Viking Ship Arrives in Calgary

    CALGARY, Aug. 7 /CNW/ -


    The Freydis Joanna, a Viking Ship, arrives in Calgary at the Danish
Canadian Club of Calgary (727-11th Ave SW) at 7:00 pm on August 10, 2009 on
route to the Danish Canadian Museum in Alberta. She is a 6.3m Viking Ship
handcrafted at the Danish Viking Museum in Denmark with the authentic style
hand tools and methods used by the Vikings over 1000 years ago. The Danish
Canadian National Museum of Dickson Alberta is presenting, 'A Night with the
Vikings' hosted at the Danish Canadian Club of Calgary. This ship not only
represents the history of the Viking incursions and settlement in Canada but
also the incredible effort and skills of all immigrant craftsmen who came to
Canada to build the diverse cultural mosaic of Canada. The Freydis Joanna is
on a journey across Canada stopping at small communities and large centres to
share the story and let people see and touch her. The following evening,
weather permitting the ship will sail on the Glenmore Reservoir at 6:30 pm.

    The Significance of These Small Ships

    The first Europeans to set foot in North America arrived on the shores of
modern day L'Anse aux Meadows in Newfoundland. These travellers, known as the
Norse, had arrived from colonies in Greenland, though their origins were
Scandinavian. It is believed they came to cut timber, hunt and explore the
this wilderness they called Vinland. Here, the Vikings collected bog iron ore
(abundant in the immediate area) from which they produced iron on the site.
This may have been a necessity to replace boat nails that had weakened. This
is the first known instance of the smelting of ore to produce iron in North
    These small ships were carried in larger ships and thought to be used as
landing craft in shallow water coastal activity and sailing up shallow rivers
whether they were on a raiding party or exploring for food and supplies. In
Canada they may have had all these uses. Even today these remarkable small
ships are still revered for their light weight, sturdy build, agility and

    Cross Canada Journey

    The ship display has been well attended on its journey from Halifax to
Calgary. Yacht clubs, boating enthusiasts, history buffs, craftsmen, and
Scandinavians and Canadians of all types are attending. In small centres there
have been over 200 attendees at events. This event is expected to sell out and
is creating a buzz here in the Calgary region, where Scandinavians number in
the 10's of thousands alone.

For further information:

For further information: (Note photos are also available) contact: Steve
Morck, President, The Danish Canadian National Museum Society, Telephone:
(403) 547-2049, Cell: (403) 818-7583 (anytime), email:,

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