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Gjest Andrew Peterson

[#17042] Explanation of Norway regions and places

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Gjest Andrew Peterson

I was wondering if someone would be so kind as to explain this to me. I am familiar with the US-State-County-City(or Town). My understanding is that for example, Hedmark would be comparable to a US State (not in size but administratively), and Nes would be comparable to a county. I do not understand when I see placenames like Helgoya, Stenrude,and the like. Are the towns, farms? How does the farm system work?TIA,Andrew

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Gjest Heidi C. Huitfeldt

I'm not quite sure about this, but I believe it is more correct to compare the 'fylke' Hedmark to a County in american terms.Nes would then be comparable to a township or parish, and Helgerøya or Stensrud to a farm or a spesific place in the township/parish.Heidi

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Gjest N B Macdonald

Hello Andrew,There is no hard and fast rule. The administrative districts cannot be directly compared, historically or otherwise. It does seem that a (small?) majority of Norwegians agree with Heidi H. and equate a fylke with a county. I've never understood why, as it seems to me to be natural to equate fylke with a (US) state. All the fylke are divided into kommuner, and I usually translate kommune as county. Of course, neither the name of the fylke nor the name of the kommune is necessarily part of a mailing address.Today is, by the way, Election Day. Every 4 years Norwegians elect members of parliament, 'congressional representatives' if you will. And every 4 years (staggered by 2 years) we elect local representatives, to the fylke and the kommune levels. Today is a local election.I think you'll find some info in English on farms in 'Useful Links' at the bottom of the main page. Reading about the old naming traditions will tell you a lot about farms.--Nina Beth

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Gjest Agnete Schjønsby

I agree that a fylke must be translated as 'county'. Norway is not federal like the US, and we do not have the state level between the county and the central government.Stat (central state)= NorwayFylke (county) = HedmarkKommune (modern adm level; local community): Nes - now Nes has become part of the larger kommune Ringsaker.Prestegjeld (= parish. Older adm level - replaced by the kommune, but kept as church-administrative level): NesSokn/sogn. Sub-parish: Helgøya (varies through times)Gård = Farm: StensrudBruk = part of farm (most farms had more than one farming unit, you can see that in the census - more than one farmer family at the farm.

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Gjest Andrew Peterson

This is very useful information. Thank you all. My ancestors seem to hail mainly from Nes, Hedmark. I am planning a trip to Norway next summer. It is difficult to find decent detailed paper maps of Norway here, and I haven't found a deatiled map online either. I cannot find Nes on the maps/atlas that I have. I understand the island Helgoya resides inside Norway's largest lake? I can see Liliehammer on the map. How far would Nes be from there, and in what direction? What options for travel to Nes are available from Oslo?TIA,Andrew

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Gjest Agnete Schjønsby

Nes may be called Tingnes on the maps (Ting = old norse assembly).Nes church must be the old centre of the parish, and is located excactly by the bridge to Helgøya.Your information about Helgøya is correct - the lake is called Mjøsa (there is only one island of size in this lake). Located South of Lillehammer - on the Eastern side of the lake. I would guess it is a one hour drive from Lillehammer to Nes.

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