|About the Society|
|Written by Tom S. Vadholm|
|Monday, 02 March 2009 21:09|
The Norwegian Heraldry Society was founded on 27th February 1969 in facilities owned by the National Archives in Oslo. After much preparation, and accompanied by Historisk Tidsskrift (Historical Journal), Norsk Slektshistorisk Tidsskrift (Norwegian Geneological Journal) and the Nordic Journal of Heraldry the invitations were finally sent out. The aim of the Society was stated to be to advance the study of heraldry and related fields (such as flags,seals, and house-marks) by way of meetings, lectures and litterature. The Society also aspires to an educational and advisory role in these areas. This continues to be its purpose, and the Society in recent years has attracted a membership of 150 to 200.
As it´s first chairman the Society elected ornithologist Herman L. Løvenskiold,PhD. Five years later headmaster C. S. Schilbred took the chair for one year, followed by naval Commander Andreas Stang for three years. Lawyer Hans Cappelen (photo) lead the Society thereafter for all of thirteen years, and in 1990 archeologist and regional Curator Geir Helgen received the chairmans gavel, which also he wielded for another thrirteen years. The current chairman, lawyer Tom S. Vadholm, took over in 2003.
Amongst other renowned board members are numbered; Major General Arne D. Dahl, (known from the Finnmark campaign), Principal Archivist and local historian Gunnar Christie Wasberg, PhD, Curator and artist Odd Fjordholm, Major General Thorbjørn B. Bergersen, (responsible in large part for the reintroduction of heraldry in the military in Norway), and Col. Jan Eide who is today principal advisor on heraldry to the military. In 2005 the boards first female member Prof. Erla Bergendahl Hohler, PhD was elected. Since 2007 two of the board´s nine members have been women.
Since 1997 the Society has had both Historical and Consultative Committees. The first mentioned deals with questions of heraldry of an historical nature, whilst the latter may be called upon to comment on matters such as new or inherited arms,or of a more legalistic nature.This committe has twice prepared guidelines on behalf of the Convention of Local Authorities, on the use of Council´s arms. In 2007 the Society established also an Ecclesisatical Heraldry workgroup.
Meetings and excursions have been central to the Society´s activities.Due to the country´s geography, long distances, and population pattern, these have - with only one exception- always been held in or originating from Oslo.Occassionaly a free-form "members own meeting" would be held, and since 1999 these have become regular "Heraldic Workshops". There are norally eight meeting per year, alternating between more formal lecture evenings, and the workshops.
Members having a particular speciality- and guest experts- hold lectures, often on historical or aristic themes. Occasionaly the lecturer may be a visitor from abroad and we have had several from Sweden, Denmark, and the United Kingdom. These days meetings are normally held on the premises of the Norwegian Geneological Society in Lakkegata.
Every other year the September meeting is replaced by an excursion.
The Rogaland branch of the NHF was formed on the 9th on March 2009, with Mr.Axel H. Leversen as branch chairman. It is hoped that close cooperation between the branch and the NHF board will result in one meeting a year in the region.
The Norwegian Heraldry Society cooperates extensively with the Nordic Heraldry Society (Societas Heraldica Scandinavica - SHS) with it´s background in Denmark. Most of the NHF chairmen have been SHS board members, and indeed most NHF members also choose to join SHS. With this membership comes the bi-annual journal Heraldisk Tidsskrift which maintains a high profssional standard. SHS also arranges a nordic Congress every second year, the location rotating among member countries. NHF also enjoys close relations with neighbouring Heraldic Societies in Sweden and Finland.
The International Congress of Genealogical and Heraldic Sciences is normally held every second year. Likewise, the Académie internationale d'héraldique organises a colloquium in alternate years.With the SHS (viz.) Nordic Conferences in addition, NHF members recieve plenty of opportunities to participate in these fora.
In 1975 the stenciled "Messages to Members" began to circulate. This initially contained mainly practical information about upcoming meetings. Gradually though the content was expanded to other material of heraldic interest. In 2002, issue no. 64, the title "Våpenbrevet" ("Letters Patent") came into use. I 2005 the format was changed from A4 to A5, and by 2008 Våpenbrevet was being published in colour. Appearing twice yearly, the journal has become a substantial and attractive resource for the Society and it´s members.
For a long time the Society maintained a simple page of information about the NHF, heraldry in general, and some some details of the board and committees. Originally available only through SHS web page, The Norwegian Society aquired it´s own domain name and began developing the site into the present www.heraldikk.no, available in both Norwegian and (at least partially) English.
We hope you enjoy your visit, and welcome your comments!
From 1981 onwards the knight-figure drawn by board member Odd Fjordholm based on the Baldisholt Tapestry, with shield and sword, served as the Society´s emblem. In 2001 a competition was announced to produce a suitable coat of arms for the Society. As a result arms were adopted in 2005, and in 2007 the complete achievement was adopted as*:
"Gules issuing from base two battle-axes addorsed Argent shafted Or overall at the nombril point an escutcheon Or; for Crest between two axes of the arms a panache of three peacock feathers proper; Mantling Gules doubled Or."
* Blazon in english courtesy of Alex Maxwell Findlater
Emblazoned here by Maj.Gen Thorbjørn B. Bergersen-
|Last Updated on Saturday, 19 December 2009 12:52|