Skamby was originally a village, or to give it its technical terminology, a desmenial town. It can be traced back to the end of the Viking era. The name Skamby means “short town”.


The church

The church in Skamby is one of the oldest churches on Funen, and if you take a walk round it, it is interesting to see the many different boulders, field stones, bricks and large medieval bricks that have been mortared into the masonry over the centuries. The church was built on a hilltop so it could be seen from afar. The original Skamby was centred around the church and down towards the village pond.



The Viking era and the Middle Ages

In the Viking era and the Middle Ages, when the number of inhabitants in the village became too large, overflow towns were built. If you look at a map today, Skamby is actually a prime example of this. Skamby is situated in the middle of the parish surrounded by 6 overflow towns: Torup, Bastrup, Brøndstrup, Bolmerod, Rostrup, Ullerup, plus Stensby and its overflow town: Glavendrup.



The plague

When the plague came to Skamby, it must have been particularly horrible for the inhabitants. It is said that a mass grave was dug in the churchyard, and if you discovered a dark mark on the surface of your hands you went along of your own accord and lay in the grave. It is said that everyone in the parish died, except two. After the Black Death, a hawthorn was planted in 1350 on top of the grave so that no-one would dig there and allow the infection to break loose again. During a storm in 1933, a large hawthorn blew over in the churchyard and under the roots a layer of skeletons was revealed, so the story about the mass grave is not pure fabrication. After the old hawthorn blew over, a new hawthorn was planted, it is still there to this day. Inside the church, an ink drawing of the old hawthorn can still be seen.



The troll

It is said that when the building of the church got underway there were problems with a local troll. It was the troll Finn, who lived in Finnshøj near Nth. Højrup, just to the north of Skamby. Finn didn’t want to hear the church bells ring out over the landscape and tried, in vain, to sabotage the building. Among other things, he decided to vigorously throw stones at the church. However, Finn was so infuriated that all the stones went too far and landed in Stensby. (And, sure enough, even today the farmers still plough up stones in the fields around Stenby). After that, Finn ran at the church as fast as he could and gave it such a kick that his footprint was embedded in one of the foundation stones. Both the footprint and Finnshøj can still be seen to this day.



Did you know…

… that the Odense-Bogense came to Skamby in 1882. At that time the station was built a little bit outside the town and it suddenly brought the town’s commercial life alive. Skamby was subsequently extended down towards the railway line, and over time, the town acquired many shops, for example: a baker, a butcher, a grocer, an inn, a pharmacy, a hospital, a bank, a post office, a bicycle repair shop and so on.  Skamby went from being a “short” town to a long town.


The railway line was closed in 1966. The station building with its stable has been preserved at Stationsvej 2 and has been converted into dwellings. At the end of Stationsvej there is a dirt track on which you can still walk along a bit of the route of the railway line heading north east, half-way to Uggerslev.