At Elveseter Hotel you will find Sagasoylen. At 34 meters it is one of the highest columns in the world.
The column depicts central elements in Norwegian history. The top is crowned by King Harald Harfagre, the very symbol of the transition from a divided country to unified nation.
The column has a long and peculiar history. It was intended to become the new national monument for Norway, with place of honor outside the national parliament in Oslo. The sculptor Wilhelm Rasmussen won the commission issued by the Norwegian government in 1926, competing against amongst others Gustav Vigeland.
At the end of World War II in 1945, the column had not been completed. Its installation was canceled given that the sculptor had expressed sympathies with the German occupation forces.
It would not be possible to erect a national monument created by a man who served a jail sentence for treason.
The column is discovered in a shed
In the 1980, the previous generation owner of Elveseter Hotel, Amund Elveseter, discovered elements of the column in a storage shed at Skoyen in Oslo. As an art collector, and also a member of the Norwegian resistance during the war, he felt that the column deserved a better fate.
He took matters into his own hands, arranged for the column to be restored and finalised, and had it raised at Elveseter in 1992. It has since become a popular tourist attraction.
One of the houses at Omongard Farm at Elveseter has been converted to a museum.
The collection includes gypsum forms used by Wilhelm Rasmussen as well as other sculpures by the artist.