- Bicycle Culture by Design: Cargo Bike History - Svajere in Copenhagen

Here are some historical photos of a cargo bike life in Copenhagen. Above, King Christian X on one of his daily rides through the streets during the Second World War occupation. He always rode without official guards through the streets and was much loved for it. Here, however, he was guarded by the bicycle messengers from the company Achilleus.

Here is a link to an earlier post about the Svajere - or cargo bike messengers of Copenhagen.

The bicycle messengers at the headquarters of the Post & Telegraf service in 1917. Dressed splendidly. The bike messengers - or Svajere - in official service were usually uniformed until the end of the 1940s, when casual wear became the norm.

The bicycle messengers for Illum department store in the 1940s, during the occupation.

A double cargo bike nicknamed Skildpadden - or The Turtle - in the service of Illum department store. 1940s.

The bike messenger team at Byposten messenger company.

Bicycle messengers from the telegraf service lined up on City Hall Square.

Brilliantly dapper.

Young bicycle messengers. Ca. 1940s at left and 1941 at right.

Heavy loads.

A "svajer" giving free rides to kids in the neighbourhood, 1942.

The legendary Svajerløb on Grønttorvet - now Israels Square. The races were organised by a man with a messenger company and the money raised was used to send the young bike messengers to summer camp. The races were popular events in Copenhagen. They were revived in 2009.

More about the Svajere - then and now - right here.

Cartoons about the feisty bike messengers.

A quiet moment with a pipe.

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