Vang, Hedmark

Vang church.
For the municipality in the county of Oppland, Norway see Vang, Oppland.

Vang is a former municipality in Hedmark county, Norway.

Vang was established as a municipality on 1 January 1838 (see formannskapsdistrikt). The city of Hamar was separated from Vang in 1849. Furnes was separated from Vang in 1891. Vang was merged with Hamar on 1 January 1992.

Prior to the merger of Hamar its administration center was located in Hamar (i.e., outside of its own municipality). Vang had 9,103 residents and an area of 327 km². There was strong local opposition, with one poll showing 95% of former Vang residents opposed to incorporation into Hamar. Support in Hamar was stronger as Vang was a prosperous farming municipality, while Hamar suffered from urban decay.

The sponsor for the consolidation was Odd Aspeli (of the Arbeiderpartiet). He took over as Mayor in Hamar after consolidation and remained as Mayor until 1999. Another chief sponsor against consolidation, Einar Busterud, then assumed the position of Mayor.

Gåsbu Ski Center lies in Vang Almenning, and has served as the backup venue for the Holmenkollrennene.[1] The national cross-country skiing championship was last held here in 2002.

The name

The municipality (originally the parish) was named after the old farm Vang (Old Norse: Vangr, "field" or "meadow"), since the first church was built there.

Øvre Vang is the common local name for the area outside Hamar that used to be the now merged municipality Vang, Hedmark.

Early history

Archeological evidence provides ties between the Vendel era culture in Uppland and Vang in the period from 600-800 AD. Most notable is finding of a fine examples of a Vendel Culture style ring sword in Vang burial mounds; each sword's hilt is adorned with a heavy gold ring upon which oaths were sworn.[2][3]

Åker gård (Aaker farm) in Vang was the site of an ancient Thing (ting) place; it was there that Magnus I agreed to share power with his uncle Harald Hardråde and the two became co-rulers. In the 11th century the Thing was moved to Eidsvol.

It remained a king’s farm during the Viking period, as well as a local headquarters for the military. At the end of the Hannibal War General Georg von Reichwein was granted Åker gård as his residence. During the following years it continued to be the residence of senior military officers. Jørgen Otto Brockenhuus, founder of the Brockenhuss –Schack family, resided there in the early 18th century.[2]

The 19th century

Vang municipality was established in 1837, when the municipality law came into effect. The municipality borders were those which had been established by a border commission in 1730. It was named after Vang church; since the early iron age the region had been known as Ridabu.

In 1847 the executive council majority agreed that Hamar should be restored to city status, but the decision was controversial and some believed the basis for the decision was illogical. When Hamar achieved city status in 1849 0.4 km² of land was reassigned to it from Vang. Vang gave up additional land to Hamar in 1878, 1946, 1947 and 1965. In 1891 the district of Furnes was separated from Vang to create a municipality of its own.

The earliest village was Hjellum - a contraction of «Hjellum-by`n». It was there that the train station for the Rørosbanen line between Elverum and Hamar stopped. In the same place Sanderud asylum (now hospital) was located.

During the Second World War, especially after 1944, many resistance fighters hid in Vangsåsa. About 70 persons found refuge in the Norwegian resistance Milorg's district 77 rural huts. On 26 October, German troops assaulted one of the huts and two resistance fighters were killed. A third escaped miraculously.

After 1947 the Østland District Commandos had their headquarters at Åker gård.

After the Second World War more villages developed: Ridabu, Ingeberg, Vangli and Wik.

(For additional early history, see also Hamar.)


People with connections to Vang

References and notes

  1. The Holmenkollen ski arena has been described as the cradle of all Nordic ski competition, with more than 112 years of international ski competition.
  2. 1 2 Stagg, Frank Noel (1956). East Norway and its Frontier. George Allen & Unwin, Ltd. ISBN none.
  3. The use of the ring sword is also mentioned in Beowulf and the Eddas.

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