|i.||JOHANNES BJORNESON9 LITSHEIM, b. 1845; m. BOL ENDRESDATTER, Abt. 1864; b. 1838, Strandebarms.|
Notes for JOHANNES BJORNESON LITSHEIM:|
Johannes was living on the Selevik farm, Jondal, in the 1865 census, his occupation shown as living as a teacher. He was married to Bols Endresdatter and had one child, Inger, born that year. He would have been only 20 years old. Head of the household was Lars Salomonson, Lars' wife Sella Steensdatter, their two children, Salomon Larson and Guro Larsdatter, and Lars' brother, Salomon Salmonson. All but Johannes are shown as being from Praestegjeld.
Johannes family was living in Voss in Kommunenummer: 1235, the Litsheim farm in 1875. In the census the name is spelled "Bjarnesson" He is listed with his wife and four children, his mother and two brothers, Nils Bjarnesson, a Tjenestegut,(some type of server) and Mads who was a Skolelaerer, or teacher. Both brothers were shown as not married. Although just 30 years old, Johannes had been married for over ten years, and was apparently the head of a household of 10 persons.
We surmise from this that his father had passed away and he had taken over the farm. We do not know exactly what ensued over the next 25 years, but he does not appear on the Litsheim farm in the 1900 census.
Notes for BOL ENDRESDATTER:|
Bolette Endresdatter was seven years older than her husband, Johannes, and was usually called Bol. She and Johannes raised four children. Although living on the Litsheim farm in 1875, with other brothers of her husband's, by 1900 (age 62) she is shown living with her oldest son Bjarne Litsheim, and her daughter in law, Laura Lidsheim. Still in Voss, the homestead is identified as "Bruland under Lekve". She is using the Lidsheim name, rather than her birthname, as it was becoming popular in Norway to select a permanent last name, and not to use the patronymic system. Johannes is not there, but she is shown as married, not widowed. Others in the household are a mother, Inger Naesheim, her son Jonnes Naesheim, daughter Johanne Naesheim another couple, Anders and Marta Opkvitne, and two single individuals, Josef Egdetvedt and Martin Fadnaes.
|ii.||MADS BJORNSON LITSHEIM, b. 1847, Voss, Hordaland Cty. Norway, near Bergen; d. 1926, Wisconsin; m. ANNA MAGNESDATTER VAETHE, October 23, 1877, Voss, Hordaland, Norway; b. 1853, Voss, Hordaland Cnty. Norway; d. November 1912, Chicago, IL.|
Notes for MADS BJORNSON LITSHEIM:|
Mads was raised in a large family of three brothers and four sisters. The second oldest, Mads graduated from a teacher's college in Voss in 1868 and was a teacher there until 1881. He taught at Lone Leidalskredsen. He then may have taught in Christiana (Oslo) until emigrating to America about 1886, at age 39.
Mads and Anna were married 1877 in Voss and their two sons were born there. It is unknown exactly why Mads left Norway, but others of that time emigrated due the promise of land and opportunity in America and more than 1000 persons left Voss for America over a five year period, from 1883 to 1888.
Some farmers, many of whom might have been relatives from the area, had left Voss as early at 1839 and helped establish the first Norwegian settlement near Madison, WI. A history of the area describes its importance in becoming the first capital of the Wisconsin territory, and from 1850 through the civil war, the population mushroomed.
It is unknown exactly when and how Mads traveled but he later sent for to Anna and the boys, who followed him there late in 1888. They lived in Koshkonong Prairie, WI and he taught at three schools run by Pastor Gunstein Krostu, according to a 1930 book by K.A. Rene, "Historie om udvandringer fra Voss. " The family is thought to have later moved to the Holden Parish area of Minnesota for a while, where he continued his religious teaching and also was a newspaper and book agent.
The Norway census of 1900 shows Mads staying with his youngest sister Ranveig and brother-in -law Sjur Knutsen Gjerstad on the Gjerstad farm in Voss. His mother and two unmarried sisters were all living there as well as Sjur's parents. The parents' names were Knut Sjur Sjursen (83) and Ragnhilde Odsdatter (79). The reason for his stay in Norway at that time is not known.
By this time he used the surname "Litsheim", which he used in America, and it is believed that the farm name Litsheim, is a derivative of the ancient family farm in Norway called "Lissheim". He gave his home as Minnesota, USA, and profession as "farmer". If Anna accompanied him to Norway, she must have been visiting elsewhere, as she is not shown on the census with Mads, nor has she been located in Minnesota.
Anna died in 1912, leaving Mads a widower at age 65. He is thought to have died in Wisconsin in 1926, age 79, and is buried there.
Notes for ANNA MAGNESDATTER VAETHE:|
The 1875 Norway census for Hovden in Voss shows Anna Magnesdatter, a boarder, who makes a living with handiwork, staying in the home of Villum Kolbeinsson. If this is our Anna, she was 28 years old at the time.
A marriage of Anna Magnesdatter to Mads Bjornesen in Voss has been documented as October 23, 1877 but there is some question as to whether this is the correct couple. Their son, Bjorne was born on January 8, 1878.
Anna used several variations of the name Anna and Anne, as well as the spelling of Veathe, Vaethe, and Vethe. She emigrated from Bergen, Norway on August 28,1888 with her two sons, Bjorn (age given as 20, but he was more likely 10 years old) and Johannes, who was 8. Emigration records show she was joining her husband who was "working man" in America. She used the name "Vaethe" on this journey, and it is probably the name of the farm or community from which she came, as often was the custom. The name of the ship they traveled on is not documented, but was probably the SS Norge, which made regular trips from Bergen to Hull, England.
Anna is buried in Mt. Olive Cemetery in Chicago, IL . Her date of death, provided by the cemetery is November 26, 1912.
|iii.||MARTHA BJORNESDATTER LITSHEIM, b. 1849.|
|iv.||CECILIA BJORNESDATTER LITSHEIM, b. 1851.|
Notes for CECILIA BJORNESDATTER LITSHEIM:|
Also shown in 1900 census as Sicilea, never married.
|v.||STORK BJORNESON LITSHEIM, b. 1853.|
|vi.||ANNA BJORNESDATTER LITSHEIM, b. 1855.|
Notes for ANNA BJORNESDATTER LITSHEIM:|
The 1900 census indicates Anna was unmarried at age 45.
|vii.||NIELS BJORNESEN LITSHEIM, b. 1857.|
|viii.||RANVEI BJORNESDATTER LITSHEIM, b. 1860; m. SJUR KNUTSEN GJERSTAD, October 07, 1890, Den Norske Kirke; b. 1855, Voss.|
Notes for RANVEI BJORNESDATTER LITSHEIM:|
1900 Norwegian census data shows Ranvei Bjornesdatter living with her husband Sjur Knutsen Gjerstad( Gaardbruger Ijaasmed) or farmer, on Gjerstad. Brother Mads Bjornesen Litsheim was visiting from Minneapols, and mother, Inger Madsdatter, sisters Anna and Sicilea are shown, with Sjur's parents. No children are listed.
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