Gunnar Erikson Gunhus and Thora Guulsdatter Glesne (gg-grandparents on my father’s side) – Gunnar was born to Erik Asleson Bottolvgard and Guri Klementdatter Rud in 1802 on the Bottolvgard farm in Krodsherad, Buskerud, Norway. Guri was born in 1805 to Guul Olsen and Margaret Trulsdatter on the Glesne farm in Krodsherad. In 1841 Gunnar dies leaving Thora with six children. In 1845 Thora marries Gunnar’s older brother Erick. They have two more children. In 1849 the family immigrates to the United States. Thora dies in 1850 while in Wisconsin. Gunnar’s and Thora’s oldest son Erick is my great-grandfather. The picture shows the location of the Bottolvsgard farm.
John and Abigal (Tuttle) Meader (9th great-grandparents on my mother’s side) – These are the first of my ancestors to immigrate to the United States and marry in the United States. John was born in 1625 in Bere Regis, Dorset, England. Abigal was born in St. Albans, Herfortshire, England in 1628. Abigal came over with her parents in 1835 and John came over sometime between 1648 and 1650. They were married in Dover, New Hampshire in 1653 and took up residence in Oyster Bay, New Hampshire. John died in 1704 and Abigal died in 1674. In 1694 their home (garrison) along with several others were burned to the ground in an Indian raid. Their son John is my 8th great-grandparent.
Astrid Aslesdatter Lien (g-grandmother on my father’s side)
– Astrid was born February 16, 1845 on the Lien farm in Torpo area of the Al kommune
in the province of Buskerud, Norway
to Asle Erikson Lien and Guri Herbrandsdatter Jegleim. She immigrated to the United States with her mother and brothers and sisters in 1861. After first venturing to Nicollet County, Minnesota where there was an Indian uprising in 1862 they escaped to Goodhue County
. Here she found work as a maid/nanny for Erik Gunderson Gunhus of Rice County. After several years they married and had nine children. She died April 17, 1930 of stomach cancer. Her daughter Etta is my grandmother. The picture is a picture of Astrid.
Nub Fredrickson Ringerud (g-grandfather on my mother’s side)
– Nub was born on the Ringerud farm in the Aadalan region
of the Kommune of Ringerike in Buskerud
, Norway on November 14, 1847 to Fredrick Ellingson Ringerud and Birit Nubsdatter. On February 2, 1877 he married Bertha Larsdatter Haselhaugen. In April of 1879 they arrived in the United States with their son Fredrick. They immediately went to Freeman Township, Freeborn County, Minnesota
where his parents and two sisters were living. He assumed control of the farm. In December 1909 while returning from town the wagon he was riding in was struck by a train and he was killed. His son Bernt (Ben) is my grandfather. The picture is part of the article about his death.
Sjur Markusson Dyrdal (g-grandfather on my father’s side)
– Sjur was born October 6, 1827 on the Dyrdal farm in the kommune of Hoyanger
(then Lavik), in the province of Sogn og Fjordane in Norway to Markus Anderson Dyrdal and Ingeborg Oldsdatter Brekke. He and his brother (who like Sjur's future father-in-law had leprosy) immigrated to the United States in 1854. After a year in Wisconsin they came to Kenyon Township, Goodhue County, Minnesota
to settle. On July 30, 1860 Sjur married Ingeborg Kristensdatter Nistad. They had ten children. Sjur kept Markusson as his last name but Americanized Sjur to Sever (Sivert, Syvert). He died in 1896. His last son was my grandfather. The picture is of his tombstone.
Lars Gudbrandson Haselhaugen (gg-grandfather on my mother’s side)
– Lars was born February 7, 1821 in the Ådalen region of the Ringerike
kommune of the province of Buskerud
, Norway to Gudbrand Larson Bergsunlia and Olia Bendixdatter of Honefoss. He married Ragnhild Gudbrandsdatter Finneplassen in 1846. They had 10 children. In 1877 Lars and his family immigrated to the United States. They went to Barron County, Wisconsin
where several of their children were already living. He died April 7, 1892 after being gored by a bull on his farm. His daughter Bertha is my great grandmother. The picture is of the S.S. Celtic, the ship which Lars’s family traveled on to the United States in 1877.
Asle Erickson Lien (gg-grandfather on my father’s side)
– Asle was born April 6, 1823 on the Lien farm in Torpo in the Ål kommune
, Norway. He married Guri Herbrandsdatter Jegleim in 1844. Together they had six children. He was in the timber business. His wife and their children migrated to the United States in 1861. Asle stayed behind to sell the farm/timber business. For reasons he didn’t make it over to the United States until 1881. When he did arrive in Minnesota he found that there was no land to be had. He went and lived with his son Erick in North Dakota for awhile and eventually he moved to Towner County, North Dakota
where he homesteaded over 400 acres of land. About 1905 his daughters convinced him to rent his land and come and live with them in Minnesota. He died February 2, 1911 in Holden Township, Goodhue County, Minnesota. His oldest daughter is my great grandmother. The picture is of his tombstone.
Abner Fish (gggg-grandfather on my mother’s side)
– Abner Fish was born January 1, 1795 in Northampton County, Pennsylvania
to Asa and Polly Fish. He married Margaret Kettle in 1825. They had seven children. Approximately 1853 Abner and his family and their spouses and children migrated to Dallas County, Iowa
. Margaret died in 1866 and Abner remarried in 1868 to Amelia Gettis. For the last twenty years of his life he lived with his son Peter. He died in Chicago on December 6, 1891. He is buried along with his first wife in the Xenia cemetery
in Dallas Country. His daughter Beulah is my great-great-great grandmother. The picture is of his tombstone.
Erik Gunderson Gunhus (g-grandfather on my father’s side)
– Erik was born on the Redalen
farm in the parrish (Kommune) of Krodsherad
in the province of Buskerud
in Norway on March 3, 1828 to Gunnar Erikson Redalen and Thore Guulsdatter Glesne. He immigrated to the United States in 1849 with his mother, step-father, plus all his siblings. When he left Norway he was living and working at the Gunhus farm which is in the parrish of Modum in Buskerud. The family first traveled to Wisconsin but after about five years he and three other Norwegians went to Minnesota and became the first to homestead Rice County
. His first wife was Hellena Hansdatter Glomme. She had five chidren by Erik. She died in 1860. His second wife was Astrid Aslesdatter Lien. She and Erik had nine children. He died November 6,1906. The picture is of Erik.
John S. and Mary B.C. Young (ggg-grandparents on my mother’s side)
– Click on this link
and it will take you to a webpage about them and their families.
Since many of my ancestors are Norwegians I think I should explain about their naming practices. When a child is born they receive a given name. My great grandfather, for example, was given the name Sjur. The child was also named after the father. If it was a boy you would add a –son to the given name of the child’s father and if it was a daughter you would add –datter to the father’s name. My great grandfather’s father’s name was Marcus, so my great grandfather’s name was Sjur Markusson. Finally a third name would be used. Since most Norwegians were farmers, the name of the farm they lived or worked at would be added to their first two names. My great grandfather was born and raised on the Dyrdal farm. His name then was Sjur Markusson Dyrdal. It is kind of like an address; Sjur the son of Markus of the Dyrdal farm. Click this link
for a more in depth article on this.
Markus Anderson Dyrdal (gg-grandfather on my father’s side)
– Markus was born to Anders and Kari Markuson Dyrdal in February 1790 on the Dyrdal farm of the Lavik kommune (now Hoyanger) of the Sogn og Fjordane
Province of Norway. On June 14,1812 he married for a second time to Ingeborg Oldsdatter Brekke. His first marriage had been to Aagot Gregoriusdatter Merket. From his first marriage he had one daughter. From his second marriage he had ten children. There are two Dyrdal farms; inner (indre) and outer (ytre). He lived and farmed on the Inner Dyrdal farm. The farm was located about five hundred feet above sea level. He died February 2,1855. His son Sjur is my great grandfather. In the picture you can find the location of the Dyrdal farm.
John Edward Meader (gg-grandfather on my mother’s side)
– He was born in Henry County, Ohio
on December 16, 1848 to Samuel and Sarah Meader. He married Emma Ann Young in Polk County, Iowa in 1869. They had five children. Two years after their marriage they moved to the county of Republic in Kansas
but returned a few years later due to a massive locust/grasshopper plague
in 1874. In 1880 they were back living in Kansas. John Edward and his wife eventually ended up in Dent, Otter Tail, Minnesota
where they both died and are buried. He died July 13, 1919. His second son, Orren Ellis, is my great-grandfather.
Christen Bendikson Nisesstad (gg-grandfather on my father’s side)
– Like many Norwegians Christen after arriving in the United States Americanized his last name. He chose to change Bendikson to Benson. He was born on the Nisesstad (Nistad) farm on the Arnafjord
in the kommune of Vik, the province of Sogn og Fjorane in Norway on December 12, 1815. He married Brita Kristensdatter Nese in 1843 and had four children. The family immigrated to the United States in 1856. He is one of approximately 180 Norwegian immigrants that were lepers
. The family spent four years in Wisconsin before homesteading in Kenyon Township in Goodhue County, Minnesota. He died on June 26, 1877. His first child, Ingeborg, was my great-grandmother. The picture is of Christen's tombstone which is located in the old Hauge Cemetery outside of Kenyon in Goodhue County.
Bertha Fredrickson (g-grandmother on my mother’s side)
– Bertha (known to the family as little grandma) was born Bertha Larsdatter Haselhaugen on December 24, 1855 in Aadalen, Buskerud, Norway. The story is that her father had been placed in jail that day for attending a workers meeting and had missed her birth because of this. She married Nub Fredrickson on February 25, 1877. They arrived in the United States in 1879 with one child, Fredrick, where they then traveled to Freeman Township, Freeborn County, Minnesota where Nub’s parents were living. Her parents were living in Barron County, Wisconsin at that time also. She had fifteen children. In 1909 her husband was killed in a train accident. She received a $1500 settlement from the railroad. Supposedly she spent the money or at least part of it on false teeth and a trip to visit her family in Wisconsin. She died April 20, 1954 in Albert-Lea, Minnesota. The pictures shows Bertha with several of her children and the house where she raised her fifteen children. One of her sons was my grandfather.
Guri Lien (gg-grandmother on my father’s side)
- Guri was born in September 1824 in the Buskerud province of Norway in a region known as Hallingdal
. She married Asle Erikson Lien in 1844. They had five daughters and one son. In 1861 she immigrated to the United States with her children. There are somewhat conflicting stories on why her husband didn’t accompany the family which I won’t get into now. When she first arrived in Minnesota she traveled to Nicollet County where there was a fairly large population on Hallingdal Norwegians. But an Indian uprising
forced many of the settlers to head back to the East. Guri and her family ended up in Goodhue County. Here they stayed. All five of Guri’s daughters married farmers from the area. She traveled back to Norway in 1875 to settle up (divorce?) with Asle and get her share of their farm. Sometime between returning and 1880 she went with her son Erick to homestead land in North Dakota. After returning to Minnesota she spent the rest of her life living with her daughters. She died in 1901. The picture is Guri's tombstone which is located in the Gol cemetery in Kenyon, Minnesota. Her first daughter was my great grandmother.
I have been hashing over in my head the best way to continue. I believe that writing about the different ancestors, both individuals and married couples, might be the best and most interesting way to proceed.Lorenzo Dow Weinhart (gg-grandfather on my mother's side)
– Lorenzo has the distinction as being my longest living ancestor. He lived to be one hundred four. He was born in Dallas County, Iowa on May 12, 1855 to Joseph and Beulah Weinhart. Joseph died of pneumonia when Lorenzo was only five. Beulah had a total of four husbands and outlived all of them. He had three brothers and a step-brother and step-sister. Charles, his oldest brother was killed in an Indian raid
while serving in the U.S. Cavalry in 1871. One of Lorenzo’s earliest memories is providing fresh water from his step-father’s well to a troop of Union Soldiers. In 1880 he married Florence Archer from Adair County. They had three daughters. According to family legend she left him for a circus worker. Lorenzo married his second wife, Matilda Gordon, in 1890. They had four daughters. After spending time in Des Moines and Polk City, Lorenzo and Matilda ended up in Ankeny where he established a Poultry, Eggs, and Cream business. He was elected mayor of Ankeny
twice (1910 and 1920). He eventually moved out to California to live with his daughter. When he reached the age of one hundred he was invited to appear on the Art Linkletter Radio Show. He died in Huntington Park, Los Angeles County, California on October 22, 1959. His first daughter Elsie was my great grandmother.
I am three-fourths Norwegian. All my ancestors on my father’s side are Norwegian and all the ancestors on my mother’s father’s side are Norwegian. Norway is divided into nineteen provinces. All my Norwegian ancestors are from two of these provinces; Buskerud and Sogn og Fjordane
. The non-Norwegian ancestors on my mother’s mother’s side are English (Dorset
), Scottish (up by Aberdeen
), German (the Baden-Black Forest region
), Welsh (I am still debating the genealogy evidence for this but my grandmother did claim that she had Welsh blood in her), and a tiny bit Irish.
My interest in genealogy started about five years ago. I received a gift certificate to a computer store. I decided it would be used for software but I had no idea what kind of software. I ended up getting a genealogy program. I installed it on my computer but within a week it crashed. Several months later I was at a computer conference for educators and to my astonishment I won a computer. When I got home I installed my genealogy program on it and it worked fine. Thus began my adventures into my families history/genealogy.