Gløshaug Church is a wooden stave church constructed in 1689 and seats about 100 people. The site of the church has been used all the way back to around 1160. It originally was a St. Olaf church according to Grankvist. A manuscript from 1597 calls the church then 'Olafshougs Kirke i Hærø fierding', meaning St. Olaf's Church of Harran. St. Olaf is the patron saint of Norway. The first church building on this site was built around 1170, and it was restored in 1433 and 1510. In 1689, the old church was replaced by a new stave church, which still stands today.
In the 1800s and 1900s, several Englishmen (some of those were noblemen) owned houses along the river at Gartland, where they lived during their stay in Grong. One was Thomas Merthyr Guest, a man of considerable wealth. He bought two Gartland farms and in 1873 the old Gløshaug Church. Grong municipality wanted to tear down the old church and build a new church for Harran, but instead Mr. Guest restored it. The new Harran Church was put up at Fiskum in the village of Harran. Mr. Guest's widow sold the church in 1908 to a local farmer who in turn in 1910 gave the church to the municipality.References:
Derbent is the southernmost city in Russia, occupying the narrow gateway between the Caspian Sea and the Caucasus Mountains connecting the Eurasian steppes to the north and the Iranian Plateau to the south. Derbent claims to be the oldest city in Russia with historical documentation dating to the 8th century BCE. Due to its strategic location, over the course of history, the city changed ownership many times, particularly among the Persian, Arab, Mongol, Timurid, Shirvan and Iranian kingdoms.
Derbent has archaeological structures over 5,000 years old. As a result of this geographic peculiarity, the city developed between two walls, stretching from the mountains to the sea. These fortifications were continuously employed for a millennium and a half, longer than any other extant fortress in the world.
A traditionally and historically Iranian city, the first intensive settlement in the Derbent area dates from the 8th century BC. The site was intermittently controlled by the Persian monarchs, starting from the 6th century BC. Until the 4th century AD, it was part of Caucasian Albania which was a satrap of the Achaemenid Persian Empire. In the 5th century Derbent functioned as a border fortress and the seat of Sassanid Persians. Because of its strategic position on the northern branch of the Silk Route, the fortress was contested by the Khazars in the course of the Khazar-Arab Wars. In 654, Derbent was captured by the Arabs.
The Sassanid fortress does not exist any more, as the famous Derbent fortress as it stands today was built from the 12th century onward. Derbent became a strong military outpost and harbour of the Sassanid empire. During the 5th and 6th centuries, Derbent also became an important center for spreading the Christian faith in the Caucasus.
The site continued to be of great strategic importance until the 19th century. Today the fortifications consist of two parallel defence walls and Naryn-Kala Citadel. The walls are 3.6km long, stretching from the sea up to the mountains. They were built from stone and had 73 defence towers. 9 out of the 14 original gates remain.
In Naryn-Kala Citadel most of the old buildings, including a palace and a church, are now in ruins. It also holds baths and one of the oldest mosques in the former USSR.
In 2003, UNESCO included the old part of Derbent with traditional buildings in the World Heritage List.