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Marie, Story about my family. 19th Century Scandinavian Immigration - to Minn in America, Part 3

Updated on August 28, 2015

Courthouse in Sverige

Sverige Courthouse. picture taken by Thuresson. creative commons Share alike license
Sverige Courthouse. picture taken by Thuresson. creative commons Share alike license

This is the third part of the story of a Scandinavian immigrant to the United states in the 1890's. She was a Swedish woman and part of the story of my family. She left some letters to give part of her story, the rest of this immigrants stories I've had to speculate on.

Marie and her mother.

Sweden 1893

“Must you go to this America land?” Barbra asked.

“Mother, Mother” Marie replied. “I’m a grown woman now. And my brothers in Minnesota and Montana have written of such wonderful things happening there, why shouldn’t I go? See! Viktor has even sent tickets for passage over there.”

Barbara brushed her rolling pin with flour and put the finishing touches on her pie crust. “We had always hoped that you would become engaged to John Nelson to be married.”

Mariestoked the fire in the stove to keep it hot for baking. “We are not engaged nor do we intend to be.” Her lips tightened, as they always did when she was getting angry.

“It was always thought by both our family and the Nelsons that the two of you would marry.”

“That’s what you understood,” Marie replied hotly. “It’s not what John or I want. He is a nice boy and we are friends, but we are not in love.”

“Love! What do you know of love? Love will come in its own time, after you are married.”

Marie looked out the window at the stream that ran past their house. She loved the stream and the land around it. She loved the parish and the church and the people she grew up with. But she knew it was time, as St. Paul said, to put away the things of childhood and live the life of an adult. Yes, she loved these things she grew up with and she would always cling to her memories of childhood-but she did not love John. She knew that she never would.

“Marie.” Her mother embraced her. “Let us not argue. I fear for you going so far away and maybe to never see you again.”

“ I know you do Mother, but we have people there and I feel that God has some purpose for me to go there. I don’t know what it is, but I feel I have a destiny in that land”

Barbra sat at the table and motioned Marie to sit with her. Marie sat and folded her hands over the dark oak tabletop. Putting her own work strong hands over Marie’s entwined fingers, Barbra drew a deep breath, “I too feel that you have a destiny in the America land, but I fear it may not be a good one. I dreamed last night about a place in a Minnesota.

Marie stiffened. Her Mother seldom talked about her dreams, but many folks thought that she had a special gift of insight. Her dreams often proved to be prophetic.

“In this dream I seemed to be floating over this very large village. It had many houses and buildings all made of wood. There were two roads going through the village and there were long rows of buildings along these roads. Some of these buildings were stores. There was one very large building which seemed to be used for cutting more wood to build more buildings. In many of these building there was gambling and drinking. Many were whorehouses. This was a town with much evil in it.”

Marie watched her mother’s eyes. They seemed to be looking straight through her.

“Suddenly, I saw fire falling from the sky. There were large balls of fire that came from the sky and set the wooden buildings to burning something fierce. Pretty soon the whole town and the countryside around it was ablaze in fire.”

Marie leaned over and hugged her mother. “How horrible!”

“There were people in the streets and some trying to escape buildings. Many, I think hundreds, of people were killed. I could do nothing but watch. In a hotel I saw a girl, a young woman, escape from the flames and then return to help a friend. Neither one of them got out. The building collapsed.”

“What a terrible dream. But what does it mean?” Marie asked.

Barbra tightened her hold on Marie’s hand. “I think that

girl that died in the fire was you.”

Author's Note

This series of hubs is a mixture of fiction and non-fiction in-as-much as it consists of letters left behind by my grandfather’s sister and some scenes I  wrote to give the story some continuity. The scenes are what I imagine could have happened.


© 2009 Don A. Hoglund


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    • dahoglund profile image

      Don A. Hoglund 6 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      I'm glad you like it.The fictionalized part is what could have happened. Thanks for reading it and commenting.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

      Susan Haze 6 years ago from Sunny Florida

      dahoglund, I love the way you tell a story. The mix of history and fiction is a winning combination.

    • dahoglund profile image

      Don A. Hoglund 7 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      The trouble with family histories is that they go into the bare facts but don't bring the story to life. Probably because they are done by non writers. Marie left a lot of questions in my mind. Probably most of the letters were lost as well as some from other people.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 7 years ago from Houston, Texas

      You have my attention too. I like the way you are weaving an imaginative story into the little bit of history that you have of your great aunt.

    • dahoglund profile image

      Don A. Hoglund 8 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      Thanks for reading it. I hope you enjoy the rest. Marie is sort of a side story to the geneology my sister wrote and except for some letters she left practically no footprint.

    • creativeone59 profile image

      benny Faye Douglass 8 years ago from Gold Canyon, Arizona

      Interesting story hub, you got my attention, Thanks for sharing it. Godspeed. creativeone59