Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Swedish Media on US elections

There is a lot of the USA presidental election in Swedish media these Days .The whole weekend has been full of programs and debates . Swedens public services channel TV 1.has their program "Godmorgon Sverige"(the swedish eqvivalent of "Godmorning America") producing and sending the program (with its presenters and staff) from Washington DC november 3-5th !TV4 the biggest private television channel does the same with their version of morning TV too !

The Local a webbased nespaper in english about Sweden also writes that "US election Fever hits sweden". With so mutch media coverage and the fact that US politics affects Sweden to maybe we swedes should be able to vote in the US Presidental election too? ;)

Swedish emigrant Institute gets a little money, but closes its research department until the end of the year and still faces a very uncertain future

Hello again all friends of Swedish genealogy. I have to apologize for not writing for a while. but I did not think I had much to write about.

A small Happy not it sthat the Swedish Emigrant Institute has recieved 2 donations of money.
It recieved 1.6 miljon swedish kronor (around 205 000 dollar) from the The Bank of Sweden Tercentenary Foundation to be able to complete the Emigrant Database EMIBAS. The database contains 1 million Emigrants from sweden to other countries taken from church records. The present database is to old it is impossible to add new information and it is also impossible to complete the system. Attemps to do that before have been unsuccesful since when the money attatched to it has run out the job has been left halfdone. I really hope it will be better this time.

The Swedish-American of the Year Barbro Osher has decided to donate 100 000 dollar (around 798 000 swedish kronor) to the Institute "It will be used to try to reconstruct the Institutes activities" says Lars Hanson (the present head of the Institute)according to an interview in the local newspaper Smålandsposten.

As I have written on the blog before there have been a lot of turbulence around the Swedish Emigrant Institute this year. There is lack of money, the Local governement and the county governement wants to merge the Institute with the local museum and a local archive but the Swedish Emigrant Institute have refused and so the local governement and county has cut all their funding as well as resigned from the Swedish Emigrant Institutes board of directors.

There have also been discussions of renting or moving parts of the exibitions to other places.
For now the battle ax seems to be buried temporarely. But the new donations hardly helps the Institutes all economical problems .I think they will have to cooperate with someone to be able to function in the long run.
The Swedish Emigrant Istitute has also recently closed its research deparment for new enquieries for the rest of the year.
One reason is to be able to answer the back log of all questions that has been send in by e-mailor letter .another reason is the uncertain futute. hopefully the research department can open again next year but it is far from sure.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Swedish Emigrant Institute refuse merger !!

On Friday sept 19 the Swedish Emigrant Institute's board in a board meeting refused the municipalitys of Växjös offer that the Institute should merge with the county museum Smålands Museum and The Kronobergs archive.

The Merger would have created a common board for all 3 institutions. The refusal of the merger will mean that the Swedish emigrant Institute will lose all money from the Municipaliy of växjö as well as from the county of Kronoberg wich in total stands for around 40 % of the yearly budget.

As I have written before The Swedish Emigrant Institute is an archive and museum over the swedish Imigration to other parts of the world it has extensive collections of letters microfilms and interviews.
However its economy is in bad shape and that and the turbulence in its leadership in later years is one of the reasons the politicans in Växjö wants to merge it with the county museum
Smålands museum but the Emigrant Institute is afraid of loosing its independence.

With an economy already in bad shape this will certainly not make the economic situation better.
There is a risc that the exibitions and the research service to visitors and family researchers may have to close down in Växjö (or the exibitons rented out or moved) several alternatives are discussed. Cooperation with The University of Växjö or some other university or istitution , seaking money from american foundations or for example renting out the exibitions ,moving the exibitions and material to some other place in Sweden (Kalmar and Gothenburg has been mentioned as possible alternatives ) but nothing is clear yet.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Emigration History Conference in Mellerud Aug15-16

On Aug 15-16 a Emigration History Conference took place in Mellerud in the provinc e of Dalsland. I did not have the possiblility to attend .but here comes a report from one of the participants genealogist and editor of the Swedish American Genealogist
Elisabeth Thorsell.

The Mellerud Conference 2008

In the middle of August a group of dedicated emigration researchers assembled in Mellerud in Dalsland, Sweden, for a couple of conference days. Among the group members a number of Americans were also seen.

Some thirty participants spent all day Friday on a bus tour, which took us to the fragrant herb garden i Dals Rostock, where we could also listen to a key fiddle player and enjoy the museum.

From there we went to Lästvik manor in Steneby parish, where the painted tapestries from the 1800s, showing various castles, in the dining hall were a most interesting sight. Here Elisabeth Thorsell spoke about Salt Lake City and
The Swenson Center, places that then seemed like they were on another planet. Next the bus went to a nice inn, where we after lunch listened to Ted Rosvall and Anna-Lena Hultman explaining all about the Swedish CD databases.

Dalsland is not famous for its wide highways, so on the way back to Mellerud, we travelled small back¬roads over the Kroppefjäll, but did not encounter any moose.
Afterwards Lilly Setterdahl from Moline, IL, lectured on Dalsland people that she and her late husband Lennart had researched in the U.S.

Saturday was open to the public and held in the Kulturbruket på Dal, a local cultural institution, with a full day of lectures, mostly in Swedish. We could listen to lectures on the Swedish American Line, on the soldiers and the allottment system, on Genline, on hidden sources for emigrant research, on female emigrants, on the coming EmiWeb, and on the Vasa Order of America. A popular session was presented by Owe Clapson on “Olle i Skratthult” with old songs and gags in the bondkomik tradition.

The lectures attracted a large crowd and the organizers could be very pleased at the end of the day, as the conference seemed to be a big success.
The day was ended with a smörgåsbord dinner at the “Värdshuset på Dal”, where we all enjoyed the beautiful landscape and the sight of the sun, sinking into Lake Ånimmen.
There was already some talk about having another conference in a year or two, and it may be well worth the travel to Dalsland.

Elisabeth Thorsell"

Thanks to Elisabeth we have this intresting report and beatiful pictures from the conference. Elisabeth has her own website

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Swedish Family Research Fair in Aurora, Colorado oct 4th

On Oct 4th the Swedish Genealogy Society of Colorado will hold A Swedish Family research Fair at the community college of Aurora near Denver Colorado. the fair will provide private research assistance Sessions among the exibitors will be Genline. The Old Mill Museum of Lindsborg Kansas
As well as lectures about How to find ones swedish roots and about Swedish Military research. More information can be found on the Fairs webpage.
the cost for attending will be 25 dollars if you register before sept 19 and after that 30 dollar.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Genealogy Days in Malmö Day 2 part 2

Peter Wallenskog former C E O of Genline
spoke of the companys goal to provide still more swedish churchrecords online. As well as the companys new websites familjeband.se and bygdeband.se. Familjeband (family ties) is a webased site were it should be possible to put up ones family tree online. it seems intresting hovever it is still in BETA face. they seam to have problems with importing gedcom files.
and I do nnot hink the site really will will take of until they have solved that problem.
Bygdeband (ties to places). Is a similar website but aimed at local historical societies so they will be able to but up their materials about different
locations for example photos and descriptions. It should then be possible to tie persons from Familjeband.se to places in Bygdeband.se I got an interview with Peter Wallenskog this year too wich I will use in a later podcast episode.

The most far away participants I could find was
Lorna Nelson and Lenora Lynam from the Mc Pherson County Old Mill Museum in Lindsborg
Kansas. Linsborg was founded by swedes in the late 1860-ties and still a great part of the population has their ancestors in Sweden.
it seems like the Old Mill museum has some cooperation with Genline since they were
standing in the Genline conference booth.
it was very nice speaking to them and I also
got an interview with Lorna.

A popular feature at the Genealogy Days was
"Släktsök"(Search your family) A place in the exibition hall with a lot of computers. there any visitor to the conference could search their ancestors or relatives in genealogy databases CD-Roms or sites with scnanned images online for free (and even get a little help fom experienced genealogists). All
to get a little taste if Family History was something for them ;)

As a whole thew Genealogy Days was very worth visiting. The entrance fee for visitors was relatively modest 40 swedish kronor for each Day
( a little over 6 american dollar).so you cold visit both conference day for about 12-13 dollar no preregistration was needed for visitors (only for exibitors). Around 3000 people attended and there were around 110 exibitors.
The Swedish Federation of Genealogical societies
also elected a new chairman Barbro Stålheim who succeded Ted Rosvall
Next years genealogy Days will be in the city of Falköping in the province of Västergötland

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Genealogy Days in Malmö Day 2 part 1

The second Day of the Genealogy Days provided many intresting lectures.
Since the theme of the conference was the
Treaty of Roskilde in 1658 when the provinces of Skåne Halland and Blekinge became swedish (they had belonged to Denmark before that) and how that and following events impacted the people of the provinces as well as Denmark and Sweden.

Many of the lectures of the conference was on this theme. I attended one about "The terrible Swedes" given by Charlotte S H Jensen (in the middle of the picture to the left).Despite this fact she and several other friendly Danes had come as representatives of Samenslutningen af Slaegthistoriske foreninger(Danish Genealogical Societies) to give help and answer questions from people with Danish roots.
For those intrested in Dansih geenalogy here is a link to a thew webpage of Arkivalieronline (Danish archives online).
I even got an interview with charlotte wich I will use in a later podcast episode.

The members Malmö Genealogical Society who organised the conference surely had a lot to do.
As seen on the picture beside. they had their hands full of showing people around. Unfortunately I could not get an interview with any of them.

Among the sponsors of the conference where
Genline and ArkivDigital. 2 swedish companies who provides swedish churchrecords online.
Ancestry.se the swedish branch of Ancestry.com
Where also among the sponsors as well as the City of Malmö

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Genealogy Days in Malmö Day 1

This years Swedish Genealogy Days the yearly conference of the Swedish Federation of Genealogical Societies was held in the city of Malmö in the province of Skåne in southern Sweden .Over 100 exibitors crowded in the convention center at Europaporten in Malmö.Everything from genealogical societies, archives to companies offering original sources online.

Among the exibitors was the Swedish Emigrant Institute from Växjö. They were friendly to let me go with them in their car.
Here we can see archivist Kristina Persson and Bo Björklund study some of the Institutes databases containing swedish emigrants to USA and other places.

Erik Gustavson from the Kinship Center in Karlstad in the province of Värmland.

Spoke about EMIWEB a new project launched by the Kinship Center the Swedish Emigrant Institute. Göteborgs Emigranten and some others.EMIWEB is a webbplace aimed at housing some of the databases containing swedish emigrants to USA and other countries for example databases of swedish emigrants taken from swedish churchrecords and also members of swedish-american societies.In time the databases should be searchable over the web for a subscription fee. I was lucky to get an interwiev with Erik Gustavson wich I hope to use in a later podcast episode

Friday, August 29, 2008

Aug 27 I posted a new episode of my podcast Anna-Karins Genealogical Podcast.
It this episode I speak about the Minnesota Day at the Swedish Emigrant Institute and has 2 interwievs with the chairman of the Swedish Fedration of genealogical societies Ted Roswall
and one with the swedish-american professor H Arnold Barton. I wrote about the Minnesota day in a blogpost on Aug 11 in this blog.

Family researchers at the Malmö Festival

Each year around aug 15-aug 22 the yearly Malmö Festival takes place in the city of Malmö in the province of Skåne. The city fills with cultural and music evnts and food from the whole world is served on the Gustaf Adolf square as well as many shops and sellers sells their products in the streets. sometimes I go to Malmö to attend the Festival.

This Year in the both of the Malmö city municipality some genealogists where present.
The little tent had a sign "prata med en släktforskare" (Meet a family researcher)
It was the Malmö Genealogical society.
Wich was telling about family research and showing people a bit about how to find their ancestors. and andvertising
this years Genealogy Days wich is the yearly confernce of the Swedish Federation of Genealogical Societies.
wich takes place in Malmö Aug 30 to Aug 31.
I will attend and try to make some interview to use in a podcast episode.

Here Niclas Hertzman from the Malmö Genealogical Society shows my friend
Marie how to do family research.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Child on the Titanic reidentified

Here is a tips from Collen Fitzpatrick the forensic genealogist.

A body of an unknown child who perished on the Titanic has been reidentified.
Among the around 1500 people who perished on the Titanic were several children.
Around 300 bodies of Titanic victims were recovered and some of them buried in Halifax at the
Fairview Lawn Cemetery
Many of the victims were unidentified. Especially one of a little boy captured peoples imagination and a memorial was erected over him. No one knew his name. But for many years it was thought by some that is was the body of Gösta Pålsson a 2 year old swedish boy who died with his mother and 3 siblings in the sinking.
In 2002 the childs body was dug up very little was left only a pair of small theeth. using DNA the body was identified as a little finnish boy Eino Panula who also died with his mother and siblings. However the DNA result and other circumstances made some researchers unsure about the identification and further research and testings have now reidentified the body
as that of Sidney Leslie Goodwin a 19 month old english boy.Who also died with his family on the Titanic. The first misidentification may partly have come from that the scientist were under some pressure from TV who was making a documentary about the case.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Karl Oskar Days and Minnesota Day

This weekend In Växjö. saw the Karl-Oskar Days and the Yearly Minnesota Day.
The Karl-Oskar Days are named after one of the main characters in the author Wilhelm Mobergs Emigrant Novels.

Today it is a kind of city festival held around the second weekend of August every
year. Alot of acitivities are going on in the city with the shops moving out on Storgatan(Main street) as well as differend food sold outside. In the evening artists are performing in the city square.

The Swedish Emigrant Institute also took part and had a vendor both on Main Streat In the picture we see archivist Kristina Persson selling books and giving information. The Swedish Emigrant Institute is an archive and museum over the swedish Imigration to other parts of the world it has extensive collections of letters microfilms and interviews.
However its economy is in bad shape and its future is very uncertain since the politicans in Växjö wants to merge it with the county museum
Smålands museum but the Emigrant Institute is afraid of loosing its independence.

On Sunday the Minnesota Day took place. The Minnesota Day is a yearly celebration of the Swedish imigration to other parts of the world especially Minnesota it is usually held in the park outside the Swedish Emigrant Institute but this year it was rainy so we had to stay inside.

First we Were entertained by by two comedians performing songs once performed by
"Olle i Skratthult" a famous swedish-american comedian. his real name was Hjalmar Peterson 1886-1960.

Afterwards several speaches were made among others by the county governor and we were also entertained by the Växjö Male choir.

The Swedish -American of the Year this year was
Barbro Osher swedish consul general in San Francisco. The person chosen swedish-American of the Year is chosen by the Vasa Order of America.

Among the other speakers was Lars Hansson the present head of the Swedish Emigrant Institute
and H Arnold Barton
Arnold Barton is a swedish-american history professor of swedish-descent who has written
several books about swedish and scandinavian history. I managed to get a little interview
with him as well as with Ted Rosvall the chairman of the Swedish Federation of Genealogical societies I plan to use the interwievs
in a later episode of the Podcast.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Today we have a terrible rain so it is a perfect weather for doing your family research by the computer or sorting paper at home ;)
Earlier this year I made a little video about "The Day of Family research" wich was held March 15 Here in Växjö it was held at the library and members of
The Kronobergs Genealogical Federation wich is our local Genealogical society
they showed people how to do their family research in the video I also have an interview with its former chairman Aron Axelsson

I have been interviewed

This is my first posting so welcome to my blog. I am a swedish Family researcher intrested in genealogy and especially about swedish immigrants to USA and other countries.

Recently I made a trip to USA wich I hope to tell about in this blog.
during the trip i took part in the Southern Californian Genealogical jamboree in Burbank California.

At the Jamboree I was interviewed by representatives from Rootstelevision
Here is the interview