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Gunnar Frímannsson


Akureyri, ÍSL

Gunnar studied Social Sciences at Uppsala University in Sweden and worked as a teacher and school administrator at Menntaskólinn á Akureyri for 20 years, then as director of operations for the Akureyri Music School and project manager for the City of Akureyri. Later, he served on the board of the Icelandic Red Cross as well as in the local Eyjafjörður chapter of the Red Cross. He still works in the clothing division there.

About 20 years ago, Gunnar came across a letter that his ancestors, mainly his great-grandmother and her children, sent to his great-aunt, who had moved from Þelamörk in Hörgárdal to the west in Norðurárdal in Skagafjörður. He realized he knew little about all these people and started digging for information about them, i.e., what kind of people they were and what kind of life they would have lived. Later, he looked for his mother's kin in the Westfjords, mostly connected to Bolungarvík, about whom he knew even less. He has written about all these people on his website,, under “Ættmennin.” Gunnar says he hopes that someday his descendants will be interested in knowing something about their ancestors and his writings can be useful to them. He started asking his parents and other people of their generation about their family histories too late and as a result many things were never recorded.

Gunnar says he is not particularly interested in genealogy beyond his own family history research, but “logging into IcelandicRoots is a nice pastime for people my age.” Gunnar also knows from experience that having detailed and reliable information about their ancestors makes things easier for people when they start digging into their ancestry, which is why he focuses on identifying everyone's date and place of birth, as well as their death date and home at the time of their death.

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