I just returned from attending the Centennial celebration of the Hallinglag in America. A Lag is a society or organization of Norwegian descendants of Hallingdal, Norway. More will be posted on the celebration later; but first I want to share some of the history of Hallingdal that I learned for the first time, thanks to Edna Rude and the mayors from Norway.
Edna transcribed many documents and gathered them into a fine article, too lengthy to reprint in this blog. But, for those interested, please write to me and I will send you her address. And I will try to sum up Edna Rude’s history over the next few days:
Hallingdal first became a kingdom about 800 and its first king was named “Hadding.” He lived at Hoff in upper Al and his son succeeded him as king, living at Garnos in Nes. The name Haddingdal was used for a long period before it became “Hallingdal.” Hadding was the son of King Raum of Telemark, and a brother of King Ring of Ringerike. In 870, Hallingdal accepted Harald Fairhair as king, along with all of Norway.
So the history of our people begins with the civilization of a settled people, from about 800 to 1000 A.D. known as the Viking Age.
While the Vikings raped and pillaged Europe’s coasts, they also planted colonies. Nobody was safe from the Vikings. The name Vik means bay or inlet and the men who swarmed out of these bays in the far north included Danes and Swedes and they were since known as Vikings. A king in France invited a group of Vikings to settle on their shores in exchange for peace and a guarantee that the Vikings would protect France from other bands of Vikings. That area is called Normandy; and it has been said that Normandy is the only place in the world where French is spoken with a Norwegian accent.
But now we know that there was a settled civilization in Hallingdal by 800 A.D., the question remains: "Where did they come from?" (To be continued)