Thursday Doors in Kristiansand, Norway

This morning we are continuing our walk in Kristiansand, Norway and making our way to the Old Town, called Posebyen. But, before we get a move on, I want to say some more about COLOR! I just can’t get over the play of light on the colors. They are so brilliant and crisp. Crisp and clean blues, stunning reds and bold golds, all tied together nicely with stark whites. It makes a very pleasing display! So, do the colors actually mean anything? This is what I learned……………

White was the most luxurious color, since it was the most expensive. In the old days the mineral, zinc, was needed to create the white paint and it was very expensive. Zinc white is permanent in sunlight, it will not blacken by sulfur-bearing air, is non-toxic and the color is very pure, sharp, and clean.  Only the very wealthy could afford to paint their buildings white.  Some of the wealthier folks would paint their houses white, but paint the out buildings and sheds in the cheapest color, which was red. Families with homes facing the coast might paint only the part of the house facing the sea, white. Using white paint was a status symbol and showed their neighbors they were wealthy!

Red was the cheapest color of paint to produce. It was created by mixing ochre with cod liver oil. With an abundance of cod liver oil, fishing towns, where the incomes were lower than average, were mostly painted in red. Look HERE for the fantastic colors of red found at the wharf in Kristiansand.

The other color I found in abundance here, was yellow. It was a little more expensive than the red to make and again made by mixing ochre with cod liver oil.

Leaving the Fiskebrygga quay, where the fishmongers sold their catch of the day, the first big houses along the shore are painted white. These are the homes of the sea captains and merchants. They traded one lobster for one roof tile from Holland merchants in order to tile the roofs of their white houses! These folks were very well off I’d say! First their door………

Kristiansand, Norway, Houses of the Sea Captains
Kristiansand, Norway, Houses of the Sea Captains

and a photo of the size of these houses………

Kristiansand Harbor, Sea Captains Houses

Posebyen is the historic section of Kristiansand. It features old barracks-style, wooden, houses developed with strict right-angled streets. It is also known as the Quadrature. This center of town and popular residential area features the largest collection of low wooden houses in Northern Europe. In 1666, Christiansand became a garrison town and was heavily fortified. King Christian wanted certain merchants to live in his new town and they were ordered to move here or pay high fines. When the soldiers arrived they had to stay with the local residents. Originally, the  family housing consisted of five families and soldiers alike. The soldiers were so rowdy, no one wanted them in their homes and the wealthier families paid money to the soldiers, to get rid of them. The poorer families were not so fortunate. The oldest section was called the Bag Area and the soldiers, Bag Soldiers. I couldn’t find out why they were called Bag Soldiers! Were they filling sandbags? Were they unloading ships? I would like to know……..

Here is our first look at Posebyen. Today, it is known for it’s historical and architectural value and has earned special listed status. Let’s look at some of the doors!

Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Florist Shop
Kristiansand, Norway, Florist Shop

I really enjoyed this little garden shop right in the center of Posebyen………

Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street View

Near the end of the barracks section is the Methodist Church……           I don’t know if you noticed, but most of these houses do not have the wooden horizontal planks on the bottom foot of their houses. These planks were not hammered on to stay, so they could easily be removed and replaced when they rotted. Now, there is usually a cement foundation. And did you notice the houses had little porch steps? The folks placed mirrors on the side of the steps, so they could sit inside their homes and watch, who came by.

Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street Methodist Church
Kristiansand, Norway, Radhusgata Street Methodist Church

In 1892, a large fire burned nineteen blocks of the Posebyen housing all the way to the central cathedral. After that, all new housing had to be bricked. Here is a look of some of the new housing……….

Kristiansand, Norway, Elvegata Street View
Kristiansand. Norway, Elvegata Street View

I hope you have enjoyed our walk in Kristiansand today. We are visiting several places in Norway, so I’m sure to have more doors! Stay tuned!

Look here to see what others are doing for Norm’s Doors!

It’s easy to do Norm’s Doors. Photograph some doors and post them to Thursday Doors on Thursday!

PS All photos were taken on our IPhones …….we are traveling lighter!

10 Comments Add yours

  1. Sheree says:

    What a fabulous selection of handsome doors! Really enjoyed the tour.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Really lovely to see the buildings and their doors. Everything is so neat and tidy and precise.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Teresa says:

    These are gorgeous doors. And the place looks immaculate.

    Regards, Teresa
    https://mywanderings.travel.blog/

    Like

  4. dennyho says:

    What an education! I enjoyed learning the history of the colors used for the homes and would not have guessed that white was the most expensive to create. Very nice collection of wonderful doors. I’m ready to travel!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Norm 2.0 says:

    Some beauties in this collection. I found the blue ones stand out the most against the white background. Another thing I noticed is how everything seems to be so tidy and well-maintained. It looks like a really nice place to visit.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I love the bright blue and the garden shop is lovely. Along with everyone else, I’m impressed, and remember being impressed when I was there so many years ago, at how clean and neat everything is.

    janet

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Janet, Kristiansand, like Warnemunde in Germany was spotless! When we were out in Posebyen it was early in the morning, 8ish,,,,,,,and already the folks were out painting their houses or cleaning/sweeping their yards! We had to duck a lot of ladders!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Jo Shafer says:

    I like the bright whites especially when paired with blue doors and window trims. Just as impressive, however, is ocher siding with, perhaps, dark green doors. All in all, the smaller houses remind one of colonial era cottages on Nantucket (or is it IN Nantucket?).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, Jo, I liked the off bit of odd colored doors as well. I think at one time all the houses, not in the barracks area, were single storey, fisherman type cottages. The amazing thing is how wide the streets are in front of the cottages as you get closer to town……..

      Like

  8. DrJunieper says:

    Beautiful buildings! Have to remember that about zinc, because nothing looks so quickly “old” as white that yellows. Beautiful buildings and doors! Love that blue one, may be not the most expensive looking, but it speaks to me! How is it where you are, lockdown in reversal I hope? Here restaurants opened last week:)

    Liked by 1 person

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