Lögberg-Heimskringla - 16.03.2001, Page 5

Lögberg-Heimskringla - 16.03.2001, Page 5
Lögberg-Heimskringla • Föstudagur 16. mars 2001 • 5 What's happening in... Iceland Tómatar um allt ár Tomátoes grown year-round Gunnur Isfeld lcelandic Editor Reykjavík, Iceland PRODUCTION OF ICELANDIC vegeta- bles is steadily increasing and following better knowledge of using electric lights in winter, a variety of vegetables is grown year-round. Production of cucumbers has doubled since 1995 from half a million kg to one million kg; cucumbers have been grown year-round in Iceland since 1994. Besides cucumbers a variety of lettuces are grown and now tomatoes have been added. According to Kjartan Ólafsson, chairman of Vegetable Producers, the Icelandic-grown vegetables are con- stantly gaining on the markets in Iceland. Consumers are pleased with the Icelandic products and the quality is excellent over the winter months compared to imported vegetables. Kjartan said that continuous develop- ment has taken place since electrical lights were used. Every year there have beeen new technological developments and farmers have closely followed new development in this field. *** THESE ARE A FEW ITEMS I found in the news in Iceland. The unusual weather continues here with one low pressure system following another bringing strong winds, snow, and hail, followed by warmer temperatures, more wind and rain. However, people here say Góa has just begun and she is temperamental and cannot be underes- timated. We keep attending one art event after another. The outstanding Icelandic singer Gunnar Guðbjörnsson came from Germany to sing at a special concert with the male voice choir Stefnir, held at Grafarvogs Church. Guðbjartsson sang some well known gems of Icelandic music, ending with "Hamraborgin" by Sigvaldi Kaldalóns with text by Davíð from Fagraskógi, a magnificent piece which he sang for the first time publicly. Another specail concert was held at Hallgrímskirkja. This one was a special concert in connection to the Christianization Celebration. The music, Passía, was composed by Hafliði Hallgrímsson to texts by Hallgrímur Pétursson, Steinn Steinar, Matthías Johannesson and others. Special soloist was Mary Nessinger, mezzo soprano from New York, who sang in Icelandic with the Mótettukór of Hallgrímskirkja, conducted by Hörður Askelsson. This was a truly unforgettable event. Again the church was filled to capacity, over twelve hun- dred people. Greetings to all of you at L-H. Gunnur Isfeld Nonnahús Continued from page 1 of children's books. In the summer of 2001 Zonta plans to do an exhibition on the life of Jón's moth- er who was Sigríður Jónsdóttir, born August 14, 1824 in Reykjahlíð at Mývatn. She moved to Canada in 1876, where she helped with the household in William Taylor's home. He was a widower and brother of John Taylor. Two of Williams' daughters married Icelandic settlers, Halldór Briem and Sigurður Kristofersson. Nonni's brother Friðrik Sveinsson, born November 4, 1864, also moved to Canada in 1873 from Espihóll in Eyjafjörður, where Ólafur Ólafsson had been his foster father. Friðrik took the name Fred Swanson in Canada. He worked as a painter in Winnipeg. Among other things he painted theatre scenes and designed the stained glass windows of the Unitarian Church on Banning and Sargent. He married Sigríður, an Icelandic woman, and they had four daughters. Before that Friðrik had a daughter named Freyja. Sigríður Guðlaug Sveinsdóttir, Nonni's sister, was born August 18, 1867 and moved to Canada in 1888. She stayed for some time with her mother, but that is all thaf is known about her after she left Iceland. To make the special exhibition about the life of Nonni's mother as good as pos- sible, Zonta needs all the information that it can get about her, her children, and their families after they came to Canada. They would be grateful if anyone has old pic- tures or things related to this family that they would be willing to lend them for the exhibition. All expenses will be taken care of by the club. L-H will be happy to collect items to send in one package to the Museum. Please deliver them to our office in Winnipeg at Suite 650, 5 Donald St., or mail to PO Box 1859, Winnipeg, MB R3C 3R1. The club can be contacted by send- ing e-mail to nonnahus@ismennt.is, or by post. USA Seattle's Nordic Heritage Museum and Iceland Room Theodore R. Beck Nordic Heritage Museum Seattle, WA THE NORDIC HERITAGE MUSEUM ÍS a must when Icelanders come to Seattle. This museum is the only one in North America that shows exhibits from the five Nordic countries: Iceland, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, and Finland. Discover colourful textiles, cherished china, books and Bibles, woodworking tools, photographs, and a myriad of other treasures brought from the old countries to enrich life in a new land. Gathered in the museum's five eth- nic galleries, one for each country, they illustrate the differences and bonds link- ing Scandinavian people in the Pacific Northwest and applaud their achieve- ments. The museum is in Ballard, the part of Seattle where most of the Nordic people settled early in the 20th century. The address is 3014 N.W. 67th street. Hours are 10:00 am to 4:00 pm Tuesday through Saturday, and 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm on Sunday. Check out fhe website at www.nordicmuseum.com. The Iceland Room was planned and built by a dedicated group from the Icelandic Club of Greater Seattle after fhe museum was established in 1980. The room illustrates the conditions in Iceland in the late 1800s and early 1900s when the bulk of the emigration to North America occurred, and the way the immigrants adapted to their new environment. The primary focal point is the all- purpose living room in the ancient fami- ly turf farmhouse, the baðstofa. This replica has a central place in this exhibit because the home was the heart and cen- tre of the rural life that was Iceland until the early part of the twentieth century. The baðstofa was where they ate, slept, carded, spun and knitted wool, carved wooden utensils, and read the sagas. It was the school for this very literate soci- ety and was the community centre for communication and creativity. Books were the most prized posses- sions of the immigrants as seen in the picture of Jakobína Johnson reading in her library. Jakobína, a well-known poet in the Icelandic community, was born in Iceland but lived most of her life in Ballard. Pictures of other poets and writers of the Pacific Northwest like- wise symbolize the paramount place of literature in the Icelandic heritage and psyche. Music, art, and drama were also part of the cultural pursuits as shown in the exhibits. Religion and the church provided for the spiritual needs of the immigrants and provided places for sharing experi- ences in the strange new environment. Churches were built as soon as they set- tled into their new world. The altar and other furnishings in the corner alcove are from the old Calvary Lutheran Church on 23rd N.W. and N.W. 70th in Ballard, which housed "Hallgrim's Congregation." Most of the early immigrants settled in Manitoba and in North Dakota. There the way of life was growing grains, far different from sheep raising and ocean fishing left behind in the old country. In the centre of the room is an exhibit of old tools and farm implements used by the early pioneer Icelandic-American farmers. Another window shows woolen goods from present-day Iceland, considered the finest in the world. Other exhibits illustrate history and contemporary Iceland. A new exhibit is dedicated to Viking times. A bronze bust of Leifur Eiríksson, a painting of a Viking ship by Leif Karlsen, and a sun- stone Viking navigation aid researched by Leif Karlsen are on display. On May 1, 1990, Vigdís Finnbogadóttir, then President of Iceland, was in Seattle and dedicated this room. Her picture is over the entrance to the room. Current President of Iceland, Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson, and his then wife, Guðrún Katrín Þorbergsdóttir, attended a recep- tion at the museum on August 1, 1997 and their picture is also featured. The Iceland Room Group meets every Tuesday morning at 10:00 for cof- fee and plans the morning activities in the room and the library. Presently Sig Johnson and Ted Beck are the co-chairs of the committee for the Icelandic Club. The group invites anyone interested in the room, the library and museum to join us for coffee on any Tuesday morn- ing. Contributors and Advertisers Please direct submissions, photos, camera-ready art, and notices (events, births, obitu- aries, etc.) to: Lögberg-Heimskringla PO Box 1859 Winnipeg, MB R3C 3R1 <m ir unn* Rin* xm mv wwm mri u nrmr mvrum & nnt á r\n wmtinw

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