Slotsallé 14, House of the Royal Physician and the First Pharmacy

At the eastern end of Slotsallé is this large, elegant house dating from 1765, making it one of the oldest ducal houses in Augustenborg. The house was rebuilt and extended in 1924, when a “staircase tower” and a large arch pediment were added. Old paintings and photos show the house from the harbour / fjord from where it would have given a good first impression of the town.

Unlike most of the ducal houses in Augustenborg, this one has no wall dormer. This may be because the house was the first of its kind in the town, or because it had a different function, for example as a “temporary residence” for the ducal family while the present Palace was being built (1770-76). Whether the duke lived here is not known, but it was probably built by him.

From 1783 to 1801, the house was inhabited by Royal Physician Carl Ferdinand Suadicani (1753-1824), who had his doctor’s surgery at the address. However, there were also other physicians in the house, including Dr. (M.D.) Johannes Rhode and Court Physician Hieronymus Friedrich Philipp Hensler, who was a specialist in gynaecology.

In 1795, Dr. Suadicani travelled with the ducal family to Copenhagen, where his good reputation earned him the right to care for the royal family and to the title of Royal Physician. His treatment of Duchess Louise Augusta was so effective that after ten years of childless marriage she gave birth to three children in the following four years. “One doesn’t get pregnant from reading an encyclopaedia” was her comment, and it was rumoured at the time that she not only had relations with the introverted duke, but also with a certain royal physician with whom she allegedly also had a child.

The house functioned almost like a modern medical centre – at times there were several physicians and some of them were specialists. They even opened a pharmacy in the house. The idea came from Dr. Suadicani, who was unhappy with the pharmacy in Sønderborg, which often could not deliver on time and demanded exorbitant prices. Therefore, he persuaded the duke to set up a public pharmacy in Augustenborg. In 1797 a permit was granted to establish a branch of the Løve Apotek in Flensburg. However, the duchess was not content, so she wrote to her brother Crown Prince Frederic, who had the king sign a resolution authorizing a ducal pharmacy with a license on March 1, 1799. The house served as a pharmacy until 1851, when a former manager took over the lease and moved the pharmacy closer to the palace.

Dr. Suadicani was succeeded by Hans Wilhelm Henrici, who was succeeded by Jacob Friedrich Björnsen, who was a medical doctor and psychologist. After the war in 1864, there were two general practitioners in the house.

In 1890, a new chapter in the town’s history began, when entrepreneur and baker August Christian Ferdinand Storke from Broballe established his grocery store in the neighbouring property, Slotsallé 16. This was the beginning of a local business empire that included a grain import business, a lumber trade and a lime kiln on the other side of the fjord, called Shanghai. Some people still say that the Fjord Hotel (Fjordhotellet) is located on Shanghai. It was an impressive business the Storke family built. Large buildings were erected on both sides of the fjord, but now only the warehouse on Banegårdsgade remains.

In 1895, Storke bought number 14 Slotsalléincluding the extension, no. 14a, which contained a kitchen and housing for the employees. The two buildings used to be separated by an alley that led to the outbuilding behind the house. In 1993, a descendant of the Storke family, Gert Christian Bonde and his wife Aase, took over the house. For many years, an acupuncture clinic was run, but today there is a private residence on the ground floor. On the first floor there is a “Chronomatic Research Center” specialising in the thinking of the late Frede Schandorf around numbers, tones and time. Frede Schandorf died in 2013.