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Founding Fathers across the Atlantic - History and Legacy in Norway and the USA

  • “Scene at the Signing of the Constitution of the United States” av Howard C. Christy
    “Scene at the Signing of the Constitution of the United States” av Howard C. Christy

The Constitutions of the United States (1787) and Norway (1814) are the only two from the revolutionary era still in force.

In 2018, the museum Eidsvoll 1814, will initiate a larger project aiming to compare these two principal legal documents as central to the act of government during more than two centuries of state-building. The project further aims to map out the changing ways and styles in which the original authors – the Founding Fathers – have been portrayed in respectively Norway and the USA.

The project is planned as a series of temporary exhibitions, publications, debates and other public activities over a period of three years, culminating ultimo 2020. To highlight constitutional history in Norway and USA, a set of thematic vantage points have been chosen:

  • Founding Fathers – Revolutionary Characters
  • Founding Fathers in the art
  • The Constitutions as Symbol and Reality
  • USA/Norway - 200 years of co-existence and co-operation
  • Iconic national monuments and the stories we make them tell

In addition, the project is to be supplemented with a practical experiment, aiming to transform the Eidsvoll House from a well-preserved museum object into a lively social meeting place for debate, social activism and political decision-making. Central to this, is the staging of temporary events in connection with the US presidential election campaign in 2020. As for the project as a whole, this experiment aims to re-actualize the history and legacy of the political endeavours that shaped the two oldest constitutions still in use today.

More information about the project will soon be given on this website. The official launching of the project will take place at Eidsvoll this forthcoming November. Stay tuned!

The project is made possible by support from contributors and by Norges Bank, the central bank of Norway.

Contact: Bård Frydenlund, bard.frydenlund@eidsvoll1814.no, (+47) 41 54 00 72