Daily Archives: April 1, 2011

The Underground Movement


                      Kristian Stein.

Kristian Stein was born in Bergen in 1901. He worked for the Post Office and also owned a tobacconist shop as a sideline. As a Post Office employee he frequently travelled along the coast sorting the post. This gave him the opportunity to be in contact with many people. As soon as the Germans invaded Norway he began planning a resistance movement. It was not an easy task but by the autumn of 1940 he, and several prominent men, had things in hand and the Kristian Stein Organisation came into being. They began to smuggle people, wanted by the Germans, over to England and Scotland in small fishing vessels. These journeys, under the cover of darkness, were extremely dangerous. There were mines everywhere, and the enemy was on a constant look-out for escapees. Not everyone made it to safety, and if caught it meant prison camp or a death sentence.

The Kristian Stein Organisation had about 1500 members country-wide. The tasks these people were asked to undertake varied greatly, from supplying ammunition, printing and delivering illegal newspapers, drawing maps and general spy-work. Some, with technical ability, helped the setting up of secret radio links with England, deep in the quiet fjords  or on isolated farms. They became experts at avoiding the eagle-eyed Germans and getting themselves out of tricky situations.