Hammerfest (häˈmərfĕst) [key], town (1995 pop. 9,561), Finnmark co., N Norway, on Kvaløy island. It is the northernmost town of Europe, but its harbor is always ice-free. Tourists are attracted by its uninterrupted daylight from May 17 to July 29. There are fish-processing plants. Chartered c.1795, Hammerfest was heavily damaged by British naval bombardment in 1809, by fire in 1890, and by retreating German forces in 1944.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.