The first hint of a location came from my great-grandfather's baptismal record. It said his parents were living in Moum Farm, Borge Parish, Østfold, and beneath the farm name was another in parentheses -- Haugen. A hill in Moum Farm it was then! From census records I also knew that it was Moum Søndre or South Moum. That narrowed it down pretty well. But, of course, I wanted to know exactly where Haugen was. Through an historian in the area (see his web site here), I learned about property records on the Digital Arkivet site and, voila, the property record for Haugen in Moum Søndre was found. It clearly showed that my ggg-grandfather Andreas Andersen was the first Haugen, obtaining property rights in 1867. His daughter, Hanna Marie Andreasdatter married my gg-grandfather, Emil Georg Samuelsen, and the record shows they also purchased a lease of land at Haugen to build another house. It seems like several siblings of Hanna's also lived at Haugen and carried the Haugen surname.
|The property record for Haugen in Moum Farm, Borge Parish, Østfold|
Lucky for me, my father's cousin contacted someone who had actually grown up in Haugen. Before my arrival in Norway, he showed her the way to the ruins of Haugen. Today, there is a company on the Glomma River there, and the vegetation has taken over the area where the Haugen houses once stood. The man she met said the houses were destroyed in the 1960s. He remembered a place that was very beautiful with a good view of the river and fruit trees he used to climb as a boy.
So, on the morning of my 9th day in Norway, we set out to see Haugen with my father's two cousins, the daughters of one of his cousins, my mother, and my son. My father was feeling better, so he also came along. We followed my father's cousin to the site, which was somewhat industrial looking with the company's handiwork all over the area. After our cousin received permission from the office, we headed to a wooded area nearby. To my left, there were piles of dirt obstructing the view of the river. To my right was a mass of wooded vegetation. But there was a path that we could follow into the brush. Together we climbed over thick plant and tree debris and roots. We finally arrived at an area where there were bricks strewn all over the ground. A look around brought us to an old water well, which was a sure sign there had once been homes there. Another sure sign of a past residence was the presence of fruit trees. We found apple and cherry trees mixed in the wooded vegetation. There were also berry bushes. It was sad that the past of Haugen was so buried away from what must once have been a very pretty place, but I was very excited to be there, at the birthplace of my name. I kept one of the small green apples from a tree as a souvenir.
|The view from Haugen today|
|Haugen descendants searching for their past|
|A water well|
|Bricks on the ground|
|Apples from the Haugen apple tree|
|The house in Vesten built by my gg-grandfather, Ludvig Hansen|
|Probably the house of my ggg-grandparents, Anders Pettersen and |
Anne Kristine Simensdatter
|The workshop and possible boat building area beside it|
|In Vesten, the river was once filled with timber logs|
|A view of Fredriksten in Halden|
|The Charles XII monument today (since 1938)|
|The monument of Charles XII in the late 1920s|
|The famous anchor representing the sinking of the German cruiser |
Blücher during WWII
|Letters on the wall of Santa's post office|
I have been behind on my postings regarding my trip because I have since returned home and things have been a bit hectic. Thank you all for your patience as I continue to post the last few wonderful days I spent in this wonderful country of Norway. Every day I carry its beauty in my heart.