Sunday, 27 December 2015

Christian Hoover (1776-1850) (52 Ancestors Week 52) Theme: "Resolution"

When asked about her ancestry, my maternal grandmother Idella Edwards always mentioned the "Pennsylvania Dutch". This Pennsylvania Dutch line was through her father Charles Edwards' maternal Hoover line.

When Iowa genealogist Alice Hoyt Veen discovered Charles's mother to be Barbara Hoover, early online searches led me to believe that perhaps we could follow these ancestors back through George Hoover to immigrant Andreas Hoover (or Huber) who emigrated to America in about 1758 from Ellerstad, Bad Durkheim in what is now Germany.

Further research, however, has led me to doubt this connection. The repetitious use of the names Andreas/Andrew, George,  Christian, Philip and Samuel have created much confusion around who is part of which family. Resolution of this matter remains elusive as 2015 draws to a close. For this reason, I will focus on Barbara's grandfather (my 4th great grandfather) Christian Hoover, a connection of which I am more confident.

Christian Hoover was born in Pennsylvania 10 February 1776. At around the age of 20 he married Maria Barbara Harmon, daughter of Christian Harmon and Christina (or Anna) Magdalena Lenhard. The couple had at least 5 children: Samuel born 1796, George born 1799, Catherine born 1800, Philip born 1802, and Christian (my 3rd great grandfather) born 1809. The family were members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church at Crooked Creek in 1810.

The 1820 census for Plum Creek, Armstrong County, PA lists Christian Hoover with the total number of family members being 7. Ten years later, he is still in Plum Creek; he and his wife's ages are both given as between 50 and 60; there is one male under 5, one male 10-15 and one 20-30 as well as one female between 10-15.

Location of Plum Creek, PA
Google Earth Image
We don't know much about the particular details of their lives in Plum Creek, Armstrong County, PA, but Christian would eventually die there on 20 February 1850 just after his 74th birthday; his wife outlived him by a couple of decades. He is buried at Saint John Lutheran Cemetery, Sagamore, Armstrong County, PA.

Photo Courtesy Burke Stoughton
Find A Grave website

Christian and Maria Barbara were part of the group called the "Pennsylvania Dutch". Contrary to how it sounds, this does NOT mean they were from Holland. Rather, it refers to early German-speaking immigrants to Pennsylvania and their descendants. To say that they were "from Germany" is also not correct, since Germany did not exist as a country at the time. The majority of them came from what is today southwestern Germany, the Rhineland-Palatinate and Baden-Wurttenberg region, while others were Swiss, Alsatians and French Protestant Huguenots. They traditionally spoke the language known as Pennsylvania German or "Deutsch". This group of settlers arrived in America in waves in the late 17th century through the 18th century.

Area for Origins of Pennsylvania Dutch Emigrants
Google Earth Image
They were not all of one religious affiliation. As we know, Christian's family were Lutheran, the most common group. Others might have been Reformed or Anabaptist and some were Mennonite and Amish. Many were persecuted in Germany for their Protestant religious beliefs.

In addition to religious persecution, the area from which they came was ground zero for numerous wars over the years. During the Thirty Years War and again during the War of the Grand Alliance, troops ravaged the area, burning homes and crops, pillaging and plundering. The result was similar to what is happening today in war-ravaged regions - thousands, if not millions, of refugees.

To add to the misery, the winter of 1708-9 was the harshest for 100 years. Many of the vineyards and farms suffered severe losses. At the invitation of Queen Anne of England, the first wave of refugees sailed down the Rhine to Rotterdam. The intention was to head to Pennsylvania, but some found themselves in England or Ireland. Eventually, some 32,000 of the refugees took advantage of the offer, but the English couldn't handle any more and issued a Royal proclamation in German that any immigrants arriving after October 1709 would be sent back where they came from. (Once again one is reminded of today's Syrian refugee situation with borders being closed to those trying to escape.) There is no indication that our Hoovers were included in this first group.

Pennsylvania under Quaker William Penn was a much more welcoming place than most. As a result, as further waves of German-speaking immigrants made their way down the Rhine and across the Atlantic, that was most often the destination of choice. We don't know if our Hoovers arrived directly in Pennsylvania where we first find Christian and his family. We don't know if it was Christian's parents, or, more likely, his grandparents, who made the journey across the ocean.

Whichever family members were the immigrants, they would have made their way down the Rhine to Rotterdam. The passage down the Rhine itself took 4 to 6 weeks, with tolls and fees being demanded at every turn. (Again, one is reminded of today's refugees enduring extortionate rates to sail to freedom.)

The Pennsylvania Dutch settled primarily in the southeastern and south central part of the State. By the time of the American Revolution, nearly half the population of Pennsylvania consisted of the Pennsylvania Dutch. They tended to side with the Patriots, but many (including some Hoovers) refused on religious grounds to take part in the fighting.

This posting closes my "52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks" for 2015 with the Pennsylvania Dutch ancestry being unresolved. My New Year's Resolutions must include finding parents and grandparents for Christian Hoover and finding where they came from in the area that is now Germany.


  • Find a Grave website for Christian Hoover
  • Wikipedia Article on "Pennsylvania Dutch" accessed 4 December 2015
  • "Palatine Germans to America - their History of Immigration" accessed online 4 December 2015 at
  • Jim Sutcliffe pedigree chart first provided 8 August 2010
  • Kris Hocker website on the Hoovers at
  • US and International Marriage Records, 1560-1900 on
  •, Pennsylvania, Compiled Census and Census Substitutes Index, 1772-1890

Saturday, 19 December 2015

John Machell (1509-1558) (52 Ancestors Week 51) Theme: "Nice"

The holiday season is traditionally a time for getting dressed up nicely to go out on the town. It seemed like a good week to feature my 11th great grandfather John Machell of London, England, who was, among other things, a haberdasher. Don't let the simplicity of that job title fool you - John was not just a shopkeeper!

Even the name "haberdasher" evokes nice images of refined dressing. A haberdasher is someone who sells small items for sewing, things like ribbons and buttons, and can also be a dealer in men's furnishings such as suits and shirts. Sadly, we don't have haberdashers, as such, in Canada today.

No, this isn't John Machell, but is representative of men's fashions in Tudor times
Portrait of a Young Man by unknown artist, in the Public Domain  from Wikimedia Commons
John Machell was born about 1509 and led a nice, if short, life. By the time he was 40, he was a wealthy wool merchant living at the elegant red brick Tudor-style Sutton House which had been built a decade or so earlier by Sir Ralph Sadleir, one of Henry VIII's Privy Councillors. The house is considered today to be haunted. Dogs are often heard wailing in the dead of night. These are thought to be the dogs that belonged to John Machell when he lived there. Whenever dogs come into Sutton House, they often stop short at the foot of the staircase, hackles raised, staring at something on the staircase invisible to the human eye. Another ghost is thought to be that of John's daughter-in-law who died giving birth to twins in 1574. The house is now restored and under the auspices of the National Trust; a visit would seem to be in order.

Sutton House, Hackney, London September 2005
Photographer : Fin Fahey, Wikimedia Commons

John married Joan Lodyngton, daughter of Henry Lodyngton and Joan Kyrby. They had three sons - John Machell the younger, Matthew (my 10th great grandfather) who was born about 1535 and Thomas, the youngest.

John was obviously a successful businessman. He was Master of the Clothworkers' Guild 1547, Auditor of the Clothworkers' Guild 1551-3, Alderman of the City of London 1556-8 and Sheriff of London 1555-6. The position of Sheriff of London today entails only nominal duties, but in John's time, it would have meant that he was expected to attend the judges at the Central Criminal Court Old Bailey and take on judicial responsibilities. Two sheriffs were elected each year, one of whom was an alderman (like John) and eventually that person was expected to become the Lord Mayor of London. This didn't happen in John's case - perhaps because he was not a well man by that time.

John Machell died in August of 1558.

Funerals at the time were elaborate events steeped in rules of pageantry. Each person's status determined what position in the procession he or she would occupy and what colours and items of clothing they were expected to wear. No doubt the haberdashers were kept very busy outfitting people properly for these events.

Thanks to an informative contemporary history written by fellow clothworker Henry Machyn, we know that John's corpse would have been covered with a pall of black velvet, borne by yeomen in black coats and assisted by gentlemen in gowns and hoods. The order observed by the Lord Mayor, the Aldermen and Sheriffs for their meetings and wearing of their apparel throughout the year was printed in Stowe's Survey and stated that the following was to be worn for the burial of an Alderman (such as John) as the "last love, duty and ceremony one to another": the Aldermen were to wear their violet gowns, except such as have black gowns or mourning. When an Alderman died, the master Swordbearer was to have a black gown and to carry the Sword in black before the Lord Mayor. The Master Chamberlain was not to wear his tippet (long ceremonial scarf) unless the Lord Mayor or Aldermen wore their scarlet or violet. For John's funeral, the arms were described as "Per pale argent and sable, three grey-hounds courant counterchanged, collared gules."

Machyn describes the offices that John had held and added that he was married to "Jone", daughter of Harry Lodyngton who then remarried to Sir Thomas Chamberlen, knight, and died herself 28 April 1565.

John had made his will on 26 July 1558 "in the 5th and 6th years of the reign of our sovereign Lord and Lady King Philip and Queen Mary." (Catholic Queen Mary I would herself die just four months later.) He obviously knew that he would be entitled to a special funeral for he makes this comment in the preamble to his will: "And my body to be buried in Christian burial after a decent and convenient order according to my Estate degree and vocation as shall be thought meet and convenient by my overseers."

He left one-third of his estate to be divided equally by his children, one-third for specific legacies (many to the poor and to his extended family) and the remaining one-third to his "well beloved wife Joan Machell". The estates that Joan received for her lifetime over and above any jointure or dower to which she would be entitled included among others the manor of Guilden Sutton in the County of Chester and all other lands there, his manor of Burneshed with the appurtenances in the County of Westmorland and all his lands in Hinton in the County of Southhampton and Dorset. His land holdings were extensive resulting in a will that went on for several pages. His three sons were left his jewellery including gold chains, rings and brooches. Quite clearly John Machell had led a very nice life indeed.


  • 573.html
  • "The Diary of Henry Machyn, Citizen and Merchant Tailor of London from AD 1550 to 1563" accessed online 4 December 2015 at
  • "Aldermen of the City of London" website accessed online 4 December 2015 at
  • Will of John Machell posted to by MerilynPedrick63 based on transcription done by Bridget Machell 2011 accessed 4 December 2015

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Captain George Denison (1620-1694) (52 Ancestors Week 50) My Theme: "December"

Wife of Captain George Denison - my 9th great grandmother Ann Borodell

My 9th great grandfather George Denison was the second son of that name born North of London in Bishop's Stortford, Hertfordshire, England to William Denison and Margaret Chandler. He was baptised there 395 years ago this week on 10 December 1620. The first George had been born in 1609 and had died in 1614 as a young child. This second George would have a longer and more vigourous life, living into his 70's.

Location of Bishop's Stortford
Image from Google Earth
Young George had an early adventure when he crossed the Atltantic aboard the Lion with his parents and two brothers as part of the "Great Migration". There were many other children making the journey and no doubt the boys, being boys, found much entertainment. He was eleven years old when he arrived in Roxbury, Massachusetts. The early church in Roxbury records his father William as its 3rd member and names William's sons Daniel, Edward and George. Daniel had been attending university at Cambridge when he was recalled by his father to join the family's migration. Edward was about 15. Another son John was in his mid-20's, had been educated at Cambridge and so decided to remain in England where he was a minister.

Accompanying the family on the voyage was George's tutor, the Reverend John Eliot. Education was obviously important to this family. They were quite well off and brought a good estate from England. Young George's early life in America was probably more comfortable than most. His father William held a number of public offices including Roxbury constable, Deputy to the General Court and committee member for inspection of ships.

Life in New England was never without controversy, however. William was one of five Roxbury men to be disarmed on 20 November 1637 for supporting Mr. Wheelwright and Mrs. Hutchinson. This was in regard to the Antinomian Controversy which raged in Puritan New England from 1636-1638. It pitted the majority of the Puritans against the adherents of a "covenant of grace" espoused by Cotton Mather and supported by Anne Hutchinson and her brother-in-law Reverend John Wheelwright. Apparently William Denison was also a supporter. The Antinomians were generally regarded as heretics against the established laws. Concepts of gender and politics added to the disagreement. We don't know whether George's mother Margaret was one of the numerous women who followed Anne Hutchinson's teachings. Eventually, the Antinomian leaders were tried and banished, so perhaps William was fortunate to have been only disarmed! Young George by then would have been a young man of about 17, but there is no mention of any involvement by him in this whole controversy.

We do know that George fell in love with a young woman named Bridget Thompson when he was about 19. He proposed to Bridget by writing her a love poem:

It is an ordinance, my dear, divine,
Which God unto the sons of men makes shine,
Even marriage, to that whereof I speak,
And unto you therein my mind I break.

In Paradise, oft Adam God did tell,
To be alone for man would not be well--
He in His wisdom, therefore, thought it right
To bring a woman into Adam's sight;

A helper that for him might be most meet,
To comfort him by her doing discreet.
I of that stock am sprung--I mean from him--
And also of that tree I am a limb.

A branch, tho' young, yet I do think it good
That God's great vow by man be not withstood;
Alone I am, a helper I would find,
That might give satisfaction to my mind.

The party that doth satisfy the same
Is Miss Bridget Thompson by her name;
God having drawn my affections unto thee,
My heart's desire is--that thine may be to me.

This with my blottings, tho' they trouble you,
Yet pass them by, because I know not how--
Though they at this time should much better be,
For love it is, that first has been to thee.

And I would wish that they much better were,
Therefore, I pray, accept them as they are,
So hoping my desire I shall obtain,
Your own true lover, I, George Denison by name.

From my father's house in Roxbury To Miss Bridget Thompson, 1640.

Miss Bridget obviously approved of his sentiments for marry they did. They went on to have two daughters, Sarah and Hannah, but Bridget died giving birth to Hannah in 1643.

George was devastated. He returned to England that same year and was a soldier under Cromwell, participating on the evening of 2 July 1644 in the Battle of Marston Moor where he did great service.

Battle of Marston Moor, English Civil War
Painting by John Barker in the Public Domain

He was slightly wounded, taken prisoner but was able to make his escape and rejoin the Parliamentarians. He was more seriously wounded on the morning of 14 June 1645 during the Battle of Naseby and was then sent to Cork, Ireland to recuperate at the home of John Borodell, a wealthy English leather merchant. Body and heart both mended when he fell in love with his nurse - John Borodell's beautiful daughter Ann (my 9th great grandmother). They were married shortly thereafter and returned to New England later in 1645.

It was said that George and Ann were known for their magnificent personal appearance as well as for force of mind and of character; she was always known as "Lady Ann" because of her personal attributes.

George and Ann had several children including  my 8th great grandmother Margaret Denison (1657-1741), John Borodell Denison (1646-1698), Ann Denison (1649-1706), George Denison (1653-1711) and William Denison (1655-1715). Their descendants are plentiful; George lived to see his family include 3 sons, 6 daughters and 58 grandchildren. On the television program "Finding Your Roots", Professor Gates uncovered the ancestry of comedian David Sedaris back to this family.

The couple lived in Roxbury near George's parents prior to moving to Connecticut - first joining John Winthrop, Jr. at New London on the Pequot River. This was done in an attempt by Massachusetts to claim control of the land that would eventually become eastern Connecticut. In 1651 George was named captain of the train band and was given a house with 6 acres of property; he established the defenses for the town. In appreciation for services rendered, he was given 200 acres east of the Mystic River in the town of Stonington (then called Southertown) where he surveyed the boundaries and laid out a road from the ford at the Pawcatuck to the ferry at the Thames. At first, he and Ann lived in a rough lean-to surrounded by a stout stockade for protection. (This is now the site of the historic Denison Homestead of Mystic, CT.) George was appointed "clerk of the writs".

Location of Stonington, CT
Google Earth Image

Even after the whole area was absorbed into Connecticut, George and his family remained there and he remained active in both military and civil affairs. His service included: Deputy to the General Court from both New London and Stonington, War Commission for New London in 1653, Captain during King Philip's War, second in command of the Connecticut army under Major Robert Treat. He was instrumental in the capture of Canonchet, helping to put an end to King Philip's War. It was said that as a soldier, no citizen of his day was more conspicuous except perhaps for John Mason.

He and Thomas Stanton set aside 8,000 acres of land for the scattered Pequot tribe as the first reservation. The Pequots, largely to their detriment, had sided with the English during King Philip's War.

George's estate grew. He was rewarded for his services with large land grants by both the Town of Stonington and the Colony of Connecticut. The Mohegan chief Oneco gave him a great feast and 2000 acres of tribal lands. The resulting peace enabled him to take down his stockade and build a great house where his wife Ann hosted famous dinner parties for family and friends. Life was good.

He died in Hartford, Connecticut 23 October 1694 while discharging his duties at the Massachusetts General Assembly. Ann would long outlive him, dying at the age of 97. Both are buried at the Ancient Burying Ground in Hartford.

Photograph of Tombstone for George Denison from the 1881 book
"A Record of the Descendants of Captain George Denison of Stonington, Conn."
  • Denison Homestead website located at
  • Anderson, Robert Charles, "The Great Migration Begins, Immigrants to New England, 1620-1633", Volume 1; Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1995
  • U.S and Canada, Passenger and Immigration Lists Index for William Denison, 1500's-1900's
  • "Some Descendants of Captain George Denison" accessed online at on 05/04/2009
  • Hurd, Hamilton D (comp.), "History of New London County, Connecticut, with Biographical Sketches of many of its Pioneers and Prominent Men", 1882; Philadelphia: Lewis & Co., accessed online at Google Books on 30 November 2015
  • Poem by Captain George Denison from Appendix in Baldwin, John Denison, "A Record of the Descendants of Captain George Denison of Stonington, Conn.", Worcester, Mass.: Tyler & Seagrave, 1881, 298 accessed online through Google Books on 30 November 2015

Friday, 4 December 2015

Anna Ericksdatter Elton (1849-1938) (Week 49) My theme: "Saudade"

Several years ago, my husband and I had the pleasure of sailing our boat through Gwaii Haanas Park on the southern end of Haida Gwaii (former Queen Charlotte Islands) off Canada's west coast. This National Park is unique in that it is jointly managed by Parks Canada and the Haida people. To oversee and protect the delicate ecology and history of their traditional territories (and sometimes to offer tours and talks to visitors), "Watchmen" are stationed at the various historic locations for a few weeks at a time. These are regular Haida people of all ages left in a very remote region with no television, roads, internet or cell phone coverage. Contact with the outside world is made by VHF radio in short conversations, which in their case meant using a list of shorthand "code" numbers. When we visited Hot Spring Island (before a 2012 earthquake put the three hot pools in jeopardy) two women were acting as Watchmen at the site. As we were the only visitors there that day, they kindly invited us to join them for lunch after we soaked in the hot pools. The thing that stands out in my mind (aside from the nice hot lunch that they shared with us) was how one woman was so badly missing her grandchildren back home. She had an ache in her heart that showed on her face and in her voice; she needed to see her grandchildren. Apparently she had called her supervisor using something like "code 9" on the VHF radio, but there really was no code number to effectively express her problem. There simply is no adequate word in English either.

I claim no Portuguese ancestors, but the Portuguese do have such a perfect word for this strong emotion - "saudade". Saudade describes a deep nostalgic or melancholic longing for an absent person or place that one loves deeply. Sometimes it can include the knowledge that you will never see that person or place again. I think it could even extend to family members one has never met. It can include terrible sadness and feelings of loss or absence, but it can also include the recollection of happy times past and bittersweet joyful recollections. If you have experienced it, you know that it is a much stronger emotion than merely missing someone; perhaps it most closely resembles a bad case of homesickness.

The closest thing in Norwegian (the mother language of my great grandmother Anna Elton) might be lengsel etter fravaerende familie.

Anna Elton c1890
Having children and grandchildren of my own in distant places sometimes leaves me with saudade of them. But I know I can talk to them on the telephone or by Skype or quite easily go to visit them. Such was not always the case for my ancestors. When they left their homelands to emigrate to America, they must have known in their hearts that they would probably never again see family, friends and the community they were leaving behind. Sometimes family groups travelled together and that no doubt eased some of the anguish, but even once in America, families often dispersed into new areas. Many people grew up never meeting their grandparents or aunts and uncles. Many grandparents never knew the joy of watching their grandsons and granddaughters grow up. Saudade must have been common. 

When my paternal grandparents decided to uproot and move across the border to homestead in Saskatchewan, Canada, it meant they were too far from their own parents in Minnesota to have them involved in their children's lives. The result was that my Dad only met only one of his 4 grandparents and that was during one single visit to Minnesota when he was just 4 years old. The grandparent he met was Anna Elton, his paternal grandmother ("bestemor" in Norwegian, or even more specifically, "farmor" to distinguish his father's mother from his mother's mother who would be his "mormor").

Anna (sometimes called "Annie") Ericksdatter Elton (sometimes spelled "Ellent" or "Elson" or "Eltun") was born in Vang, Valdres, Oppland, Norway on 14 March 1849.

Pin marks location of Vang, Oppland
Google Earth image

She was baptised 9 April 1849 at the local Lutheran church at Vang. The church was at that time quite new, having been completed just 10 years earlier. The church records also show her being vaccinated for smallpox on 19 September 1851 at the age of 2 3/4 years.

Vang Kirke
Photo Courtesy John Erling Blad on Wikimedia Commons

Øye i Vang in Valdres, Oppland, Norway
Photo courtesy John Erling Blad, Wikimedia Commons

When her parents Erick Anderson Elton and Sarah Holien emigrated to the United States in 1854, young Anna was listed in the church records as leaving for America with her family. She was 5 years old.

Her father died tragically the following year after being crushed by a falling tree. Times must have been very difficult for Sarah and her young family. We don't have any details of how they survived, but it has been suggested by a descendant of Erick's sister Sigrid Andrisdatter (who had come to America with her brother's family and who also became a young widow) that the sisters-in-law probably banded together for support. No doubt saudade was a common emotion for missing both their deceased husbands as well as their traditional family support systems back in Norway. But the women would have had to soldier on, day after day doing what it took to raise their children. This was the situation in which Anna grew up to young womanhood.

It appears that Anna gave birth to a son Erstein (or Steve) at Canon Falls, Renville County, MN in September of 1868 when she was 19. Unlike the Norwegian church records, American records do not provide us with the name of Steve's father. (The only surname ever associated with him was "Bardahl", the name of Anna's future husband. Even Steve's death certificate names Hans and Anna as his parents. However, it is highly unlikely that Hans was Steve's birth father since there would have been no reason for him not to marry Anna at the time of her pregnancy rather than waiting until 5 years later.) (2018 updated information: Steve was born 8 September 1868, named for his father Osten Ostenson. He was baptized 20 December 1868 according to US Evangelical Lutheran Church Records, Transcribed and obtained from , record 10 for 1868 births and baptisms, Holden Lutheran Church, Goodhue Co., Minnesota.)

In 1873, Anna married Hans Bardahl in Goodhue County, MN. The witnesses to their wedding give us some idea that Anna had been among extended family: her older half-brother Hans Asbjornsen was one witness and the surname given for the other witness was Elson, quite possibly also a relative or at least a close friend from Norway. The newlyweds soon moved to Renville County where they farmed and started their family.

Anna would give birth to 10 children over her lifetime, 7 of whom survived infancy. Sarah was born in 1876, my grandfather John in 1879, Ole in 1883, Susie in 1886, Hanna in 1887 and Ella in 1890.

Bardahl Family late 1890's: Top row left to right - Hannah, Ole, John, Susie;
Seated left to right - Sarah, Hans, Ella and Anna; Steve is absent

The same year that youngest daughter Ella was born, the family moved to Grant County where they farmed 3 miles south of Barrett, MN. Upon their retirement in 1918, Hans and Anna moved into the village where they were living when two of their young adult daughters, Susie and Hannah, died tragically in the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic. Four years later Hans died too.

Anna age 81 with sons Ole and John, 1930
This was the only time that Anna met some of John's children
and she appears delighted to be with two of her three sons
After her husband's death, Anna continued for awhile to live in Barrett. At the time of the 1930 census, son Steve was living there with her; she owned her own house, valued at $2800 (which sounds low to us but this was the most valuable house listed on that page of the census).  It was in the early summer of 1930 that Anna's son John and some of his family made the visit during which my father Ken, age 4, got to meet his grandmother for the first and only time.

Kenneth Bardahl (age 4) lower left in front of his oldest sister Joetta;
2 Christenson cousins on right side during the visit to Minnesota in 1930

Anna Elton Bardahl summer 1930 with some of her grandchildren
Eventually she moved to live with her youngest daughter Ella and Henry Christenson, first in North Dakota and finally in Appleton, Swift County, Minnesota. Although she didn't get to see much of son John's children, she would have had other grandchildren to offer her joy.

Anna Elton Bardahl July 1935

Anna passed away 77 years ago this week on Saturday 3 December 1938 just before midnight at the Christenson home. Her death was attributed to old age (she was aged 89 years, 8 months and 19 days). Her obituary said that she and her husband Hans had been active members of the Lien Lutheran Church and that "their home radiated with true friendship and with a hospitality which their hosts of friends will never forget." Funeral services were held at the Lien Lutheran Church on the afternoon of Wednesday 7 December. The Lien choir sang "Sweetly Resting" and Karen Samuelson sang "Den store hvide flok". She is buried in the Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery near Barrett, Grant County, Minnesota beside her Hans.

Headstone for Hans and Anna (Elton) Bardahl
Photo by Ken/Elinor Bardahl


  • Minnesota Death Index, 1908-2002; Evangelical Lutheran Church of America Records 1875-1940; Minnesota Find a Grave Index 1800-2012; 1930 United States Federal Census
  • State of Minnesota Marriage Licence and Certificate for Hans Bardahl and Anna Elton
  • State of Minnesota Certificate of Death 4733 for Anna Bardahl
  • Kirkeboker for Vang, Oppland, Norway (microfilm 307321) and Norwegian digital archives