V is for Vikings

I’m not talking about the football team here, but about honest-to-God Vikings from Scandinavia.  

We recently went to a Vikings exhibit at The Field Museum in Chicago. While my husband and son were less than excited, I was thrilled.  Cases and cases were filled with artifacts from their daily lives, how they made their food or combed their hair.  My favorite was the runestones. To see a civilization’s writing reminds us that once upon a time a single person sat down with chisel in hand to tell a story. 



It also reminded me of a famous piece of Minnesota history – the Kensington Runestone.  The story is that a Swedish immigrant found the engraved stone in a farm field and the runes tells of a Vikings expedition that traveled through central Minnesota in the 1400s. Mostly discredited as a hoax, I still find this episode fascinating. 

Let’s assume it is real. Can you imagine this group of adventurers wandering through these lakes and lands before Columbus even thought about sailing to the Americas. 

Let’s assume it is fake.  That means someone spent days creating a great tablet, carving ancient runes.  They also came up with a backstory of finding it intwined in the roots of a tree in the middle of a field.

Either way, it is an amazing story.

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2 thoughts on “V is for Vikings

  1. I share the fascination and since we know how far they actually traveled, it’s certainly my plausible. Haven’t been to the Field Museum though I know my son at age eight loved Jorvik in York (a reconstructed Viking village) and I can still recall the unbelievable smell they’d developed to making the living history experience complete. Enjoyed your post.

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