30 April 2012

Royal blogs survey updated

Royal blogs come and go, and today I thought it was about time to make another link renovation at Hoelseth.com's Royal blogs subpage. All the blogs that had not been updated since last fall were axed, and a couple were added, included The Royal Reading Corner.

Please post a message or send me an e-mail if you have recently discovered a new royalty-oriented blog which you think should be included in my blogroll.


Sweden: Princess Estelle stole the show on her granddad's birthday

Around 2000 people gathered at the Outer Courtyard of the Royal Palace in Stockholm when the public celebration of King Carl XVI Gustaf's 66th birthday took place today. According to the Royal Court's website as well as The Local/TT), the band of the Royal Swedish Navy played among others several marches as well as a medley of the glamrock group The Ark's songs and also the pop group Abba's "The winner takes it all". The traditional 21-gun salute from Skeppsholmen and the change of the guards also took place. The king took the time to receive flowers and drawings from many children.

Later the king appeared on one of the palace balconies, where he was joined by Prince Carl Philip, Queen Silvia and eventually also Crown Prince Victoria and Prince Daniel with their 2 months' old daughter Princess Estelle. This was of course received very well by the crowd, and has also made headlines in the Swedish newspapers. See for instance Aftonbladet.se and Expressen.se in addition to the links made above. A direct link to Expressen's TV coverage can be viwed here.

The then Princess Victoria also made a similar public appearance on the balcony on the king's 32nd birthday in 1978 when she was 9 months old. We will not have to wait so long for Princess Estelle's next public appearance, as her christening will take place on Tuesday 22 May at the Palace Church in Stockholm.


Norwegians connected to royalty or nobility and a former Countess von Klot-Trautvetter

Some years ago I posted from time to time a survey of Norwegians married into foreign royal or noble families at the European Royals Message Board. The members of the message board seemed to enjoy the postings and many contributed with more examples as well. I have mentioned some of them in this blog too, for instance Aagot Axell, née Midling (1886-1931), who in 1918 married Count Herman von Ostheim, and Anne Lütken (1959-2001), who from 1982 to 1985 was married to Baron Christian de Massy, a cousin of the current Prince of Monaco.

Other examples are Colonel Lieutenant Ingmar Fridjov Andersen (1860-1942), m. 1891 Baroness Clothilde von Oefele; Peter-Fredrik Behncke (b. 1925), m. 1959 Countess Terez Maria Revay de Szklabinya (1928-2008); Christopher Blom Heimbeck (1885-1967), m. 1933 Princess Karin-Elisabeth of Schoenaich-Carolath (1900-1966), and Grete Kvaal (1915-2009), m. 1937 Prince Georges M. Sturdza. And many, many more.

Then there are examples of Norwegians who "could have" married into royalty or nobility if the relationships had survived - some years ago Pia Haraldsen, whose mother Jasmin was married to Queen Sonja's nephew Karl Otto Haraldsen from 1990 to 2006, dated Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume. The latter got engaged to Countess Stéphanie de Lannoy last week. Another Norwegian woman dated for a few years Prince Rudolf of Liechtenstein (b. 1975), a nephew of Prince Hans-Adam. The woman in question later married a Belgian man of noble ancestry, while Prince Rudolf on Friday 20 April 2012 married Tilsin Tanberk in Istanbul, Turkey.

The other day a correspondent sent me a link to a protocol of civil marriages in Oslo where the names of a German Countess married to a Swedish "godseier" ("estate owner") but apparently residing in Oslo, turned up. So there was a Norwegian connection, even if the man in question was not a Norwegian citizen. But when I read the marriage registration more carefully, it turned out that the woman had only got her (social) comital title from her first marriage.

For the record, the marriage registration informed that godseier Carl Adolf Ragnar Olson, b. Kristianstad, Sweden 10 August 1880, son of ritmester Carl Olson and Sigrid Olson, née Malmsten, got married on 15 December 1933 to grevinne (countess) Irmgard Marie Louise Hedvig Karoline von Klot-Trautvetter, b. Clausdorf [in today's Mecklenburg-Vorpommern], Germany 19 December 1905, daughter of estate owner Peter Heinrich von Hagemeister and Elisabeth Augusta Julia von Zansen.

According to the protocol both had been married once before.

If the registration at GeneAll.net is correct, Irmgard's first husband was Count Herbert Wilhelm Erich von Klot-Trautvetter (1896-1977), and they had two children together. Count Herbert later remarried and got four more children by his second wife.

According to Arreskow.se, Ragnar Olson (the website claims that he went by his third given name) was first married to Mia Kockum, and they had one child. It is difficult to say what happened to Ragnar and Irmgard - I haven't managed to find much information at present, but then there are numerous sources I could check out but which are not available to me at the moment. Arreskow.se suggests that Carl Olson died in Stockholm, without giving any year of death. One should of course take some precautions when Wikipedia is consulted, but according to the online encyclopaedia (English version/Swedish version) Ragnar Olson died on 10 July 1955, and he has got a mention because he in 1928 won a bronze medal in individual dressage competition in the Olympic Games in Amsterdam, as well as a silver medal in the team competition.

When I above say that it is difficult to know what happened to  Ragnard and Irmgard, I mean that it is unknown to me at present if the marriage lasted until Ragnar's death in 1955, or if they got divorced. The latter seems more likely, though, given her age in 1955 (my reasons for saying so come in the next sentence). According to Werelate.org (which claims that she was born as an "East German Baroness), Irmgard was later married twice (and got a daughter in her third marriage) and died on 5 April 2005. The latter is, by the way, confirmed by the Oslo cemetery register and by Aftenposten 11 April 2005 ("Anmeldte dødsfall" ("Reported deaths")). There is a noble family named Hagemeister, by the way, cf. the index of Genealogisches Handbuch des Adels, Band 17, Adeliche Häuser B III, but is there also a baronial (freiherrliche) family with the same name? If so, then at least Irmgard's fourth husband would qualify for my survey! See also the website Gutshäuser und Schlösser in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.

Updated on Tuesday 2 April 2013 at 21.00 (minor correction).

26 April 2012

Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum, Oklahoma, USA

Yesterday I wrote about the proposed locations of the Norwegian national 22 July memorials. The proposals are - as expected - already debated, as many feel that the park next to the Oslo Cathedral would be a more fitting place for a national memorial in the capital. The cathedral was the natural place to visit for thousands of mourners in the days and weeks that followed the terror attacks. Who will forget the vast flower garden outside the cathedral? The steering committee wrote in its report that Domkirkeplassen (the Cathedral Square) still is a living, informal memorial place and didn't want to replace it with a permanent memorial. The national memorial place is supposed to unite everyone, independent of political or religious affilation. The steering committee felt that the square/park outside the cathedral would be too exluding.

Other people find that the Government Quarter, where the first terror attack took place, would be the best place for a national memorial. Others again think that Nisseberget in the Palace Park would be a good idea, while some people feel the location is rather "irrelevant" to the tragedy that took place in Oslo.

The discussion of the location and what the memorials should look like will of course continue. I am not going to compare the 22 July attacks with other terror attacks, as the story behind the different attacks are so different. Still, many thought about the Oklahoma City bombing in the days after the 22 July bomb attack, and it has also been mentioned during the trial.

The bomb attack on the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City on 19 April 1995 killed 168 and injured more than 680 people besides destroying or damaging more than 300 buildings. I am sure there were many debates about the memorial in Oklahoma as well, something that I will not go into. The memorial was formally dedicated on 19 April 2000, while the museum opened the year after. I visited the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum in July 2005, and was very moved by the way the memorial was designed and by its simple beauty, if you can use that word about a place where such a horrible crime took place. The Reflecting Pool, the Feld of Empty Chairs symbolizing the 168 people who were killed, the Survivor's Wall and Tree and the Memorial Fence were all well-chosen parts of the memorial where the victims, survivors and rescue workers are honored.

The Norwegian national 22 July memorials will of course be different in style and size, but I wouldn't be surprised if the artists and/or architects who will work on the memorials in Norway will look to elements of memorials such like the one in Oklahoma City for ideas.

Updated on Friday 27 April 2012 at 08.30 (minor language correction).


Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume of Luxembourg and Countess Stéphanie de Lannoy engaged

The Grand Ducal Court of Luzxembourg announced this morning the engagement of Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume to Countess Stéphanie de Lannoy:

Leurs Altesses Royales le Grand-Duc et la Grande-Duchesse, ont la très grande joie d’annoncer les fiançailles de Leur fils, Son Altesse Royale le Prince Guillaume, Grand-Duc Héritier, avec la Comtesse Stéphanie de Lannoy.

Palais, le 26 avril 2012
Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker informed his government and and the presidium (Bureau) of the Parliament (Chamber of Deputies) an later held a press conference. We were among others informed that the wedding is expected to take place later this year. The official celebration will take place at  Château de Berg on Friday 27 April. Earlier in the day there will be an official event at the Grand Ducal Palace where the couple will meet the prime minister, the president of the Chamber of Deputies, the government, the Archbishop, the Nuncio of the Holy See, other members of the diplomatic corps, the mayor and the commanding officers of the Police and Army.

Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume was born in Luxembourg on 11 November 1981 and is the oldest child of Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria Teresa, née Mestre.

Countess Stéphanie de Lannoy, who belongs to one of the oldest noble families of Belgium, was born at Ronse, Belgium on 18 February 1984 as the youngest of 8 children of Count Philippe de Lannoy and Countess Alix of Lannoy, née della Faille de Leverghem. Her paternal grandparents were Count Paul de Lannoy and Countess Béatrice de Lannoy, née Princess de Ligne, while her maternal grandparents were Baron Harold della Faille de Leverghem and Baroness Madeleine della Faille de Leverghem, née de Brouchoven de Bergeyck.

Her CV is impressive. Following her primary and secondary education in Ronse, Saint-Odile in France and in Brussels, Countess Stéphanie spent a year in Moscow where she studed Russian language and literature. She later studied Germanic philology at the Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium, before moving on to Berlin, Germany where she finished her master degree, focusing in her dissertation on the German influence on the Russian Romanticism. Then she took a further education course at the Wallonian Commercial office of the Belgian embassy in Berlin, before she started working for an investment company. Among her main interests are classical music - she plays the piano and violin - and literature, as well as sports (swimming and skiing). Besides French, which is her mother language, she speaks Dutch, English, German and Russian. A solid background for becoming Hereditary Grand Duchess of Luxembourg!

More details and photos (which are copyrighted and can not be published here) can be found at the official website of the Grand Ducal Court as well as the newspaper Wort.lu.


25 April 2012

National 22 July memorials report submitted

The Norwegian Government decided in December 2011 to establish two memorials after 22 July, one in Oslo and one in connection with Utøya (Hole municipality), following the 22 July attacks. According to the Ministry of Culture's press release of 22 December 2011, the memorials are intended to both honour the memory of the deceased and represent a collective tribute to the volunteers, survivors and rescue personnel. 77 people died in the attacks.

The steering committee for the national 22 July memorials, chaired by former Minister of Culture Åse Kleveland, submitted today to the Government its report Steder for å minnes og påminnes - innstilling vedrørende minnesteder etter 22. juli ("Places for recollection and reminding - a report concerning memorial places after 22 July"). The report (in  pdf) can be read here.

The committee has visited and discussed several places in Hole and Oslo to place the memorials. Regarding Hole municipality, where Utøya island is situated, the steering committee believes that the memorial place should be accessible to everyone and therefore located on the mainland. Therefore Sundvollstranda, Vik, Sundøya, Gamleskolen, Elstangen, Sørbråten, Lauvodden (Veikroa) and Lien were all visited, and the committee concluded that Sørbråten (see pp. 12-14) was the best place, with Lauvodden as an alternative. Both places are connected to Riksvei ("National road") 155 and are close to Tyrifjorden lake with a view to Utøya and with limited passing traffic.

I gather that Arbeidernes Ungdomsfylking (AUF, Workers' Youth League) will also set up their own memorial on the island itself.

In Oslo the committee has visited Domkirkeplassen (the Oslo Cathedral Square), Stortorget (the Main Square next to the Oslo Cathedral), Eidsvolls plass vest, Tullinløkka, Youngstorvet, Grev Wedels plass, Kontraskjæret/Skansen, Nisseberget (in the Palace Park) and Regjeringskvartalet (the Government Quarter). The conclusion was that Nisseberget in the Palace Park (pp. 21-23) was the best place, with the Government Quarter as an alternative. The Royal Palace has responded positively to the proposal. Nisseberget is in the report described as "a sunny height in the Palace Park, between Wergelandsveien and Slottsbakken", with a great view to the city, and is "both secluded and open at the same time".

Personally I would have thought that the Government Quarter, which was severely damaged by the car bomb on 22 July 2011, would be the most fitting place to raise the memorial, but the committee regards the uncertainty about when the reconstruction work is finished as a weakness. But even if also the Government decides on Nisseberget for the national 22 July memorial in Oslo, it will not exclude a memorial also in the Government Quarter, although in a smaller scale.

It is now up to the Norwegian Government to decide where to place the national memorials. The committee has suggested that an invitation will be given to an open, international "prequalification" for a commission which includes the two national memorial places. In the so-called open prequalification artists, architects and co-operating groups will present their reasoned applications for participation. The prequalification will be followed by a closed competition where up to 20 artists etc. take part.

The plan is that the national memorials will be unveiled on 22 July 2015, four years after the attacks took place.


Genealogen no. 1, 2012

Genealogen (i,e, "The Genealogist"), the newsletter of Norsk Slektshistorisk Forening (NSF; The Norwegian Genealogical Society), was published earlier this week, and I received my copy today.

One of the most interesting contributions this time - and most relevant to this blog - is perhaps Ole Bjørn Darrud's article Olav den Hellige Haraldssons fødested. En kildedrøfting ("Olav the Holy Haraldsson's birth place. A discussion of sources") which can also be read at NSF's website (flipbook version). A presentation (in Norwegian) can be read here.

In his article Darrud discusses the methods and sources used by Thorstein Vale, who last year in his booklet Dokumentarisk lokalisering av lav den Helliges fødested, i lendeheimen på Digrenes i det Gamle Grenland presented the theory that King Olav the Holy (Olav II Haraldsson, r. 1015-1028) was born at Nordigard Lindheim in today's Sauherad in the county of Telemark. Darrud has written a short presentation of his article (in Norwegian) at Arkivverket's users' forum (23 April 2012).

Genealogen also contains information about NSF's book project about "the Eidsvoll men", i.e. the 112 delegates to the Constituent Assembly who convened at Eidsvoll in 1814 to draw up the Constitution of Norway. The project aims among others to include the ancestry (back to their great-grandparents) of all the Eidsvoll men as well as genealogical information about their immediate family (wife, children, siblings).


King hails diversity during terror trial (Views and News from Norway)

Views and News from Norway published a rather nice article yesterday (24 April 2012) about the Norwegian King Harald V's recent visits to Furuset in Groruddalen, Oslo:

King hails diversity during terror trial

Here is the Royal Court's own article published 23 April (in Norwegian):

Møtte unge på Furuset

Even the republican newspaper Dagsavisen praised the king after the recent Furuset visit in its editiorial today.


15 April 2012

Royalty Digest Quarterly no. 1, 2012

The first issue of the magazine Royalty Digest Quarterly this year arrived in my mail box just before I was heading for Mandal to spend the Easter weekend there, but I haven't had enough time to have a look at it before now. The editor Ted Rosvall has chosen to write about Queen Elizabeth's 60th anniversary as a British sovereign in his column, listing other European monarchs who can boast of long reigns.

Rosvall has also written the first article in this issue, Sasja - the charming scoundrel, which deals with Princess Victoria of Schaumburg-Lippe, née Princess of Prussia (1866-1929), and her scandalous marriage to her Russian tennis partner, Alexander Zoubkoff (1901-1936), in 1927.

No Royalty Digest Quarterly without a family album - this time the magazine's historical consultant Charlotte Zeepvat has chosen to write about The Children of Emperor Franz Stephan and Maria Theresia, Queen of Hungary in Habsburg - A Family Album: part I. The album includes 60 images of various Habsburgers as well as a photo of Hofburg Palace. In addition you will find 3 pages with family tables.

The third article, The Winter Palace in Flames, is written by Marion Wynn, and as the title suggests, focuses on the descruction of the Winter Palace in St. Petersburg by fire in 1837.

Michael L. Nash has chosen The last King of Finland as the topic of his article. He is of course referring to Prince Friedrich Karl of Hesse-Kassel (1868-1940), Landgrave from 1925, who was elected by the rump parliament (those on the wrong side in the previous civil war were excluded) in 1918 as Finland's new king. He never formally accepted the throne, however, so the title of the article is a bit misleading.

The author Randi Buchwaldt has written many books about Danish royals and royalty-related topics, and this time she has landed on Hereditary Princess Caroline-Mathilde of Denmark. A kind-hearted, sweet and warm person. Princess Caroline-Mathilde (1912-1995), the second daughter of King Christian X' younger brother Prince Harald and his wife Helena, née Princess of Glücksburg, married in 1933 her first cousin Prince Knud (1900-1976), who would have become a King of Denmark in 1972 if it had not have been for the changes to the succession law in 1953, when cognatic succession was introduced (full cognatic succession was not introduced until 2009), and King Frederik IX' daughter Princess Margrethe, today Queen Margrethe II, became first in line of succession to the Danish throne.

Leka Zogu, or King Leka I of the Albanians, died in Tirana on 30 November 2011, and the Zogu dynasty expert Neil Rees has written an account of Leka's life. It includes among others photos from his funeral on 3 December 2011 and of the cemetery where his wife Susan, his mother Geraldine as well as himself are buried. Plans are under way to bring the bodies of his father King Zog and his sisters from the Thiais cemetery in Paris to Tirana, as well as other members of the royal family from their resting places in exile. This is supposed to happen in 2012 in connection with the centenary of Albanian independence, but I don't know at present if it will really be carried out as planned. The idea is that the royal mausoleum built for King Zog's mother and now being rebuilt, is to house all the deceased members of the Zogu dynasty. Leka Zogu's funeral was also a topic at the traditional Royalty Weekend, which took place this very weekend (14-15 April 2012). I attended last year's conference, but was not able to travel this time, as most of my travel budget for 2012 will saved for the trip to the USA).

Paul Minet, founder and editor of the original Royalty Digest magazine and "a specialist dealer in royal books', died on 6 February 2012. Charlotte Zeepvat has written a really interesting obituary where we also get the history of the Royalty Digest and the Royalty Weekend. Regrettably I never met Paul Minet, but was in contact with him from time to time in connection with my subscription to the magazine and my many book orders, and he was always very friendly and helpful.

Charlotte Zeepvat's last article of this RDQ issue is titled Dressed for the nation. Zeepvat opens her article by writing that "One of the fascinations of old photographs is the insight they offer into clothes worn by royalty for all manner of occasions'.

There are no book reviews this time, but as usual the readers can enjoy the column The World Wide Web of Royalty with news of "Births, marriages, deaths and other events in the extended European Royal families". Due to the wonders of Internet, the news are usually a bit old when the magazine is printed, but it provides a record for future references.

Information on Royalty Digest Quarterly can be found at its editor's website Royalbooks.se. See earler presentations of RDQ here.


11 April 2012

The Norwegian Royal Court. Annual report 2011

The Norwegian Royal Court's annual report 2011 was delivered to the Storting's Presidium, the Ministry of Government Administration, Reform and Church affairs and the Office of the Auditor General yesterday, 10 April 2012. I received my copy from the Communication Staff today. A pdf file of the report (in Norwegian only) can be found here. Earlier reports can be found here, while a summary in English of the 2010 annual report can be found here. I am sure 2011 will be covered later on.

The annual report contains a survey of the Norwegian royal family's activities and the work of the royal court in 2011. A list of all the orders and medals conferred during the year is also included.

The Lord Chamberlain, Åge B. Grutle, says in his summary that the tragic events at Utøya and the Government buildings on 22 July left a particular mark on the royal family's work in 2011. The royals made a point of being available to those affected by the tragedy and contributing to keeping Norway united around its values in such a difficult time.

The members of the royal house had a comprehensive programme both at home and abroad. They visited all the counties, including 42 municipalities (there were 430 in all during 2011, but the number dropped to 429 on 1 January 2012 when Mosvik and Inderøy merged), and 23 official visits were made abroad. Troms county up north hosted the king and queen's traditional county visit, while the Crown Prince couple went to Hedmark county.

The king and queen received state visits from Lithuania in April, from Luxembourg in May/June and from the Republic of South Africa in September. They paid state visits to Slovenia and Croatia in May and carried out a 10 days' long visit to the Norwegian America in October. Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit paid an official visit to Ghana in April. The Crown Prince has continued his work as goodwill ambassador of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), a role which brought him to Nepal together with the UNDP administrator Helen Clark in November. The Crown Princess has also continued her work for UNAIDS.

The royal diary of 2011 reveals that King Harald had 103 audiences as well as 28 formal audiences in which newly appointed ambassadors to Norway presented their credentials. The king had 241 official engagements in Norway and abroad, while the Crown Prince was present at 183 official events. For the other members the numbers were 99 (HM The Queen), 63 (HRH The Crown Princess), 23 (Princess Märtha Louise) and 26 (Princess Astrid Mrs. Ferner).

The annual accounts of the Royal Civil List (not the royals' personal appanages) showed a surplus of about NOK 11.046.053, which will be allocated for later projects. Also the accounts of the Crown Prince couple showed a surplus (NOK 1.174.102), which will be saved for later purchases. The accounts of the Palace tours on the other hand showed a deficit of NOK 172.514.

According to the annual list 30 persons received the Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav in 2011, just like in 2010 (all classes combined). Among those were Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg and Princess Astrid's husband Johan Martin Ferner. 124 persons received the Order of Merit (all classes combined). Among them were Luxembourg's foreign secretary Jean Asselborn and the former Olympic speed skating champion and President of the organisation Right to play Johan Olav Koss.

The Medal of St. Olav was given to only 2 persons, while there were 348 recipients of the King's Medal of Merit. Finally 28 persons received the King's commemorative medal, including the communication staff's own Sven Gj. Gjeruldsen.

See the official website for more details about the Norwegian orders and medals.

Updated on Wednesday 17 April 2013 (two missing words in the third last paragraph added).

10 April 2012

Easter break summary

Statue of police inspector Sigvard Larsen (1948-1928), "father of the police act", outside his home in Storgata, Lillehammer.

This year's Easter break was spent with family and friends at Hafjell and Mandal, and I decided to take a little break from my blog as well. The only exception was the addition of a photo and a postscript to my blog article of 20 March 2012, The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall in Norway. The addition was made the only evening I spent in Oslo after the stay at Hafjell and before I travelled down to Mandal. Here is a summary of various news etc. I most likely would have written about (not necessarily in a chronological order, though) if I spent the whole vacation in front of my computer instead of being with my family:
  • A few days before I travelled up to Hafjell I thought about the expected birth of Peter and Autumn Phillips second child. It would be so typical if the child was born when I was not able to write about it right away. And of course, the news of the birth of Isla Elizabeth Phillips, the second great grandchild of Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh, came on 30 March, the very day I was driving up to Hafjell. The baby girl was born the day before, 29 March 2012, at Gloucestershire Royal Hospital. Peter Phillips is the son of the Princess Royal (Princess Anne) and Mark Phillips.
  • 30 March 2012 was the 10th anniversary of the death of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother (1900-2002). Earlier the same day (Saturday 30 March 2002), I lost my grandmother, Aslaug Trygsland, née Ramstad (1915-2002), so naturally at the time - and also this year - the royal event came in the background.

  • My grandmother Aslaug Trygsland (1915-2002). This must be her confirmation photo taken in September 1930 (see no. 29).

  • 8 April 2012 would have been the 100th birthday of Sonja Henie (1912-1969), the Norwegian figure skater and Olympic champion.
  • Another anniversary that got some attention this Easter was the Titanic disaster of 15 April 1912. Yes, still a few days until the anniversary, but at least two documentaries were broadcasted on Norwegian TV this Easter, hence my comment. A survey of the Norwegian passengers at Titanic can be viewed here.
  • During my Easter break at Hafjell, I visited Lillehammer, which hosted the Olympic Winter Games in 1994. In Storgata I passed the statue of police officer Sigvard Larsen (1848-1928), who is regarded as the "father of the (Norwegian) police act". According to the information plaque, Larsen, who was Lillehammer's first police inspector, was a pioneer in the struggle for more rights to the police employees. In 1906 he even forwarded his own law proposal for a national police act to the Norwegian Storthing. Nothing came out of it at the time, but 6 years later a committee was appointed to review the question. But Norway had to wait until March 1936 before the police act was sanctioned. Why it took that long is another matter. I might look more into in in connection with my work at Lovdata.
  • Concerning Easter, GD.no published a photo of the king and queen of Norway as well as Princess Märtha Louise and the Behn family arriving at Vinstra Station in connection with their vacation at the royal mountain chalet ("Prinsehytta") in Sikkilsdalen. I am not sure where the Crown Prince family spent their Easter vacation, though. It could have been at their own cottage in Uvedal or at Dvergsøya outside Kristiansand. Or somewhere else...
  • GD.no published the photo to illustrate a NTB article which told about a poll Ipsos MMI had conducted for Dagbladet on the Norwegian royal family. The poll revealed that 93% believes King Harald does a good job, while only 1% says the opposite. The numbers for the other members of the royal family were 81% (Queen Sonja), 89% (Crown Prince Haakon), 75% (Crown Princess Mette-Marit), 25% (Princess Märtha Louise - 27 % actually think she does a bad job) and 5% for Ari Behn. Not sure why the latter, who, although he is considered a member of the royal family, never performs official duties on behalf of the royal family on his own. Princess Märtha Louise seems to get negative ratings because people can't see the difference between her official role and her private business (her "angel school" etc.). Princess Astrid Mrs. Ferner could have been included in the poll, but is not very well known and was probably left out because of this.
  • During the first days of the Easter break the news that the Norwegian Genealogical Society (NSF) had terminated an agreement with the other Norwegian genealogical association, DIS-Norge, concerning the hiring of office services, was announced. NSF has stated financial reasons for its decision. It has not been received well by the DIS-Norge leadership and surely lead to some debate among the Norwegian genealogists, but hopefully the two associations will be able to co-operate on other matters later on. I have been a deputy member to the NSF committee since 2009.
  • Buckingham Palce announced yesterday, 9 April, that the Duchess of Cornwall had been appointed (to be a) Dame Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order (GCVO). Awards in the Royal Victorian Order are made personally by The Queen, for services to the Sovereign.