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Holmenes ( Holmenes)
Address: Holmen, 9072 Birtavarre
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Construction System /
Cogging joint method; woodwork; alder
Building Type: Farm site; residence; museum
Keywords: Sami, farm, cog joint construction, woodwork, alder, residence, sod roof, storage shed, barn, stable
Year of Construction: 1800 to approximately 1950
The Holmenes Farm is located in Holmen in the valley Kåfjorddalen, approximately 3 kilometres from the base of the fjord Kåfjorden. This valley runs in a south eastern direction upwards towards the mountains and inwards towards the Finnish border. The valley Kåfjorddalen receives very little precipitation, and the cultural landscape is characterised as a combination of hay fields, grazing pastures and lush deciduous forests with many alders.

Today the Holmenes Farm provides a good example of what a Coastal Sámi farm in the Troms County looked like, in the beginning of the 20th century. The farm comprises many small structures, each with its own unique function. The cottage and storage sheds were built using the cogging joint method, while all of the other structures were built using stave construction. All of the roofs are covered with sod. If one wanted to build with pinewood, which is what the cottage is made of, the timber had to be brought in from other places. The storage sheds are made of timber from deciduous trees, primarily alder, as well as the poles used in the stave constructed structures. Here on the Holmenes Farm there are barns for cattle and sheep, stables and a loft. In addition, there is a summer barn with a fence running between the pasture and the woods, along with sheds for overnight stops, firewood, food and clothing. The buildings are arranged in three rows, which are located behind one another on a flat alluvial plain. The water well is located in between the oldest (at the far rear) row of outbuildings and the storage shed/row of farming houses.

The structures on the Holmenes Farm were erected in the 19th- up until the middle of the 20th century. Some of the buildings have been reconstructed, and today the farm complex is a part of the Northern-Troms Museum.
Literature: Hage, Ingebjørg: Holmenes - sjøsamisk gård i Kåfjord. Nå en del av Nord-Troms Museum, Jord og gjerning. Norsk landbruksmuseums årbok 1988.
Hage, Ingebjørg: Fjærbuene i Birtavarre, Sjøsamiske buer og naust, Fotefar mot nord, Tromsø (year unknown)
Publisher: The University of Tromsø, 20.12.2005
Author: I.H
Photographer: I.H 2007

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