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Key Number: HS 25867
Site Name: Trondhjem Lutheran Church
Other Names:
Site Type: 1603 - Religious: Church, Cathedral or Chapel

Location

ATS Legal Description:
Twp Rge Mer
48 18 4


Address:
Number:
Street:
Avenue:
Other:
Town:
Near Town: Camrose

Media

Type Number Date View
Source

Architectural

Style: Gothic Revival
Plan Shape: Rectangular
Storeys: Storeys: 1 1/2
Foundation: Basement/Foundation Wall Material: Concrete
Superstructure:
Superstructure Cover:
Roof Structure: Medium Gable
Roof Cover:
Exterior Codes: Bell Tower
Roof Trim - Special Features: Spire
Exterior: The church is of wood frame construction on a full concrete foundation with basement. The roof is of the gable style and the building has a central, square bell tower with tall pyramidal roof and a small round spire. The exterior is finished with bevelled clapboard and the roof with wood shingles.
Interior: N/A
Environment:
Condition:
Alterations: The exterior of the building has undergone very little in the way of change. An unobtrusive concrete block chimney has been added to the rear elevation. The interior exhibits modern style lighting fixtures and ceiling fans. The majority of changes are in the basement which has been modernized to serve as a Sunday School and kitchen area. The overall retention of original design and fabric is quite high. In the 85-90% ranges.

Historical

Construction: Construction Date:
Constructed
1929/01/01
Usage: Usage Date:
Church
1929/01/01
Owner: Owner Date:
Trondhjem Lutheran Church of Round Hill
1959/12/30
Architect: N/A
Builder: N/A
Craftsman: N/A
History: Historical Significance:
Norwegians have played a role in the history of Alberta since 1870 when Fred Kanouse, described as a gunslinger, whiskey trader and deputy sheriff from Montana, constructed a cabin along the Elbow River within the present city limits of Calgary. He traded with the Indians from this cabin from 1870 to 1872.
Kanouse was followed by other Norwegians from the United States during the 1880s who began to exploit the timber resources west of Calgary in response to an increasing demand for lumber in the area following the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway. As the Province's railway network expanded between 1883 and 1914, Norwegian settlement expanded into Central Alberta where it played a role in developing the agricultural economy of this region. Large scale immigration into the region from the United States before World War One was assisted by the end of the American land frontier and poor conditions in the agricultural economy of the American middle west.
After 1900 an increasing number of Norwegians also emigrated directly to Canada from Norway. Among the Norwegian settlers, Bersvend Anderson came to the Bardo district in 1894 to join his son, son-in-law and other relatives. Born in Bardo, Norway in 1821, Anderson had taken his family to the United States in 1876. Following the establishment of his family on a farm near Crookston, Minnesota, he pursued a career as an itinerant lay Lutheran Minister in Minnesota and North Dakota. He was eventually ordained as a Lutheran Minister despite his lack of seminary training prior to his arrival in the Round Hill district.
Anderson represented the Hauge Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Synod of America, named after the famous Norwegian lay revivalist of the early nineteenth century, Hans Nielsen Hauge. The Hauge Synod resisted the union movement amongst Norwegian Lutherans until 1917. The organization of the Trondhjem Lutheran congregation in October 29, 1906 was one of the results of Anderson's involvement in the development of religious institutions in this region. The charter members of the congregation included the Bruce family, Martin Sol Laug, the Foss family, the Fred Olsen family and Mrs. Knudsen, the majority of whom came from the vicinity of Trondhjem in Norway.
The construction of a church, however, was delayed until 1929 when the congregation accepted Ludwig Pederson's offer of a two acre site located two and a half miles east and one mile north of Round Hill.
The gift of $2,500 from the Ladies' Aid as well as personal contributions provided the funds for completing the church later that summer. The church remained on the site until February 1954, when it was moved to the town of Round Hill.
Trondhjem Lutheran Church was associated with various aspects of the settlement period in Alberta's history. Creation of the congregation in 1906 and construction of the church in 1929 recalls both the phase of rapid settlement expansion before World War I and the consolidation of the settlement before 1930. Because of the Norwegian character of the church organization, it also represents the role of Scandinavian settlers in the settlement process. As was the case with many other Scandinavian groups, the Trondhjem settlers in general and Anderson in particular spent some time in the United States before coming to Western Canada. As a religious institution, the Trondhjem Luthern Church represents one of the dominant types of social institutions on the Alberta rural frontier, along with schools.
Architectural Significance:
The Trondhjem Lutheran Church is an example of Carpenter Gothic architecture, which is essentially the imitation in wood of Gothic forms which had been constructed exclusively of brick and stone. It represents the adaptation of nineteenth century English ideas on gothic church architecture to the conditions of the frontier regions of Western Canada where funds and/or construction materials precluded the use of stone or brick. This particular example of Carpenter Gothic architecture is distinctive because of the design of its spire and the return eaves which are on the facade and the rear exterior. Trondhjem Lutheran Church, therefore, is representative of a style of church which was frequently utilized during the early years of a congregation's development. This style, which appeared both in rural and urban areas in Alberta, has tended to survive in greater number in the rural areas of the Province.

* * *
Draft Press Release Edmonton, Alberta
The Honourable Greg Stevens, Minister of Alberta Culture and Multiculturalism, announced today that the Trondhjem Lutheran Church at Round Hill has been designated a Registered Historic Resource.
Trondhjem Lutheran Church is closely associated with the arrival of Norwegian settlers in Alberta between the 1890s and World War I. Many of these settlers established themselves in central Alberta following the completion of the Calgary and Edmonton Railway to South Edmonton in 1891.
Among the Norwegian settlers was Bersvend Anderson, who came to the Bardo district in 1894 to join his son, son-in-law and other relatives. Born in Bardo, Norway in 1821, Anderson had taken his family to the United States in 1876. Following the establishment of his family on a farm near Crookston, Minnesota, he pursued a career as an itinerant lay Lutheran Minister in Minnesota and North Dakota. He was eventually ordained as a Lutheran Minister despite his lack of seminary training prior to his arrival in the Round Hill district.
Anderson represented the Hauge Norwegina Evangelical Lutheran Synod of America, named after the famous Norwegian lay revivalist of the early nineteenth century, Hans Nielsen Hauge.
The organization of the Trondhjem Lutheran congregation in October 29, 1906 was one of the results of Anderson's involvement in the development of religious institutions in this region. Most of the charter members of the congregation came from the vicinity of Trondhjem in Norway.
The Trondhjem Lutheran Church constructed in 1929 is an example of Carpenter Gothic architecture, which is essentially the imitation in wood of Gothic forms which had been constructed exclusively of brick and stone. It represents the adaptation of nineteenth century European ideas of gothic church architecture to the conditions of the frontier regions of Western Canada where funds and/or construction materials precluded the use of stone or brick. This particular example of Carpenter Gothic architecture is distinctive because of the design of its spire and the return eaves which are on the facade and the rear exterior.

Internal

Status: Status Date:
Active
1987/08/21
Designation Status: Designation Date:
Provincial Historic Resource
1988/07/07
Register:
Record Information: Record Information Date:
K. Williams 1989/09/07

Links

Internet:
Alberta Register of Historic Places: 4665-0663
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