The Aslak Lie House – an “Impossible Project”


Terri M. Van Orman (Folklore Village, Dodgeville, WI)

Prominent Norwegian craftsman, Aslak Lie and his family left Valdres in 1848, bound for Wisconsin. The home/workshop he built was a hybridization of Norwegian and American styles. In 2002 the building, slated for demolition despite its spot on the National Registry of Historic Places, was “saved” by a nearby arts and culture organization, which encountered project fundraising difficulties due to the great recession of 2008. Resuming the project in 2014, rather than using money, the organization relied on one very knowledgeable volunteer foreman, along with community volunteers, local farms, apprentices, interns, and students, who are seeing the project to completion.

Part of 09-01 Perspectives on Material Culture [hybrid], Saturday, October 15, 2:30 pm–4:30 pm