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Descendants of Frederik Vilhelm Sørensen

Generation No. 1

1. FREDERIK VILHELM5 SØRENSEN (SØREN4 OLSEN, OLE3 SØRENSEN, SØREN2 OLUFSEN, OLUF1 OLSEN) was born 02 November 1852 in Sæbyhoj, Sæby Parish, Holbæk Co, Denmark1, and died 18 April 1930 in Froid, Richland Co, Montana. He married SOPHIE CHRISTENSDATTER 21 March 1882 in Denmark, daughter of CHRISTEN THOMSEN and MAREN CHRISTOFFERSDATTER. She was born 20 March 1861 in Ruds-Vedby, Holbæk Co, Denmark, and died 07 June 1955 in Medicine Lake, Sheridan Co, Montana.

Notes for F
From The Sorensen Family by Grant Sorensen -
Fredrick Vilhelm Sorensen was the first of the family to cross the ocean in 1869 when he was 17 years old. The ship was the 'White Starline' Royal Mail Steamer, SS Britannic. He came to Minnesota via New York. At this time Ulysses S. Grant was the USA President. Fred was extremely impressed by the wide open spaces, in Denmark they had to be careful when they stepped out the front door of their house or they would step on the plants in their vegetable garden. The yard was so cramped and small. He was so enthused that he became what could be called a self made immigration officer, and travelled back to New York himself and then to Denmark. He made this trip many times, 7 times during one 10 year period. A one way trip would last usually between 6 and 7 weeks. Each time he would arrange for others to be brought back to Minnesota. He would help them get settled, file on their claims, he would even have to write and print for them, filling out forms, etc. He brought his father, Soren Olsen, over first in 1872, then his brother Ole Sorensen. There was also one sister that came over, whose last name was Jensen. Fred was the guardian for his sister's children whose names were William, James, Christine and Fred.
On his fourth trip back he attended church in February of 1882 and there he met Sophia Josephine Thomsen. She invited him home for dinner (well, Sophia and her mother, Maren, had been wanting to go to America and Fred was an immigration officer wasn't he?). Both Sophia and her mother attended Baptist gatherings in Denmark in a private home, these were secret meetings and if they had done this openly they would have been ridiculed, scorned and maybe even stoned.
Sophia had an inheritance of some size coming from her father, but she had to be 21 years of age and not married in order to receive it. On 21 March 1882 she became Mrs. Fred Sorensen, after an acquaintance of just six weeks. Later that Spring of 1882, they with others and her Mother left for the USA. Sophia was pregnant on the boat but lost the baby due to a miscarriage. Even through all this they kept the marriage a secret and she did get the inheritance.
From 1883 to 1901 they lived in Storden, Cottonwood County, Minnesota, about 25 miles from Windom.
In 1889 Fred made another trip back to Denmark. This time he brought over the Peder Madsen family. Their port of entry was Sioux St. Marie, Michigan. Mrs. Peder Madsen was Maren Christoffersdatter Bang's (his mother-in-law's) sister, Karen.
In the fall of 1901 they moved to northern Minnesota near the towns of Ulen and Flom. In 1905 Alfred and Joe left for Montana and homesteaded near Dagmar. Lydia and her daughter joined her brothers there in the spring of 1909 and in 1910 their brother David joined them.
In July of 1913 Fred, Sophia, Agnes, Esther, and Nina went out to visit the homesteaders in Montana. All the farming equipment in Walworth was sold in March of 1917 and the family moved to Marvin, South Dakota, where Grandma Sophia's stepfather, Peter Bang, lived. In July of 1918 Fred, Esther, and Nina went to Bergen, North Dakota, to help Marie with the harvest. Esther and Nina stayed in Bergen to attend school and Fred left for Montana to help Joe and his family during the flu epidemic.
In March of 1919 Fred, Sophia, Esther, and Nina moved to Ruso, North Dakota, and in October of 1921 Fred and Sophia moved to Montana.
In later years Fred dealt in Real Estate and was Township Assessor and Clerk in Minnesota. Some of Fred's children remember him as a disciplinarian and they say Fred wasn't much of a farmer, where he could have made some money he was always 'over his head' promoting other things.

From Flemming Aasklint, Danish researcher - Testes (witnesses at Baptism) of "Frederich Wilhelm Sorensen" on 9 January 1853 were Maren Sophie Larsdatter, Lars Pedersen, Christian Jorgensen, and Jens Hansen.

On 1 May 1868, in the wake of numerous scandals involving trusting emigrants who had been cheated by Danish emigration agents, the Danish parliament passed a law calling for stricter regulation of these agents. In accordance with this law, the Copenhagen Chief of Police had to approve and monitor the work of all the emigration agents in Denmark and to authorize all tickets to overseas destinations made out in Denmark. In the Copenhagen Police Records of Emigrants we find Sorensen, Frederik Vilhelm, occupation - Landmand, age - 17, destination - Kansas City, contract no. - 944, registration date - May 5, 1870, birth parish - Sæby S., last residence - Holbaek A., destination country - USA, IDcode I6971S1617.
(Sørensen, Frederik Vilhelm, Landmand, 17, Kansas City, 944, 5/5/1870, , -, Sæby S., Holbæk A., USA, , I6971S1617).

The Centennial History of Cottonwood County, Minnesota (1970), Storden township was originally known as Westbrook township, there being four townships together under one name at that time. There were scarcely any settlers in the township until the spring of 1870 when immigrants from Denmark, Norway, and Sweden settled. At that time in Denmark a common laboring man was paid 24 cents a day and two meals. Most of the first homes of these settlers were dugouts and the first crops were wheat and oats.

In 1872 the township was severed from Westbrook and since most of the settlers were Norwegian it was renamed "Town of Norsk." There were no regular roads, bridges, or signs for guidance. New Ulm was 60 miles away and the nearest market town. At 20 miles a day it took farmers 3 days to get to market and they camped on the prairie along the way. Mail was gotten twice a year in New Ulm and newspapers were scarce. There was a small town one mile west and north of the present town of Storden named Copenhagen and a post office was established there in 1873. The railroad came through Windom in 1875 and the government decided that the name of the town was too long so in the spring of 1875 a meeting was held at the Martin Halland farm to reorganize the township and the post office. The name "Storden" was proposed and adopted for the township and the post office at this meeting.

Most farm work was done by hand during this time. The oxen pulled the plow and the farmer walked behind and guided it. The seed was scattered by hand and the grain was cut with a cradle which would bunch the grain as it was cut. Threshing was done by pounding the grain with a flail. Horse drawn machinery came into use in the early 1900's.

For several years in the 1870's there were crop failures and grasshopper plagues in the area and the Danish Baptist Church of Clarks Grove sent some relief. During distribution a few gospel meetings were held and on July 12, 1879, the First Scandinavian Baptist Church of Westbrook, later the Storden Baptist Church was organized. Their first building, a simple structure 18 by 24 feet with homemade pews and three windows on each side, was erected where the cemetery is now located. A Ladies Missionary Society was begun in 1882 and the Sunday School in 1885. In 1893 the church building was moved to a new site about one-fourth mile east of Double Lakes and between 1895 and 1903 the building was sold, removed, and replaced by a new structure.

Betheen Bean of Westbrook, Minnesota (a descendant of Fred's sister, Mette) sent a copy of Fred's Naturalization Papers (Second Paper and Proof) from Cottonwood Co, Minnesota dated January 5, 1887. The witnesses listed were David Pratt and C. H. Anderson and it was signed by Fred. It also states that he filed his first papers (Declaration of Intention) in Brown Co, Minnesota, on January 22, 1878.

1880 Cottonwood Co Minnesota Census, page 64D:
Ole Sorenson, Self, Married, Male, W, 40, Denmark, Farmer, Denmark, Denmark
Anna Sorenson, wife, Married, Female, W, 24, Norway, keeping house, Norway, Norway
Magreth Sorenson, dau, single, female, W, 3, Minnesota, Denmark, Norway
Nels George Sorenson, son, single, male, W, 1, Minnesota, Denmark, Norway
Frederick Sorenson, brother, single, male, W, 27, Denmark, laborer, Denmark, Denmark

From Danish Emigration Archives -- leaving for Windom, Minnesota in 1882:

Sorensen, Fred. W., Arbejdsmand, 29, Windom, Min., 2112, 4/5/1882, , -, Amerika, USA, , I8182S1402
Sorensen, Sofie, Hustru, 21, Windom, Min., 2112, 4/5/1882, , -, Amerika, USA, , I8182S1403
Christoffersen, Sofie, Husholderske, 42, Windom, Min., 2117, 4/5/1882, , -, Sorø, USA, , I8182C1402

From the 1900 Cottonwood Co Minnesota Census for Westbrook Township - Fred Sorensen is listed as born in November of 1852, 48 years old, and married 18 years. He and both of his parents were born in Denmark. He emigrated in 1870, had been in the US 30 years and was a naturalized citizen. His occupation was listed as farmer. His wife, Sophia, and 11 of the children (Priscilla through Lillie) are listed.

Fred W. Sorensen Family by Esther Sorensen Larsen

During the early part of the twentieth century, eight young people from the Sorensen family came to Sheridan County, Montana, from Minnesota to establish their homes. In 1905, Alfred and Joseph set out. They travelled in a covered wagon across the prairies of North Dakota to south of Dagmar, Montana. The wagon was their home, but the first morning brought a surprise. Although the prairies seemed lonely and desolate, they found that thieves had stolen their horses. In haste, Joseph set out to track them. With the help of a bicycle, he travelled thirty miles before sundown. He found the horses tied to a wagon, minus harness. Fearing the thieves hiding in a shack nearby, Joseph quickly rode off with the horses. One of many struggles was this.
After some time and tedious trips for supplies needed for building shelters, they travelled east to find work, for their money was gone.
Having established a lowly home--a sod shack--Alfred returned to marry Annie Torgerson in 1908. Alma (Mrs. Mike Hoff) and Franklin, who now lives in Thompson Falls, joined the family. Annie helped many neighbors in time of sickness or at the birth of a baby.
Marie and Lydia Sorensen soon joined their brothers and took land adjoining theirs. The sisters helped by baking, washing and sewing and were repaid by having some of the heavier tasks done for them. At harvest time, the girls worked in cook cars. Marie married Ludwig Wastwet and Lydia became Mrs. Tom Flick. By then, 1910, brother David joined the group.
Hardship and sadness did come, Marie Wastwet had been blessed with a daughter, Marian, in 1911, but the twins born in 1913 died. A wise Indian woman by the name of Eliza Decept (Mrs. John Charette) was midwife. She could not speak English but was wise as to what had to be done and Marie's life was saved. This incident prompted Mr. and Mrs. Fred Sorensen to visit their sons and daughters in 1913, bringing Agnes, Esther, and Nina. Only Nina returned with them. Agnes married Martin Torgerson and her twin, Olive, married Elmer Rasmussen. Agnes and Martin bought the Wastwet homestead after Ludwig's death.
In 1915, Joseph married Oma Dean and two children were born to them. Joseph and Oma both died of influenza in 1918 leaving the children to the care of Lydia Flick, then a widow. The children were Freddie and Ruth.
After teaching a number of years, Esther married Einer Larsen and they have four children: Melborn in Wyoming; Palmer in South America; Nina Grundy of Minneapolis; and Lily Ann Schoessler of Billings.

From the Plentywood Herald, 24 April 1930 - F. W. Sorensen Passes on Friday, April 18th
We record the passing of F. W. Sorensen who passed away at the home of his son Alfred, about 20 miles east of Medicine Lake, on April 18th.
Mr. Sorensen was a grand old man. He was Christian in every sense of the word and was a leader in all church and Sunday School work in the community where he lived until poor health made it impossible for him to continue with these activities. He was troubled with dropsy and several other ailments, but his prescribed time on earth had expired and old age was the real reason for his passing on, as he was 77 years and 5 months old at the time of his death.
For some time previous to his demise he spent considerable time at the home of his daughter, Mrs. W. A. Deem of Medicine Lake.
Previous to settling here in 1918 the Sorensen family resided in Baker County, Minnesota, but came here with his wife that year to live near his son Alfred Sorensen and where he and his wife lived most of the time since.
The funeral was held at the Alfred Sorensen home on Tuesday, April 22nd with Reverend M. Rhode of McCabe officiating, and a great many people were in attendance to pay final tribute to the venerable old man whom all had learned to love; and very few were there who did not shed tears as the last rites were said and the casket was placed in its final resting place.
Sixteen children were born to the Sorensrn family of whom 12 survive him, and also a number of grandchildren. The children are: Mrs. W. A. Deem, Medicine Lake; Mrs. L. C. Madsen and Mrs. Hannah Busk of Michigan; Mrs. Lee Tyson, Bergen, North Dakota; Mrs. Orval Mills and Mrs. Lawrence Larsen of Velva, North Dakota; Mrs. Einer Larson, McCabe; Mrs. Elmer Rasmussen, Warm Springs, Montana; Mrs. Martin Torgerson, of Dagmar; Alfred Sorensrn of Dagmar; Herbert Sorensen of Devil's Lake and David Sorensen of Willmar, Minnesota.
The remains were prepared for internment by the Fulkerson-Nelson Mortuary of Plentywood who were in charge at the funeral.
Words of condolence for the kin of this splendid and well-beloved patriarch as well as appreciation of the thorough Christian life exhibited by him during his long sojourn here on earth are heard at every hand, and it is with regret that we have to record his death.

See a copy of an Obituary for Fred (in Danish) and a history of Saeby Church (also in Danish) from Betheen Bean.

More About F
Burial: 22 April 1930, Brethren Cemetery, Froid, Montana
Cause of Death: "infirmities of old age" and dropsy
Confirmation: 1866, Sæby Parish, Holbæk Co, Denmark
Medical Information: bed ridden for 2 months before death

Notes for S
Ruth Ellen Maness, Danish researcher, found the record of Sophie's christening in the Family History Library IGI - Sophie Thomsen, christened 25 March 1861 in Ruds-Vedby parish, Holbæk County, Denmark. She then checked the Parish Registers of Ruds-Vedby (FHL film 049433) and found: Born 20 March 1861, christened 25 March 1861, Sophie, illegitimate daughter of the "lady of the night", Maren Sophie Christoffersdatter, and the released (dismissed), pensioned school teacher Thomsen living at Vedby Mark. She then searched the 1860 Census (FHL film 039551 item 1) for Thomsen's first name: living alone in a household in the village of Vedby was the unmarried Christen Thomsen, age 56, released, pensioned school teacher. She searched for Sophie's confirmation record to find her true patronymic surname but she was not confirmed in Ruds-Vedby parish. Her patronymic surname would have been Christensdatter since her father's name was Christen Thomsen.
A search was made of the "moving-out lists" (Afgangslister) for Ruds-Vedby parish and between May and July of 1864 the unmarried female, Maren Sophie Christoffersen, age 25, who had been working at Schoolteacher Thomsen's house, moved to Slaglille parish in Sorø County to work for Jens Larsen at Bronsmark.

From The Sorensen Family by Grant Sorensen - Both Sophia and her mother, Maren, attended Baptist gatherings in Denmark in a private home. These were secret meetings and if they had done this openly they would have been ridiculed, scorned, and maybe even stoned.
Sophia had an inheritance of some size coming from her father but she had to be 21 and unmarried in order to receive it. On March 21, 1882, she became Mrs. Fred Sorensen, after an aquaintance of just 6 weeks. Later that Spring, they with others and her Mother, Maren, left for the US. Sophia was pregnant on the boat but lost the baby due to a miscarriage.

From the 1900 Cottonwood Co Minnesota Census for Westbrook Township:
Sophia is listed with her husband Fred Sorensen in Enumeration District 16, family number 29. It states that she was born in March of 1861, was 39 years old, had been married 18 years, and was the mother of 13 children, 11 still living (twin boys had died). She and both her parents were born in Denmark. She emigrated in 1882 and had been in the US 18 years.

Plentywood Herald, 13 October 1949 - Medicine Lake Octogenarian, Here Since 1913, Still Active Despite Age - A Medicine Lake woman who was born more the 88 years ago in Denmark is still spry enough to get around and do a lot of things that many a younger woman can not do. The octogenarian is Mrs. Sophia Sorenson who came to live in Sheridan County back in 1913.
Mrs. Sorenson was born 20 March 1861 at Saby, Sjalland, Denmark, the daughter of a Professor of Languages who taught in Denmark for more than 20 years.
Her professor-father died while she was still in her teens and she helped her mother earn a living by spinning yarn on the same spinning wheel on which she had learned the art of spinning in her tender years. It had belonged to her grandmother who taught her spinning.
Throughout her life she has cherished that spinning wheel, now a 175 years old and which she brought with her when she came to America.
Romance, of course, came to this young Danish girl and she was married to Frederick W. Sorenson in her native country March 21, 1882.
A month later the newlyweds started on a very long honeymoon. They boarded an immigrant ship for the land of promise, America!
The first home of the young couple was on the bridegroom's homestead near Westbrook in Minnesota.
The "near" hardly describes the town because it was 40 miles away and the early trips were made by team and wagon for supplies for the pioneers.
That was the Sorenson home for nearly 20 years but in 1901 they felt the urge to push further west and settled on a farm in Becker County, Minnesota, just east of Fargo, North Dakota.
But in 1913, after 4 of their children had taken homesteads in Sheridan County, the Sorensons decided that here at last was the ideal western place they sought. They settled on a farm in the Volmer area.
Trials of the pioneers were theirs in the new land but those hardships seemed to have had a way of strengthening, rather than weakening the hardy Mrs. Sorenson; for today, the little lady who is nearing 90, gives every appearance of being able to meet the world and give a good account of herself in spite of her years.
Mrs. Sorenson is the mother of 16 children, 9 of whom are still living. She has 43 grandchildren and 47 great-grandchildren, scattered from Alaska to the Panama Canal and from Hawaii to Michigan. Children living in Sheridan County are Mrs. William Deem of Medicine Lake with whom she makes her home and Mrs. Einer Larsen also of Medicine Lake.
In the twilight of her years Mrs. Sorenson still delights in getting out the old spinning wheel now and then, as she did for the Plentywood Herald during the recent Harvest Festival when she spun yarn for throngs of onlookers in the Herald's booth at the City Auditorium.
Mr. Sorenson died in 1930 and since that time she has made her home among her children.

Medicine Lake Matron Rites Held on Friday
The Reverend Ray Benhardus, pastor of the Baptist Church in McCabe, officiated at funeral services last Friday, June 10th, for Mrs. Sophia Sorenson, 94, Medicine Lake.
Conducted at 2 pm, service was held in the Medicine Lake Lutheran Church and burial was in the family plot in the Brethren Church cemetery 10 miles east of Froid. Pallbearers were 6 grandsons: Glynn Deem, Manard Torgerson, Art Torgerson, and Lowell Rasmussen all from the Medicine Lake area, and Emmett Tyson and Ronald Mills, Minot, North Dakota.
Sophia Josephine Tompson was born on March 20, 1861 at Saby, Sjelland, Denmark to Professor and Mrs. Christian Tompson. Her childhood years were spent with her parents near and in Copenhagen where Professor Tompson was an educator.
During those years in Denmark she was active in the work of the Baptist Church, serving in any capacity she was able.
On March 22, 1882, she became the bride of Frederich W. Sorenson who had first come to the United States in 1869, and as an American and immigration officer, had returned to Denmark on business. The couple emigrated to the United States shortly, and after a brief stay in New York they journeyed on the southern Minnesota where they homesteaded near Windom.
About 20 years later the Sorensons migrated with their families to northern Minnesota, and in 1918 they moved to the Volmer community in Sheridan County, Montana, to be near several of their children who had homesteaded there. Sixteen children were born to the couple, seven of whom preceded their mother in death.
Mr. Sorenson in April 1930, and since then his wife made her home among her daughters, Mrs. Marie Tyson and Mrs. Orval Mills, North Dakota, and Mrs. William Deem and Mrs. Einer Larsen, Medicine Lake.
Prior to her death, Mrs. Sorenson was quite active until the last 15 months preceding when she was afflicted with a lingering illness. However, she kept doing whatever she could to keep in touch with relatives and friends through letter writing and visits. She was always active in church and WMS work and cared for aged persons several times in her home.
Survivors include 7 daughters--Mrs. Priscilla Madsen and Mrs. Hannah Busk, Michigan, Mrs. Marie Tyson and Mrs. Orval Mills, North Dakota, and Mrs. Olive Rasmussen, Mrs. William Deem, and Mrs. Einer Larsen, Medicine Lake; and 2 sons--David, Minnesota, and Alfred, Thompson Falls; also 45 grandchildren, 89 great-grandchildren, and 5 great-great-grandchildren.

More About S
Burial: 10 June 1955, Brethren Cemetery, Froid, Montana
Children of F
2. i.   PRISCILLA JOSEPHINE6 SORENSEN, b. 19 June 1883, Storden, Cottonwood Co, Minnesota; d. 06 November 1975, Muskegon, Muskegon Co, Michigan.
3. ii.   ALFRED WILLIAM SORENSEN, b. 25 September 1884, Willmar, Kandiyohi Co, Minnesota; d. 12 October 1957, Thompson Falls, Sanders Co, Montana.
4. iii.   JOSEPH SORENSEN, b. 28 October 1885, Storden, Cottonwood Co, Minnesota; d. 12 November 1918, Sheridan Co, Montana.
5. iv.   MARIE ANNA SORENSEN, b. 20 February 1887, Windom, Cottonwood Co, Minnesota; d. 16 January 1973, Minot, Ward Co, North Dakota.
6. v.   LYDIA CLARA SORENSEN, b. 25 May 1888, Storden, Cottonwood Co, Minnesota; d. 07 May 1985, Plentywood, Sheridan Co, Montana.
  vi.   DAVID SORENSEN, b. 23 October 1889, Storden, Cottonwood Co, Minnesota; d. 08 February 1962, Fergus Falls, Otter Tail Co, Minnesota.
Lily Ann, Esther Sorensen Larsen's daughter, remembers that David and his mother, Grandma Sophie, took the train to North Dakota for the funeral of Ludwick Wastwet (Marie's husband) in July of 1915 but the train arrived too late for the funeral. David was a close friend of Ludwick's and grieved inwardly from this emotional wound never fully recovering. Eventually, David was sent to a mental hospital at Fergus Falls, Montana. Previously, David had been struck by lightning and this event could have affected him also. He lived out his life in the hospital.

  vii.   TWIN BOY ONE SORENSEN, b. 20 April 1891, Storden, Cottonwood Co, Minnesota; d. 20 April 1891, Storden, Cottonwood Co, Minnesota.
  viii.   TWIN BOY TWO SORENSEN, b. 20 April 1891, Storden, Cottonwood Co, Minnesota; d. 20 April 1891, Storden, Cottonwood Co, Minnesota.
7. ix.   HERBERT LEVI SORENSEN, b. 20 April 1892, Storden, Cottonwood Co, Minnesota; d. 22 November 1944, Everett, Snohomish Co, Washington.
8. x.   HANNAH CHRISTIANA SORENSEN, b. 21 February 1894, Storden, Cottonwood Co, Minnesota; d. 02 November 1978, Kalamazoo, Kalamazoo Co, Michigan.
9. xi.   AGNES MAGDALENE SORENSEN, b. 28 February 1896, Westbrook, Cottonwood Co, Minnesota; d. 05 October 1946, Plentywood, Sheridan Co, Montana.
10. xii.   OLIVE MARTHA SORENSEN, b. 28 February 1896, Westbrook, Cottonwood Co, Minnesota; d. 01 January 1982, Plentywood, Sheridan Co, Montana.
  xiii.   LILIAN HULDA SORENSEN, b. 20 October 1898, Storden, Cottonwood Co, Minnesota; d. 10 June 1934, Voltaire, McHenry Co, North Dakota; m. LAWRENCE JEROME LARSON, 14 November 1920, Voltaire, McHenry Co, North Dakota; b. 10 May 1893, Lyle, Mower Co, Minnesota; d. 14 August 1973, Minot, Ward Co, North Dakota.
  xiv.   FRANK MORDECAI SORENSEN, b. 23 October 1901, Flom, Norman Co, Minnesota; d. July 1910, Flom, Norman Co, Minnesota.
Burial: July 1910, Walworth Baptist Church Cemetery, Flom, Minnesota

11. xv.   ESTHER SOPHIA SORENSEN, b. 09 June 1903, Flom, Norman Co, Minnesota.
12. xvi.   NINA ELIZABETH SORENSEN, b. 06 July 1905, Flom, Norman Co, Minnesota; d. 19 December 1996, Velva, McHenry Co, North Dakota.

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