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Levanger is a town and municipality in Nord-Tr√łndelagmarker county, Norwaymarker. It is part of the Innherad region. The administrative centre of the municipality is the town of Levanger.

The town of Levanger was established as a municipality on 1 January 1838 (see formannskapsdistrikt). The rural municipalities of Frol, Skogn, and √Ösenmarker were merged with Levanger on 1 January 1962 and the island municipality of Ytter√łymarker was merged with Levanger on 1 January 1964.

Levanger is a member of the Italian initiative, Cittaslow, for slow towns that don't adopt a "fast-lane" approach that is so common in most modern towns.

General information

Kirkegata, Levanger's main street

Name

The municipality (originally the parish) is named after the old Levanger farm (Old Norse: Lifangr), since the first church was built there. The first element is probably an old river name (now Levangerelva) and the last element is angr which means "fjord".

Coat-of-arms

The coat-of-arms is from modern times. They were granted on 25 November 1960 as the arms of the town of Levanger. The horse is a symbol for the town as a major trading center between Swedenmarker and Norway for many centuries. The arms did not change after the addition of the other municipalities (that had no arms when they were merged with Levanger).

History

Levanger can probably be traced back to the Iron Age, and with certainty back to the Viking age, although it was located somewhat different to the current town center, probably in relation to the Halsstein bygdeborg (hill fort). The name "Levanger" is known from Gunnlaug Ormstunges saga.

In the Middle Ages, the area now part of the municipality of Levanger was part of the county of Skeyna in the traditional district of Innherad. The county was ruled by earls who resided at the manor of Geite, situated on a hill nearby the present town. The county was divided into six parishes: Eknemarker, Alstadhaug, Levanger, Frol, Ytter√łymarker, and Leksvikmarker. The county church was located in Alstadhaug, which also contained the fylking, while Levanger was the main port and market town. Not much is known about the earls of Skeyna, as few documents still exist that document their existence. The Reformation and the Danish occupation of Norway in 1537 caused the Norwegian nobility to disintegrate, and the last earl was most likely executed during the reformation. The Danish rulers united Skeyna with four other counties in Innherad, creating the county of Steinvikholm. Later, the Levanger area was part of the counties of Trondhjems amt, Nordre Trondhjems amt, and finally Nord-Tr√łndelagmarker fylke.

Levanger Church
The town of Levanger was founded by Carl III, king of Swedenmarker on 18 May 1836, on the site where the village of Levanger already existed. The village had expanded from the traditional winter fair, known as the marsimartnan (lit. the St. Marcus Market of Levanger), dating back to the 13th century. In October 1836, as the town's borders set, Commissioner Mons Lie proposed that "the town shall bear the name of Carlslevanger, so the name of this ancient soil can be united with that of the new town's glorious founder". Despite the suggestion getting refused, the town protocols spoke of Carlslevanger Stad instead of Kj√łpstaden Levanger until 1838. In 1837, the municipalities of √Ösenmarker, Skogn, and Ytter√ły were established, which, together with the city of Levanger and the borough of Levanger, created the present municipality of Levanger.

The inhabitants of Levanger were not prepared at becoming a town, and so it took a long time before the town was constituted. In these early days the town was ruled by the Foged (Royal rural administrator). At that time there were already established a trade organization, "Levangerpatrisiatet" from 1695, based on the market. But only citizens of Trondheimmarker could be members, until Levanger became a town in its own right. In 1839 the first guild of the town was established, and in the following years several new trades and craftsmen settled in the town.

In 1841, the first official elections were held, and Hans Nicolai Gr√łnn was elected the first mayor of the town. Two years later, the town got its first water pipe system, its first two primitive street lamps and a town hall.

The fire-security report of 1844 clearly confirmed the great risk of disastrous fire in the town's narrow lanes; all houses were wooden houses. Therefore the mayor hired major Johannes Sejersted to make a general report and draw up a new regulation plan, showing levanger as a more "continental" town.

And already in 1846, two years later the town was nearly totally ruined by a great fire. Sejersteds regulation plan was used when the town was rebuilt.Levanger has been damaged by two great fires after that time; in 1877 and 1897, but each time the town has been rebuilt as a wooden town, and still today most houses are wooden houses.

Throughout the 19th century, the famous market's economical importance faded out, and the ancient arrangement was reduced to a tradition without much content. That was the end of Levanger as an important port of foreign trade between Sweden and Norway.

However, in the early 20th century, the town of Levanger was pleased by new establishments such as county hospital and college of education. The German occupation in 1940 was the beginning of a 40-year long "interregnum" of the traditional "Marsimartnan".

In 1961, the town of Levanger was decided to be determined and, from 1 January 1962 become part of the Greater Municipality of Levanger and Boroughs, and the mayor was replaced by a municipal speaker. The municipality of Ytter√łymarker was merged with Levanger two years later.

Over thirty years later, in 1997, as a result of the resurrection of the "Marsimartnan" in 1989, the town of Levanger was re-established, though the town still is part of Levanger municipality. But the center of administration is to be found in the town of Levanger, which is also, in historical terms, the administrative basis for the municipality. And Levangers town traditions and culture go way back. The town is laid out according to an urban and regulated plot with proper streets. It's more than just a townhall and a city square. In fact, Levanger's always been a town, though not always officially, and every inhabitant in the town area carry this piece of knowledge with pride. Thus there does exist a sense of distinction between town people, and the people from the country side. In 2002, Levanger joined the Cittaslow movement, although there've been some violations of the Cittaslow charter, of which can be mentioned the construction of the unharmonic new mini mall in Sj√łgata, down by the seaside. This mini mall includes the post office, a grocery store and an electrical appliances store. This mini mall is too much of a concrete slab, and doesn't harmonize with the surroundings.

Economy

The world's largest paper-producing company, Norske Skogmarker, built its first ever factory in Skogn in the vicinity of Levanger. This factory started production in 1966, is working today, and it provides 530 jobs at the plant, and an additional 1,900 jobs in transportation and forestry. Levanger encompasses some of the best agricultural areas in Tr√łndelag.

Most of the town's commercial area is concentrated around the main street, called Kirkegata (Church Street).

Transportation

The main street of the town has roads connecting to the E6 at both ends. The town is situated on the Nordlandsbanen railway line, and is served by Levanger Stationmarker. A ferry regularly runs between the town and the island of Ytter√łymarker in the Trondheimsfjordmarker.

√Ösen church in the midst of the grain fields

Attractions

  • A museum about the town of Levanger
  • Hveding Auto Museum
  • A Pavilion is located on the site of the original town hall. It was used for the opening of the Market
  • Alstadhaug parish church
  • Skogn (a medieval stone church)
  • Brusve Museum
  • Byavatnetmarker, a lake in Levanger
  • Fenka art gallery
  • JT's Crib, nightclub


References



External links




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