This amazing place has served Norway well

But do you know where it is?

Besides having rescued the land from enemy forces several times, it is also a continuous cultural inspiration source. Hailed in Ja Vi Elsker, Norway’s national anthem. Quote from the 4th verse:

During summer months there are concerts and TV shows and so on. But Fredriksten, the Fortress of Halden, also has its legends who fascinate people worldwide. Basically, it is a story from the 1800s where a lieutenant vanished during inspection—a presumed murder case without a body—at least at the beginning.

More about that soon.

Photo: Wikipedia, moderated with GIMP

Denmark-Norway constructed this fortress in the 17th century as a replacement for the border fortress at Bohus, which had been lost when the province of Bohuslän was ceded to Sweden by the Treaty of Roskilde in 1658. The fortress was named after King Fredrik III of Denmark and Norway, and the town of Halden was also originally named after him. Known as Fredrikshald between 1665 and 1928.

The name Halden means slope, and slope there is.

Festningsgata. Photo: Tom Thowsen 2020

Here`s a street view of Festningsgata, with mighty Fredriksten Fortress lying there on its cliff. The white Bell Tower at the top lies 122 metres above mean sea level. And local lore tells of a secret passage between the Fortress and the town, with an entrance in the basement of one of these houses. So far, this is an unsolved riddle.

Photo: Wikipedia

At the top of Fredriksten Fortress you have good view towards the Swedish side of the fjord. But you can also see, far out in the horizon, the snowy mountains of Telemark.

The Bell Tower. Photo: Wikipedia, moderated with Gimp

Another story tells about a lieutenant who vanished during an inspection at the Bell Tower, one cold winter night in the 1800s. In 1926 they found, by chance, the body of a soldier buried near the tower. But there is more. Some connect this murder case to the local ghost who haunts the fortress—the White Lady. She`s a beautiful young Lady in a long, white dress. Many claims to have seen her among these walls.

Is she looking for her lover—the murder victim?

We`ll probably never know.

Nevertheless, have this shady lady almost overshadowed the Swedish warrior king Charles XII, who was shot during his attempt to take the Fortress in 1718. The White Lady has been highlighted on TV, theatre, music, and literature. More than ever.

Back in 2010, Ghost Hunters International tried to capture her in one of their TV episodes.

All in vain. She did not reveal herself, of course.

However, if you are intrigued by The White Lady, there is a novel about her on the international book market—Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and Amazon. Both English and Norwegian editions. Also eBook and Paperback.

And who knows, maybe you`ll plan for a trip to Halden too when the better time arises.

There`s so much more to show, and there is more to come.

Subscribe and stay tuned.

Thank you for your attention. 

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