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Controlled Scholarship and Productive Nationalism{1}
By Franklin D. Scott (Volume I7 Page 130)

American homogeneity is growing slowly out of diversity. What homogeneity now exists is but poorly understood. Why? Perhaps largely because the roots of diversity are not understood. The emphasis on the Anglo-Saxon heritage is proper, but its frequent exaggeration throws into shadow other bright facets of the background of America.
Dutch, Swedish, French, and other strains have blended blood and culture in North America since the seventeenth century, and in the Southwest the Spanish element appeared still earlier. German, Irish, Polish, and many other elements contributed to the growing population and the developing civilization. Yet historians of the United States have been unable to penetrate deeply into the essence of the varied cultures brought by these groups across the Atlantic. They have been deterred by linguistic and psychological barriers. Possibly it is only within each group itself that one can expect to find the language equipment and the insight necessary for the interpretation of the group's history.
Each immigrant group was a special kind of section of the national society from which it emanated in Europe. Each had its own dream of America and the individuals within each group made their own kind of adaptation to life in the new community. If they could not provide the materials for their histories the accounts could never be written. And many of these peoples were both too busy and too indifferent. As Charles A. Beard once put it, the German immigrants liked too well just to drink beer together; the Italians and others [131] lacked scholarly interest and background; the Poles might be able to do it to a certain extent; but the Scandinavians above all had the concern and the literary tradition to do the job well if they would. {2}
The Norwegian Americans are proving the correctness of part of Beard's prognosis.
In Ole Rynning's Emigrant Song of 1837 is the poignant epitome of the problem and the story of the Norwegian who sailed across the north Atlantic to build a new life:

Beyond the surge of the stormy deep,
The mists hide Norway's rocky shore,
But longings rise, their tryst to keep
With magic forests known of yore,
Where whistling spruce and glacier's boom
Are harmonies to Norway's son.

Though destiny, as Leif and Bjørn,
Call northern son to alien West,
Yet will his heart in mem'ry turn
To native mountains loved the best.
As longs the heart of a lone son
To his loved home once more to come. {3}

The emigrant long retained a love of the land of his child hood, yet he pitched his tent and built his house and some times his skyscraper in the land of his adult choice. His two national bonds of interest sometimes came into conflict, but more happily they blended into a common heritage to give him a sense of historical background with a double truth and a double strength. The Norwegian-American Historical Association is the institutionalized expression of his deep historic feeling.
Founded in 1925 at the time of the one hundredth [132] anniversary of the first group migration from Norway to the United States, the Norwegian-American Historical Association has in twenty-five years attained a position of recognized leadership in its field. No one can reckon the total number of studies it has inspired among both Norwegian Americans and other groups, but its own publications form a remarkable body of constructive scholarship. Sixteen volumes of essays and source materials in the Studies and Records series; five volumes in the Travel and Description series; plus thirteen individual books of high caliber and rich variety attest a vision, an industry, and a careful planning far beyond the ordinary.
The story the Association has to tell is the tale of men strong in body and soul who pioneered a new land. "At home" in Norway, opportunity was limited. Ambitions and cultural standards were high; a literary emphasis had been dominant since the saga age. But farms were small and families were large. Many of the young men who migrated would have spent their lives at home eking out a meager existence. Ingrid Gaustad Semmingsen in an article of 1940 described the problems of an expanding population in the stable, inelastic economy of Norway in the early nineteenth century. The youth of the peasant class insisted on a chance to use their abilities, and they gradually freed themselves from the tradition which bound them to the soil. {4} Martin Ruud found even in the emigrant songs that the primary motivation was economic, but he found also "the sense on the part of so many of social and political inferiority." Despite the fact that Nor way had the "most democratic society and government in Europe" there was still a feeling of "servitude and chains and slavery." {5} [133]
Therefore these people suffered the rigors of the Atlantic crossing, a shipload of them sailing in the famous sloop "Restaurationen" in 1825. Other small groups followed after them, occasionally sending out advance agents to explore the land and select sites for settlements. The movement gathered momentum and built up to a crescendo in the 1880's. The volumes in the Studies and Records series are replete with articles illustrating facets of the migration, the life on shipboard, discovering the land, making settlements, and building homes. The whole sweep is synthesized in the two-volume study on Norwegian migration by Theodore C. Blegen, a work generally recognized as the best treatment we have of a national migration. {6} The more special problem of settlement itself is handled by Carlton C. Qualey in another publication under the imprint of the Association. {7}
The "America letters," written by these articulate adventurers and settlers to friends at home, provide a mirror of their own reactions and of contemporary conditions in America. They run the gamut from praise to abuse. Johannes Nordboe wrote from Illinois in 1837: "Here a young but poor man can soon become a well-to-do farmer if he works hard and uses good sense. He can look forward to becoming rich without usury, a difficult task in Norway. {8} Another wrote in 1870, "Most of the settlers really achieve, comparatively early, economic success on a higher plane than would have been possible had they remained at home; and most of them declare themselves content with their lot." {9}
In the first volume of Studies and Records a section is translated from Johan R. Reiersen's "Pathfinder for [134] Norwegian Emigrants," which when published in 1844 helped to rectify the impression of tragedy left by Ole Rynning's book and his early death. {10} Reiersen says: "All those who have been in America for a few years, with a few individual exceptions, are in a contented and independent position. Anxiety and care with respect to daily bread and subsistence for their families burden them no longer. . . . Taxes and rents encumber no one, and fear of distraints and seizures does not trouble their minds. Poor rates and begging are practically unknown, and even the children of deceased poor people are eagerly received by the Americans, who support them and give them instruction. But, all things considered, this is as much as one can say. The majority still live in their original log cabins, which, however, are always a good deal better than the mountain huts in which they lived in Norway. They have only a little money, because of the indolence with which many carry on their farming. And the old manner of con ducting their household affairs, to which they are accustomed in the old country, is continued. Unsanitary conditions obtain in many cases. Lack of efficiency and enterprise, qualities upon which success in America altogether depends, and in general lack of information and of education are some primary causes why our countrymen have not as yet progressed further than they have. {11} [135]
An agricultural school director from Norway took an antagonistic attitude toward emigration during his visit to America in 1850, and concluded his argument to his country men, "America offers you, in all likelihood: more meat to eat, a greater area of land to cultivate, more exertion, less comfort, a shorter life; now choose." {12} Bishop Jacob Neumann, who thought people ought to remain in the land where God had decreed their birth, admonished the peasants against the loneliness of being "among absolute strangers, among Europeans of every race and language," and warned them of the absence of the church and the school. {13}
Again and again is emphasized the need of hard work for success, and one immigrant (Søren Bache) wrote frankly to a friend advising him not to come, for he was not used to farm work, and would find life "rough and monotonous." Let his daughters come first, get jobs in city homes, then they could advise him after a year or two. {14} Hence we get evidence of the negative as well as the positive - but the immigrants kept coming, seeking always the better life.
On the broad subject of pioneering the prairies, the Association's bookshelf provides much, both in quantity and quality. Here can be found insight both conscious and unconscious into the problems of the foreigner in a new land. As Brynjolf J. Hovde says: "The newly arrived immigrant, by the very fact of being unidentified with American life, was sometimes able to turn upon it an observational power of unusual acuteness; furthermore, these wholly personal documents are likely to be peculiarly revealing, both of the immigrant mind and of the process of readjustment. How much more accurately the causes of great popular [136] movements could be assessed if historians had available a large collection of such letters, than when, as now, they are compelled merely to infer them from government statistics and from plausible coincidences! Similarly, students of European history would gain from the letters of those who remained behind a much more intimate knowledge of the effects of emigration and of the reflex action of America upon Europe. {15}
Life on the frontier was unavoidably crude, and it often shocked those who came from the more refined culture of the Old World. Some died of disease or accident or overwork. Some returned to Norway disgusted or disappointed. More remained to outlive the harsh beginnings, to build farms in the Dakotas, Minnesota, Oregon, New York - to populate and develop America. Hence the records show the failure of the few, the hard-won success of the many. They gloried in their productive farms, and in the esteem of their neighbors. One of the sons of Hedemark wrote home in 1868 from Wisconsin that his "people are well pleased in America because it is clear to them that their labor and toil are appreciated and rewarded and they themselves properly respected." {16}
The struggle with nature by these "Giants in the Earth" is most graphically described by Ole E. Rølvaag, who was one of the founders of the Association, though his own writing was largely independent. {17} That struggle is described or reflected in scores of the letters, articles, and biographies published; it is the basic theme of the whole story.
These builders of "the new kingdom," as Einar Haugen says, often began their life in America as the "hewers of wood and the drawers of water . . . [for the] frontier communities. [137] Their strong arms aided in keeping the means of communication moving on the Missouri River. Their mechanical skill as carpenters and blacksmiths helped to create and preserve, even in the wilderness, the implements of civilization. They acted as assistants and managers for the government agents, and as their intermediaries with the Indians; their wives kept boarding houses and gave to the wilderness a touch of home. These experiences were only an episode in the lives of most of them; as the facts from their earlier and later careers show, they merely sought a means of support while they were waiting for income from their farms. Their sound, respectable origin from the upper farming class in Norway, the return of most of them to this means of livelihood in America, and their eventual economic security have [indicated this]." {18}
The urban life of the newcomers, especially of the domes tic servants and the day laborers, has so far received scant attention, and it is an important though a difficult field. Two significant exceptions do throw light on urban industrial and capitalistic participation.
First, the work of engineers and inventors is told magnificently by Kenneth Bjork in his Saga in Steel and Concrete- a book not only published by the Association, but instigated therein and aided by its fellowship grant. The "migration of skills in the response to the needs of American society" brought to the United States for a whole generation almost 25 per cent of the trained graduates of Norway's technical schools. These men made some of the most visible contributions to expanding America: Carl Barth who helped to develop scientific management techniques and improved the slide rule; Edwin Ruud who made bathing easier by inventing the automatic hot water heater; Anker Holt who applied the caterpillar principle to agricultural machinery and thus indirectly contributed to "tanks" of war; Ole Singstad who [138] constructed New York's Holland Tunnel and became the world authority on tunneling; Eyvind Lee Heidenreich who promoted the use of reinforced concrete in the United States-the list goes on and on, and to it must be added the fisherman's friend, Ole Evinrude. Obviously the Norwegians have done more than their share to make America the land of mechanization and of skyscrapers. {19}
The second exception to the urban gap is A Long Pull from Stavanger, wherein Birger Osland pictures many sides of Norwegian-American life in Chicago. He describes the transition in the national clubs as the Norwegian-born are gradually edged out of control by the second generation, with their American interests and their weakness in the ancestral tongue. He tells of the creation of the Norwegian-America Line, and of his own service in Christiania in World War I as military attaché of the United States, and of the organizing of the Norwegian-American Historical Association, of which he was treasurer from the beginning. He seasons the book with his own sage observations and sidelights - such as the remark of Dr. Karl F. M. Sandberg, chairman of the Norwegian National League of Chicago, who being a physician could never cut short a speaker: "he knew he might have thus suppressed ideas that later would fester." {20}
One dramatic aspect of the saga of migration is the amalgamation of peoples and ideas in the new environment. From Norway came proud particularists, valley patriots of Telemark and Gudbrandsdal and Trøndelag; when they were thrown together in Iowa or in Seattle it was Norwegianism rather than localism that triumphed. Intermarriage and their common church brought them together. Gradually the Norwegian speech had to absorb new and American words to fit new conditions, and a hybrid language was born. But the younger generation learned English rapidly; they taught the [139] older, as younger generations do, and the Norwegian communities became bilingual or wholly Americanized in speech.
As Einar Haugen puts it in one of his interpretative articles, "The immigrant straddles two cultures, and if he is homeless in both, it is due in no small measure to his linguistic difficulties." {21}
The tongue became American, but the heart could not empty itself of Norway. Many a time one gets the note sounded in Olaus Duus's poignant letters from his Frontier Parsonage. He says, "But America is not Norway. Here there is always a sense of strangeness, something unlike home, and I don't suppose we'll ever feel completely at home here." {22}
Laurence M. Larson tells in his Log Book of a Young Immigrant how his wife, visiting with him in a Norwegian fjord, slowly turned to him and said she understood now how it would be difficult to leave such a country. {23} The unique grandeur of Norway's scenery and the tenacious hold of its culture could not be thrown off in a lifetime.
Yet the fundamental ideals of the freedom-loving northerners, their skill, their industry, their ability to withstand hardship, all met the stern demands of the frontier. These people were fitted to be pioneers, and they became American as the frontier itself became American. The degree to which many of them adapted themselves and came to be in tune with the new society is expressed by J. R. Reiersen in a letter of 1852: "I have learned to love the country to which I emigrated more sincerely than my old fatherland, of which I can never think with any heartfelt longings. From my point of view I consider the old monarchic, aristocratic, and hierarchic institutions as contemptible playthings, of which the [140] human intelligence ought to be greatly ashamed. I feel free and independent among a free people, who are not chained down by any class or caste systems; and I am very proud of belonging to a mighty nation, whose institutions will and must in time come to dominate the entire civilized world, be cause they are founded on principles that sound intelligence must recognize as the only ones that are right and correct." {24}
As John Storseth summed it up: "A great commonwealth is forming here in America. People of every tongue, religion, and race are getting more and more conscious of being one. All of them came here with their different ideals and aspirations. And they brought with them their tribal memories from a thousand years back. It is all these memories that the different nations brought with them which, put together, have made America what it is today." {25}
The ballad "How Things Have Gone" puts similar concepts poetically.

At the start we had troubles aplenty
When we stepped on this far-away strand;
We heard only a meaningless babble
When our ears caught the speech of the land.

‘Twas a long pull learning the language,
And our spirits were often downcast;
When a Yankee would ask what our names were,
We would most often answer him, "Yas!"

We were not in the ranks of the wealthy
And our homes took a long time to build;
We sought work that would earn us some money,
For our youngsters were hungry and chilled.

With the passing of years we were hopeful
That our lot would improve over now;
For our children were learning the lingo,
And we sold some produce from the cow. . . [141]

We had known just the rock slopes of Norway,
Gave the Yankees the best of the land;
We were seeking for woods and for water,
And the prairie was not in demand. .

When the Yankees perceived how we struggled,
They were ready at once with their praise;
And they shared with us many a tidbit;
Now may God bless their generous ways.

We desired to show we were grateful,
And were anxious to be of some use;
We took hold of the roughest of jobs here,
Just to show them what we could produce. .

Now the years are commencing to lengthen,
We are living right royally here;
And although we have had our reverses,
We look forward without any fear.

We have schoolhouses, farms and our churches,
And we're still ever forging ahead;
While our strength lies in faith and in union,
There'll be nothing we need to dread. {26}

Norsemen became Americans and at the same time remained Norsemen. But, in them, as they conquered their troubles and came into contact with Americans of older vintage, "A new spirit is awakened . . . a feeling of independence and freedom, a spirit of tolerance in matters of religion, and an open mind for information, together with that conviction of their worth as men and citizens which is the cornerstone of the moral virtues." {27}
In politics the Norwegian Americans were slow to assert themselves, and the publications of the Association do not as yet contain much information on this phase of activity . . . though of more recent years Norwegian Americans have given many notable figures to the states and the nation. [142]
Another of the richly loaded veins mined by the Association is the culture of the immigrant communities. Here the church was the heart in early days; a church puritanical in principle, but somewhat liberalized in organization. {28} Very likely the reason for the abstention of the immigrant from politics was that to him "The Lutheran congregation still constituted the community." {29} In the 1870's some of the clergy, in their desperate attempt to keep that community pure, were reported to claim "that it is impossible to preach true Christianity in the English language." {30}
The Norwegians who wished to hold both the material ad vantages of America and the cultural values of Norway also built strong colleges like St. Olaf and Luther to conserve their heritage. Karen Larsen in articles and in the biography of her father has told some important segments of that story. {31} Other scholars who likewise prized their inheritance worked at the task in other and even in secular institutions. Still larger in numbers were scholars of Norwegian blood who distinguished themselves in all the varied fields of teaching and research of the nation to which they now belonged; others became doctors, businessmen, bankers, lawyers - and gained both wealth and prestige. {32}
The Association has made available a few of the ballads and songs of the immigrants, sounding that enchanting harmony of the plaintive and the humorous - [143]

Farewell, Norway, and God bless thee. Stern
and severe wert thou always, but as a mother
I honor thee, even though thou skimped my bread.

And also:

In Oleana, that's where I'd like to be, and
not drag the chains of slavery in Norway. . . .
In Oleana they give you land for nothing, and
the grain just pops out of the ground. Golly,
that's easy. . . .
And little roasted piggies rush about the streets
politely inquiring if you wish for ham. {33}

There are articles on Norwegian literature and on the American controversies over Ole Bull and Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson. There is hardly a beginning of the study of the transit of Norwegian folklore, but there are a few preliminary studies of the press. Arlow Andersen concludes one of these, on "Lincoln and the Union":
"That the Norwegian-American press reflected a growing patriotism, induced in part by the war, there can be no doubt. Norwegian-born soldiers became more conscious of their responsibility toward the federal government and of their potentialities as American citizens. Relatives and friends behind the lines were similarly affected. If the editorial views of Emigranten and Fædrelandet were conditioned during the first two years by Northern military failures and during the last two years by more cheering news from the battle front, they showed themselves to be anything but vacillating in matters of principle. Far from being obstructive, these editors exhibited a critical and intelligent loyalty to Lincoln and the Union, a loyalty which characterized the majority of Americans of Norwegian birth." {34}
George M. Stephenson contributed an interpretation of [144] "The Mind of the Scandinavian Immigrant," and John Heitmann gave a specific illustration in his article on Julius B. Baumann. Baumann, an irrepressible optimist, described to O. E. Rølvaag the kind of story he wanted his friend to write: "I see fishermen, day laborers, tenant farmers, people with empty hands but with courage and determination coming from Norway, landing on our shores, trudging westward in want, in danger, in poverty, but looking with hope to new horizons. They know nothing about farming, nothing about the people, nothing about the land, and not a word of the language. But they have faith and courage, and the will to conquer difficulties. They are sustained by hope, they work, they experiment, they experience joy and love, and sorrow. They meet new problems always. Undismayed, they over come them. They conquer themselves, their longings, their woes, their dismay and disappointments. And they conquer the forest and the prairies. Lord, what a theme!" Rølvaag was himself deeply interested in the work of the Historical Association and insisted like his colleagues, "Nothing but the best will do." {35}

The luxuriant variety of the material here sampled has been brought forth in twenty-five years of planned publishing. It is the product of an unusual combination of interests and abilities. The Norwegian-American Historical Association has been a balanced team that has included the inspirational leadership of men like Ole Ravage and Lars W. Boe and Kristian Prestgard and Olaf Halvorsen, the business acumen of others like Arthur Andersen and Birger Osland, the vision and scholarly talents and administrative ability of Theodore C. Blegen, the sound scholarship of Knut Gjerset, Paul Knaplund, and many others already named, and also that ultimate sine qua non, the sustained support of an intelligent clientele. [145]
Policies have been sane and practical. Publication has not been allowed to outrun either the money in the bank or the material properly prepared. Even the few weak articles add something to the picture, and the books are all of a quality that can be pointed to with pride. Two characteristics are notable: (1) The stress on documentary publication - especially letters and contemporary books in translation, the original source material which to the historian is sacred; {36} (2) Specific and intimate accounts, the case-study technique - biographies, autobiographies, and special studies like Gjerset's on Norwegian-American sailors. {37}
The accumulation of data in all its luxuriance has been the major work. Synthesis and interpretation have been left to the professionals such as Dean Blegen, who has carried on his own work and at the same time has guided others as man aging editor through the entire twenty-five years.
The emphasis has been on the early period of migration and settlement, and regionally it has all but confined itself to the Middle West. But a major work is in preparation on the Norwegians of the Pacific coast and Alaska; and the careful collections of the archives in Northfield and of the museum in Decorah, Iowa show that preparations are being made for continued research. We can look forward to more studies - local, statistical, religious, economic. No one knows better than the editorial board the vastness of the field still ahead, and it is largely because of their vision off to the far horizon that the job at hand has been done so well. What has been accomplished is not haphazard but organized, and it [146] fits into a larger and broadly inclusive pattern; this early work has been done so well that it will never have to be redone.
The fair and balanced treatment of the data, including both the criticisms of disgruntled pioneers and the extravagant paeans of praise of others, indicates the maturity of the present generation, which can look with equanimity on the opinions and activities of its ancestors. Honesty, thorough ness, and insight have characterized the work and have established ideals of scholarship to guide this Association and to challenge the best efforts of other groups. The newly formed Swedish Pioneer Historical Society is frankly inspired by the example this Association has set, and one hopes it can attain an equal scholarly status. The total result is more than building a body of knowledge; it is raising the standard of historical writing in a difficult but important field; it is placing truth above chauvinism. The romance of the great migration remains, but science is added to romance. It is scholarship with vitality.
In reading through the works published by the Association one is impressed by the numbers of contributors, many of them not professional historians. This is the best possible indication of the widespread knowledge that we gain under standing of ourselves by an understanding of our past.
In the New World the Norwegians proved, thousands of them, that the blood and the culture and the spirit they had inherited needed only opportunity. Given that, with their will to work, they dug success out of the prairie sod. Essentially the work of the pioneer was the work of a man with his two hands and his will; the conquest of the wilderness was the product of innumerable individuals, men, women, and children, straining at the ax and the plow and the stove. They acted separately and for personal reasons; the sum of their achievements was the spread of civilization across the [147]
The Norwegian-American Historical Association bases its work implicitly on this philosophy. Its publications are gradually creating a mosaic of that dramatic process. Each colorful piece is small and distinct; placed in a pattern by the artistic choice and the precise workmanship of scholarly planning, these studies are becoming a true historical mosaic. The Norwegian picture is then a portion of that yet vaster panorama embracing all the nationalities that have built America. It is the literary counterpart of the concept which Lorado Taft sculptured in his March of Time. It is a picturesque and vital segment in the epic of our time, The March of Peoples.
The theme that encompasses, though in the language of nineteenth-century piety, the outlook and the work of the Norwegian-American Historical Association was expressed in the 1840's by Ole Munch Ræder: The Norwegian emigrants "are carrying on a great national mission-in accordance with the wishes of Providence working through their instinctive desire to wander. Their mission consists in proclaiming to the world that the people of the Scandinavian countries, who in former days steered their course over every sea and even found their way to the distant shores of Vinland and Hvidmannaland, have not been blotted out from among the peoples of the earth, nor have they degenerated. After having regained their independence, so that they again can show themselves in the world, they come to demand their place in that country upon which their fathers cast the first ray of light, no matter how flickering and uncertain, and to take part in the great future which is in store for this youthful, but already mighty, republic. Let them become Americans, as is the duty of holders of American soil, but this need not prevent them from remaining Norwegian for a long time to come!" {38}
Thus the grand theme of cultural interaction and diffusion has been taken up and given life by the Norwegian-American Historical Association; scholarship has been wisely directed, nationalism has been made constructive. Personalities have been preserved by the publication of memoirs; the life and problems of the era of the great migration have been revealed through letters and ballads; the interaction of two cultures has been analyzed in special studies. Here is a prototype for other groups who would search the past to gain understanding of themselves, and of the America they have helped to build.


<1> This is the revised version of an address presented at the noon luncheon of the twenty-fifth anniversary celebration of the Norwegian-American Historical Association at Northfield, Minnesota, on October 6, 1950.
<2> As told to Vilas Johnson, and quoted by him.
<3> ‘Translated by Theodore C. Blegen and used in his address at the Rynning Centennial Program at Northfield, Minnesota, in 1937; published in the News Letter of the Norwegian-American Historical Association, no. 6, p. (August, 1937). See also Theodore C. Blegen and Martin B. Ruud, ed., "The Seventeenth of May in Mid-Atlantic: Ole Rynning's Emigrant Song," in Norwegian-American Studies and Records, 8:18-22 (Northfield, 1934). The Studies and Records series has been, throughout twenty-five years, supervised by Dr. Blegen as managing editor, with a gradually changing editorial board. The first volume was published from Minneapolis; all later volumes from Northfield, Minnesota. The author is grateful for the assistance of Miss Helen Knuth in the examination of the series.
<4> Norwegian Emigration to America during the Nineteenth Century," in Studies and Records, 11: 66-81 (1940).
<5> Studies and Records, 2:1-3 (1927).
<6> Norwegian Migration to America, 1825-1860 (Northfield, 1931); Norwegian Migration to America: The American Transition (Northfield, 1940).
<7> Norwegian Settlement in the United States (Northfield, 1938).
<8> Arne Odd Johnsen, ed., "Johannes Nordboe and Norwegian Immigration," in Studies and Records, 8:35.
<9> Studies and Records, 13:52 (1943). The passage is from an official report by A. Lewenhaupt, chargé d'affaires in the Swedish-Norwegian legation in Washing ton, D. C., dated November 17, 1870.
<10> The Association published the original text of Ole Rynning's True Account of America and a translation by Theodore C. Blegen as volume 1 of its Travel and Description Series (Minneapolis, 1926). The original was published in Christiania in 1838. Rynning led a band of settlers to the ill-fated Beaver Creek settlement in Iroquois County, Illinois. While the colony was in process of decline and disintegration, Rynning died. His True Account was essentially encouraging, though his death was a potent negative argument. A more pessimistic report was published in Stavanger in 1839: Theodore C. Blegen, ed., Peter Testman's Account of His Experiences in North America (Norwegian-American Historical Association, Travel and Description Series, vol. 2 - Northfield, 1927).
<11> "Norwegians in the West in 1844: A Contemporary Account," in Studies and Records, 1:110-125 (1926). Theodore C. Blegen here translates a section from Chapter 10 of Reiersen's book, Veiviser for norske emigranter til de forenede nordamerikanske stater og Texas (Christiania, 1844). See also "Behind the Scenes of Emigration," a series of letters from Reiersen in Studies and Records, 14:78-116 (1944).
<12> "Emigration as Viewed by a Norwegian Student of Agriculture in 1850," in Studies and Records, 3:56 (1928). The letter was written by A. Budde and translated by A. Sophie Bøe.
<13> Gunnar J. Malmin, ed., "Bishop Neumann's Word of Admonition to the Peasants," in Studies and Records, 1:95-109.
<14> C. A. Clausen, ed., "An Immigrant's Advice on America," in Studies and Records, 15:77-84 (1949).
<15> "Chicago as Viewed by a Norwegian Immigrant in 1864," in Studies and Records, 3:65. The passage quoted is from Hovde's introduction to an America letter of 1864.
<16> C. A. Clausen, ed., "A Norwegian Schoolmaster Looks at America," in Studies and Records, 13:78.
<17> See especially Rølvaag's Giants in the Earth (New York, 1927), The Boat of Longing (New York, 1933), and Peder Victorious (New York, 1929). See also Kenneth Bjork, "The Unknown Rølvaag: Secretary in the Norwegian-American Historical Association," in Studies and Records, 11:114-149.
<18> "Norwegians at the Indian Forts on the Missouri River during the Seventies," in Studies and Records, 6:113 (1931).
<19> Kenneth Bjork, Saga in Steel and Concrete (Northfield, 1947).
<20> Birger Osland, A Long Pull from Stavanger: The Reminiscences of a Norwegian Immigrant (Northfield, 1945).
<21> "Language and Immigration," in Studies and Records, 10:2 (1938).
<22> Frontier Parsonage: The Letters of Olaus Fredrik Duus, Norwegian Pastor in Wisconsin, 1855-1858, 32 (Northfield, 1947). This is volume 4 of the Association's Travel and Description Series.
<23> P. 3 (Northfield, 1939). A book of essays by Professor Larson, The Changing West, was also published by the Association (Northfield, 1937).
<24> Lyder L. Unstad, ed., "The First Migration into Texas," in Studies and Records, 8:39-57. The passage quoted is on page 52.
<25> "Pioneering on the Pacific Coast," in Studies and Records, 13:158. Storseth was a Norwegian who settled in Poulsbo, Washington, in 1889.
<26> Einar Haugen, "A Norwegian-American Pioneer Ballad," in Studies and Records, 15:3-8. Mr. Haugen quotes and translates twenty stanzas in all. For other emigrant songs, see Theodore C. Blegen and Martin B. Ruud, ed., Norwegian Emigrant Songs and Ballads (Minneapolis, 1936)
<27> Studies and Records, 1:121.
<28> Marcus L. Hansen, "Immigration and Puritanism," in Studies and Records, 9:1-28 (1936). See also Frontier Parsonage, 96.
<29> Studies and Records, 13:59.
<30> Quoted by Jacob Hodnefield in "Erik L. Petersen," in Studies and Records, 15:181.
<31> "A Newcomer Looks at American Colleges," in Studies and Records, 10:107- 126; and Laur. Larsen, Pioneer College President (Northfield, 1936). Larsen was president of Luther College and father not only of Karen and Ingeborg Larsen of St. Olaf College, but of Jakob Larsen of the University of Chicago, Henning Larsen of the University of Illinois, and Hanna Astrup Larsen, long-time editor of the American-Scandinavian Review.
<32> See Laurence M. Larson, "The Norwegian Pioneer in the Field of American Scholarship," in Studies and Records, 2:62-77. A recent volume by Leola Bergman, Americans from Norway (Philadelphia, 1950) made use of the Association's archives and its publications.
<33> Martin B. Ruud, ed., "Norwegian Emigrant Songs," in Studies and Records, 2:4, 11. See also Theodore C. Blegen, "The Ballad of Oleana: A Verse Translation," in Studies and Records, 14 :117-1921.
<34> Studies and Records, 15:121.
<35> Studies and Records, 4:63-73, 11:124, 15:171. Volume 4 was published in 1929.
<36> In addition to examples already cited should be mentioned the intimate correspondence brought out in Theodore C. Blegen's edition of The Civil War Letters of Colonel Hans Christian Heg (Northfield, 1936). The most recent books in this category are: Aagot Raaen, Grass of the Earth: Immigrant Life in the Dakota Country; and Pauline Farseth and Theodore C. Blegen, eds., Frontier Mother: The Letters of Gro Svendsen. Both were published in Northfield in 1950. Frontier Mother is volume 5 of the Association's Travel and Description Series.
<37> Knut Gjerset, Norwegian Sailors on the Great Lakes: A Chapter in the History of American Inland Transportation (Northfield, 1928) and Norwegian Sailors in American Waters: A Study in the History of Maritime Activity on the Eastern Seaboard (Northfield, 1933).
<38> America in the Forties: The Letters of Ole Munch Ræder (Norwegian-American Historical Association, Travel and Description Series, vol. 3 - Minneapolis, 1929). The translation was made by Gunnar J. Malmin.


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