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Julia Fredrikke LUTH Broaker

(Danish-American; Rhode Island/New York City)

A Danish-American and social leader.  She was among the younger of the many children of Thorkild and Fredrikke Løth who emigrated from their home in Jutland to Newport, Rhode Island.  In 1886 she married Frank Broaker and they settled in New York City (sometimes living in Manhattan and sometimes in Brooklyn).  Frank Broaker, who is credited with being America’s first CPA, held the original copyright on a visual method of double entry bookkeeping.  Julia Broaker (writing under the name of “Julia Anderson”) was the author of The Younger Mrs. Courtney, a novel published in 1903.  Julia and Frank Broaker were listed in the New York Blue Book of 1930.  She died in 1950.

  • Born about 1863 in Uggerby Parish, Vennebjerg Herred, Hjørring Amt, Denmark; daughter of Thorkild Mikael Christiansen Løth and his wife Lovise Fredrikke.
  • Emigrated 1877-1878 to Newport, Rhode Island
  • Married 1886 Frank Broaker of Pennsylvania, 3 daughters: Alma, Julia and Ethel; a 4th child died young.

Died 2 July 1950.

Bibliography:            Julia Fredrikke LUTH Broaker (c. 1864-1950)

AICPA: “Inside AICPA” (May 1998)
American Fiction, 1774-1910 (Reel Listing)
Ancestry: NYC Births,
Author Anniversaries (www.kingkong.demon.co.uk)
Brooklyn Info
Censuses (US): 1880 (Newport, RI),1900 (Newport, RI), 1910 (Brooklyn), 1920 (Manhattan), 1920 (Newport, RI), 1930 (Manhattan)
City and Telephone Directories, Newport, RI
Copyright notices (online)
CPA Journal Online, April 1996 (www.nysscpa.org)
DDD: Censuses (Danish) 1840-1890
DDD: Danish Emigration Database
Ellis Island Records, online
Internet Genealogical Sites (AWT and Family Tree Maker)
Italian Genealogy Group: NYC Marriages
LDS: IGI (Extracted Record) 1886
Leasingnews.org (archives)
Rootsweb message board for Newport, RI
Social Security Death Index

Rudolp Beeder (1813-1879) and his wife Barbara Sophia Stiegler (1820-1917)
Norwegian-Americans; he was a master shoemaker and she kept home (Alabama)

  • Born: He was born on 6 Nov 1813 in Bergen, Norway (son of Andreas Næss Beeder and his wife Inger Kildstrøm); she was born on 23 Dec 1818 in Norway (daughter of Jørgen Christian Stielgler, a master craftsman and his wife Anne Johanna Lohmann.
  • Married 20 March 1842 in Bergen, Norway with children: Andrew, Rudolph, George, Anna Henry, Charles and two others.
  • Immigrated 1843 (they left Bergen aboard the Mercurius on September 7th and landed in New York  City)
  • He died  on 12 November 1879 and she died on 26 December 1917; they are buried in the Old Whistler Cemetery in Mobile County, Alabama

Rollof Greve Beeder was the son of a master goldsmith in Bergen and his wife Barbara Sophia was also the child of one of that city’s master craftsmen. He was one of four (possibly seven) children.  They emigrated from Bergen along with her sister Christine Stiegler.  The young couple settled first in Kirkland, NY where the older children were born and, in the early 1850’s, they later moved to Mobile County, Alabama.  Their son George may have served in the Alabama 3rd cavalry during the Civil War.  Rudolph Beeder died in 1879 but Barbara Sophia lived on until 1917.  On her last census entry (the census of 1910) is the sad entry: eight children, none living.

US censuses: 1840-1910
American Civil War Database (Historic Data Systems)
Bergen Kyrkebøker: Døypte, Viede and Begravende
Norwegian Census of 1801
Naeseth, GB: “Norwegian Immigration: I:291, 296

OLAF  MAURITZ  BERGMANN   born  May 8, 1881.
Norwegian sailships carpenter

Siblings,  GUNDER MARTIN,    Older brother, ships Captain, Washington
              OLGA  BERGMANN,    Younger sister, was an estate caretaker.
OLAF  married  TORBORGA  OLIANNA  ANDERSEN at,  Our  Saviors Norw.
          Evangelical Church in Brooklyn  New York, August 3, 1909 ,
          after arriving through Ellis Island on the S.S. Tietgen in 1907
OLIANNA  was born at Vrengen, Arendal, Norway,  November 15, 1885.
OLAF'S  father, LARS OLOF  BERGMAN was from Hudiksvall, Sweden.
OLAF'S  mother, THOMINE  GUNDERSDATTER was from Klaadeborg farm,
            at the river Nidelva, near Arendal.   Klaadeborg was formerly
            owned by King Christian's  V., family, in the 1600's.  It contained
            rich iron mines.
OLAF and OLIANNA returned to Norway in 1910.  They had seven
            children,  EINAR,  LARS,  LEIF, DAVID, ANNA,  AAGOT,& ASTRID
OLAF'S ancestors trace back to  ERICH  VESTBY, Hassela,Sweden
            in the year 1480.   His family line was Swedish military.
OLAF'S  son  EINAR, born 1911,  married  EVELYN ANN NILSEN,
            born 1917  in Brooklyn            
            They have three sons,  MAURICE OLAF,  ARNOLD,  and STEVEN.
            MAURICE  resides near New Hope Pennsylvania.
            STEVEN    resides in Garden City, New York.
            ARNOLD   resides in Brooklyn and is on the staff of the Scandin-
                            avian East Coast Museum.  
References :  Ellis Island emigration records
                   Norwegian census  of 1900
                   Archive records of Haarnosand, Sweden

Martin Albert Colberg

Norwegian-American Steam Vessel Captain, Connecticut

  • Born: 31 October 1855 (Trondheim, Sør-Trøndelag, Norway); son of Mortinius Coburg and his wife Anne Regine Christine Ekle.
  • Immigrated 1895; naturalized
  • Married c. 1880 Marie K.
  • Died: 1938

Martin Albert Mortiniusen was born in Trondheimwhere his father Mortinius Colberg (1809-) was a vognmand (that is, he rented out wagons).  The older Colberg had been married three times: first to Elen Marie Berg, secondly to Anna Regine Elke and thirdly to Bergitte Dahl with children the first two marriages.    Children of Mortinius Colberg were:

   Emilie Margrethe (Elen Berg)
   Elise Mathilde (Elen Berg)
   Elise Matilda (Elen Berg)
   Julia Mariane (Anna Elke)
Anna Maria (Anna Elke)
Jacob (Anna Elke)
Martin Albert (Anna Elke)
Anna Maria (Anna Elke)

He married c. 1880 Marie K. (born 1858, Norway-died 1950) with six children, five of whom survived childhood:

   Adolph M. (1880, Norway-1961, Connecticut)
   Peter (1882, Norway-after 1930, Mass.?)
   Charles Magnus (1886, Norway-1968, Conn.)
Berger (1890, Norway-after 1920)
Nancy M. (1897, Connecticut, USA-1955, Conn.)

According to the 1910 census, Martin Colberg immigrated in 1892 (the date of his immigration varies and he usually gives the date as 1895 which agrees with the Ellis Island records) while his wife and sons followed in 1896.  Colberg found employment as a naval pilot with the Norwich and New York Propeller Company and, by 1916, he was the captain of its principal steamer Chelsea (a freighter that sailed between Norwich, Connecticut and New York City).  Capt. Colberg died in 1938 and is buried in Norwich, Connectiuct.

“History of New London” (v. 2:p. 592)

 “Vital Records” (Trondheim)

Censuses (US):1910-1930 (Norwich, CT; Hartford, CT)

Censuses: (Norway): 1865-1875 (Trondheim, Sør-Trondelag, Norway

City Directories, Massachusetts, Ancestry.com

City Directories, New Haven (CT), Ancestry.com

City Directories, New London County and Norwich (CT), Ancestry.com

Connecticut Death Index, online

Digitalarkivet: Emigration Register, online

Ellis Island Records, online

Norwich Heritage Trust

USGenweb/CT (Norwich), online

World War I Registration Cards (online, Ancestry.com)

Viggo Beutner Drewsen
Gudrun (Løchen) Drewson
Danish-American Chemist
Norwegian-American Suffragette
New York

  • Born 13 April 1858 (Copenhagen, Denmark); son of Valdemar Drewsen (Dreusen) and his wif Pauline Sophia Beutner; siblings: Aage, Ellen, Jonas, Sigrid, Paul and Fanny
    Born 5 May 1868 (Inderøen, Nord-Trøndelag, Norway), daughter of Hermann Løchen and his wife Anne Margrethe Jenssen; siblings: Haakon, Olaug, Ragna Aagut,Inga Olaf, Anonie and Margit
  • Married in Norway; children: Pierre (1889), Antonia (1892), Margaret (1896)
  • Immigrated 1894, naturalilzed
  • He died 1930 (New York) and she died 1946 (California)

Viggo Drewsen was the son of a paper manufacturer and he was named for his paternal uncle, a Danish author whose friends included Hans Christian Andersen.  When he was a young child his family moved to Oslo where he was brought up.  He studied chemistry, received a doctorate from the university in Munich in 1881 and taught for five years at the technical school in Trondheim.  He went into his father’s field of paper manufacture and came to New York City (first to Staten Island and later to Brooklyn) where he was the chief of the technical research department of the West Virginia Pulp & Paper Company.  The family eventually settled in Larchmont in Westchester County.

Gudrun Løchen was born on the northeastern Norwegian coast and she came from a large and prosperous family; she probably met her future husband in Trondheim.  She was active as both a suffragette and a frequent lecturer on that subject.  In 1936 she published her memoirs (“Man Mindes Mangt”), recounting all the fascinating people she had known in the New York of the first three decades of the 20th century.  After her husband’s death she moved with her young grandson to California where she died.

“People in the life of Holger Drachmann” (http://www.drachmannshus.dk)

California Death Index (online)

Danish Census: 1834 (København)

Danish Emigration Database (online)

Ellis Island Records (online0

Hans Christian Andersen Center (http://www.andersen.sdu.dk): Pauline Beutner og Valdemar Drewsen

Norwegian Censuses: 1865 (Inderøy) (Kristiania); 1875 (Kristiania)

Norwegian-American Historical Association: Norwegian-American Studies

NTNU (Trondeheim), online: publications

Philadelphia Passenger Lists (online_

US Censuses: 1900 (Richmond, NY), 1910 (Brooklyn, NY), 1920 (Westchester County, NY), 1930 (Westchester County, NY)

Hans Lauritz Hansen and his wife Anna Andersdatter. (submitted by Roy Harrington)

They came to Brooklyn in 1885 and 1887. I have their history back as far as 1490 in southern Norway and their descendants to the present time. As an example, here is Hans' story.

Hans was from Strømmen according to his obituary. Strømmen is and was in his day, a suburb of the City of Arendal in Aust Adger Co., Norway. It is a small, mostly residential district a few hundred yards across, on both sides of the bridge across the Nidelva River, connecting the City to the Island of Hisøy. He lived there as a young man before he emigrated.
The Øyestad parish records say that he was born 4 May 1856 on Asdalen Farm (now Asdal Farm), Øyestad Parish, Aust-Adger, baptized 6 Jun 1856 in Øyestad Church (Vol A-14, p. 154-b-59). Asdalen Farm was a Farm about 1 1/2 miles up river from the Strømmen bridge and was the same farm on which his wife-to-be, Anna, was born. They were baptized in the same church, but he was about 9 years older than she. Asdal is about 1,000 yards across and was breaking up into residential parcels at that time. Haugerød, where Anna lived, consisted of two streets paralleling the River and each had perhaps 10 to 20 houses in it. He undoubtedly knew her. Today, parts of Asdal are still farmed, but the old farm has many residential lots and homes.
According to Emigration Records for Kristiansand Police Dist. V. 2 (1882-1886), serial # 301, H. L. Hansen, sailor, unmarried, age 29, emigrated from Arendal to New York on 14 Apr 1885 on a ship of the Anker B. Hansen Line. Year of emigration confirmed in 1900 Census, N.Y. (His brother, Peder emigrated to NY 0n 24 Nov 1886, 18 months after Hans.)
Hans settled in Brooklyn, NY and is listed in the City Directory as a carpenter in 1887/8. In 1891-2, he is listed in City Directory for Brooklyn under Lauretz Hanson, carpenter, at house, 63 Wolcott. A Laurence Hansen, cabinetmaker is also listed, living at his home, 129 Eckford. In May 1899, he used the name "Laurence" on daughter Florence's birth certificate.
He is listed in NY Census for 6 Jun 1900 under Lauritz Hansen, naturalized citizen. His wife, Anna, born Oct 1863, is 36 yrs. old, mother of 7 children, 6 living, has been married for 12 years Two Hans Hansens were naturalized as an American citizen on 24 Oct 1892. (see Record # 62 of Vol/bundle 59 of the City Court of Brooklyn) and on 27 Jul 1893 (Bundle 59, #263). Both lived on Hamilton Ave, Brooklyn.
The 1890 census for NY burned and there is no index for the NY 1910 census. I could not find him in the 1920 or the 1930 census. In about 1935, he lived with daughter Berit in Saugeties, N.Y. and later he lived with daughter Alice at 240 St. Marks Ave., Brooklyn, N.Y.

My Grandmother, Anna Karoline Andersdatter of Øyestad parish, Arendel, made this coverlet in 1888 for her trousseau while coming to America to marry Hans Lauritz Hansen of the same parish and raise a large family in Brooklyn N.Y. It is 5.5x5.5 feet, made of wool and is fully lined on the reverse and unblemished.

Her obituary read "Mrs. Anna K. Hansen was an unusually active woman and very interested in public affairs. She held over the years, many honorary positions in the Norwegian organizations and took a large part in the work of the Norwegian Children's Home (orphanage) and hospital. She was a member of the woman's organization "Norge", children's organization "Hjojdis", ladies' auxiliary with the Norwegian Hospital and orphanages children's organization." Obituary from the Nordisk Tidende, the local Norwegian newspaper, put out by the Norway Times, 481-81st. St. Brooklyn, N.Y., 8/2/1928.

Oscar Iverson
Norwegian-American Sportsman
Portage, Maine

  • Born September 1854 in Norway (possibly in the Oslo area)
  • Emigrated 1880 (St. Stephen, Charlotte, New Brunswick, Canada) and 1882 (Maine, USA); naturalized as an American citizen
  • Married c. 1878 Aagot Rustad who was born in January 1857 (possibly in Vestby, Akershus, Norway); children: Sigrid (1881 in Canada), Arthur (1881 in Maine, USA), Ragnhild (1884 in Maine, USA).
  • Died: 1940

Captain Iverson was a shipsmaster who came ashore in Canada with his young Norwegian wife.  Their oldest child was born in New Brunswick province and, in 1882, the family migrated on to Portage in Aroostook County, Maine, USA.  There he established a sporting camp (Camp Iverson) which consisted of two cabins and could accommodate 16 guests; he also had a small fishing “fleet” of four canoes and nine rowboats.  He spent the rest of his long life in this remote area of Maine, operating his camp with firmness and grace.  Captain Iverson  died in 1940 and Aagot Iverson died in 1938; they are buried in Portage, Maine with their son Arthur (died 1907) and  in the same cemetery as their daughter Sigrid (died 1952) and her husband Oren E. Decker (died 1930).

The lives of Oscar and Aagot Iverson must include a note on their granddaughter Sigrid Tompkins (the only child of their daughter Ragnhild).  Sigrid Tompkins followed her father into a career in the law and was the first woman in Maine to be made a partner in a legal firm. It is interesting to speculate what impact the influence of that Norwegian couple had in molding this girl from an isolated, small town.

Canadian Census for St. Stephen, Charlotte, New Brunswick (1881)

Colby College (Waterville, ME): student folder of Ragnhild Iverson Tompkins ‘1908n

General Catalogue 1820-1920 of Colby College (Waterville, Maine)

Norwegian Census for Vestby, Akershus (1865)

Pullen, Clarence: In Fair Aroostook. Bangor: Bangor & Aroostook Railroad Company (1902). Pp. 27-30

Transcription of the Portage Municipal Cemetery.  Michaud, Murray & Susan (transcribers); www.rootsweb.com/~mefrankl/portgcem.html

US censuses for Aroostook County, Maine: 1900 (Township 13), 1920 (Houlton), 1930 (Portage Lake)

Bendix Johansen (1859-1926) and Petrine Ulleberg (1854-1935)
Norwegian-American Millwright and Homemaker (Brooklyn, NY)

  • He was born 23 July 1859 in Fjære Parish, Aust-Agder and was the oldest child of Johan Kristian Kristianssen (a farmer Skaregrøen) and his wife Anne Baardsdatter; Bendix’s younger sisters were Anne and Maren.  Petrine was born in 1865 in Kongsberg, Buskerud and was a daughter of Martin Matisassen and his wife Petrea Pedersdatter (they later assumed the surname Ulleberg); her sisters were Matilde, Anne Marie and Lina.
  • Married in Norway, probably by 1890 when their oldest child was born.  Children: Nadoch, Marquette, Marie, Otto, Ruth and Leonard.
  • Bendix died 21 December 1926 and Petrine died 19 1935; they are buried in Green-Wood Cemetery in NY.

Bendicks Johansen was the oldest son of a landed cotter and may have been a seaman in his youth.  According to a census entry, he immigrated in 1880 so he was probably still not settled on land when he married in Norway toward the end of that decade.  Petrine was the daughter of a carpenter or builder in Ytre Sandsvær parish which now is part of Kongsberg.  She emigrated from Kristiansand (via Gothenburg) and arrived in New York City aboard the Virginia 19 October 1893; she traveled with her small son Nadoch.  He was naturalized in 1889 and described himself as a millwright in a sugar factory  The Johansens lived their married life in Brooklyn.

Halkett, Fred: The Complete European Halkett Family Tree (AWT), June 2005
Norwegian Censuses: 1865, 1900
US Censuses: 1920
Emigrant Protocol from Kristiansand (Digitalarkiv)
Ellis Island Records (online)

Michael Emil Kai
Norwegian-American Soldier and Housepainter, Massachusetts

  • Born c. 1840 in Norway (most likely in Akershus), son of Morten Peter Kai and his second wife, Kirstine Amundsdatter; known full siblings: Karoline Mathea (c. 1838) and Bernhard Julius (c. 1842); known half sibling: Juliane Marie (1830)
  • Immigrated 1864     
  • Married 4 April 1873 in Boston, Massachusetts to Inger Helena Andreassen who was born c. 1853 and immigrated from Sweden in 1868; children: Amelia Helena (1874), Matilda Christina (1878), Edwin (1882), Hjalmar (1884), and Morten (1887-1895).
  • Died 1908 in Boston.

Michael Kai arrived in Massachusetts toward the end of the Civil War but he enlisted almost immediately in the Army of the Potomac under the alias of Charles A. Kai.  He was mustered into F Company of the 32nd Massachusetts infantry and was mustered out in Washington DC the following June.  After the war he established himself in the Jamaica Plain section of Boston where he was a housepainter.  He married a fellow Scandinavian immigrant in 1878 with 6 children, 5 of whom lived to be adults.  He applied for (and received) an invalid pension from the army in 1894 and after his death in 1908, Helena Amelia was able to obtain a widow’s pension for her mother.

Ancestry.com: Civil War Pension file; Massachusetts directories; World War I Draft Registration Cards

Censuses (Norway): 1801, 1865 (Akershus)

Censuses (US): 1880, 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930.  All Massachusetts, mostly Boston

Historic Data Systems (cite: “Mass. Soldiers, Sailors and Marines in the Civil War”)

Kirkebok for Ager (DIS)

LDS/Vital Records

Massachusetts Vital Records 1841-1910 (New England Historical Genealogical Society)

John (or Hans) Martin KALBERLAHN
First Norwegian-American physician; North Carolina.

John M. Kalherlahn was born in Trondheim Amt, possibly in Zværnvær parish, in 1722.  By 1744 he had moved to Denmark where he was converted to the Moravian Church.  On June 13, 1753 he left London aboard the Irene with 30 other like-minded Danes and Germans from the Moravian congregations of Barby, Hennersdorf, Herrnhut, London and Zeyst; the ship docked in New York almost 3 months later.  He went right on to Pennsylvania and, on November 17, 1753, he was one of 15 Moravians who arrived in Wachovia (Bethabara), North Carolina—on foot.

Kalherlahn served as the young settlement’s doctor and surgeon.  In 1758 he returned briefly to Pennsylvania where, in the Moravian Church in Bethlehem on July 29th, he married Anna Catharine Antes.  The couple returned to North Carolina but the doctor died in a typhoid epidemic in 1760.  His widow was to remarry three times.

Historic Bethabara Park—historical descriptions (www.bethabarapark.org)
AWT (various)
Jordan, John N. (compiler): “Transactions of the Moravian Historical Society”, transcribed by Betty Green
Hustvedt, Lloyd: Guide to the Archives of the Norwegian-American Association (2001), p. 1433
Greipsland, Torbjørn: “The first Norwegian physician in the USA?”; NSL May 10, 1995; 115(12):1524-5
Atlases and gazateers
Censuses (Norwegian)/DIS-Norge
Tax Register (1886)

John G.  (Johan Gustave) LARSSON
Swedish-American Medical Doctor (Maine/Massachusetts)

Born 10 Feb 1878, Vermland, Sweden (son of  Lars Peter and Amanda (Olsson) Larsson)
Immigrated 1883 and naturalized 1888.
Education:  Caribou (ME) High School 1898, AB Colby College (1902), MD Long Island College Hospital
Medical School (1907).
Married 9 Aug 1906 Emma Christina Lundquist with two children (Zelma Kristina and Bryngel Gustave).
Died: 1950

Johan Gustave Larsson came to New Sweden, Maine with his parents and 2 younger siblings (Selma and Axel); a 4th child (Frank) was born in Maine.  He graduated from Caribou (ME) High School (1898), He worked in the educational system of his home in Aroostook County (ME) while attending school and, after receiving an MD degree, practiced in Massachusetts for over 28 years.

He was a member of the Boston Medical Society, the Massachusetts Medical Society, the Order of Vasa, the Scandinavian Fraternity of America, the Mercantile Library Association, Alpha Tau Omega, Alpha Kappa Kappa, the Boston Commandery Knight Templars, St. Andrews Royal Arch Chapter (Masons), and the Odd Fellows.

Who’s Who in New England (1938), p. 768
US Censuses (Aroostook County, Maine and Suffolk County, Massachusetts): 1900, 1920
Maine Marriages (online)
World War I Registration cards (online)

Henrik von Zernikow LOSS
Norwegian-American Engineer and Inventor, Pennsylvania
  • Born: 20 March or April 1861   (Kristiansand, Vest-Agder, Norway); he was a son of Jens Christian Loss and his wife Margrete Gundersen; siblings: Petter, Alfred, Hugo, Axel, Julius
  • Immigrated: 1883, never naturalized
  • Single
  • Died: 28 July 1938 (Oslo, Norway)

Jens Christian Loss was a merchant in Kristiansand whose business failure had a serious impact on many people in Kristiansand.  His son Henrik spent a year working in a machine shop in Kristiansand before becoming a graduate of Hortens Tekniske Skole (Horten Technical School) in 1878.  He held a series of jobs in Norway (including a position with the state railroad) before  coming to New York, USA .  He lived in New York for several years before moving to Philadelphia where he had the fortune to be befriended by a fellow immigrant Carl Barth.  Loss worked first at the Baldwin Locomotive Works and later at the Edge Moor Iron Works in Philadelphia.  Eventually he accepted a position with the Keystone Bridge Company in Pittsburgh (this company was owned by Andrew Carnegie) but soon returned to Philadelphia to take a position with the Pencoyd Iron Works.  In 1893 he opened a consulting office to take advantage of his pre-eminent skill in hydraulics but this enterprise was a business failure and Loss went to work as an inspector of elevators (the regulations that he worked out were to become an international standard).  Five years later he was hired by the Pressed Steel Car Company (Pittsburgh) as a consulting engineer and here he designed the first rolled steel railway car wheels in the country (1902).  His last post was with the Schoen Steel Wheel Company which was also in Pittsburgh.  Loss published several thorough articles and was a speaker at both the Engineers’ Club and the Franklin Institute.  He received The Franklin Institute Gold Medal

He spent the last years of his life in Philadelphia--making extended trips back to Europe.  It was while on one of these tours that he fell ill and died in Norway.  By terms of his will, Henrik von Zerinkow Loss left $150,000 to cover his father’s unpaid debts.  The remainder of his estate went into the von Zernikow Loss Fund, the interest of which was used for the cultural enrichment of Kristiansand.

Rygg, A.N.: Norwegians in New York, 1825-1925.  Brooklyn: The Norwegian News Company (1941).  P. 164.

Bjørk, Kenneth: A Migration of Skills.  Norwegian-American Historical Assocation, vol. XIV: p. 1

Census (Norwegian): 1865, Kristiansand

Censuses (USA):

Ellis Island Records, on line

Digitalarkivet: Emigranter over Krisitania (1871-1930)

Bjørk, Kenneth: Saga in Steel and Concrete.  Northfield, MN: Norwegian-American Historical Association (1947): p.104-115.

Engelhart C. OSTBY
Norwegian-American Jeweler, Rhode Island

Born:            1847 (Oslo, Norway)
Immigrated: 1869 (New York City)
Married (1876) Lizzie Macy Webster with 5 children
Died at sea: April 15, 1912

Engelhart Cornelius Christensen Østby was among the older children of Christian Østby (a  xxx from Rommerik) and his wife Josephine Poulsdatter.  He studied at the Royal School of Art and worked for 6 years as an apprentice in order to became a jeweler in Oslo.  In September of 1869 he set forth from Oslo and landed in New York City where he traveled north to Providence, Rhode Island.  After several years of working as a designer and engraver for another firm, he co-founded Ostby & Barton with $3000 capital.  Ostby & Barton became a successful jewelry company that, at one time, was the world’s largest producer of gold rings.  Mr. Ostby also was active in community and charitable activities in Providence.

He had married (June 7, 1875) Lizzie Macy Webster of Providence; the couple had four sons and one daughter (Harold, Erling, Ralph, Raymond and Helen) but his wife died in 1899 and so his mother, who had immigrated in 1878, undertook to raise the younger children.  In 1912 he traveled to Norway and to Europe, returning home on the Titanic with his daughter Helen.  Helen survived the collision with an iceberg but Engelhart Ostby did not; his body was found, brought home to Providence and buried at Swan Point

Encyclopedia Titanica: “Mr. Englehart Cornelius Østby”, “Helene Ragnhild Østby”
Census (Norwegian): 1865 (Christiania)
Censuses (US):  1880-1910 (Providence, RI)
“On the Road” (a series of online articles featuring places associated with Titanic passengers)
“Forget me not” (an online memorial)
Emigranter fra Oslo 1867-1930 (online emigrantprotokal)
Ancestry.com: births, marriages and deaths in Rhode Island
Ellis Island Records

PETERSON, George Conrad, Lawyer
Norwegian-American, Massachusetts

  • Born: 23 November 1880 (Kristiansand, Vest-Agder, Norway); siblings: Gerda, Peter, Thomas A. (Jr.), Caspar, Benny (Jenny?), Adolph, Valentine
  • Immigrated 20 September 1890 (Boston, Mass.)
  • Married: 28 September 1920 (Whitman, Mass.) Bessie L. Sears; children: Barbara Lee
  • Died: January 1952

Born Jørgen Pedersen, he was among the eight children of Tønnes Andreas Pedersen and his wife Bertine Jørgensdatter.  When Jørgen/George was a young boy in the mid 1880’s, Tønnes (later known as Thomas A. Peterson) emigrated to Plymouth, Massachusetts where he had family and where he established himself in his trade of shoemaker and shoe repairer.  A few years later, the rest of the family followed.  George graduated from Plymouth High School and went on to attend Amherst College for two years before he transferred to Harvard University where he earned an A.B. degree in 1904.  He then seems to have worked as a teacher before returning to school--the law school of Boston University from which he graduated in 1911.  George Pedersen settled in Plymouth, Massachusetts—in the same neighborhood where many of his family lived—where he worked as a lawyer and insurance salesman.  In his later years he became president of the Plymouth Bar Association, a director of Jordan Hospital and a member of the Legal Advisory Board of Amherst College.

Amherst College Biographical Record for the Class of 1904
Boston University (Office of Development and Alumni Relations)
Census (Norway), 1865: Kristiansand and Øvrebø parish (both in Vest-Agder)
Census (US): 1880-1930 (Plymouth, Plymouth, Mass.),
City Directories for Plymouth, Mass. 1905-1951 (online)
Emigrant Protocols, Digitalakiv
Extracted Records from Churchbooks of Kristiansand and Øvrebø (LDS)
Who’s Who in the East, 1938 (Marquis), p.1006
World War I Registration Cards (Mass. & NY), online at Ancestry.com

Oscar Reierson
Danish-Norwegian-American Soldier, Lawyer and Farmer, Virginia

  • Born: 29 October, 1836 in Copenhagen, Denmark; son of Johan Reinert Reierson (a Norwegian) and his first wife Henriette Waldt, a Dane; siblings: Johan, Christian, Charles, Henrietta and a boy who was born and died in 1851
  • Immigrated 1845 Aust-Ager to New Orleans
  • Married: Mary E. Flannagan; children: Stella (1863), Lita (1865)
  • Died: 10 May 1913 in Louisville, Kentucky

Oscar Reierson went to Texas as a small boy along with his parents, siblings, aunts, uncles and grandparents.  Along with other settlers from the coastal area of the Agders, the Reiersons were early settlers in Henderson, Texas.  Eventually Oscar was sent to Charlottesville, Virginia in order to study law but, while he was there, the Civil War broke out.  As did two of his brothers, he joined the Confederate army; Oscar Reierson enlisted in the 35th Virginia Battalion, which was also known as White’s Battalion or the Comanches.  According to a letter on file, his military career was “short, spirited and racy”.  After his short military service, Oscar Reierson returned to the law and established a practice in Charlottesville where he married a local lady.  He also was a leading farmer in Albemarle County and his experimentation with spraying fruit vine crops was noted by horticultural groups.  His latter years were saddened by the death of his daughter Stella and, leaving their child buried in her maternal grandfather’s plot in Charlottesville, the Reiersons moved in with their surviving daughter (Lita) and her husband (Poindexter Drane) in Louisville Kentucky.  Oscar Reierson died there in 1913.

Johan S. Rydstrom, Tailor
Swedish-American (Boston, Mass.)

Born 17 May 1852 (Fridlevstad, Blekinge, Sweden)
Immigrated: 1873 (from Karlskrona), naturalized 18 Oct 1880
Married 8 Jan 1876 to Johanna Charlotta Hallberg (born 26 Jun 1852, Uddevalla, Bohuslän, Sweden (she
            probably was daughter of Charles B. & Mary Hallberg of Chelsea, Mass., both Swedish
            immigrants).  The Rydstroms had 10 children: Maria Christina (1876), Carl Fredrik Hjalmar
            (1878), Johan Arthur (1879), Alvah Waldemar (1881), Alvah Waldemar [yr.] (1884), Frank
            Appleton E. (1886), Herbert (1888), Erwin Dennett Lawrence (1890), Milton )(1892), Johan
            Wendall (1895)
Died circa 1898

Johan Swen (or Swen Johan) Rydstrøm came from Fridlevstad parish in southern Sweden.  He married Johanna Charlotta Hallberg whose family was already established in Boston when Johan immigrated.  They had many children, 8 of who survived childhood.  Johan died when the youngest was only a toddler, leaving Johanna a widow with many small children.  Although their father had been a tailor, most of the boys went into the field of sales and several moved out from New England.  Johanna Rydstrom died between 1910 and 1920.

Ancestry.com: Boston Telephone Direcotry (1890)
Ancestry.com: WWI Registration Cards (1917-8)
NEHGS: Mass. Vital Records til 1910
US Census: 1870 (Boston), 1900 (Boston), 1910 (Boston, St. Louis)
Wretlind: A Swedish City Directory of Boston, 1881 (1986)

Niles Bierregaard SCHUBARTH (circa 1818-1889)
Norwegian-American architect/designer/engineer; Rhode Island

  • Born: circa 1818 in Norway (possibly in Akershus), son of Levor-Christian Schubarth of Kongsberg, BU and his wife Else Kirstine Biørnegaard.
  • Immigrated 1840 (the Emilie)
  • Married by 1849 Elizabeth (who was born in Rhode Island) with children: Lawrence (c. 1849), Natalia L.D (1853), Cornwell T. (1856), Minnie J. (1858) and George L. (1865).
  • Died 1889.

Born Nils Biørnegaard Schubarth, his name has been Americanized.  He left Drammen (May 18, 1840) for New York (via Göteborg) and arrived in August.  His was the first name on the ship’s passenger manifest where he is described as being a clerk.  Originally he found employment working on renovations to the Erie Canal but by 1844 he was working as a civil engineer in Providence, RI as partner to Stephen Atwater.  In 1849 he joined in a partnership with William S. Haines and, although that association ended in 1853, Schubarth continued to work all the rest of his life as a civil engineer, an architect and a landscape designer.  He worked on the designs of many cemeteries in the Providence area (including Swan Point and Oak Grove) and he was the architect of the Jefferson Street Baptist Church in Providence (now on the National Register).

Aker Ting Book
Clausen, C.A. “An Immigrant Sipload of 1840” (Norwegian-American Historical Assn. Vol XIV: Page 54
Hagerup, Peter: the Family Hagerup (//
Naeseth, Garhard: Norwegian Immigrants (Madison, WI, 1993), Page 97
National Register of Historic Places
Norwegian Census: 1801 (Kongsberg, Buskurud)
Rhode Island Births
Rhode Island Deaths
Rhode Island Historical Society (on William S. Haines)
Rhode Island Preservation and Heritage Commission
RI Cemetery Locations (//members.triod.com/~debyns)
Swan Point Cemetery
The Cultural Landscape Foundation (//tclf.org/pioneers)
US Censuses: 1850, 1860, 1880, 1900 (Providence, Rhode Island)

Alexander F. THORDEMAN
Swedish immigrant in Boston, Massachusetts.  He was an ironworker/moulder and a porter in Chelsea, Massachusetts although he had originally intended to go to sea as his father had (when in Sweden, he worked as a first mate).  He was naturalized on November 29, 1888 in the U.S. District Court of Boston (no. 152-81).
  • Born on July 28, 1854 in Nyköbing to Capt. Anders Ferdinand Thordeman and his wife Maria Helena Dahl; he was baptized as Ferdinand Alexander.
  • Emigrated in 1869.
  • Married 1881 to Anna Elvira Hyacinta Sjöstrand with four children, all born in the Boston area: Francis Ferdinand (later known as Frank), Ida Helena Constantia (later known as Helen), Malvina H. and Helga Elvira.  Anna E. Thordeman also was a Swedish immigrant: she was daughter of Frans Sjöstrand (a brewer in Gränna) and his wife Carolina Linblad) and she immigated in 1881.
  • Died 1905 in Chelsea, Massachusetts.

Wretlind, E (transl & ed. N.W. Olsson): “Swedish City Directory of Boston”  (1886)
Mass. Vital Records
US Censuses: 1900 (Chelsea, Boston, Cambridge); 1920 (Everett); 1930 (Cambridge)
World War I Registration cards (online)
Telephone Books (1890

THORESEN, Søren Anton              Manhattan (B) and Staten Island (H), New York           
Born: 1878, Brunlanes, Vestfold, Norway
          Son of Capt. Søren Thoresen and his wife Anne Sørensen Jomfruland
Education: Mechanical Trade School (Porsgrund, Norway)
                  Technical Institute (Mittweida, German)
Immigrated: Arrived at Ellis Island on 18 May 1903 (Hellig Olav)
Married:  Bessie A. Pikley (9 Sept 1909 in Manhattan, NY)
                Children—James, Sylvia, Adele and Norma
Died: 1952

SA Thoresen’s first job in the US was in Minneapolis but he soon returned to the east where Westinghouse employed him in Pittsburgh.  In 1905 William Barclay Parsons in New York City hired him as a draftsman.  By 1940, when he took a position with Parsons, Brinckerhoff and Douglas (consulting engineers in New York City) he had gained a professional reputation as a tunnel engineer.  His best known work was the ventilation system installed in the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel (opened in 1933) although he contributed significantly to the Scheldt River Tunnels in Belgium.  Publications include articles in Canadian Engineering, Civil Engineering, Engineering (London), Engineering News-Record and Iron Age.

Bjork, “Saga in Steel & Concrete” (Norwegian-American Historical Assn.
Census (Norwegian): 1900
Ellis Island records
Emigrant Protocol, Larvik, Norway
Interviews and family photographs

Scandinavian East Coast Museum
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