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The History of Värmland

The appearance of Värmland has been created by several inland ices. They sharpened and formed the bedrock into valleys and fertile agricultural areas. It is in these areas that the first findings were discovered. In western Värmland there are several large grave-fields, among others Olof Trätälja's mound in Säffle. Since the province had no connection to the sea, it was not very powerful during the Viking Era or during any other seafaring period in Sweden.

Archaeological findings show that the province was inhabited already during the Stone Age but still during the Middle Ages Värmland was very sparsely populated.

The trade over the border to Norway was lively and from Norway came Christianity to Värmland. The pilgrimage track to the Cathedral of Nidaros (Trondheim) went through the province. Neither the climate nor the soil were favourable for cultivation and agriculture was weakly developed. Värmland had a lot of small farmers; still in the middle of the 19th century small farming was the most common way of farming.

In the 16th and 17th centuries many Finlanders came to Värmland and they were important for the cultivation of the province.

Mining was a part of Värmland's trade and industry already in the 15th century. The mining industry was improved and Värmland became famous for its ironworks. The first ironworks were situated in the valley of Klarälven and still you can see a lot of ruins from smelting-houses.

During Industrialisation in the 1850s the small mining companies disappeared and other, larger industries were growing. The building of railroads and channels changed transportation methods.

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