Monday, October 06, 2008

THE PINK TOWNHALL OF HAUGESUND




Originated by MaryT, check hers for today.

Once upon a time there was a town, built by barrack barons on viking sites. Herring bones was the turf of the new town. Its inhabitants were proud of that. Fish gave work to fishermen, barrel makers, salters, layers, carpenters, rope makers, skippers, seamen, school for seamen, cooks, navigators, the lots. On the top of the pyramid throned the shipowners. They became rich, fast and stinking rich. Especially was World War 1 good for the trade. Huge assurance sums for the ships sunk by the new German u boats. Equal high prizes for the valuable cargo; fish and fish oil for a Europe at war.


Now; what I tell here is only hearsay and old rumors.
The biggest and richest of the shipowners was claimed for owing a lot of tax. An income he denied for and could not either be persuaded to pay for.



"I'll do something better," he said, "I'll grant the town a new and mighty town hall as a gift from me on my fiftieth birthday." The year was 1920.The fathers of the city coucil could nothing but accept.
A competition was held among the foremost architects of the nation. The two young men who won, had chosen a neo classicistic, rather pompous style.
To study at the well they afterward went to Italy for a year and a half. Some say they hardly made it home to Norway again.They pored on, inspired from the antique and renaissance; columns, arches, tempel like gables ,architrave, geometric forms and consoles.
Created in euphoric, youthful intoxication.

One setback as they came home. The land was a sloopy hilltop, too short for a classic, symmetric building. No problemo. They just broke the east wing and bent it backwards. The inhabitants of Haugesund are so used to the sight, that they hardly ever reflect over the fact that their town hall has but a half facade..
Two years ago it was voted the prettiest building of the town. The autumn red Virginia Creeper on the raw, reddish granite floor groud is a sight for sore eyes.So is the mighty eagle sculptured by Norway's # one animal sculpturer, Dyre Vaa.
The ship owner?
He and his wife continued to bulid, educate and donate for the rest of their lives.
The citizen still honor their pink hall, with a feeling; "Maybe he was no scholar, maybe he was a bit pompous, but he had a wide open heart, he knew how to throw a party. If the town belonged to him, he also belonged to us ".

Double click to enlarge

30 comments:

Your EG Tour Guide said...

Thank you for telling the story of Haugesund town hall. Interesting ale, even if it might be just a rumour. ;-)

ellen b said...

What a fun post. Loved the heresay history and all! The Virginia creeper really adds a lot to the stone! Happy Ruby Tuesday to you.

Grandma Faith said...

Your town hall is beautiful and I loved reading your story all about it.

Leora said...

Felisol, thanks for visiting me twice. For some reason, Wordpress seems to close my comments occasionally. I always want comments!

Lovely tale about Haugesund. I liked the bench especially. Have you heard of the movie, the Man Who Love Haugesand? I didn't see it, but it was part of our local Jewish Film Festival a few years ago.

Ralph said...

What a gorgeous building. The red exterior offers a subtle elegance, and the Greco columns add a classic stately air. A building of such stature is a better gift than paying lots of taxes. the taxes may be wasted by the town, but this massive building is built to last. Nice!

me ann my camera said...

Loved the pictures that went with you text and history lesson. Happy Ruby Tuesday.

People with Cameras said...

Beautiful building and photos.

Yen said...

I like that last photo! Your town looks like a nice place to visit:) Mine is posted HERE. Happy RT!~

♥peachkins♥ said...

I can tell that you have lots more stories about your place.Makes me wanna come and visit!

shutterhappyjenn said...

Great location! Thanks for taking us there through your pictures!

My RT entries are posted here and here. Happy Tuesday!

Mojo said...

always nice to get a bit of history along with the art... And you gotta love a guy who's got money, but doesn't mind throwing a party for the common folks. I think I'd have liked the guy myself.

BlogBlast for Peace - 11.6.2008

Bobbie in Hawaii said...

What an interesting post. Thanks for telling us that story, and for showing us the fine building that is the Haugesund Town Hall.

Jim said...

Hi Felisol, I like your red building that fellow bought for you. Thank you for its story.
..

MyMaracas said...

Wonderful post! I love the story, and the photos of that unusual building are so lovely. Thanks for sharing this with us.

John Cowart said...

At least your Town Hall has a story; our city hall here in Jacksonville is an abandoned department store nobody but the government would buy.

Dirk said...

Nice pictures AND an interesting story.

Robin said...

What a great post - knowing the story behind them made the photos really special.

Ivanhoe said...

That was a wonderful story and wonderful pictures. Have a great Tuesday :o)

Pia K said...

A really beautiful building, both in colour and architecture!

Mags said...

Wow-what a great story! And beautiful pictures to go along with it. Great post!

Mrs. Mac said...

Once again, you have put together a beautiful Ruby Tuesday story. Great photos and history lesson.

Dianne said...

I love the bench. And the last 2 photos are amazing. Great angle and color.

thank you for putting so much into this post. really interesting to read and lovely to look at.

~Just Me~ said...

Wonderful RT, and the history behind it.

jaejae said...

interesting. now i know something about your place & history! thanks! i love posts like this.

Hildegarde said...

Interesting combination of history, architecture and red. P.S. I don't know if the hangbag is a LV :-)

Terry said...

Dear Felisol
We don't even have to visit all of these places.
All we have to do is come here every Ruby Tuesday and drink in the sights and stories and photos and comments from your blog!
I agree with Dianne.
My favourite picture is the bench.
That comfortable looking bench is just waiting for a few Ruby Tuesday friends to sit in it and pass the time of day, as Princess Serina serves hot cups of tea in English china tea-cups!
Love Terry

Saija said...

what a beautiful building! and i DO love the colour!

blessings on you dear one!

the teach said...

Another wonderful story, Felisol! A very pretty pink building and I love the creeper! Thanks for posting for Ruby Tuesday! :)

Amrita said...

Fantastic Felisol, what steely people. Norway is fast becoming my favourite country really.

Debbie said...

I love reading stories about Norway. Both my mother and father's relatives are from Norway and I've visited once too. I'm glad that I discovered your blog and will be back to visit.