Where Streets have no Name

namnlosagrand

No, this is not about the U2 song. This is a street sign in my hometown of Härnösand, Sweden.

NAMELESS ALLEY.

I honestly have no idea about the history behind this choice of name but at least it’s kind of … original.

Namnlösa Gränd is in an area that actually was saved from the tearing-down mania that seemed to rage  through Sweden, and probably other countries in Europe during the 60’s.

One little part of our beautiful town was saved. Many other parts, that I do remember, were torn down to make place for rather dull, stereotyped buildings. Even the old hotel, which was really beautiful.

I left Härnösand a little more than six years ago, and before I left I didn’t own a digital camera. Besides, I didn’t have any great interest in photography. We did get a digital camera at work, which I borrowed a few times and shot pictures of my cat.

Now … with my newly won interest for photography, and also because I’m not there anymore … I often think of all the buildings and streets I would have loved to shoot.

The other day, I heard that U2 song, which led me to think about Namnlösa Gränd. I googled it but didn’t get any good hits – I’m not really sure if it is an official street name that is approved by the city council but that doesn’t really matter. It has been there for as long as I can remember.

Got this bright idea, that I could ask my friend, Elisabeth, who now is on my Facebook list, to go there and shoot a picture of the sign and the little alley itself. Elisabeth is a friend, with whom I’ve sort of renewed contact with … her being on Facebook has made my whole FB experience much more positive. I wasn’t much into it before.

She didn’t even know about Namnlösa Gränd, so this was a win-win situation LOL. Now she knows and I got the pictures!

 

namnlosagrand2

 

This whole area where this alley is located, is called Östanbäcken. It’s a small area, with a few, likewise small, streets in it. As I google it right now, I’m surprised that not more is written online about it because it’s of great, historic interest.

These old, wooden houses, date back to  after 1727. That was the year when a big fire devastated the city. One of the streets … Telegraph Alley can actually be found in an old map from 1699.

This area is in the very center of town, and it’s a quite amazing feeling to just walk around a corner from the busy street life in town, and enter Östanbäcken … you feel like you’re taken aback to a different world … a different life.

The name … Östanbäcken would translate to Easterbrook. There’s a subterranean brook in Härnösand, hence the name … it’s located east of this brook.

 

 

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12 thoughts on “Where Streets have no Name”

    1. Thank you! 🙂
      The area has a lot of history, there’s a building with bullet holes dating back to the time when the Russians were invading!

      Nowadays they are beautiful, private homes and a few have been turned into apartment buildings too.

  1. This is so interesting. I love things like this. I was just watching the news and saw they found some artifacts under ground in New York City.

  2. Hi,
    It is a shame when there is so much history that there isn’t more about this place. I find it fascinating that the Alley was in a map from 1699, that is incredible.

    1. We were lucky in my town, that at least this little area was spared from the tearing-down rage. In most towns and cities an area like this would have been turned into a huge department store with parking lot!

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