The ARCHIVES at NAHA

The heart of the NAHA archives is its extensive manuscript collection, which includes letters, diaries, journals and ledgers, newspaper clippings, obituaries, congregational records, family and local histories, and other resources related to Norwegians in America. The archival collection also includes photographs illustrating all aspects of Norwegian-American history. The archives are available to NAHA members and non-members, but fees are charged for most services.

Online Research

Collection Databases

  • Leif is the online search engine for NAHA manuscripts and photographs. It allows keyword searching of collections, groups of documents and images.

  • Bridge is the shared online catalog of Rolvaag Library at St. Olaf College and Gould Library at Carleton College, both in Northfield, MN. Rolvaag Library possesses excellent collections of bygdebøker (Norwegian community history books) and Nordic-American publications. See Hovland Indexes below.

Full Text Articles

Image Collections

  • Norwegian-American Images Our new 90th anniversary online collection (2015) significantly increases the number of Norwegian-American images available on this site and expands the search options. We will continue to enlarge this collection as time allows. Image reproduction fees are detailed below.

Indexes

  • Hovland Index Use the Hovland Index to identify which bygdebøker are located in the Rolvaag Library, St. Olaf College, Northfield, MN.

  • Hovland Map Index A geographical aid to finding bygdebøker.

  • Lutheran Herald Index locates articles from this periodical about or written by Norwegian-Americans who were clergy, members or otherwise associated with the Norwegian Lutheran church.

  • Norwegian Newspapers in America Search by newspaper name, state or city of publication, or browse the entire list.

  • Rowberg Index An index of a portion of the Rowberg collection of newspaper clippings. Provides access to obituaries and other biographical data.

Other Resources

  • A guide to the archives is available in PDF format.

  • Links These external web sites may assist you in conducting research on Norway, Norwegian Immigration and the Norwegian language.

Researching at NAHA

Old picture postcard Researchers are welcome to use the NAHA archives in person. Arrangements can be made to use the NAHA archives by calling the archivists at (507) 786-3229 or by e-mailing naha-archivists@stolaf.edu to make an appointment. Appointments should generally be made several days in advance and for our regularly posted hours Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. (Monday-Thursday Memorial Day through Labor Day). Afternoon hours are also often available but only by advance appointment. The archivists are happy to assist visitors in finding appropriate resources, but we are unable to undertake extensive research for patrons. We can answer simple research questions on the telephone and by e-mail, but we may need a week to ten days to respond. As noted below, the services of a trained genealogist are available for a fee. Digital cameras and cell phone cameras may be used with the permission of the staff. Personal scanners are not permitted; but with the permission of the staff, researchers may scan a limited number of non-fragile items on our self-service copier/scanner. Entire collections may not be copied and copyright restrictions must be observed.

Fees

Other Norwegian-American Resources at St. Olaf

Norwegian-American books and newspapers belonging to NAHA are housed in the St. Olaf College Library and may be identified with the St. Olaf-Carleton on-line catalog, Bridge. Rare Norwegian-American imprints (books and pamphlets) are housed in the library vault, as indicated in Bridge. Access to these materials requires advance reservations which can be made by clicking the following: "Schedule an appointment". The library also houses a rich collection of Norwegian-American materials of its own, including bygdebøker.

Donations of Archival Material

Old farmstead photo

The NAHA archives actively collects manuscripts (correspondence, diaries, famiy histories), local and congregational histories, photographs, and recordings that document the history of Norwegians in North America (including Canada). We do not collect books published in Norway, although we will accept the donation of bygdebøker and Norwegian-American imprints not already in the St. Olaf Library collection. Materials from post-World War II Norwegian immigrants are a collecting priority. Donors can be assured that materials will be properly preserved and that donating families will retain access to their records. All donations to the NAHA archives will be acknowledged in writing. Although we prefer original materials, we will accept copies or make copies for donors who wish to retain originals. Our complete Collection Guidelines are here.

Translation from Norwegian to English

The NAHA archivists are not able to provide Norwegian translation services. NAHA does maintain a list of translators who may be hired to provide such services.

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