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Photographs by a member of the public, 1935

Some restoration work was carried out in Jelling Church in the winter of 1935-36 and the area around the rune stones used as a storage place for rubble and soil. A member of the public was somewhat worried about the stones and sent four photographs to the National Museum. Here there was surprise at the lack of respect shown to the rune stones. The museum approached the architect connected to the church, Bachelor of Divinity J. H. Vernersen, who was also the supervisor in charge of the monuments. He replied that ”… perhaps some pieces of rubble when dumped may have rolled on to the bottom edge of the small rune stone. I can ensure the National Museum that no damage whatsoever has been caused to the rune stones.”

Despite the assurance that the rune stones had not been damaged, the criticism probably troubled both Vernersen and the parochial church council. Shortly afterwards it was decided to improve the immediate environment of the rune stones. Thus Vernersen informed the National Museum in a letter of 26 November 1936 that the church council had taken away the nearest 4-5 grave stones. “The fences and graves stones have been removed, the area has been levelled and gravelled, after which the rune stones stand free in an open place and can be seen from all sides.”