Evje og Hornnes

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Evje og Hornnes kommune
Coat of arms of Evje og Hornnes kommune
Coat of arms
Official logo of Evje og Hornnes kommune
Aust-Agder within
Evje og Hornnes within Aust-Agder
Evje og Hornnes within Aust-Agder
Coordinates: 58°35′5″N 7°46′14″E / 58.58472°N 7.77056°E / 58.58472; 7.77056Coordinates: 58°35′5″N 7°46′14″E / 58.58472°N 7.77056°E / 58.58472; 7.77056
Country Norway
County Aust-Agder
District Setesdal
Administrative centre Evje
 • Mayor (1999) Bjørn Alfred Ropstad (KrF)
 • Total 550.22 km2 (212.44 sq mi)
 • Land 520.73 km2 (201.05 sq mi)
 • Water 29.49 km2 (11.39 sq mi)
Area rank 193 in Norway
Population (2010)
 • Total 3,397
 • Rank 254 in Norway
 • Density 6.5/km2 (17/sq mi)
 • Change (10 years) 1.5 %
Demonym(s) Evjedøl
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
ISO 3166 code NO-0937
Official language form Neutral
Website www.e-h.kommune.no
Data from Statistics Norway

Evje og Hornnes is a municipality in Aust-Agder county, Norway. It is located in the traditional region of Setesdal. Evje og Hornnes was created as a new municipality on 1 January 1960 after the merger of the two older municipalities of Evje and Hornnes.

General information[edit]

During the 1960s, Norway enacted many municipal reforms such as mergers and border adjustments, and the municipality of Evje og Hornnes was established during this time. On 1 January 1960, the neighboring municipalities of Evje (population: 1,646) and Hornnes (population: 1,280) were merged to form Evje og Hornnes. On 1 January 1986, the Lislevand farm area (population: 8) was transferred from neighboring Birkenes municipality to Evje og Hornnes.[2]


The municipalities of Evje and Hornnes were joined in 1960 with the compound name Evje og Hornnes.

The municipality (originally the parish) of Evje is named after an old Evje farm (Old Norse: Efja), since the first church was built there. The name is identical with the word efja which means "eddy".[3]

The municipality (originally the parish) of Hornnes is named after an old Hornnes farm (Old Norse: Hornnes), since the first church was built there. The first element is horn which means "horn" and the last element is nes which means "headland". So the meaning of Hornnes is "the headland shaped like a horn".[3]


The coat-of-arms is from modern times. They were granted on 24 April 1992. The arms show two mining wagons as mining has been of great importance for the area already for many centuries. One of Europe's largest nickel mines is in the municipality.[4]

See also: Meråker


Flåt mine in Evje og Hornnes municipality was Europe’s largest nickel mine for a period. Flåt mine came into operation in 1844 as a copper mine. From 1872 until 1946 it was mined for nickel. At the point operations were terminated, it was 422 metres (1,385 ft) deep (reaching below sea level). Over three million tons of ore were removed and refined into 14,500 tons of copper and 20,000 tons of nickel. Local mining technology and mine history can be seen at the museum at Fennefoss.

Evjemoen was a Norwegian military camp in use from 1912 to 2002. The camp lies south of Evje in Evje og Hornnes municipality. From 1953 to 1995 Evjemoen was used as a training area for Infanteriets øvingsavdeling II (IØ2). It was retired in December 2002.


Evje og Hornnes is bordered in Aust-Agder county on the northeast by the municipalities of Bygland and Froland, in the southeast by Birkenes, and Iveland. To the west in Vest-Agder county it is bounded by Åseral, Audnedal, Marnardal, and Vennesla municipalities.

The Otra river which flows through Evje og Hornnes is the largest river in the Sørlandet district. It flows from the Setesdalsheiene in Bykle municipality in Aust-Agder in the north down to the municipality of Kristiansand in the south. The lake Kilefjorden is part of the Otra river, along the southern part of the municipality.

The lake Gyvatn is located along the border with Bygland and Åseral. The lake Høvringsvatnet is located about 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) northeast of the municipal center of Evje.


The Evje og Hornnes municipality is situated at the south-western margin of the Baltic Shield, the exposed section of the East European craton. Rocks in the area are dominated by different types of precambrian gneis and a large metagabbro body stretching into the neighboring Iveland municipality.

During the final stages of Sveconorwegian (0,9-1,1 Ga) orogeny, a large pluton of granitic/monzonitic composition was emplaced in the northern part of the municipality, and is assumed to have a relationship with the thousands of pegmatite veins in the Evje-Iveland area.

Earlier during the Sveconorwegian orogeny mafic rocks (gabbro-diorite) were emplaced. Most of the gabbro has been affected by the Sveconorwegian orogeny and became a metagabbro (amfibolite) with only minor remnants of the original gabbro. The Flåt Nickel Mine is situated at the north-western margin in a diorite intrusion post-dating the gabbro.

The pegmatites of the Evje-Iveland area have become worldwide known for a large number of rare and often beautifully crystallized minerals.

The pegmatites were initially mined for quartz, used in the melter at Fennefoss to extract the nickel from the ore from the Flåt Nickel Mine. Later large quantities of feldspar were mined for use in the ceramic industry, both in Norway and abroad. Also mica (muscovite), beryl, rare earth elements—containing minerals, scandium ore, and minor quantities of uranium ore were mined.

After 1983, almost all mines were abandoned, and nowadays only minor quantities of "tannspat" or dentalspat are mined in a 1-2 mines. This is microcline or plagioclase feldspar of very high purity, and used to make porcelain teeth-fillings or dentures. The tannspat is exported to Germany, Liechtenstein, Austria, and sometimes Japan.

A number of the mines is still open to mineral collectors who hope to find some of the beautiful crystals the area is known for.


The area is internationally known for its interesting geology and its mineral richness. Deposits of nickel, quartz, feldspar, mica, beryl, REE-minerals, scandium, and uranium ore have been exploited. Nowadays only ultrapure feldspar for dental applications is being mined.

Tourism is a major source of income for the entire area. During the summer many thousands of tourist visit Evje. It is possible to walk for hours in the beautiful hills and forests without encountering any other people. There are many outdoor activities: rafting [1], rock climbing, biking, cross country skiing, kayaking, canoeing, paddling, water skiing, riverboarding, swimming, fishing, mineral collecting, mine excursions etc. Additionally there are several museums and farms open to visitors.

The lively shopping center of Evje is of regional importance.

In addition there is some industry, among which a well known producer of fiberglass boats, Skibsplast.



  • Geomuseum in Fennefoss

The Evje og Hornnes Geomuseum på Fennesfoss is part of the larger Setesdalsmuseet, which has its main seat in Rysstad, Valle municipality. The geomuseum has an extensive collection of local minerals, most notably minerals from the pegmatite veins in the Evje-Iveland district. These pegmatites have been exploited for quartz, feldspar, mica, beryl, thortveitite, REE-containing minerals and uraninite. In addition, excellent gemstone material has been found: aquamarine, gold beryl, rock crystal, smoky quartz, citrine, spessartine and amazonite. The geomuseum has excellent samples of all these minerals. Marie Curie had several consignments of radioactive minerals sent to her from this region. The museum includes a collection of laboratory equipment, among which an electroscope with "Pierre Curie" engraved.

  • Setesdal Mineralpark

The Setesdal Mineralpark is located at Auensneset, 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) south of Evje. The displays are entirely constructed in underground mining adits. The collection consists of more than 1000 foreign and Norwegian minerals. The Setesdal Mineralpark is internationally acclaimed to be a unique museum, with a collection of very high quality. The Evje-Iveland district is known for its mineral richness and is yearly visited by thousands of collectors trying their luck in one of the pegmatite mines.

  • Flåt nickel mine

The Flåt nickel mine is situated a couple of hundreds of meters behind the Evje Mineralsti, and has been Europe's largest nickel mine. The mine was operated from 1844 initially as a copper mine, but from 1872 to 1946 as a nickel mine. The upper parts of the Flåt Nickel Mine is open to visitors and during the summer there are daily guided tours.

  • Evje mineral trail

The five pegmatite quarries at the 2 kilometres (1.2 mi) long Evje Mineralsti are accessible to collectors against a modest fee. Here it is possible to collect excellent samples of amazonite, different types of quartz, fluorite, pyrite and many others. It is also possible to find beautiful samples of the pegmatite rock, with feldspar/quartz/mica that could be used in your garden. The first mine, Landsverk I, is also the most mineral-rich pegmatite of the entire Evje-Iveland district, and internationally known for an exciting suit of minerals, many of which occur in good crystals.

  • Oddestemmen steinsliperi

The Oddestemmen Steinsliperi is probably the only remaining old-fashioned stone-cutter workshop left in Norway. The workshop specializes in the cabochon technique and produces silver jewelry with stones from own production.

  • Mineral tourism

The Evje-Iveland area is famous for its mineral richness and is visited by thousands of collectors and mineral-minded people every year. In the area several of the old pegmatite mines are open to collectors on a fee-basis. During the 2008 season the following mines are open: Birkeland, Håvarstad, Knipane, Litjønn, Slobrekka, Solås, Steli (all in Iveland), and Evje Mineralsti (in Evje).

In all these mines it is possible to collect nice samples of the basic minerals: quartz, feldspar and mica. Additionally it is possible to find many other different minerals, varying from mine to mine. A valid collecting permit is necessary in order to be allowed to collect minerals at these places. It is not allowed to collect in any of the other mines without prior, explicit permission of the owner of the mine.


The Byglandsfjorden is a large inland lake 40 kilometres (25 mi) in length situated in the Bygland municipality, just north of the Evje og Hornnes municipality. It is part of the Otra river. The lake provides swimming and fishing opportunities.

The only wood-burning steamboat in the country, the "Bjoren", provides tourist trips on Byglandsfjorden. It was built in 1866.


The Otra river is the largest river in the south of Norway. It springs from the Setesdalsheiene in the Bykle municipality in the Aust-Agder county and runs southwards to Kristiansand in the Vest-Agder county, where it runs out in the sea. The Otra is known as an excellent river for salmon fishing all the way up to Vigeland in the Vennesla municipality. The Byglandsfjord -a very wide part of the Otra- is known for a rare salmon variety, the "bleka" or "bleke". The Otra is extensively used for outdoor activities, like rafting, paddling, swimming and fishing.


  1. ^ "Navn på steder og personer: Innbyggjarnamn" (in Norwegian). Språkrådet. Retrieved 2015-12-01. 
  2. ^ Jukvam, Dag (1999). "Historisk oversikt over endringer i kommune- og fylkesinndelingen" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Statistisk sentralbyrå. 
  3. ^ a b Rygh, Oluf (1905). Norske gaardnavne: Nedenes amt (in Norwegian) (8 ed.). Kristiania, Norge: W. C. Fabritius & sønners bogtrikkeri. pp. 184 & 191. 
  4. ^ Norske Kommunevåpen (1990). "Nye kommunevåbener i Norden". Retrieved 2008-10-03. 

External links[edit]