He was smart and she was pretty. Rafael Lönnström was asked to move his ammunition factory further away from Helsinki in 1930ies. He chose Rauma. Far enough (from Russia), but not too far from civilization. His wife Teresia could take shopping trips from Turku to Stockholm.
After the war, the main focus of operations shifted to water fixtures, and the Lönnström companies developed into a major player in metal industry in Rauma. Their factories used half of the electricity produced in Rauma! Remember, electricity came in 1900 and there wasn’t enough of it.
Rafael Lönnström died from illness in 1943 and Teresia managed the business another 30 years. She sold her share to the huge Huhtamaki Group business, which ten years later sold it further on. The current successful water fittings factory Oras and BHW waste management companies in Rauma had a boost from this business deal.
As the business flourished, the company built housing for its workers around the factory (incl. 5 two-storey houses on Syväraumankatu Street and 7 white wooden houses known today as Weekday Houses).
Teresia and Rafael Lönnström Home Museum on Syväraumankatu 41 in Rauma. Website
The way they met was romantic, but it’s another story. Go see their home and you still feel their presence.
She adopted her sister’s daughter, who worked as an accountant for the company. She died only a few years after Teresia. They traveled abroad, loved photography and collecting arts. She left huge funds to the Finnish Cultural Foundation and the Foundation for Economic Education.