Here, gathered in our beloved South Dakota, are a few members of our Williamson / Mattson Clan. Charles and Luella are to be blamed (be kind, they didn't know what they were doing). We're generally a happy bunch and somewhat intelligent (notwithstanding our tenuous grasp on reality). I'm also proud to say that most of us still have our teeth.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

The Tornberg Family and the Sami, the People of the North

The Sami, People of the North
(Lapland. Great Grandmother Ida's Home)

From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Hello All,
Today we spend more time with our Great Grandmother, Ida Tornberg. You remember that Ida was the wife of John Albert Mattson. Walter Mattson was their only child. In the previous post a few days ago we found her hometown in Sweden. Today have more information on her family thanks to cousin Angie Mattson Berntsen.

After several hours of research, Angie located the Swedish Census of 1900. I have the translated pages below:

This entry is for Ida's father Isak. (Click to Enlarge)

This entry is for Ida's Mother Maria (Click to Enlarge)

This Entry is for Ida's Brother Levi (Click to Enlarge)

This Entry is for Ida

This Entry is for Ida's Sister Anna

The picture above (Click to Enlarge) is the application Ida made for life insurance in 1926. In it we learn more about her family.
  • She was a store clerk in Sweden before coming to America.
  • She lists delivering Grandpa Walter Mattson as her only disease :) and that it occurred 16 years ago. She goes on to say that it took 10 days to recover.
  • Her health was perfect. She said she hadn't been to a doctor in the previous 5 years.
  • She says she has not used any form of wine or spirits. In other words, according to this document Ida never used liquor.
  • She lists her father deceased due to an accident.
  • She lists her brother Levi deceased due to accidental drowning when he was 18 years old.
  • She lists her mother alive and 70 years old and in good health.
  • She lists her sister in good health and 30 years old.

Great Grandma Ida holding Luella (Summer 1940)
Great Grandma Vesta (Violet's mother) is on the right. Ida loved the name Christina
and called Luella "Stina" for a nickname.

Roxie Jacobson, Luella, and Great Grandmother Ida. Roxie was once a neighbor of the Mattsons in Montana. She moved to Belle Fourche and ran a boarding house. The Mattson family were regular visitors.

I asked Luella for one story about Great Grandma Ida to accompany this post.
Grandma Ida was the one that always called us in for supper and bed when we were children on the ranch. Our fist stop was the wash basin that sat on top of the buffet (a piece of furniture that held the fine dishes, linens and silverware) . I remember a picture of the gleaners hanging over the buffet the whole time we lived on the ranch.

Grandma Ida had us wash our hands and faces before we ate or went to bed. I remember that while we washed Grandma would lean on the buffet, resting her head on her right hand. She always had her eyes closed. I thought she closed her eyes because she was so tired. She worked from the moment she was up until she went to bed.

After she died I remember telling Grandpa about her leaning on the buffet with her eyes closed while we washed. He told me that she wasn't resting when she had her eyes closed. She used that moment every day to pray for each of her grandchildren individually.
And, to finish this post:
  • Two pieces of traditional music from Lapland - Ida's home in Sweden, taken from the film "Pathfinder", a story told by the people of the north for over 1000 years.
  • And the Flag of the Sami (Lapland).

From the film's opening credits. The Music of the North

This is the Sami Flag (Flag of the Association of the Sami People). The Sami (also called Lapps, although they consider this word derogatory) inhabit Sápmi, which today encompasses parts of northern Sweden, Norway, Finland and the Kola Peninsula of Russia but also the border area between south and middle Sweden and Norway.

And again, from the film's closing credits. The hauntingly beautiful music of the Sami.


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