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The farm was made economically viable by combining farming and fishing as was the traditional way along the North Norwegian coast. The wife would take care of the day to day running of the farm and the husband would be away fishing large parts of the year and working at home during the main farming seasons such as haying and ploughing.

Knut Hamsun's uncle bought the farm in 1862. He lived in the vicarage at Presteid and Knut Hamsun's parents were his tenant farmers. They came north from Lom in Gudbrandsdalen to Hamsund in 1862 when Knut was three years old. However, Knut's father was not a fisherman, but a tailor and he combined this trade with farming. They rented the farm for many a year before they were finally able to become the owners. When Knut was just nine years old, he was sent to the uncle's farm to work as part of the contract between the families. While there he was longing to go back to Hamsund and in later life he wrote "my home was poor, but endlessly dear to my heart". As a young man he decided to change his surname to Hamsun from Pedersen, which came from his father's first name Peder. He went on to become a world famous writer and Nobel laureate.

In 1959 Knut Hamsun's childhood home was turned into a museum and later in 1994 it was taken over by the museum Hamarøy Bygdetun, which again is now part of the museum foundation Nordlandsmuseet, a group of local museums in the Salten area.

Hamsund gård