Hemnes Bygdetun consists of a beautifully situated farm that can be just glimpsed from highway E6. The farm has a 500 year history, so its buildings and collections offer many insights into how our ancestors, both rich and poor, lived.
Lillebjerka Farm probably dates back to around 1550. The impressive main house was built in 1750. The parlour is beautifully decorated and can be visited by museum guests. A log house with an open hearth in the middle of the floor gives a strong impression of how poor people lived, and dates from the 1830s. This loghouse, the stately farmhouse, the storehouse (stabburet) and cookhouse contain many objects used on the farm, and others collected from nearby farms.
Other fascinating buildings in the area
The old bakehouse at Jamtjord in Leirskardalen, dating from 1620, is one of the oldest wooden buildings in Northern Norway. Typical of farmhouses at the time, it has living quarters at one end and a hearth at the other. When the new main house was built, the old building was used for baking and for repairing and making boats.
Ancient baking traditions are very much alive in Hemnes; every summer the traditional bread called kamkake is baked in the old hearth at Jamtjord.
About a 20-minute drive from the farm is the village of Hemnesberget. On request, you can visit other old buildings that are now part of Hemnes Museum. The workshop of Per the Smith also has an exhibition of old toys. Kirkebua is one of the houses that were once used to shelter church-goers from other villages. Down by the ferry quay is Ranheimbrygga, an old wharf building that now houses an exhibition on shipping and trade, with many maritime objects including old ship engines.
Read more about Helgeland at www.visithelgeland.com