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NAHA Editor Anna M. PetersonNAHA is pleased to name Anna M. Peterson as the Association’s new editor. For the past decade Anna has been an active scholar in the field of Norwegian-American history. She currently serves as assistant professor of history at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa — a position she will keep while she holds the NAHA editorship.

Anna earned a B.A. in Scandinavian Studies at Concordia College, Moorhead. As an undergraduate, she also studied at Hedmark University College in Norway. She holds two graduate degrees in history: an M.A. from the University of North Dakota and a Ph.D. from Ohio State University. As an American-Scandinavian Foundation Fellow 2012–13, Anna was a visiting scholar at the Center for Gender Research at the University of Oslo. In 2016 she was the first American historian to receive an award for the best and most innovative contribution to Historisk Tidsskrift (the Norwegian Journal of History). 

Anna has served as a member of the NAHA Board of Directors since 2014. She also serves as a Luther College liaison to Vesterheim Museum and as a board member to Nordic Studies and Women and Gender Studies programs at Luther.

In her role as editor, Anna will oversee the redesign and relaunch of NAHA’s journal, Norwegian-American Studies, which is anticipated for the fall of 2019. The roots of the journal go back to 1926, when the Association released its first issue of Studies and Records. Since then, NAHA has published a total of 36 volumes of studies. The name of the series has changed over the years, but the intent has remained the same: to encourage and support scholarship in the field by offering a peer-reviewed platform.

“I look forward to sustaining and developing NAHA’s relationships with authors and showcasing the best scholarship in Norwegian American history, culture, and life in our publications,” she says.

There have been only four previous editors in the Association’s 93-year history: Theodore Blegen, Kenneth Bjork, Odd Lovoll, and Todd Nichol.

“I am honored for my name to be listed alongside the accomplished past editors of NAHA. I intend to uphold the reputation for academic excellence that they established,” she says.


In 1938, Kenneth O. Bjork and Theodore C. Blegen prepared a history of the thirteen-year-old NAHA and laid out a long-range program for its future in a pamphlet entitled A Review and a Challenge. The Association had already established a proud record of scholarship and could point to nineteen publications of merit.

Nearly a century later, NAHA reflects on more than one hundred publications and its vibrant service to its members and community. Its dynamic program has brought into focus the Norwegian-American experience and its relationship to all ethnic groups in the United States.

The "challenge" outlined by Bjork and Blegen still defines the Association's work today. We have recently completed publishing of a three-volume edition of immigrant letters to Norway, one of the key goals of our founders. Currently, we are refreshing and redesigning our journal, Norwegian-American Studies while we explore the possibilities of digital publication for a new era. The challenge remains!

NAHA Editorial Council
The following provide support and counsel to the NAHA editorial program:

Betty A. Bergland
Laurann Gilbertson
Lori Ann Lahlum
Ann M. Legreid
Terje Mikael Hasle Joranger
Deborah L. Miller
Daron W. Olson
Ingrid Urberg
Nils Olav Østrem
Orm Øverland

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