Ranae's Swedish-Chicago Heritage

In the early 20th century my paternal grandparents, Rikard Severin Källman (1887-1968) and Lydia Abrahamson (1890-1978) immigrated from Sweden, settling in Chicago. I am exploring my Swedish ancestors immigrant journey to "Amerika" and life in Swedish Chicago. I am searching for cousins everywhere to share family stories, pictures, memories and new discoveries about our Swedish heritage and our family today.

~ This blog, like my family tree, is always a work in process. Please stop back now and again! ~


DNA PROVES I actually do have cousins

I initially did my DNA with 23 and me. The results were confusing to me and quite honestly not much help with my genealogy. I uploaded the results to My Heritage. Sort of throwing a wider net?
Where are all MY cousins?

 My genealogy ancestry already was documented back to the late 1600's on most lines. Although I worked hard at it, if I am honest it is more due to my great luck in being half Norwegian and half Swedish.  I have to say "Thank you" to the wonderful parish and national records of Norway and Sweden.  I really did not feel DNA would contribute to finding additional ancestry. But why did I not have any cousin matches? Well, I did have quite a few but they were all possible 4th, 5th and more remote "cousins".
 My Mexican son in law also tested and immediately had first cousin and oodles of second cousin matches. What's the deal? Goofy/prejudiced/biased? thoughts went through my head. Mexicans have larger families than Scandinavians? Maybe. My son in laws mother did have 13 siblings. Scandinavians are too cheap to pony up a few bucks to check their DNA? Maybe. I can be pretty tight with a buck myself. For sure.

Being a passionate family historian I already had hunted down and harassed most of my first and second cousins into revealing themselves but yesterday.....finally.....DNA came through with some hits! I now have four matches! Three of those folks names I already had on my family tree but it was cool to see scientific "proof" that we were truly related.  Descended from my Norwegian great great grandfather Gunder Andreas Nielsen was a third cousin. Descended from my Swedish great grandfather Robert Albin Abrahamsson was a first cousin once removed and also a second cousin once removed. Descended from my Swedish great grandfather Karl Teodor Andersson Källman was another second cousin.

Maybe I have changed my mind about DNA research.
Ummmmm, maybe.

your cousin also?
check out your Scandinavian DNA,

* If you care to see my DNA breakdown and my previous musings about the results; 
you can click on "DNA in Genealogy" in the search box to the right of this blog post.


Occupation Investigation - Gustaf Gustafsson 1795-1812, Bergsman

South Central Sweden has the largest concentration of base metal and iron ores in Northern Europe. There are mines in existence today that were established in the early 1700's and mining itself took place in Sweden from the earliest times. Mining was a very common occupation for the average man in the area of Sweden my paternal grandfather came from.

Gustaf Gustafsson, my 3X great grandfather, was born in 1795 in Berg, Lerbäck, Örebro, Sweden. Swedish Household Examinations and the record of his death refer to him as a "bergsman" or miner.
A physically demanding and dangerous job no doubt. In addition, in his day there were no worker safety or child labor laws. The 5 day, 8 hour work week was over one hundred years away.  It is entirely possible that Gustaf worked the mines from the young age of eight or nine, six days a week for up to twelve hours a day.

late 19th century miners
Gustaf was twenty six when he died. Twenty Six. Young even for the early 19th century. Look at this  record.  Lerbäck, Örebro, Sweden deaths from January to July 1812. Gustaf's death is underlined in red and he is only one of seven miners who died in this parish in just half a year!  Every month another miner died. It seems very possible, even probable that work in the mines was the contributing factor or direct cause of death for many who spent their life underground.

Ancestry.com: Swedish Church Records 1500-1941
County: Örebro; Parish: Lerbäck; Volume: F:1;
Record Type: Död (Deaths); Year Range: 1801 - 1861;
Roll/Fiche: MN-1128; 

my great great great grandfather
Gustaf Gustafsson
b: 9 December 1785 Berg, Lerbäck, Örebro, Sweden
d: 23 March 1812  Lerbäck, Örebro, Sweden

Gustaf Gustafsson→Jan Gustaf Gustafsson Bergvall→Clara Sofia Bergvall→
Richard Severin Källman→Melvin Carl Kallman→ME!


Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Where were my ancestors in 1900?

Randy Seaver has issued the latest challenge for Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: Where were your ancestors in 1900?

1900, is not so far away? NONE of my ancestors had yet emigrated to the U.S. to settle in the Swedish and Norwegian neighborhoods of early 20th century Chicago.

According to my family tree;

*my paternal grandparents 
Rikard Severin Källman 1887-1968,  he, his father and five siblings had just moved to  Spångsholm, Veta, Östergötland, Sweden to work in the factories there. 
Lydia Abrahamson 1890-1978 was living on the family farm Stommen in Östra Frölunda, Älvsborg, Sweden with her parents and seven siblings.

*my maternal grandparents
Paul Skoglund Sevaldsen 1896-1971  was living in Fredrikshald, Østfold, Norway with his parents and two siblings.
Dagmar Gundersen 1900-1991 was born in June of that year  and lived on the farm, which had been in the family since the mid 1600's, Øvald in Eidanger, Telemark, Norway with her grandfather, an uncle, an aunt, her parents and an older sister.

*my paternal great grandparents
Karl Teodor Andersson Källman 1853-1910 was a widowed factory worker living in Spångsholm, Veta, Östergötland, Sweden with his five children
Klara Sofia Bergvall 1854-1898: had died two years previously of Tuberculosis
Robert Albin Abrahamson 1860-1923 was a gentleman farmer living on the farm Stommen in Östra Frölunda, Älvsborg, Sweden with his wife, mother and eight children.
Anna Karolina Karlsdotter 1859-1925 lived on Stommen in Östra Frölunda, Älvsborg, Sweden with her mother-in-law, husband and eight children.

*my maternal great grandparents
Anders Sevaldsen 1863-1915? was a missionary for the Seventh Day Adventist Church living with his wife and two children in Fredrikshald, Østfold, Norway
Anne Marie Halversdatter Høyset 1871-1909 was a missionary wife with her husband and two young children in Fredrikshald, Østfold, Norway.
Nils Gundersen Øvald 1875-1961 was a sailor living on the family farm Øvald with his father, sister, brother, wife and two children
Gunhild Marie Olsdatter 1875-1959 lived with her father-in-law, brother and sister-in -law, husband and two children on the farm Øvald in Eidanger Telemark, Norway

*my paternal great great grandparents
Anna Lisa Pehrsdotter 1817-1904 was a widow living on the farm Knutstorp in Lerbäk, Örebro, Sweden with her son, daughter-in-law and seven grandchildren
Charlotta Majholm Abrahamson 1826-1904 was a widow living with her son, daughter-in-law and eight grandchildren on the farm Stommen in Östra Frölunda, Älvsborg, Sweden.
Sara-Brita Larsdotter 1821-1906 was a widow living on the farm Skäremo in Håcksvik, Älvsborg, Sweden with her daughter, son-in-law and six grandchildren.

*my maternal great great grandparents
Sevald Andersen Stubskin 1818-1900 had been ill for some time and died in 1900 on the farm Stubskin where he lived with his son, daughter-in-law, four grandchildren and three tenant workers.
Gunder Andreas Nilsen 1843-1930 was a tenant farmer living on the farm Øvald in Eidanger, Telemark Norway with a daughter, son, another son and his wife and two grandchildren.
Ole Helliksen 1842-1904 was a tenant farmer and ice harvester living on the farm Røra in Eidanger, Telemark, Norway with his wife, unmarried daughter, three unmarried sons, married son, daughter-in-law and two grandchildren.
Hanna Matea Gunuldsdatter 1848-1902 was a housewife living with her husband Ole and their extended family

believe it or not 
*my maternal great great great grandmother
Maren Kirstine Andersdatter 1826-1912 was living with her unmarried son and three other tenants on the farm Lillegaarden in Eidanger, Telemark, Norway

I had nineteen ancestors alive in 1900. Eight lived in Sweden and eleven in Norway. It would be an additional six years before my first ancestor ventured to the United States.

Thank you Randy, that was fun and also showed me some areas I need to research.


Swedish Military Conscription

Between 1901 and 2010 Sweden had mandatory military service for all young men.
My great uncle Seth Abrahamson (1892-1964), the younger brother of my grandmother Lydia, was conscripted to serve in the Swedish military.

My great Uncle Anders (Andrew) Olof Söderstrom (1888-1960), the husband of my great aunt Ruth, also served in the Swedish military before his emigration to the United States in 1910.

@1907 Anders Olof Söderstrom in uniform

A sad commentary on the unrest in the world at this time:
 Mainly because of the escalating unrest in the Baltic, at the beginning of this year (January 1 2018) Sweden reintroduced mandatory military conscription. 4000 young people born in 1999 were picked from a pool of about 13,000 men and women. The Swedish Armed forces is reportedly planning for 4,000 troops called this year and 4,000 called next year for basic training. This is about 4% of those born in 1999 (eligible for the 2018 draft) and 4% of those born in 2000 (eligible for the draft in 2019). 
And yes, this time both men and women will be called to serve equally.

A very interesting, informative piece about military fears in Sweden today can be found in the Atlantic article "Why Sweden Brought Back the Draft" click → HERE

Matthew 24:6 (King James Version)
"And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled:
for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet."