Hanne Krogh and Her Trailblazing Norwegian Ancestors

Hanne Krogh is one of Norway’s most beloved Eurovision heroes. In 1985, she clinched the first-ever victory for her country together with Elisabeth Andreasson, the other member of Bobbysocks!, with their phenomenal performance of “La Det Swinge” (“Let It Swing”).

Hanne was no stranger to the Eurovision stage: she represented Norway as a soloist in 1971. She also returned after her victory in 1991 as part of Just 4 Fun. She’s won many of Norway’s most prestigious music awards, including numerous Spellemanns (the Norwegian Grammy) and the Peer Gynt Prize. In between her Eurovision performances and serving as MC in many conventions—particularly those on female entrepreneurship—she’s managed to release 27 albums and many singles.

Curious to learn about her heritage, Hanne took a MyHeritage DNA test. Through the results and records we found through SuperSearch, MyHeritage put together a fascinating picture of Hanne’s family past.

Hanne Krogh’s DNA results show representation from multiple parts of northern Europe: she is 56.1% Scandinavian, 26.9% Irish, Scottish and Welsh, 10.8% Finnish, 4.1% East European, and 2.1% English.

In addition to 10 extended family members, Hanne Krogh has close to 4,000 relatives from over 31 countries worldwide that she can now reach out to directly from the MyHeritage platform.

Arnt Halvorsen 3rd great-grandfather

Hanne’s 3rd great-grandfather on her mother’s side, Arnt Halvorsen, was from Biri in eastern Norway. Arnt’s parents disapproved of his marriage to a girl from a poorer family, so in 1840, he moved with his wife and their 4 children to northern Norway to escape all the gossip. That’s where Hanne’s great-great-grandfather, Hans Halvorsen, grew up.

They settled on the farm of Marhaug. The record also indicates that Arnt was a Haugianer: a member of the Pietist revival movement within the Lutheran branch of Christianity, founded by Hans Nielsen Hauge. Biri was a hotspot for this movement, and the Halvorsens joined it there. The record says that Arnt was active in his faith.

Record of Arnt Halvorsen moving away from Biri
Record of Arnt Halvorsen moving away from Biri

Arnt Halvorsen must have been a well-respected man in the area. We found an abundance of stories about him and his family. The Steigen farmbook, for example, also gives a description of Arnt’s trip with his family to the north of Norway. It is said that he left by horse and wagon to Trondheim, where he sold both and continued the rest of the trip by boat.

Record of Arnt in the Steigen farmbook
Record of Arnt in the Steigen farmbook

Arnt Halvorsen was the first man in the area to shoe his horses. It is said that when he ran the horses across the iced waters in the night, the sparks flew, and caused people to claim that Arnt was in cahoots with Satan!

Story about Arnt and his shoed horses
Story about Arnt and his shoed horses

In a different story told by his grandson, Arnt once shot a wolf that was following them. One of the grandsons found the dead wolf and proudly exclaimed that “Dad sure was a good marksman. He even shot a paw off the wolf!”

List from Steigen farmbook
List from Steigen farmbook

According to Steigen farmbook, Arnt was elected foreman representative in Steigen. He is described as freeholder Arnt Halvorsen, Marhaug, serving from 1858-67. The list described some of the area’s best men, highly esteemed either through financial status, political influence or religious leadership.

Odd Milton Krogh, grandfather and August Krogh, great-grandfather

Odd Milton Krogh, Hanne’s paternal grandfather, and his father August Krogh were both saddlemakers. They are both listed in a 1910 census record from Oslo.

1910 census from Oslo that lists Odd Milton Krogh and August Krogh
1910 census from Oslo that lists Odd Milton Krogh and August Krogh

The record indicates that the family lived at Fossveien 5c—the building pictured below.

The address where Hanne’s grandfather and great-grandfather lived
The address where Hanne’s grandfather and great-grandfather lived

The book Norwegian Tradesmen describes both Odd Milton and August. The description gives information on their education and family.

Excerpt from Norwegian Tradesman that mentions August Krogh
Excerpt from Norwegian Tradesman that mentions August Krogh
Excerpt from Norwegian Tradesman that mentions Odd Milton Krogh
Excerpt from Norwegian Tradesman that mentions Odd Milton Krogh

Overall, from MyHeritage’s research, we see that Hanne’s family tree contains enterprising farmers and craftsmen who weren’t afraid to challenge the status quo and try new things, and yet were loved and respected by their communities. Hanne, who is known as a successful female entrepreneur, has clearly followed in their footsteps.