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About Café Uroxen

Café Uroxen is situated in a steep climb of S:t Johannesgatan, a step down from the curb, in a building dated 1928 designed by architect Gunnar Leche. Through the basement apertures, one sees the legs of passer-byes. It is likely that Café Uroxen first opened in 1928 and run by Maja Berg and Hildur Lind until 1947, when Sigrid Ferm took over. A few years later in 1950, Olga Ernlund became the owner, and in 1952, Anni Jansson. Hilda Pettersson then operated the café from 1955 until at least 1989.

On the upper parts of the café’s walls there are murals, painted with a certain sense of humour based in a fictitious prehistoric time. Examples include hunting motifs, aurochsen, and sea monsters in the German Ocean. But there are also paintings of Gustavianum as of 1700, Aeconomicum (Institute of Economy as of today), and of the Disting market in Uppsala in 1500. None of the murals are signed, but each one is of similar character and thus likely created by the same person, possibly by a master painter by the name of Melker Jansson in the late 1920’s. The café was named by one of its regulars, Professor Björk, who during one of his visits took particular fancy of one of the motives; “Aurochsen and their ferocity”.

Café Uroxen is sometimes, quite erroneously, called “Märtas”, which is likely explained by the fact that another café on S:t Johannesgatan (at 23A) was run by Ms Märta Andersson in the 1960’s. When Märta sold the café, its nickname “Märtas” for some reason was inherited by Café Uroxen.