Fisheries Museum

Ålesund on the west coast of Norway is an historic port which over the centuries has been concerned with fishing, sealing and merchant shipping. The majority of the town’s wooden buildings were destroyed in a great fire in 1904. Many of the new buildings which replaced those lost in the fire were designed by young Norwegian architects in the Jugendstil – the German form of Art Nouveau. The fisheries museum occupies a white warehouse of 1861 on the mole at the entrance to the harbour which escaped the fire of 1904. It was occupied between 1924 and 1986 by the Oluf Holm A/S company, and is usually called the Holmbua (Holm shed). The displays illustrated the manufacture of cod liver oil for medicinal purposes, which was a significant industry in Ålesund, and the processing of klippfish (bacalao or stockfish), the traditional means of cutting, salting and drying cod for export to southern Europe (see Kristiansund), as well as such auxiliary trades as the making of barrels to contain oil or preserved fish. There is also a substantial exhibition completed in 2009 depicting deep sea fishing in the period up to 1960, featuring steam- and diesel-powered trawlers, radio communications, and the role of the women of Ålesund in cutting and packing fish while waiting patiently for their menfolk to return from the sea.

Fisheries Museum
Molevegen 10
6004 Ålesund
+47 (0) 70 - 123170