Author Archives: Isidor Kjellberg

Living: 1841 - 1895

Place of birth: Stockholm

Frans Gustaf Isidor Kjellberg was a Swedish journalist, leading liberal and, as the author Alfred Kämpe describes him in the third and final volume of The Freedom Struggles of the Swedish Allmog, "the indefatigable old fighter for the right to vote".

He was the son of the customs inspector Carl Gustaf Kjellberg and has been described as a bold and optimistic force of nature. In 1869 Kjellberg travelled to the UK and the USA to practice at the Bullock Printing Press Co in Philadelphia. At the same time, he was a correspondent for Göteborgs-Posten and editor of the Swedish Monitor in St. Paul, Minnesota, and for a time publisher of Justitia in Chicago.

Kjellberg was sentenced in 1881 to two months' imprisonment in a freedom of the press case.

In 1887 Kjellberg founded Sweden's first suffrage association in Linköping. Ordinary people had no voting rights at all at that time, only the wealthy landowning male population who made up about 20% of the population. After three years, the local suffrage association was transformed into the national organisation Sveriges allmänna Rösträttsförbund in 1890. The Liberal Rally Party was formed in Linköping in 1902 in honour of Isidor Kjellberg, who had been dead since 1895.

"Among happy kingdoms, ours is number one"

Poem popular at voting meetings in the peasants' cottages in the late 19th century