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Norwegian Genealogy

Emblem of Nottoden Notodden Kommune

Pop. 12,313; Area 856 sq. km. (331 sq. mi.)

Notodden includes the towns of Gransherad, Heddal and Notodden. Its name means "the fishing place."  Its silver on blue coat of arms represents the Tinn River with lightening bolts, depicting hydro-electric power, emanating from it.  The settlement of Notodden was a result of the taming of the Tinn River inLocation of Nottoden
 in Telemark the late 1800's. The resulting hydro-electric power was the reason for locating Norsk Hydro's factories, one of the first nitrate factories, here in 1905. The Tinfoss Iron Works is one of Europe's biggest ferro-silicon smelting works. The town is built on terraces sloping down toward Lake Heddal. Telemark Teachers' College is located in Notodden.

Bolkesjø is a district with strong tourist traditions. One of the earliest inns in eastern Norway was located at Bolkesjø. The "Old Cottage" at Bolkesjø carries on with these old traditions. It has an unusually beautiful location with a view over much of Telemark.

Gransherad school, built in 1866, still stands but is currently a private residence.

Heddal is a picturesque valley near Notodden running north from Lake Heddal towards Hjartdal. Lifjell lies to the west.


Sites to See

Heddal Church Notodden Church is a modern building consecrated in 1938. It has been decorated by Henrik Sørensen and Stinius Fredriksen. A sculpture, "Devotion" by Anne Grimdalen from Tokke, stands outside the church.

Ramsåsen Nature Reserve in Elfterdalen is a large protected area of virgin forest. It is located at Lisleherad, about nine kilometers from Notodden.

The Heddal District Museum lies on a hill overlooking the Stave Church. There is a fine collection of buildings from the district including three cottages, a cotter's farm, a summer mountain farm and storehouses. Ramberg Cottage from Tinnegrend has an especially fine rosemaled guest chamber decorated by Ola Hansson in 1794. The guest cottage from Uppigard Høve built in 1744 is also exceptional.

Heddal Stave Church, five kilometers west of town, is the largest of the stave churches still standing in Norway and the mostClick for larger image of Heddal Church impressive. The present chancel is the oldest part and is thought to have been built in 1147. The rest of the church is from 1242. It is built in the form of a basilica, with 12 larger and 6 smaller interior columns. There is a gallery around the entire building. The church has 4 richly carved portals. The interior is decorated with old wall paintings and with rosemaling from rosemaling from the 1600's. Much of the furniture and fixtures have been removed to the Historical Museum in Oslo. However, the old "Bishop's Chair" still stands in the chancel. It is said to have come from the pre-Christian era. In 1952 an extensive restoration, financed by H. B. Holta of Notodden, was completed.


Telelaget Genealogy

Telelaget's Volunteer Genealogists for Notodden

Emigrant Ancestor Database: Notodden

Submit your emigrant ancestor information


Bygdebøker for Notodden

What's a Bygdebøk?

  • Hansen, Jens Christian. Notodden; utgitt av Notodden kommune i Anledning byers 50 årsjubileum, 1963. Notodden: Notodden kommune, 1963.

  • Notodden historielag. Årsskrift. 1/1983- .



Norwegian Language

Official Nottoden kommune Website


English Language

Heddal Stave Church


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This page was last updated Saturday December 31, 2016 22:28:15 -0600