A replica of a Danish-built Viking færing – an exploration boat used at the turn of the second millennium — landed at the Danish Canadian National Museum in Dickson Aug. 23.
An estate donation enabled the museum to commission the Freydis Joanna to be built in Denmark with the authentic style hand tools and methods used by the Vikings more than 1,000 years ago. The boat has toured Canada on its voyage and docks at its home port.
Acquisition of an authentic replica of a Viking boat was made possible through the generosity of Ponoka residents Karen and Kresten Sommer, whose estate on Karen’s death provided $40,000 to the Danish Canadian National Museum and Gardens to be used “for something special.”
The landing event included a mock Viking raid by historical re-enactors from Odin’s Ravens following a ceremonial dedication by Paul Elliott of History Anew historical reconstructions and Svend E. Neilsen of the Danish Canadian National Museum Society. The Viking village showcased medieval Scandinavian craftmanship and weaponry, and entertainment such as rune reading and mock battles provided by History Anew and Odin’s Ravens.
“This ship not only represents the history of the Viking incursions and settlement in Canada,” said Steve Morck, president of the Danish Canadian National Museum Society, “but also the incredible effort and skills of all immigrant craftsmen who came to Canada to build the diverse cultural mosaic of Canada.”