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Memoria e Ricerca

The Tordenskiold festival in Frederikshavn, Denmark, 1998-2010. A naval hero in a society at war

di Dan Henry Andersen
in Memoria e Ricerca n.s. 37 (2011), p. 37

The Tordenskiold festival (Tordenskioldsdage) in Frederikshavn, Denmark, started in 1998 and is presently the largest maritime historical festival in Northern Europe. The local social and economic background is discussed, especially relative economic deprivation due to closure and downsizing of heavy industries, but it is concluded that the festival began due to the special ambitions of a group of teachers at the Frederikshavn Production School, and that the festival derives its success from local interest and the generosity of the municipality. It is argued that maritime historical festivals and reenactment will inevitably contain anacronisms and mixing of historical epochs, but at the same time they are powerful tools for connecting to the past. Key words: Frederikshavn; Denmark; Peter Wessel Tordenskiold; Maritime historical festival; Public History.