Odense’s first poorhouse was situated at the corner of Paaskestræde and Overgade in no. 19. The building was a merchant’s house from the renaissance era, which the town bought in 1804 and refurbished to use as a poorhouse.
At the top floor was a school and Hans Christian Andersen attended school here. This floor has been demolished, but parts of the house can still be seen in Paaskestræde.
Hans Christian Andersen went sporadically to the poorhouse school after he went to a regular school. His family had the tradition of attending school at a woman called Marie Raaschou, but Hans Christian Andersen was enrolled in another school with a teacher called Fedder Carstens. This school primarily intended for Jewish children, however was closed down. Before the school was closed Hans Christian Andersen got to know the Jewish girl Sara Heimann, and it is believed she is the role model for the character Naiomi in “Just A Fiddler.”