Sea Dog Bamse

Sea Dog Bamse

Memorial Sea Dog Bamse Day

Jul 22

Other Scottish Country Dances for this Day

Today's Musings, History & Folklore

Woof! One of WWII's most unusual animal heroes, this 196 pound St Bernard dog became the global mascot for the Royal Norwegian Forces and a symbol of freedom and inspiration for Allied troops throughout Europe. After Norway fell to the Germans in 1940, the Thorodd operated from Dundee and Montrose, where Bamse became a well-known and much-loved figure, shepherding the Thorodd's crew-members back to the boat at pub closing time, traveling on the local buses, breaking up fights and even taking part in football matches. Often donning his own steel helmet as he took his place in the Torodd's bow gun turret, Bamse made a huge contribution to the morale of the crew, and saved the lives of two of them. Mourned both by locals and Norwegians when he died in 1944, Bamse's memory has been kept alive both in Norway, where he is still regarded as a national hero, and in Montrose, where a larger-than-life statue of him stands.🇳🇴 󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 🐕 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿

"The presence of Bamse with the Norwegian Navy at Dundee and Montrose in World War Two has left an enduring reminder of the Norwegian contribution to the Allies, and of Scottish-Norwegian friendship."

~ Montrose Heritage Trust

Sea Dog Bamse

This dance honors a remarkable animal hero of World War II with connections to Norway and Scotland, who passed away this day, July 22, 1944, a St. Bernard known as Sea Dog Bamse.

 

Taken from the book description of the same name:

"This is the remarkable story of one of the Second World War's most unusual animal heroes,  a 14-stone St. Bernard dog who became global mascot for the Royal Norwegian Forces and a symbol of freedom and inspiration for Allied troops throughout Europe, and captured hearts on both sides of the North Sea even sixty years after his death.

From a happy and carefree puppyhood spent as a family pet in the Norwegian fishing town of Honningsvåg, the gentle giant Bamse followed his master at the outbreak of the war to become a registered crew member of the mine-sweeper Thorodd. Often donning his own steel helmet as he took his place in the Torodd’s bow gun turret, Bamse cut an impressive figure and made a huge contribution to the morale of the crew, and he gallantly saved the lives of two of them.

After Norway fell to the Germans in 1940, the Thorodd operated from Dundee and Montrose, where Bamse became a well-known and much-loved figure, shepherding the Thorodd’s crew-members back to the boat at pub closing time, travelling on the local buses, breaking up fights and even taking part in football matches.

 

Mourned both by locals and Norwegians when he died in 1944, Bamse’s memory has been kept alive both in Norway, where he is still regarded as a national hero, and in Montrose, where a larger-than-life statue of him was unveiled in 2006 by Prince Andrew. "

There is even a special tartan named for Bamse.  

 

For more about his history, click the memorial statue for a documentary video.

Sea Dog Bamse
Sea Dog Bamse

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