The Norwegian Railway Museum is located in a beautiful park-like environment a few kilometres from the town centre of Hamar.

Apart from the main Museum building, there are a number of buildings housing locomotives and rolling stock, and a number of other buildings which have been relocated from other sites. Amongst these are several old station buildings, illustrated here.

Norwegian nineteenth century station architecture was of very high quality, even the small stations had well built buildings of distinctive style.

In most cases they were built of timber, which was plentifully available, and a major export. Indeed, timber provided the main traffic for most of the nineteenth-century Norwegian railways. In the hands of skilled architects it is capable of producing beautiful buildings.

Frank Stamford

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Kløften station was built in 1854 and was one of the original intermediate stations on Norway's first railway, Norsk Hoved Jernbane (NHJ, meaning Norwegian Trunk Railway), which was standard gauge. The NHJ ran from Oslo (then Christiania) to Eidsvold. The architects were Heinrich Ernst Schirmer and Andreas Friedrich Wilhelm von Hanno, both of who were German born.

Details of the verandah of Kløften station.

Bestum station was originally on the 3ft 6in gauge Drammen railway, and was located 4.5 km from Oslo.

Close-up of the entrance on the rail-track side of Bestum station.

Inside the waiting room of Bestum station. Note the cast-iron heating stove, the timber panelled walls, and the door to the station-master's office.


Ilseng station. This was built in 1893 and was designed by the architect Paul Due, who was also the designer of the much more grand Hamar station of 1896. Ilseng was 9.1 km east of Hamar on the 3ft 6in gauge Hamar—Grundset Railway which had been opened in 1862, but by the time this building had been built formed part of the Røros railway to Trondheim. In the early 1920s a larger building was provided at Ilseng, and this building was given to the Railway Museum in 1926.

This shows the telegraph equipment in the station-master's office. There are three telegraph keys on the desk, punched paper-tape recording apparatus, and a kerosene lamp. The Edmonson ticket cabinet can be seen in the corner. The picture was taken through the window in the door of the office, hence the reflections.

And this picture of the telegraph keys was taken through the front window, hence more reflections.

Inside the waiting room are scales, and a strange weight-driven apparatus which looks like a clock without a dial.

A close-up of the weight-driven apparatus. The builder's plate on the device says:

F.W. TORNBERG

1895

STOCKHOLM

Leikvangen station. I have not been able to find the original location of this building.

Interior of the waiting room of Leikvangen station. Note the cast-iron heating stove, the photographs of the king and queen, and the door to the station-master's office.

Telegraph equipment in the station-master's office, using instruments which send and receive messages letter by letter, obviating the need for skills in morse-code, but drastically slowing the transmission speed.

A 750mm gauge railway connects the outdoor exhibits of the museum, and runs most days during the summer, using this locomotive Urskog, which came from the 750mm gauge Urskog-Hølands railway.

The builder's plate of the locomotive.

A short section of bridge rail laid on longitudinal sleepers has been laid in the museum. It is the type of track used on Norway's first railway in 1854.

References:

Owen, Roy; Norwegian Railways: From Stephenson to high-speed; Balholm Press, Hitchin, England, 1996

Hartman, Eivind; Mangset, Øistein; Reisegg, Øyvind; Neste Stasjon: Ein guide til jernbanens arkitekturhistorie; Gyldendal Norsk Forlag 1997

Bjerke, Thor; Stenersen, Roar; Rørosbaneboka: ... om stambanen øst for Dovrefjell; Norsk Jernbarnemuseum & Norsk Jernbarneklubb, Hamar 2002

Norwegian Railway Club (Norsk Jernbaneklubb) stations database


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All photographs Copyright Frank Stamford, 2010, who may be contacted by email at: frank.stamford@bigpond.com

Last updated: 27 December 2010