Wednesday, March 9, 2011

But what does it all mean?

March 9 - Take a family document (baptismal certificate, passenger list, naturalization petition, etc.) and write a brief narrative using the information

This is Johan August "Gust" Johansson Berggren's certificate for moving out. Gust was a 20 year old bachelor at the time he left Ossjo Westergard, Ljunga parish in the county of Kronobergs, Sweden in 1883 and headed to America.Though considered a minor, he was free to marry at this age. According to the document, he'd had cowpox, was able to read, had a passable knowledge of Christianity and was entitled to Holy Communion. It also states that he'd "been on the interrogations and was enjoying civic trust". He was too young to have completed military service, was registered for the census and was planning to move to America. The document is dated 9 Jun 1883 and is signed by his pastor...last name Svenson

transcription provided by Yvonne Henriksson

Are you wondering why I chose the document of a man to answer this blogging prompt for Women's History month?
Sometimes the women's stories are found between the lines of their father's or husband's stories. This document, which has been in my family's possession for decades, held the clues to a host of other pieces of the puzzle. No one could read the document and I'm fairly certain that no one tried. It was kept safely in a bundle of other "important family papers" but remained a mystery until it was posted online with a plea for help. When the translation arrived in my email, the floodgates opened and the hunt was on. It's slow going with this brickwall ancestor and his wife. But I will chip away at that wall, one little chunk at at time until I find what I'm looking for.

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