on, Margareta's living condition gradually improved and she began to eat fruits that she never had during the war. She tried oranges but hated the sour taste, she had bananas but didn't like it. Because of this experience, we are trying to incorporate these strong smells that would elicit Margareta's memories about WW2. 

During the war, Sweden declared the policy of non-belligerency and remained as a neutral nation. However, their neutrality was debated over the years, and their intentions were unclear. In 1939, war broke out between Finland and Russia. Although Sweden never officially declared their assistance for Finland, thousands of volunteers were involved in the war. Later on 1940, Germany controlled the Baltic sea and restrained Sweden's trades with foreign countries. Nearly all the goods that were exported from Sweden went to the hands of Germans. Especially iron ore and ball bearings which were used in wars. As a neutral country, Sweden received pressures from both the Allied Powers and the Axis Powers. They tried to appease both sides with their demands, and at the same time, they were also building a strong military force. Throughout the war, Sweden held the initiative of conducting humanitarian missions. They offered help and assistance to thousands of refugees.