|Akershus Fortree from the Deck of the Cruse Ship|
The Akerhaus Fortress has a 700 year old history. It was built as protection from a Swedish earl who attacked it in 1363. The attack was unsuccessful, and Akerhaus Fortress became a stronghold in Oslo. I lost count on how many times the castle has been besieged, but in those many times, it was never conquered by a foreign country. It did did surrender without combat to Nazi Germany and was under Nazi control from 1940-1945. The Germans used it as a military headquarters, prison and and also a place of execution. There were many who resisted and at the end of the war, a memorial was built to honor them and later this amazing Norwegian Resistance Museum was built. I am glad we chose this museum to visit. It was sad, in many parts, but that sadness made me realize the importance of resistance, and how difficult it can be.
|This is the memorial for those in the resistance.|
I am going to show you a picture of the part of Akerhaus that we saw. The one with the toilet paper was the most difficult for me to grasp. The human spirit in such dire times and such horrible conditions was a large part of the success the end of the war.
This is the toilet paper that was the diary of Petter Moen. He would prick letters in the toilet and stuff the sheets of toilet paper in a ventilating shaft. I found this heart wrenching as I pictured the difficulty he must have had punching holes to form letters, to form words. He did not know if this diary would ever be found, and yet he documented what life was like as a prisoner of the Gestapo. He never lived to know that his story is now part of our history.
|Toilet Paper Diary|
Here is a closer view of the toilet paper. The letters and words are easier to see.
These are rifles with bayonets that the Nazi's used while occupying Norway. There is a letter stuck onto one bayonet that we think the resisters put there as protest for what the letter says. There was a sign that said the rifles were put together in the shape of a swastika, but neither one of us could see the shape.
Here is the note. I translated it the best I could.
|This is one of the gates in the fortress.|
|This walk through a small tunnel took us to another part of the fortress.|
This is a small tower and a cannon.