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Norsk Folkemuseum has re-erecting two Reconstruction Houses from Finnmark in the Open Air Museum. In these buildings we tell the story of World War II in Finnmark, of the forced evacuation and the scorching, of the return and the reconstruction after he war – and of every day life on the 1950s.

The History

At the end of World War II (1944-1945) the Germans used scorched earth tactics, and destroyed almost all buildings and all boats in Finnmark and Northern Troms. The population was evacuated. In the years following the liberation in 1945, the region was rebuilt and people returned. 

The extensive reconstruction of the region lasted until the early 1960s. This is an important, but little known part of Norwegian postwar history. The architecture of the region was completely changed during this period – a direct and concrete expression of the drama and the change the people themselves went through.

The Family who lived in the house

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    The Persen family in front of a «gamme». Their pre-war house was close by. The daughter Else to the left, next to Ole Persen (drinking coffee). Elvira Persen is no. two from the right. Photo from the 1930s. Foto tilhører Arnfinn Arntsen.
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    Else, now married to Herman Arntzen, with her husband and their son Arnfinn, in front of the reconstruction house in Olderfjord where they lived together three generations in the 1950s. Foto tilhører Arnfinn Arntsen.


  • Olderfjord in Porsanger Haakon Harris / Norsk Folkemuseum

Finnmark is the northernmost part of Norway and constitutes one sixth of mainland Norway, with an area of over 48 000 km². Finnmark borders the Arctic Ocean in the north, towards Troms (Kvænangen) in the west, Finland in the south and Russia in the east. The largest cities are Alta and Hammerfest in the west and Vadsø and Kirkenes in the east.

Project Managment

  • Birte Sandvik and Espen Revold. Haakon Harriss / Norsk Folkemuseum

Espen Revold

Project Manager Building

Birte Sandvik

Project Manager Interiors and Exhibition 

The Project Team

Morten Bing, Cultural History Section
Anne Marie Svebak Grimstad, Education Section
Alexander Lindbäck, Departement of Archives
Jan Petter Brennsund, Department of Preservation

The Exhibition Team

Mette Opsal and Cecilie Thue

Artifact registration

Hanne Simonsen

From the Building Preservation Section:

Einar Haugen, Lars Lunde, Alexander Myrseth and John Wennberg

From the Department of Agricultur

Jan Tore Sørsdal, Gard Anstensrud and Stein Sunde

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    The Exhibition will be texted in Norwegian, Sami, Kven and English.