University of Oulu

Janne Ikäheimo & Tiina Äikäs (2018) Hanging tree as a place of memories – Encounters at a 1916 execution site, Journal of Community Archaeology & Heritage, 5:3, 166-181, DOI: 10.1080/20518196.2018.1483997

Hanging tree as a place of memories : encounters at a 1916 execution site

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Author: Ikäheimo, Janne1; Äikäs, Tiina1
Organizations: 1University of Oulu, Archaeology P.O. Box 1000, 90014 Finland
Format: article
Version: accepted version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.5 MB)
Persistent link:
Language: English
Published: Maney Publishing, 2018
Publish Date: 2019-12-08


Near the city centre of Oulu in northern Finland, one comes across a peculiar monument: a pine tree turned into a memorial that marks the site of the last official execution by hanging in the country. Archaeological excavations took place at the hanging site in August 2014, not only to gather archaeological evidence on the history and use of the memorial, but also in order to offer people a way to share their memories and recollections of this rather unusual place. In this article we discuss the data gained from interviews (N = 20) conducted in connection with the excavations. The interpretation of the data shows that the hanging tree memorial has been and continues to be a place of both private and communal memories. It has been used for private gatherings and visits as well as for nationalistic purposes. The authenticity of this site as the actual place of hanging can be reasonably questioned, but the place is still important for local people.

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Series: Journal of community archaeology & heritage
ISSN: 2051-8196
ISSN-E: 2051-820X
ISSN-L: 2051-8196
Volume: 5
Issue: 3
Pages: 166 - 181
DOI: 10.1080/20518196.2018.1483997
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 615 History and archaeology
616 Other humanities
Copyright information: © 2018 Taylor & Francis. This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Community Archaeology & Heritage on 08 June 2018, available online: