Sven Alfred Gustafson
(Greta's brother)



Introduction

Sven Alfred, was born on July 26, 1898, at Sädra Maternity Hospital. It was a the Gustafsson's first child. Sven had inherited his father's lean good looks and temperament. He was also, secretly, his mother's favorite. On June 14, 1919, Greta graduated from public school and  Alva studied shorthand while working in an insurance office.

Sven struggled with a number of lowplaying jobs after military service. He earned a few kronor a week at the local konditori (bakery) where he met a young dairy maid named Elsa Hägerman and soon began a family. When she became ill following her pregnancy, the moved back home with his parents. There were now seven people living in three rooms at the Gustafssons'.

Sven went to Paris during the summer of 1928. Soon after, he was entertaining offers from film companies in Sweden, England, and France. In 1929 and 1930, he made three films in Stockholm and Paris – two as Sven Garbo and one as Sven Gustafsson.

In 1931, Sven had married Ethel Marguerite Baltzer; Peg, as she was known to her friends and family, was born in the United States to Swedish parents. Their daughter, Ann- Marguerite Gustafson (who later assumed the name Gray as her naturalized American name), was born during the spring of 1932. Greta had no problem with the idea of becoming an aunt – in fact, she seemed to enjoy it.

Sven studied art at the Art Students League and exhibited several paintings in local galleries. He was variously identified in city directories as A. Samuel or S.A. Gustafson, artist.

Sven Gustafson died on January 27, 1967. He suffered an acute heart attack while under the care of doctors at the Desert Hospital in Palm Springs. Sven left his entire estate to his widow, Ethel Marguerite (“Peg”) Gustafson – there was no mention of his sister in his will.
 

The Sven Alfred Gustafson facts summary

Original name
Sven Alfred Gustafsson

Professional Name
Sven Garbo


Sven Garbo (Sweden 1929)

Date of Birth
July 26, 1898

Place of Birth
Sädra Maternity Hospital/Stockholm in Sweden


Sven as a boy

Occupation

In his youth, Sven had several low-playing jobs after military service. He also earned some money at the local bakery. nder the name Sven Garbo, he made 1929 a film in Sweden. In 1 930 he came to the USA and made two films, without success. A s early as the 1940, he started studying Art.


Sven Garbo (USA 1930)

Date of Death
January 1967

Place of Death
Santa Fe/New Mexico/California/USA.

Course of Death
heart attack

 
Greta and her brother, Sweden 1932

His wife
Marguerite „Peggy“ Baltzer - they married in 1932.

His Father
Karl Alfred Gustafsson

His Mother
Anna Lovisa Karlson

His Sisters
 Alva Maria (1903) and Greta Lovisa (1905)


His Children
Sven Åke Gustafson Frederiksson (born in 1919 ) - with Elsa Hägerman.
                          Gray Gustafson ( born in 1932) - with Marguerite Baltzer

Sven about Garbo

“Greta was stagestruck long before she saw a stage or knew about the existence of any actresses,” her brother, Sven, stated . “We all had to dress up in old costumes and do as we were told. Usually she liked to play the part of the boy.

Sometimes she would say terrible things. She would point to me and say, ‘You be the father,' and then to my sister, ‘You be the mother.' Then I would ask her what part she was playing, and she would say, ‘I am your child who is drowned.'”
When she was young, he noted, you couldn't help but believe in her.

Sven Garbo?

Sven went to Paris during the summer of 1928. Soon after, he was entertaining offers from film companies in Sweden, England, and France. In 1929 and 1930, he made three films in Stockholm and Paris – two as Sven Garbo and one as Sven Gustafsson. His name was changed for exploitation purposes without Greta's prior knowledge or consent.

“Garbo was all upset the day she received a letter from her brother saying that the film company for whom he was working [Svensk Filmindustri] wanted to change his name to Garbo,” Gustaf Norin revealed.

She said that she had made the name of Garbo herself, that it was her name, and there should be no one else using it . She sent a cable to her brother asking him to deny the company permission to use the name, but it was too late. It was to be Sven Garbo in Konstgjorda Svensson (Gustaf Edgren, 1929) and Charlotte Löwensköld (Gustaf Molander, 1930).

Sven received his most prominent exposure in När Rosorna slå ut (Edvin Adolphson, 1930), produced by Paramount Pictures in collaboration with Gaumont Studios/Paris. Here he was able to honor his sister's request and was billed as Sven Gustafsson-though he was heavily promoted as Garbo's brother.

Later in the year, Sven wrote Greta suggesting that he would like to come to Hollywood. Harry Edington was against it. So, for the moment, was Greta.

The Sven Alfred Gustafson trivia

 He is buried in Mexico/California/USA.

 Sven Åke Gustafson Frederiksson was  his only child with Elsa Hägerman.  He never married Elsa Hägermann.
     They seperated in 1928.

 In the early 1940s. Sven studied art. At the Art Students League and exhibited several paintings in local galleries.
     He was variously identified in city directories as A. Samuel or S.A. Gustafson, artist.

 He and his family came to California/USA in late 1939. Shortly after, they moved to Santa Fe in New Mexico.

 Under the name of Sven Garbo, he made three films in 1929 and 1930.

 Sven Gustafson died on January 27, 1967. He suffered an acute heart attack while under the care of doctors at
     the Desert Hospital in Palm Springs.

 When Greta was born, the seven-year-old Sven moved his bed into the kitchen of apartment.

 When Greta was a child she would often dress up as a boy, making good use of her brother, Sven's, belongings.

Sven's Films

Sven made three films: Konstgjorda Svensson (Sweden 1929), När rosorna slå ut (Sweden/USA 1930) & Charlotte Löwensköld (Sweden/USA 1930).

Source

The number one source for this Timeline is Karen Swenson's 1997 released Garbo biography Greta Garbo: A Life Apart. This is the best and most accurate book about Garbos-Life.

There's so much information in A Life Apart. Some of it is more subtle, correcting factual errors from other books and re-positioning popular myths. Unfortunately the book is only released in English-language.

 
More Family Related Pictures
Click  HERE!
 
 
 
The Films of Sven Garbo
  
 
 
 
The Gustafson's - Introduction
  
 
Karl Alfred Gustason 
  
 
Anna Lovisa Gustafon 
  
 
Alva Maria Gustafson 
  

 

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