Sunday, January 18, 2015

52 Ancestors in 54 Weeks: Week 12: Od Knudsen (1824-1890), My 3rd Great Grandfather

Odde (or Od) Knudsen was born 27 November 1824, in Bakke, Sauda, Rogaland, Norway, to Knud Knudsen (b. 1795) and Anna Sjursdatter (b. 1800).  He was christened in Sand, Rogaland, Norway 6 months later.  He had 5 brothers and 4 sisters.

According to family records, Od was given the smallpox vaccine on 8 November 1836, when he was almost 12.  By then, as John Follesdal explains in his article on Norwegian parish registers, Norwegians had been vaccinating against smallpox since the first decade of the 1800's (everyone 1 year old and up had to vaccinate, and couples had to present their vaccination certificates to get married).  I'm sure Od enjoyed the getting the vaccine as much as the child below.
[Od and his fellow countrymen would have had to have gone through a similar ordeal as James Phipps, who got his smallpox vaccination in 1796 from Edward Jenner, as imagined by artist Robert Thom in this 1950's painting, Jenner, Edward: inoculating a young boy, 1796. Photograph. Britannica Online for Kids.]

On 10 October 1846 Od, 21 years old, married 20 year old Mette Halvorsdottar (1825-1904) in Sauda, Rogaland, Norway.  Their first child, Anna, was born 21 March 1847, only 6 1/2 months after they married, meaning she was either premature or was conceived before marriage.  Two years later their twin girls, Ingeborg and Lisabeth, wereborn 2 years later on 23 May 1849.  I am assuming that Lisabeth died soon after, as my 2nd great grandmother, also Lisabeth, was born a year later, on 20 June 1850.  Next came sons Halvor (1852) and Knut (1855), followed by Ingeborg (1856) (I'm assuming the first Ingeborg died?) and Berte Oline (1859).  Their son Od, was born in 1863, and Tore Martin Odson was their last child, born in 1867, when Od was about 43.

In the Folketelling 1865 Od, 41, and his family were in HinderÃ¥a Parish, Nerstrand, Rogaland, Norway.  Wife Mette and children Halvor, Knud, Od, Anne, Ingeborg, and Berte Oline were also there.  Lisabeth was working as a servant in HinderÃ¥afor another man named Knud Knudsen, 30 (relation?).   Od was listed as "Husm. m. Jord" (husmann med jord), which was a cottager, tenant farmer, crofter, smallholder, or person who rented a house with small plot of land on a larger farm.  A 65 year old "Spinderske" (female spinner) named Ranveg Hendriksdatter was also living with them.  I do not know her relation to Od.

In the Folketelling 1875 Od, 51, and his family were in Askedalen, Nedstrand, Rogaland, Norway.  Wife Mette and children Halvor, Od, Tore Martin, and Anne were living with him, as well as son-in-law ("svigers.") Jakob Torgersen (Anne's husband), and their son Torger Olaus Jakobsen (b 1873) (Od's grandson), and wife Mette's father, Halvor Ingemundsen (Od's father-in-law).  His father-in-law was referred to as a "Folgemand, which "is a man who has "handed" over his farm to the next generation, and has made an agreement on what his rights are, for instance that he can stay at the farm as long as he lives."

The following year his daughter Lisabeth had her first child, Mette Karine, my great grandmother, out of wedlock.  I am not sure how out-of-wedlock births were viewed in that time and place, but Od and wife Mette helped raise Mette Karine some time after Lisabeth married Martin Anderson in 1880.
[Od Knudsen with wife Mette and granddaughter Mette Karine, in the 1880's]

According to family records, Od died on 24 February 1890, at age 65, and was buried 8 days later on 4 March 1890.  Granddaughter Mette Karine immigrated to the United States a few years later, in 1892 or 1893.  His wife Mette remained in Norway for the rest of her life, as far as I know.

I found the Norwegian/American dictionary online to be quite helpful in figuring out some terms on the Norwegian censuses.

© 2014 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

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