Article provided by: Øystein Sande & Morten Lilleøren
Correspondence chess was played in Norway already in the 19th century. Later the Norwegian Chess Federation, magazines and papers arranged postal events, and Norwegians participated internationally - also in IFSB. Individual CC had a great boost during the Second World War. The German rule made ordinary organisational activities very difficult, and playing by post was almost the only way to play chess tournaments. Several individually independent tournaments were arranged, and hundreds of players participated. Shortly after the war the Norwegian CC Federation (NPSF) was founded in 1945. In its first years NPSF had a boom, enabling the federation to play team matches over hundreds of boards. In the long run, that high number of members could not be upheld, and today the number is only about about 100, more than half of them active players.
Six Norwegians have played in the World Championship finals: In 2006 Ivar Bern won the final in the 17th World Championship, while Olaf Barda (1909-1971) came 4th in the first final.
Two Norwegian players have won the European championship: Frank Hovde won the 29th in 1990 and Arne Vinje the 51st in 1998. Jan Svenneby came 3rd in in the 3rd (!) in 1968.
The Norwegian team has entered the finals of the Olympiads on six occasions. In 2009 the Norwegian team won the final in the 15th Olympiads. The successful team consisted of: 1. Ivar Bern 2. Raymond Boger 3. Arild Haugen 4.Petter Stigar 5. Morten Lilleøren 6. Tor-Arne Klausen.
For a long period Olaf Barda (1909-1971) was the only CC Grandmaster in Norway. But in the last decades, things have changed. Now (2016) Norway has 9 GMs (living and deceased), 14 SIMs, 13 IMs and one female IM (LIM).
Raymond Boger managed to achieve the GM norm 11 times in the period 2003-12.
Two Norwegians have been made honorary members of ICCF: Anders Elgesem (president 1955-59) and Roald Berthelsen (long-time tournament director).
In 2006 the federation changed its name from NPSF (Norges Postsjakkforbund) to NFSF (Norges Fjernsjakkforbund), because play by post was rapidly decreasing. "Fjernsjakk" (cf. the German name "Fernschach") is now the name of the Norwegian CC-magazine.
NPSF/NFSF has always been independent, not a subdivision or committee of Norges Sjakkforbund (the Norwegian OTB organization), as is the case in many other countries. NPSF/NFSF has always had a core of enthusiasts to run the organization. A good indicator of this is the membership magazine, which has regularly appeared since its start in 1945. There had - at the beginning of 2015 - been issued 541 numbers, containing 11660 pages and 4456 games. The first editor was Sverre Halvorsen, who edited and printed himself the magazine for 33 years - often with 12 issues a year - until he was tragically taken by an avalanche of snow in the Easter of 1978. The second editor was Roald Berthelsen, until Øystein Sande took over i 1991 and has been the editor since then.
At its 50th anniversary, in 1995, NPSF was the host of the ICCF Congress that year.