We have previously mentioned that Hans wasn’t the only emigrant in the Olsen family. We know about two brothers and one sister, and we also know about a sister of Margrete in the US.  Her name was Anna, and she was married to Hans’ younger brother Lars Jørgen. They emigrated from Norway in 1883 and came to Lars’ brother Anders (Andrew) in Hercher, Illinois. Anders had been educated at the Lutheran Seminary in St. Louis and was the pastor in Herscher at that time.

The family of Reverend Anders Christian Olsen and Mrs. Anne Risetter Olsen in 1899, Herscher, Illinois.  In front from left: Gertrude, Anne, Thomas J., Anders, Anna.  In back: Sons Martin, Ole Tobias, Holden and Nils. Photo from Judy Imhoff.

Later, Lars Jørgen and Anna moved to Redwood County in Minnesota.

This family also changed their surname after coming to America. Their new name became Orfield after the name of a mountain near their homestead in Norway, Oertfjell (Ørtfjell).

The family commemorated the 100 years anniversary of  the immigration in 1983. A granddaughter of Lars and Anna, Lois E. Johnson, wrote a booklet of her grandparent’s life. A Norwegian relative, Mr. Jens Kaasbøll, has made it available on Internett.

We have known about the booklet for some time. Jim Tate (of the Melia branch) has given us a couple of pages of it, and a Google search brought us in contact with Jens Kaasbøll, who kindly let us publish the story here.

It is a bit strange that the Lillejords are not mentioned in the booklet. Redwood and Renville, where the Lillejords lived, are neighbouring counties, so the distance between them was short. Probably there were some contact, but it is not mentioned in the booklet. The author do mention a sister of Anna, living in Sacred Heart, named Johanne. From Norwegian sources we can’t find that Johanne emigrated from Norway to the US. It might be that the sister in Sacred Heart really was Margrete.

Perhaps somebody out there have more information? Don’t hesitate to send us any relevant information about the issue.

Thank you.