DIG: A Great Starting Point for Norwegian Genealogy
Looking for records on your Norwegian heritage? A great site is the Digitalarkivet at the Norway National Archives (http://arkivverket.no/Digitalarkivet).
|Norway's Digital Archives at Arkivverket.no
It can take a little getting used to but the archive has a ton of great resources including searchable Norwegian censuses from 1801, 1865, 1875, 1900 and 1910. There are also probate registers, real estate registers and land property tax lists to name a few. You can translate it to English by clicking the English button in the top-right corner.
Note: the 1875 census was not national and only enumerated larger cities, so your ancestors may not be listed in it (most of mine weren't).
Information gathered in census records can be extremely useful in the next area in the archive. It's the collection of scanned church book or parish record database (http://www.arkivverket.no/URN:kb_read). This is not in English, but I'll walk you through how to make a selection using the form on the left side of the page.
Top row "Velg fylke:" selects your region or county (such as Buskerud or Vestfold)
2nd row (appears after choosing region) "Velg prestegjeld/sokn:" restricts the list to a city ot town
3rd row "Velg kirkeboktype:" restricts the list to a certain type of book (such as "Ministerialbok" and "klokkerbok" both which contained records on births, confirmations, marriages, and deaths) Other books contain vaccination and emmigration records.
4th row "Angi periode:" is asking for the year your searching (such as 1876)
The records can be hard to read but the records of males & females were often separated to top (men) & bottom (women) or left (men) and right (women).
For a great article on the history of parish registers and other genealogical sources of Norway, visit this page by John Follesdal, it will help you better understand what you're looking at: (http://homepages.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~norway/na20.html)
Next time I'll explain the basics of Norwegian birth and marriage registers.