In upper Storegade, opposite the former Palace Hotel, is this medium-sized ducal house from 1777. It probably originally had a double-leafed front door with decorations and a curved top frame. The windows have also been significantly altered. There were probably three windows in the wall dormer and six on the ground floor facing the street.
Today, the door is set back so that a windbreak is created, but this is not an original feature. The front door often reflected the status of the owner, and the registrar was a person of high status, so he lived close to the palace.
The roof originally had red handmade clay roof tiles. When Frederick Christian I became Duke, he banned thatched roofs, and therefore all houses after about 1760 were built with tiled roofs and fire-resistant walls.
The house was built by Registrar Friedrich Opitz (1719-1797). Also called “court clerk” or “ducal clerk”. Registrar was a position one had to be sworn to. Opitz was the right-hand man of the local magistrate and in some cases he would act on his behalf. Conveniently, the local magistrate lived next door in the House of the Court Councillor.
In the beginning, the need for post in the ducal town was not very big, but it increased as newspapers and an increasing number of letters arrived. Over time, the duke was granted an exclusive right to post to and from Augustenborg, and a post office became necessary. The house of the Registrar, which must have been empty at that time, was chosen for this purpose.
On January 1, 1853, the first post office of the town opened in the house, and the 27-year-old Registrar Georg Emil Birch from Copenhagen was appointed post clerk. In connection with the new use of the house, the front door was moved to the west side of the house. And behind the house, a turning area was arranged for the horse-drawn post coaches.
According to old books about the town there were special bays for sorting post in the basement. These “bays” still exist, but are almost identical to the wine shelves found in the cellar of the palace. Having to carry the post down to the basement and then up again seems a bit inconvenient, so maybe the registrar just liked wine and wanted to store it properly.
When the war ended in 1864, the post office was taken over by Prussian soldiers. Birch offered to continue, but was dismissed for being too Danish-minded, and a certain H. Brandt from the “Post Inspectorate” in Flensburg was appointed “post officer”.
In 1888, the new post office on Storegade 14 was opened, and since then the House of the Registrar has been in private hands. Over time, the house has been used for many different purposes, such as saddlery, savings bank, laundry and ironing shop, bicycle shop, hardware store and sausage bar.
Today the house is a private residence.