Norwegian Settlers Monument - detail at dusk.
Norwegian Settlers Monument - detail at dusk.

Viking Memorial

Field review by the editors.

Norway, Illinois

In 1834, Cleng Peerson from Norway founded -- Norway. In Illinois. Later called "The Mother Settlement," it was the first permanent camp of Norwegians in the Midwest, and a future departure point for subsequent Norsemen and -women -- the great great great great grandsons and granddaughters of Vikings -- who would go on to conquer land in far-away places like Iowa.

On the 100th anniversary of America's Norway, five commemorative plaques were mounted on rocks and slabs outside the Peerson family cemetery. They're still there, like Viking runestones, offering mute testimony to the countless Olafs and Astrids that passed through on their way to someplace else. During our visit we noted that someone had spray painted on the back of one slab: "Odin Lives."

Also see: Vikings in America

Viking Memorial

Norwegian Settlers State Memorial

Address:
Hwy 71, Norway, IL
Directions:
Norwegian Settlers State Memorial. Southwest of town on Hwy 71. I-80 exit 93, then drive northeast eight miles on Hwy 71. On the west side.
Save to My Sights

Nearby Offbeat Places

Agricultural Crash MonumentAgricultural Crash Monument, Norway, IL - 1 mi.
Charles Lindbergh Crash Site #1Charles Lindbergh Crash Site #1, Wedron, IL - 6 mi.
Southwest Asia Memorial WallSouthwest Asia Memorial Wall, Marseilles, IL - 9 mi.
In the region:
Mastodon Slide, Aurora, IL - 27 mi.

More Quirky Attractions in Illinois

Stories, reports and tips on tourist attractions and odd sights in Illinois.

Explore Thousands of Unique Roadside Landmarks!

Strange and amusing destinations in the US and Canada are our specialty. Start here.
Use RoadsideAmerica.com's Attraction Maps to plan your next road trip.

My Sights

My Sights on Roadside America

Save Cool Vacation Destinations! ...Try My Sights

Mobile Apps

Roadside America app: iPhone, iPad Roadside America app for iPhone, iPad. On-route maps, 1,000s of photos, special research targets! ...More

Roadside Presidents app: iPhone, iPad Roadside Presidents app for iPhone, iPad. POTUS landmarks, oddities. ...More

Illinois Latest Tips and Stories

Latest Visitor Tips

Sight of the Week

Sight of the Week

International Spy Museum, Washington, DC (Oct 11-17, 2021)

SotW Archive

USA and Canada Tips and Stories

More Sightings

RoadsideAmerica.com Hotel & Motel Finder

Special rates for hotels.

Book Now