Norwegian history | prosperity, war and depression | Norway

On 18 November 1905, after a supportive referendum, the Norwegian parliament unanimously elected the Danish Prince Carl as the country’s new king.
Steamboats like this one - on Lovatnet, Stryn, Sogn og Fjordane, Norway - opened up possibilities for the people living in isolated places. People and goods could be transported in a way that had not been possible before. | Photo: Anders Beer Wilse - digitaltmuseum.no DEX_W_00294 - cc by. | Photo: Anders Beer Wilse - digitaltmuseum.no DEX_W_00294 - cc by.
Steamboats like this one, opened up isolated locations for trade and transportation. The location is Lovatnet, Stryn, Sogn og Fjordane, Norway | Photo: Anders Beer Wilse - DEXTRA Photo cc by.

Prosperity, war, and depression | AD 1905 – 1940

Prince Carl took the historical name King Haakon 7, and gave his only child, Prince Alexander, an equally Norwegian royal name: Olav. Haakon’s queen consort, Queen Maud, was the youngest daughter of King Edward 7 of the United Kingdom, and thus the granddaughter of Queen Victoria.

Haakon, Maud and Olav arrived on 25 November 1905; a cold and windswept winter day. The coronation took place on 22 June 1906, in the Nidaros Cathedral in Trondheim – the burial church of the Viking king St. Olav.

With its newfound independence, Norway experienced a surge in energy and development. In all areas of society, enthusiasts pushed forward in educating the country and building a strong new nation.

Norway, with its resources and access to waterfalls and their power, experienced great industrial development in the years that followed. Agriculture and fishing were motorised and modernised. The principles of national control and ownership of natural resources were defined and implemented during this early period, something that has greatly contributed to the wealth experienced by the Norwegian population in more recent times.

Did you see this one?
Norwegian royal family | the secret of Queen Maud’s coffin

The early AD 1900s was also a period of great social change, with new laws protecting workers, and generally improved living standards.

Norway chose a neutral position during World War 1, but still suffered losses and hardship. In AD 1930, the Great Depression hit Norway with full force. The labour movement and the labour party – Arbeiderpartiet – became Norway’s largest political party.

Despite a second attempt at staying neutral, it was from a weakened position that Norway was about to become a pawn in Hitler-Germany’s game of war and World War 2.

Next period: Norwegian history | World War 2 and occupation | Norway

Or see the full: History timeline | from stone age to modern era | Norway

BC = before Christ | AD = anno domini = after Christ
Main source: Store norske leksikon – snl.no

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