The thesis supports a theory that the first boats in Northern Scandinavia were wooden boats developed from the dugout - with ancestors from the East. Interpretation of - and research on boat figures in rock art have been reviewed from the first attempts of interpretation were made in 1828. The resulting conclusions and theories have been discussed. Boats from the circumpolar region as well as boats from other cultures have been studied and compared to prehistoric boats in Scandinavia. The oldest boat figures in Alta rock art have been compared with similar figures in Vyg, Lake Onega, Nämforsen and Slettnes. The analysis of 80 boat figures in Alta show a remarkable consistency of principles in construction for each of the five generations I have chosen. It is also and a clear development of design through Mesolithic, Neolithic, Bronze Age and Pre Roman Iron Age. The Bronze Age figures have a marked similarity to carvings associated with the Hjortspring boat. Finally the thesis analyzes what I believe to be the most important features of the Hjortspring boat from the point of view of its inheritance.