President: Jørgen Malling Christensen, Denmark
Jørgen Malling Christensn was elected as president in 2012. Jørgen is related on his father’s side to Rasmus Malling Hansen: His great-grandfather was RMH’s youngest brother, Johan Frederik Hansen, a teacher and organ player in the local church, born 3 of June 1839, dead October 10, 1918.
Jørgen became a member of the society in August 2006 and started translating RMH’s letters into English. Since then, he has translated all the known letters – currently 111 – in addition to the RMH biography and numerous articles. In this context he has also enjoyed historical research, adding footnotes and explanations to the translated texts.
Jørgen grew up in Denmark, but emigrated to Sweden in 1968, 19 years old. He studied at the universities of Stockholm and later Lisbon, taking degrees in Economic History, Sociology, Social Antropology, Portuguese language and culture and Development Studies related to the third world. He has worked for 17 years in Africa and 4 years in Thailand as a manager and supervisor of projects within education, health, transport, public administration, emergency aid and disaster preparedness. He speaks Danish, Swedish, English and Portuguese fluently and manages French, Italian and Spanish fairly well, in addition to his present focus on learning Thai language.
Jørgen’s interest in RMH is very broad: To study and document everything connected with the life and work of this fascinating man, as well as that of his family.
Jørgen has a daughter born 1968 in Stockholm, and two grandchildren, born 1990 and 1998. He is a migratory type of person, living in the three countries of Thailand, Denmark and Sweden.
Vicepresident: Sverre Avnskog, Norway
Sverre Avnskog was born in 1956 in Høyanger, a little place in the western part of Norway, situated at "Sognefjorden". But the family soon mooved to the capital, Oslo, and today Sverre lives in the southern part of Oslo with his wife Wan from Thailand, end their two daughters Amina, born 2007, and Amalin, born 2009 .
Sverre is educated as a teacher, and has had his work in the school since 1981.
His special interest in the matter of Rasmus Malling-Hansen, has been to search for documentation of Malling-Hansen's life - through photos and letters. Thanks to the internet he has been able to work from his own home in Norway, and contact museums, archives and search through public collections in Denmark, Germany and Norway - where he has found letters and photos.
The greatest breakthrough occured when he came in contact with several descendants of Malling-Hansen. Malling-Hansen had seven daughters and many grand children of the daughters Emma, Zarah and Marie live in Denmark and USA today. From them, the Society has recieved many valuable and unique original letters, photos and other documents.
Sverre Avnskog has built up a large archive of documents and photos, and if you are in need of a special document, Sverre Avnskog is the right person to contact. And please contact him too, if you have an item in your possesion, that might interest the Society!
You can contact Sverre Avnskog on: firstname.lastname@example.org
Vicepresident: Dieter Eberwein, Germany
Dieter Eberwein was born in 1966 and lives with his family in Schauenburg - right in the middle of Germany. He is educated as a precision mechanic and absolved the Max-Eyth-College in Kassel as a technical engineer. Finally he studied economical sciences at the University of Kassel and is now working as a planner at Volkswagen.
Dieter Eberwein started repairing and restroring old clocks, typewriters and counting machines in his childhood. Later he started collecting old typewriters and beame a member in the »I F H B – International Society of the Historical Office World«.
His typewriter collection is now completed with some unknown patent applications and drawings of the Malling-Hansen writing ball, which is rightly recognized as the Holy Grail of Typewriters.
In the year 2003 Dieter Eberwein restored Nietzsche’s writing ball (the most valuable writing ball of the world because of its famous owner the philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche) and analyzed in the following year all his typescripts. For the examination of Nietzsche’s typescripts, he developed new methods which permit the full deciphering of typewritten texts and a chronological presentation of typescripts.
After this work he wrote the book “Nietzsche’s Writing Ball” where he explained the complete restoration, the typescript analysis and Malling-Hansen’s brilliant invention from the beginning.
Member of the board: Uwe H. Breker, Germany
Uwe H. Breker started collecting typewriters in 1971 when just 5 – 6 typewriter enthusiasts were collecting in Europe. Travelling the world for 7 years he inspected all major typewriter collections worldwide.
In 1981 he founded with some friends the »I F H B – International Society of the Historical Office World«. For 15 years he was editor of the re-known magazines Historische Bürowelt(Historical Office World) and HBw Aktuell(The Society's news magazine) and handed over the IFHB – as the "richest" collector's club in the world – in 1996 to the successor with Euro 65.000 capital in the bank.
Since 1987 he runs World's No. 1 Specialty Auction House for »Technical Antiques« in Germany.
Owns in his collection a number of personal artefacts from Rasmus Malling- Hansen e.g. personal typed letter, his own writing desk, family photographs, both patent models, the typewriter, etc. Was chairman of the founding meeting of the »International Rasmus Malling-Hansen Society« in May 2006 in Kopenhagen.
You can contakt Uwe H. Breker on: Uwe@Breker.com
Member of the board: Paul Bech, USA
Paul Bech was born in 1959 and lives in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania (USA) with his wife Polly Dressler Bech and their children Nathan (born in 1989) and Hannah (born in 1993).
Paul is a great-grandson of Malling-Hansen’s daughter Zarah, who was married to Fritz August Bech. Until he learned about the Society on the internet, Paul knew very little about Malling-Hansen and his inventions and studies. The Society has provided Paul with a wonderful opportunity to acquire more knowledge and meet many friendly and interesting people, including other descendants of Malling-Hansen.
Paul works as a lawyer in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
You can contact Paul Bech on: email@example.com
Member of the board: Lars Mathiesen, Denmark
Lars Mathiesen was born in 1950, is married and lives in Copenhagen with his wife and the youngest of three daughters. His family lived for many years on Greenland, where Lars was born and had his young years.
Lars Mathiesen is the only one in the board who is related to Malling-Hansen - he is the grand son of Malling-Hansen's daughter Emma, married Mathiesen. The Mathiesen family has got the most unique collection of Malling-Hansen items, books, documents, letters and photos. They also have in their collection the medals of Malling-Hansen and a very rear mini writing ball. The mini ball used to stand on display in the window of the family's livingroom, but after they realized the value of the typewriter, they found a safer keeping place.
For the Society the Mathiesen family's collection has been like a treasure of gold and diamonds!
Lars Mathiesen graduated from the Architect school of the Academy of Art in 1977 and owns his own firm, "Pelikan Design", and works with the design of furnitures. He has in his career received a great number of prizes for his work as a designer. And once, Lars Mathiesen experinced the great pleasure of taking part in an exhibition where also Malling-Hansens's writing ball was on display.
Lars Mathisen is the one in charge of the members lists and of collecting the members fee, wich is 40,- euro, or 300,- DKK à year.
Member of the Board: Christian Barnholdt, Denmark
Christian Barnholdt was elected to be the first president of our Society at the founding meeting in Copenhagen on May 6th 2006, and has played a leading role in the establishment of the Society. In 2012 he retired and became a member of the board.
Christian Barnholdt was one of the very first persons of modern times to 'rediscover' the amazing story of Rasmus Malling-Hansen, beginning around 1985 with his research into the strange - and sad - history of the typewriter keyboard. This initial interest in typewriter history has since led him to discover many other forgotten things about RMH.
Since then Christian has written numerous articles about RMH in Danish magazines, culminating in five short articles in the new, printed Great National Encyclopedia in 2000-03.
Christian Barnholdt has a degree in economics form the University of Copenhagen from 1973, and has since worked several years as a futurist and 10 years in the computer industry, including IBM.
In 1988 he went independent to become a free-lance business and popular science journalist.
Christian Barnholdt was born in Copenhagen on June 17th 1945. He now lives in the suburb of Hørsholm, 20 kms north of Copenhagen, with his wife Hanne and daughter Helene born in 1993. Two other daughters, Eva born 1997 and Sara born 1993, have established their own home.
He is deeply engaged in local nature projects.
In his youth Christian Barnholdt travelled to more than 65 countries on 4 continents.
He speaks fluent Danish, English and German, understands Swedish, Norwegian and French.
You can contact Christian Barnholdt on: firstname.lastname@example.org