Monday, May 31, 2010

Alto Township, Lee County, Illinois - Finnestad, Vallem, Hall families

When I began this blog a couple of years ago, I had posted the 1900 Alto Township plat map for Lee County, Illinois, along with my guess as to where our ancestors resided. Long after that post, I had discovered that Rachel Vallem was Ole and Mari Finnestad's daughter.

Here is an updated map, along with my best guesstimate as to where the families were living in 1900, based upon the plat map and the 1900 US Federal census records.



Included on this map are the home sites for Ole Sr and family, Ole Jr and family, Rachel Vallem and family, Peter Vallem and family*, Isabel Hall and family* along with the location of the Finnestad school (also known as the Carlson school #135).


As you can see from the map, many family members lived rather close to one another, even after they married and started their own families.


*Based upon the census records, it seems possible that Peter and sister Isabel were renting a house and sharing with their respective families.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

1910 US Census - Isabel Josephine (Vallem) Hall

Here is the 1910 US Census for Ole and Mari Finnestad's granddaughter, Isabel Josephine Hall, her husband Ole and son Oral. They were living in Malta Township, DeKalb County, Illinois during the 1910 census.



Isabel Josephine Hall was the daughter of Rachel and Lewis Vallem.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Wanda and Betty Risetter

Below is a photo* of Ole and Mari Finnestad's great granddaughters, Wanda Risetter (Dearth) and Betty Risetter (Shipman).



Wanda and Betty were the daughters of Lillian (Finnestad) and George Risetter; granddaughters of Ole and Caroline Finnestad.

I'm guessing that the photo was taken probably sometime in the early 1940's.


*Photo provided by Roxanne (Dearth) Hamilton

Friday, May 28, 2010

Elmer James Vallem - World War II registration

Ole and Mari Finnestad's grandson, Elmer James Vallem, completed a World War II registration card in April 1942.  Elmer was youngest child of Rachel Olson Finnestad Vallem.   His father was Jacob Johnson

At the time, he was living in Rochelle, Illinois and listed his sister, Ella Bertina Vallem Olson's daughter-in-law, Mrs George Olson as someone that would know his whereabouts.





According to Elmer's niece Genevieve Fern Olson Berg, Elmer never served in World War II, but he did serve in World War I.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Olava Edvarda Knutson

Olava Edvarda Knutson, granddaughter of Ole and Mari Finnestad, was born to Elizabeth and Ole Andreas Knutson on July 12, 1878 and baptized on July 28, 1878.

Here is the official parish record from the St. Petri church of Stavanger, Norway (entry #174).


Here is the copy of the parish record from the St Petri church of Stavanger, Norway (entry #174).


I have now found 9 of Elizabeth and Ole's 10 children. I am not sure whether the unknown 10th child was born in Norway or in Illinois. Since the 1890 US census records were destroyed by fire (as well as the local paper for Rochelle, Illinois), nor do I know know what church they attended after the 1890's, it is questionable that I'll be able to locate the missing child.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Andrea Elizabeth Knutson

Andrea Elizabeth Knutson, granddaughter of Ole and Mari Finnestad, was born to Elizabeth and Ole Andreas Knutson on January 29, 1873 and baptized on February 16, 1873.

Here is the official parish record from the St. Petri church of Stavanger, Norway (entry #60).




Here is the copy of the parish record from the St Petri church of Stavanger, Norway (entry #60).

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Clara Dorthea Knutson

Clara Dorthea Knutson, granddaughter of Ole and Mari Finnestad, was born to Elizabeth and Ole Andreas Knutson on February 27, 1870 and baptized on March 27, 1870.

Here is the official parish record from the St. Petri church of Stavanger, Norway (entry #130).

Here is the copy of the parish record from the St Petri church of Stavanger, Norway (entry #130).

Monday, May 24, 2010

Mary (Maria Berthea) Knutson

A couple of weeks ago I was attempting to find some documentation to verify the Finnestad family tree going back to 1390. Until I have located records to confirm our lineage back to 1390, such as parish documents, etc, I'm skeptical as to whether I was on the right track.

In any event, I stumbled upon a Norwegian website that mentioned Ove Olson, who would have been Ole Olson Finnestad's great grandfather. Ove would be my great great great great great great grandfather.

I contacted the owner of the website about a couple of things and also to see if they could assist me in finding information about Ole and Mari Finnestad's eldest daughter, Elizabeth. Incredibly, what I received in response was a PDF file that mentioned the parish where Elizabeth and husband Ole Andreas Knutson had moved sometime prior to the birth of their daughter, Mary in 1867.

I have posted previously about Mary, who had married Stephen Olson and a few postings about their descendants, but I did not know where Mary was born, nor had I located the parish records. So with this new information, I scanned the parish records and was able to find 2 more of Elizabeth and Ole Andreas Knutson's children. As of this writing, I've located the names of 9 of their 10 children.

Here is the official parish record from the St Petri church of Stavanger, Norway for the christening (entry #180) of Mary (Maria) Berthea Knutson. Maria Berthea Knutson was born May 17, 1867 and baptized June 10, 1867.




Here is the copy of the parish record from Stavanger, Norway for her (entry #172) christening.



The great thing about having both an official and a copy of the Norwegian parish records is to confirm not only illegible handwriting, but that you have the right person. One version may seem possible, but the other helps nail it.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

1915 - Iowa State Census - Orville and Ida Olson

Iowa had mid-decade census records, which can be helpful in locating lost ancestors that may have passed away before the US census was taken. The following Iowa census records from 1915 are individual cards with the family member's name, age, education, occupation, residence and parents place of birth, etc which is very helpful in obtaining details about the family.

Ole and Mari Finnestad's eldest daughter Elizabeth had 10 children with husband Ole Andreas Knutson. I've been able to locate 9 of their 10 children; one was Mary (Maria) Berthea Knutson. Mary married Stephen Olson in Ogle County, Illinois on December 27, 1887.

Mary and Stephen had 7 children, (as far as I know from the conflicting census records). Their eldest was Orville Olson.


Orville Olson, born in Illinois before the Olson family left Ogle County, Illinois and moved to Iowa.
.


Orville's wife, Ida, born in Illinois, but married Orville while living in Iowa.


Orville and Ida's first child, Marvin Sanford, born in Cylinder, Palo Alto County, Iowa.



Orville and Ida's second child, Evelyn Ordell, born in Cylinder, Palo Alto County, Iowa.

Orville and Ida's third child, Alma Luella, born in Cylinder, Palo Alto County, Iowa.



From what I've been able to tell, these were the first great grandchildren of Ole and Mari Finnestad.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Clara & Lillian Finnestad descendants

Here is a photo* of two branches from Ole Jr and Caroline Finnestad's family tree.

Jacqueline Wheeler, (granddaughter of Clara (Finnestad) Risetter and daughter of Verdell (Risetter) Wheeler & Bruce Wheeler).

Wanda (Risetter) Dearth, (daughter of Lillian (Finnestad) Risetter) holding daughter Deborah Dearth.


I am not sure of the date, but the photo appears to have been taken sometime between 1948 - 1950.

*Photo provided by Roxanne (Dearth) Hamilton

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Evelyn Finnestad

Here is a photo * of Evelyn ('Carrie' or Caroline) Finnestad probably taken around 1920.



Here is a photo* of Charles Alexander Richardson, probably taken around 1917. (I'm guessing as to the year based upon what looks like a uniform - he served in WW I.)




Evelyn Finnestad and Charles Richardson were married March 28, 1922.

* Photos provided by Ole and Mari Finnestad's great great granddaughter, Jill (McKay) Clinton.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

1905 Iowa Cenus - Mary Olson

In 1905, Ole and Mari Finnestad's granddaughter, Mary Olson, husband Stephen, and their children Orville, Stanley, Maine and Roosevelt (who I believe is William R listed on the 1910 US census) were living in Cylinder, Fairfield township, Palo Alto county, Iowa.



Above is the 1905 Iowa census, though it is limited - providing just the name of the individual and town of residence.

Ole and Mari Finnestad's son Rasmus is the only other descendant that I have found so far that lived in Iowa. I do know that their daughter, Elizabeth had two daughters that married and moved to Iowa, but I have not been able to confirm the names of their spouses.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Elizabeth Olsdatter Knutson

I've had a bit of luck recently locating the children of Ole and Mari Finnestad's eldest daughter, Elizabeth.*

I've been able to locate the Norwegian parish records for 4 of Elizabeth and Ole Andreas Knutson's children. Once I've been able to confirm the name of the one child I am missing, I'll be posting the corresponding documents.

I have updated two names for Elizabeth's branch to the family tree. Click on the "tree" in the right margin.


*Elizabeth had married and started her own family before Ole and Mari had moved to the Finnestad farm, so 'Finnestad' was never part of her maiden name.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Oliver Finnestad - marriage certificate

Here is a copy of the marriage certificate* of my great grandparents Oliver Finnestad and Mary Kurth. They were married December 18, 1911 in Lee County, Illinois.





*Document provided by Joan Bays, the great great granddaughter of Ole and Mari Finnestad

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Oliver Finnestad - birth certificate

Here is a copy of my great grandfather Oliver Finnestad's birth certificate*. Oliver was the second child born to Ole Jr and Caroline Finnestad. He was born October 28, 1887 in Lee County, Illinois.

Oliver's mother, Caroline requested this on January 18, 1944.





*Ole and Mari Finnestad's great great granddaughter, Joan Bays provided the document.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

1920 US Federal Census - Ole Alfred Knutson

In 1920, Ole and Mari Finnestad's great grandson, Ole Alfred Knutson was still residing at the Watertown State Hospital. (Listed as patient #29).



Apparently the census taker either didn't receive accurate information, or the patient didn't know since I note it indicates both Ole's mother and father were born in Illinois. Both parents Elizabeth and Ole Andreas Knutson were born in Norway.

I've attempted to locate the 1930 census for Ole but was unable to locate one.

The Rock Island county records do indicate he died on January 8, 1934 in East Moline, so he was apparently a patient until he died at the age of 51 - 2 months shy of his 52nd birthday.