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From the Archives
    by Charlotte Jacobson (Volume 31: Page 317)

Andersen, Magnus

Translation by Karl B. Schultz of two chapters of 70 aars tilbakeblik, a book by a Norwegian sea captain which was published in Oslo in 1932. The chapters excerpted deal with the voyage of the Viking from Bergen to the Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893 and later down the Mississippi River to New Orleans.

Anderson, Mons

Clippings about an immigrant from Valdres who came to Milwaukee in 1848 and moved to La Crosse in 1851. He established his own business in 1856 and became known as “The Merchant Prince of La Crosse.” Of special interest are information about the house he purchased in 1865 and a coin which he had minted with his lion trademark on one side.

Boyum, Arne

Translation of a journal covering everyday happenings in home, church, and community which was kept by an immigrant from Balestrand, Sogn, who left Norway in 1853 and was ordained into Eielsen’s Synod in 1858. He served the Arendahl congregation, Peterson, Minnesota, 1876-1896. He was president of the Hauge Synod, 1876-1887.

Brosten, Andrew (Einar)

Translations of letters to his relatives in Norway from an immigrant who came to the United States in 1881. He wrote from Illinois and Iowa, but finally settled on a farm in Griggs county, North Dakota.

Fjelde, Herman Olaus

Papers of a physician from Alesund, who emigrated to the United States in 1889. After receiving a medical degree from the University of Minnesota, he practiced medicine in Minnesota and in North Dakota. He was a man of many interests who worked tirelessly for the preservation of the Norwegian heritage of his countrymen. He helped establish Det norske Selskab and Søndmørelaget. He was also instrumental in the erection of statues in the United States of famous Norwegians.

Dr. Fjelde came from an unusually gifted family. His father, Paul Michelet Fjelde, was a woodcarver. His brother, Jacob Fjelde, became a well-known Norwegian-American sculptor. Jacob’s son Paul also became a noted sculptor. Dr. Fjelde’s sister Pauline was a painter, needlework artist, and weaver, who had mastered the art of Gobelin tapestry.

Gjerde, Jon

Reprint of “The Effect of Community on Migration; Three Minnesota Townships, 1885-1905,” published in the Journal of Historical Geography, vol. 5, no. 4 (1979), by a Norwegian-American scholar at the University of Minnesota. The area studied is Renville county, Minnesota.

Gulbrandson, Esther

Papers of a teacher of Norwegian at St. Olaf College who was active in promoting study and interest in everything Norwegian and Norwegian American. Especially interesting are papers connected with the program “Coffee Hour,” conducted by the members of the Department of Norwegian over radio station WCAL. There are also transcripts of letters between St. Olaf College students and Norwegian seamen during the years of World War II.

Gulliksen, Øyvind

“John Lie og Amerika,” the story of a Norwegian novelist and poet who lived in Fyresdal, Telemark, 1846-1916, and who was one of the most popular writers among first-generation Norwegian Americans. In 1898-1899 he visited the United States and published a volume of poems, Helsing til Amerika. He also gave occasional lectures, but because of ill health the visit was not a great success for him.

Hagen, Monys Ann

“Norwegian Pioneer Women; Ethnicity on the Wisconsin Agricultural Frontier,” a master’s thesis at the University of Wisconsin, 1984.

Hansen, Edward

Papers concerning the life and work of an immigrant from Mandal, who came to Chicago in 1904. In 1915-1931 he operated Den Norske Kafe, which became a center for fellowship among Norwegians in Chicago. Much of his time, interest, and energy was devoted to church and charitable enterprises. He was the first business manager for Norsk Ungdom, which began publication in Chicago in 1913. In 1926-1927 he published a weekly, Chicago Tidende.

Hansen, Oskar J. W.

Newspaper items and photographs of the work of a sculptor who emigrated to the United States from Vesterålen in 1910. In 1961 he was awarded the President’s Medal of Merit for a sculpture at Yorktown, Virginia, commemorating Washington’s victory over Cornwallis. His most famous work is the Winged Figures of the Republic at Hoover Dam, “said to be the largest cast bronzes in the world.”

Hardanger Fiddle Association of America

Descriptive material about an organization seeking to preserve interest in the traditional eight-stringed violin which is the national folk instrument of Norway. An earlier organization, Spelemanns Laget af Amerika, founded in 1914, died out at about the time of World War II.

Hildahl, Hud Naes

Letters and a memoir “Listugfarmen,” written by a woman who emigrated from Kragerø in 1937 to Roseau, Minnesota, after her marriage to a Norwegian-born farmer who had settled there. She tells about her life in Norway and the contrast to her life in Roseau. She had been trained in handicrafts and as a hobby began making dolls illustrating Norwegian fairy tales. The hobby grew into a business, and she traveled all over the United States, showing, selling, and lecturing about her dolls.

Hoen, Peter L.

My Life, Dyre Dyresen’s translation of an account written by an immigrant from Nordrehaug in Ringerike. After coming to Chicago in 1971 he was converted to the beliefs of the Seventh Day Adventists. He spent the rest of his life as a layman working among the Scandinavians of this denomination.

Johnson, Nikolai

“Hawaiian Adventure,” a brief account by an immigrant from Drammen who came to Hawaii in 1880 as an indentured servant. After a few months he was released from the indenture by his father, who paid the passage money.

Kalevik, Erwin

Two accounts, Kallevig Reunion and Georgeville, Minnesota, from 1860-1903, edited by Kalevik, who at one time was a resident of Georgeville, Stearns county, Minnesota. The Kallevig reunion was held at Willmar, Minnesota, where descendants of three brothers, Alias, Johannes, and Olle Kallevig, gathered in the area where these men had originally settled in the 1 880s and 1 890s.

Langseth, Peder Olsen

“Norske Settlementer og Menigheter i Sherburne, Benton og Mille Lacs Countier, Minnesota,” written by Langseth together with A. Larsgaard and R.J. Meland. All three men had been pastors of congregations in this part of Minnesota.

Lofthus, Orin M.

Pioneers in the Norwegian Settlement, a compilation of information about the families who came to Albany, Wisconsin, beginning in 1849. The statement is made that this is intended as “a layman’s history of the entire settlement,” which covers “members of various family groups through three or four generations.” The work is in manuscript form, but has been copyrighted.

Munch, Peter Andreas

Records pertaining to the Norwegian-American interests of a sociologist who was born at Nes, Hedmark, and received the first Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Oslo. He came to live in the United States in 1948 and after teaching for some years at the University of Wisconsin, St. Olaf College, and the University of North Dakota, he taught for twenty years at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale.

In 1939 he had been part of a Norwegian scientific expedition to Tristan da Cunha, an island in the South Atlantic. This led to his publishing numerous articles and books about the island, the best known being Crisis in Utopia, published in 1971.

In 1970 he and his wife, Helene Munch, published The Strange American Way, based on their translations of the letters of his grandmother, Caja Munch, and on excerpts from the autobiography of the Reverend Johan Storm Munch, who had served parishes at Wiota, Wisconsin, and the surrounding area, 1855-1859.

After Dr. Munch’s retirement from Southern Illinois University in 1979, he was elected a member of the Norwegian Academy of Science for his contributions to the field of sociology. He died in 1984.

Nora Lodge, No. 1, Riddere av det Hvide Kors. Sons of Norway no. 415.

Additions to the papers of a Norwegian cultural and benefit society in Chicago, consisting of historical information, legal documents, and five volumes of membership, secretarial, and financial records.

Norsk Leseforening, Chicago

Secretarial and other records of a women’s reading club, founded in 1898 to foster interest in the literature of Scandinavia and particularly of Norway. The club often made financial gifts to charitable enterprises in the Chicago area.

Norwegian-Danish Methodist Episcopal Conference, Richland Congregation.

Records of a rural Richland county, Wisconsin, congregation, which in 1945 became part of the West Wisconsin Conference of the Methodist Church. The congregation was organized by a group of Norwegian immigrants in 1856. Because of declining membership the church was closed in 1981.

Odegard, Ethel J.

Papers of a Norwegian American who had a distinguished career in nursing before her retirement in 1951. She was at one time executive secretary of the Nurses’ Examining Board, District of Columbia. Her article “Farewell to an Old Homestead,” dealing with her home in Merrill, Wisconsin, appeared in Norwegian-American Studies, vol. 26.

Olson, Irving

A covering letter and an interview conducted by Janet Rasmussen with a resident of the Norse Home in Seattle, Washington. Olson had emigrated from Laksevåg, near Bergen, to Boston in 1907, where he joined the Norwegian Society and Norumbega.

Overn, Anton Gustav Helgeson

“A Pioneer’s Proclamation; Uncompromising Truth; Unfailing Love,” the translated sermons of a pastor in the Norwegian Synod, 1879-1905, who served congregations in Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Missouri, and Utah. The translations were made by a son, Alfred Victor Overn.

Pedersen, Ole R.

An autobiography translated by Pedersen’s daughter Marie Peterson in 1974. It is the story of childhood and youth in Valdres, the journey to Brown county, Wisconsin, in 1873, and family, church, and pioneer life in that county.

Pederson, Luke Molberg

“Nineteenth Century Social Change in Lesja, Norway,” a paper written by a history major in the College of Liberal Arts, University of Minnesota, 1980.

Quie, Albert

Papers of a Norwegian-American politician from Dennison, Minnesota, who served in the Minnesota Senate, 1954-1958, and was congressman from the Minnesota First District, 1959-1978. In 1978 he was elected governor of Minnesota and served a four-year term.

The papers deal with his Norwegian heritage and background, and tell of his visit to his people’s home area in Norway.

Rogney, Nellie

“Alone on that Prairie,” excerpts from a memoir written about 1910 by a woman who recalled the difficulties of life on a homestead in Rosebud county, Montana. With her Norwegian-American husband she had gone to Montana in 1914. The story ends tragically with the murder of her husband in the early 1920s.

Rovelstad, Trygve

Papers about the work of a Norwegian-American sculptor in Elgin, Illinois. His designs for a pioneer memorial in Elgin and for a huge statue to be placed in the Chicago harbor were never executed because funds were not available.

In the 1940s he was medalist and sculptor for the United States Department of War. He designed their Combat Infantry Badge and was instructor in sculpture at the United States Army University near Oxford, England. He designed and edited the commemorative American Roll of Honor, which was placed in the American Memorial Chapel, St. Paul’s Cathedral, London.

Many of his statues, badges, and medals are to be found in the Chicago area.

Royal Norwegian Navy War Veterans Association

“The Sea Breeze,” a newsletter, 1972-1983, of the United States Branch of S.S.H. Veteranforening, a social organization of citizens of Canada and the United States who served in the Norwegian Navy during World War II.

Sønneland, Sidney Gaylord

Additional papers given by Mrs. Sidney Sønneland concerning her mother, Caroline Stuverud Short. Of special interest is the story of Mrs. Short’s pilgrimage to France as a Gold Star mother.

Thomason, Thomas

Copies of Slægt register, an account by an immigrant from Arendal who came to Dane county, Wisconsin, in 1861. In 1867 he moved to Stevens county, Minnesota, which was frontier country. The journals cover family history, his youth in Norway, his experiences as a seaman, the journey to America, and the kinds of work he engaged in. He intersperses his accounts with philosophical observations and poems, some of which are of his own composition.

Tillotson, Christi

Letters written to a Norwegian immigrant living in Clinton, Wisconsin, in connection with her gifts to Opheim for an old people’s home and to Vossestrand for a children’s home in Voss.

Wefald, Knut

Letters written by a resident of Yttre Vefald, Drangedal, Telemark, to his son Knud, who had emigrated to the United States in 1887 and who became a distinguished Minnesota politician. Papers of the son, Knud Wefald, are also in the collections of the NAHA Archives. During the past year many additions have been made to these papers. Included are an account from 1903 concerning a trip to Norway, poems that he wrote in both Norwegian and English, and extracts from the Congressional Record during his term in the United States House of Representatives.


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