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Scorched Country / Kuusamo’s Kirkkoketo in the 1930s

There has been a settlement here since the Stone Age. Plenty of signs have been found of it from 2000-3000 years before Christ.

In the 16th century, there was a Sámi settlement here, which was concentrated in the winter villages of Maanselkä and Kitka. The first settlers came from the direction of Kainuu at the end of the 17th century. The settlement progressed so strongly that the Sámi had to give way or merged into the settlement almost completely by the middle of the 1700s.


Building the Kirkkoketo scale model

Almost 30 years ago, when the reconstructed houses were already being demolished and new ones were being built in their place, Kaarlo Raunio thought that the destroyed Kirkkoketo should be saved for future generations. There were no drawings of the buildings available and there was little photographic material, so the implementation had to be based on memory. People who had lived in this area for several decades were gathered in the study circle of the community college. The group got a “leader” and, as a supplement, technical expertise. On this basis, the group built a scale model of Kirkkoketo, which describes the situation in the second half of the 1930s.

– Has been drawn up on a scale of 1:300 for the base and applying this to other parts as well

– Has been done primarily based on the builders’ memory, in addition to which old photos and information received from different people have been used as help

– As for the bottom, it consists of a mass made of sawdust and glue, on which the roads are bordered with sand, the buildings are made of balsa wood, and the trees and bushes are mainly lichen

– Has required a total of about 3 000 working hours from the builders

– The source of strength has been unconditional love for the home region.

Builders from left: Eino Kuosmanen, Iivo Salmenkorva, Pekka Tirkkonen, Lauri Tammi, Veikko Törmänen, Pellervo Koivunen, Kaarlo Raunio and Erkki Hyvärinen.