Photographs and information contributed by Lars Borberg. (Danish journalist)
Air-photo of BW1 dated august 1954 - exhibited at the museum among several others.
Different views of match covers collected in 1958 by Mr. Borberg (Lars father).
The modern Narssarsuak Hotel, a nice, well equipped place, and that is a good thing, as you may very well be forced to spend several nights there, waiting for better flight weather. We spent two days and were, among other things served a treat of whale steak, mashed potatoes and vegetables washed down with a fine Californian redwine. At the rooms American television with about 20 channels. I must say, I kind of preferred a couple of long hikes in the area in stead. It seems that Narssarsuak nowadays is a quite well visited tourist-area stressing nature, fishing and a bit of hunting. It is quite expensive, though, both to get there and to stay there.
Souvenirs cost a lot, and are almost all-modern artifacts ........... plus a few nicer (and even more expensive) things. You can also get yourself a T-shirt with the words "Bluie West 1" printed on it and caps and parcacoats and badges and tags of the same kind.
There still are very impressive huge WW2-buildings, a hangar 4x, old, rusty Nissen-huts, deranged machinery and a very interesting locked iron door at the foot of the rock. -- Lars
The museum at NAB shows history, local with Vikings and all, and WW2 history about BW1 plus material collected from the hospital-site after the fire in 90(?). Besides that there is a collection of photos and newspaper-clippings. Above; A variety of things from the hospital, surgical scissors, medicine-bottles, cups, glasses a.s.o. - obviously damaged by the fire. -- Lars
NAB harbor area seen with your back at the airbase, facing the fjord. Ships: Two Danish coastal patrol navy cutters. -- Lars
Harbour area, shot from Danish navel cutter at arrival. Looking toward the airbase.
Hospital area seen from aloft. The picture is taken from the water-reservoir cut out in the rock on top of the ridge surrounding the back and the sides of the area. It is not in use any more, but there are leftovers of machinery, buildings and pipelines. From here you can see - or at least discern the chimney/fireplace from the doctors/officers mess of the hospital, showed in another picture. The chimney is the only part still standing of the hospital. -- Lars
Here I was standing at the chimney that is the only thing left of the hospital complex after the fire. This was part of the officers mess. -- Lars
I am a Danish journalist, and I take a personal (not professional) interest in the history of BW1 because of a very strange and special experience, I had when I spent 36 hours in Narsarsuaq in october 1966. I was then 19 years of age and a newly trained member of the royal danish navy crew on the way to routinely relieve the existing crew at the naval base in Gronnedal (Green Valley).
We had a spot of bad weather and were sent off duty for the rest of the day. I and a couple of others took a good walk in the area, into the valley of Narsarsuaq, at that time a very brushy place. I will never forget the almost supernatural sight, that met us, when we turned a corner of rocks and bushes and suddenly stood face to face with the huge long deserted hospital, still seemingly, almost fully equipped, but absolutely empty and overgrown. Quite scary, actually.
In those days privates did not ask questions, so I was not told about it until a long time later. Unfortunately we were absolutely not supposed to carry cameras, being in the middle of the cold war and all, so I have no pictures from that occasion.
Two years ago (1996) I visited the NAB again on a personal trip, and found, much to my grief, that the stunningly big hospital had been burned down by accident a few years earlier and bulldozed away.
My father was a reporter too and specialized in both military, Nato and Greenland. He happened to be in Greenland in 1958, covering a rescue-search for a missing danish naval cutter and, as I remember it, he spent a couple of memorable days and nights in the american officers mess at BW 1. Their sea rescue plane, a Catalina, was grounded there, due to heavy snowfall, and it coincided with the closing down of the base and of the bar too. He used to tell us, that the mess had safety belts on the barstools, so they just strapped up and emptied the shelves. Better drink it all than leave any, seemed to be the philosophy of their American hosts.........
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Lars Borbeg 12/17/1998