Who are we and where can you find us?
South Varanger Museum
narrates the complex border history of South Varanger, a multicultural
community with Finland to the west and Russia to the east. The main building,
the Borderland Museum, lies by the
E6, the main road leading in to Kirkenes. The outdoor area contains a turf hut,
a small open pit quarry for children with elements from the ore industry; a full-scale
copy of the labyrinth at Holmengrå and the statue Birds flying over, by Tone Thiis Schjetne. In addition, the museum has several district facilities throughout the municipality. Strand Boarding School, North
Namdalen Farm and the Norwegian settler farm, Bjørklund from the 1870s are all to be found in Pasvik. In
Bugøynes, 20 km from the E6, you will find the Lassi Farm, a former merchant trading house that belonged to the
family Esbensen from Vadsø. Along the river Neiden lays the Finnish settler farm
What do we present?
At the Borderland Museum one can explore
theme exhibitions connected to local history. We present the history of the
settlement and development of the region, from its origin as a common territory
between Russia, Finland and Norway, to a Norwegian border municipality with a
complex culture. We also document the industrial history of the firm A/S
Sydvaranger, the mining company that, through the extraction of iron ore from
open pit mines, led the local development from a traditional, self-sufficient
community into a centre of industry. The Museum’s war exhibition contains,
among other things the Russian fighter plane Ilyushin; and presents the war history of Kirkenes and the border
regions. During the Second World War, Fortress
Kirkenes was the main base for the German forces, and the city became a
target for allied bombers.
In the Espolin Room
at Borderland Museum, a selection of drawings and prints with motifs from
Finnmark are exhibited, the work of Kaare Espolin Johnson (1907-1994). The
museum has a large photo collection, and selected motifs can be viewed throughout
the different exhibitions. Among these
are photographs taken by the committed social commentator and doctor’s wife,
Ellisif Wessel (1866-1949). Online, the museum has an exhibition presenting the
history and life along the border river in Pasvik called Borderless water – one river, three states: www.pasvikelva.no
The Borderland Museum
is located together with the Savio Museum,
dedicated to the art of the Sami artist John Savio (1902-1938). The Borderland museum
has a café and a museum store with a wide selection of literature on local
history. Our library is open by appointment for searches in the photo archive or
for the study of local historical subjects.
(Our site is under construction).