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The Thorsets of America

Updated September 5, 2000

All of Anders Bakko (aka Andres Olson Intelhusbakko) and Åse Bjørnsdtr. Løken's children emigrated from Hemsedal Norway to the United States. Their son Bjorn (aka Ben Bakken) came over first in 1886 and settled in Northwood, Iowa. The rest of his brothers and sisters families followed Ben including my Great Grandfather Torleiv Bakko (aka Tollef Bakken), his wife Olaug Oddsdtr. Ålstveit and their five children. They bought passage aboard the Stavingerfjord ship at Kristiania going New York in November of 1924. I have the passenger list and photo of the ship as well as the steamer trunk that my Grandmother, Anne, brought over with her. The trunk is said to have been a relatives and bears the initials AOD and the year 1790 on it. It is made of wood and has a curved top and is painted in the rosemaling style inside and out. However, the key to the trunk was lost years later and the top hardware had to be removed and was never replaced, but the shipping tags are still on it!

My Grandmother Anne was soon followed by her future husband, Jacob Knut Thorset who was also from Hemsedal. He was the only Thorset known to have come over to America during that period. Anne and Jacob were married in 1926 and moved soon after having their son Kenneth in 1928 to Montevideo, Minnesota to set up farming. They returned to visit Norway with their daughter Olga some years later. Jacob past away in 1978 after retiring from farming and moving in to town but Anne is still living in a home in Montevideo. She was very active in a church where she helped translate the Norwegian hymns for the congregation.

After the Korean war, my father Ken had a successful heating and air conditioning business called "Thorset Sheet Metal" in Mankato, Minnesota. He had married Ardis Graff from Madison, Minnesota in 1949 who is also of Norwegian descent. Her Grandfather had come over from Elverum, Norway in 1881. They had two daughters; Deborah in 1955 who married Rob Ronglien in 1977 and has a daughter Tiffany, 15 yrs. old and in 1960, me, Lori. My sister and all my Aunts and cousins are still in Minnesota but my parents moved to Sarasota, Florida after I moved out east in 1987 with my husband Richard. We live in the Pocono Mountains in North Eastern Pennsylvania, have one daughter and three sons.

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