Peter Hansen Millinge 1829 – 1903

16 January 1829
Millinge, Svendborg, Denmark
Hans Jørgensen 1784
Sophie Rasmusdatter approx. 1784
1859, Copenhagen
Karen Marie Millinge 1834-1926
24 October 1903
Sankt Josephs Hospital, Copenhagen
Rasmus Hansen Millinge 1810
Anne Hansdatter 1813
Karen Hansdatter 1816
Hans Hansen 1822
Pauline Hansdatter 1826
Carl Johan Millinge 1860-1931
Sophie Martine Millinge 1862-1927
Nicolette Cecilie Millinge 1867-1957
Jenny Pouline Millinge 1870-1886
Anna C. Johanne Hansen Millinge 1873-1919

Picture of Peter Hansen Millinge from PERSONALHISTORISK FESTSKRIFT published 1903

Peter was born in 1829 as the youngest child of the marriage between  Hans Jørgensen & Sophie Rasmusdatter.

By following him through his military papers, we can see that he stayed in Millinge all through his childhood and adolescence working at his parents’ farm and at the farms of neighbours.

During the draft board in 1850, he was drafted to be a Royal Foot Guard and he started his military service 14 June 1852.

From the conscription register, we learn that he was approx. 67.4 inches – i.e. rather tall for that time (it has always been the tallest men that were drafted for the Royal Guards). The average height at that time was approx. 64 inches.

As a Royal Foot Guard his main purpose was to protect the Royal Family and as they lived in Copenhagen he had to leave Millinge Fuen and go to the capital of Denmark.

At that time, in 1852, he was still only called Peter Hansen, however the military had and still today has the habit of calling the enlisted men by the town they come from, so during his military service he was probably just called Millinge.

In 1855 we find him in the Census at Rosenborg Barracks together with all the other guards.

Rosenborg Barracks has been the residence of the Royal Life Guards since 1786. The barracks are in total 250 yards long and the big drill ground in front of the building is 207 x 164 yards.

The numbers of residents during peace time were in 1840 a little above 300 persons, mainly young men, but also the families of the superiors.

Rosenborg Barracks

The military services normally lasted 4 years so by 1856 he left the military.

In 1858, more precisely 1st July, he started to work for the King’s Royal Stables.

A little more than one year later, at the age of 30, he married Karen Marie Andersen, a young woman of 25 years who came from Frederiksværk in the north of Zealand. The marriage took place 28th October and the best man was the oldest brother Rasmus Hansen Millinge. Peter and Karen Marie started out living together with Rasmus’s family – i.e. 4 adults and 3 children in a 3 rooms flat in Rigensgade 467.

All in all, we must assume that Rasmus had a big influence on Peters start-up in Copenhagen and he was probably a big help. Not only did he help with lodging, but he was also working for the Royal Family as a Footman and it is likely that he helped Peter into his job. We do not know of course, there could be other reasons.

Different places where Peter lived

View from Hummergade – end 1880s

After Rigensgade the young couple moved a bit around in the centre of Copenhagen: When Carl Johan was born in 1860 they lived in Knabrostræde, later at Sophies birth in 1862 they lived in Hummergade. They lived there for almost 10 years. Hummergade does not exist anymore, many of the buildings were torn down to make room for the Public Trustee’s Offices during the beginning of the 1900-century.

The Census 1880 reveals that they had a 5 room flat on 2nd floor. This was too big an apartment for a family of 7 so they also had a lodger living there 😊

Stable Master’s House – Staldmestergaarden

Somewhere between 1880 and 1885, the family moved to Tøjhusgade to live in the Stable Master’s House.

The Stable Master’s House was built in the beginning of 1700 as a residence for the staff working at the Royal Stables located just around the corner. It is a big three-winged building in Baroque style with noble portals facing both Frederiksholms Kanal and Tøjhusgade. The house was listed in 1908 and is today the residence of Ministry of Ecclesiastical Affairs and the Ministry of Education.

If we take a look at the Census from 1890 in Tøjhusgade it gives us a snapshot showing who lived where on 1 November 1890. In the ground floor of Tøjhusgade 15 we find below people:

The head of the families in the Stable Master’s House were all working for the royal stables, as coachmen, riding masters, saddlers, stablemen, etc. I could not help notice Hans Peter Rasmussen (4th family), who was working as a “Foderknægt” (feed boy) at the age of 79, no chance of early retirement at that time.
All the Millinge children were still living at home with their parents: Carl Johan (29 years) working as an assistant engineer, all three girls Sophie (27 years old), Nicolette (22 years old) and Johanne (16 years old) working as bookkeepers. Jenny, their 3rd daughter, died in 1886 only 16 years old from tuberculosis.

Royal coachman

As already mentioned, Peter started his carrier in the royal stables on 1 July 1858, 29 years old. He started out as a “Biløber” (directly translated he who “runs by”). He was taking care of the horses and was also driving the coaches and riding the horses. When the royal family used the coaches for official purpose, there were “Biløbere” in front of the coach and next to the horses. So he must have been quite fit to perform the job. Later, he was promoted “Livskudsk” for Princess Caroline of Denmark. This means that he was her person coachman. This was his occupation as seen from the Census 1880. Princess Caroline died in 1881 and Peter continued as a royal coachman not connected to any particular person. In 1894, on 28 July he was decorated Knight of Dannebrog. It was the silver decoration given for 40 years meritorious services (must be 4 years as royal life guard (military service) and 36 years in the royal stables.

From the census 1901, we can see, that he was promoted “Vognmester” this means that he was responsible for a part of the fleet of coaches. He continued in this job until his death in 1903.

Princess Caroline and her Gala Coach

Princess Caroline of Denmark (Arveprinsesse Caroline) for whom he was Livskudsk, was born in 1793. She was King Frederik the 6th oldest daughter and married to Ferdinand, her father’s cousin.

She was widowed in 1863 and lived most of her life the Bernstorffske Palæ in Copenhagen.

The inventory accounts 1879-1884 describes her gala coach as follows: A high two seater coach with double springs and patent axel. It was brown with red ornamenting. The upholstery was beige damask silk and the seats were covered by white cloth.

So this was the coach Peter Millinge drove. He must have looked impressive in his red uniform overlooking the world from his driver seat high above the others.


24 October 1903

Peter died on 24 October 1903. From the death announcement from the hospital, we can see that he died of : Emollitio cerebri – “softness of the brain” i.e. cerebral thrombosis. Marie, his wife, wrote in the death notice for the newspaper that he had been sick for a long time prior to his death.

After a long time in sickbed at Sct. Josheps Hospital, on 24 October, God has called away my dear husband, royal Vognmester, Peter Hansen Millinge, Dbmd. p. p. which is hereby announced to family and friends.

On behalf of children, children-in-law and myself

Marie Millinge

The funeral will take place from Holmen’s chapel Friday 30th October at 12½.



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