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The Transatlantic Crossing
20. February 2001
- Børge Solem
This article is based up on an article I wrote for the Norwegian National Library for their web presentation "Det Løfterike Landet". The original article was shorter, and was translated to English by Harry T. Cleven. As the article has been added to, and became quite extensive, I have decided to divide it into several web pages, arranged as chapters. (December 2006, Børge Solem)
The article focuses mainly on the transatlantic journey. It is the story of how many emigrants going to America between 1825 and 1925 would travel. It also gives some insight to the amazing development in how ships were constructed and the transportation arranged to meet the demands of the increasing number of people on the move. Even though this is mainly about the experience of Norwegian emigrants, the experiences and conditions of travel will be much the same regardless of the nationality.
The Transatlantic Crossing:
- Chapter 1: Early Norwegian Emigrants
- Chapter 2: Steerage Passengers - Emigrants Between Decks
- Chapter 3: By sail across the ocean - daily life aboard
- Chapter 4: Children of the ocean - life and death on the Atlantic
- Chapter 5: Sailing ship provisions - Food and drink
- Chapter 6: Sanitary conditions on board - health and sickness on emigrant ships
- Chapter 7: From sail to steam
- Chapter 8: The largest, the fastest and most comfortable ships - by steamship across the ocean
- Chapter 9: The giant express steamers - The transatlantic crossing following 1900
- 2 accounts of the crossing on the Marie in 1864 (1999)
Hazel Evans of Faribault, MN, contributed some new pieces of information about this very dramatic voyage on the Marie in 1864
- PIONEER HARDSHIPS by N.J. JOHNSON (1999)
About the dangers and hardships he and his family went through when coming to America on the ship Marie in 1864.
- Hanna Jacobson Starks' account of the voyage on the Marie in 1864 (1999)
Yet another account about the crossing on the Marie in 1864, told by Hanna Jacobson Starks to her niece Sophia Jacobson Quarness.
- The crossing of the Maryland in 1869 ()
This account is taken from a log kept by John Headland, and was submitted to us by Dolores Shirts
- Coming Over on the ship "Norden" in 1864 ()
This story was submitted by Tyler Kanten, who's family came over on the Norden in 1864. Tyler's great, great, great grandparents came from Norway aboard the Norden and left some stories about the trip across the Atlantic. Not a very nice trip at all.
- Ole Dahl's personal account of his voyage on the Nordlyset to America in 1859 ()
This is an excerpt from a letter dated May 10, 1925 and written by Ole Dahl to his brother Gustav Dahl. It was translated into English by Louise Dahl Nelson, daughter of Gustav. The excerpt was submitted by Gary Urban
- John O. Tansem's account of the voyage on the ship Olaf from Christiania to Quebec in 1867 ()
This is an account of the crossing on the ship Olaf from Christiania to Quebec in 1867. It was written in John O. Tansem's diary. The story has been submitted by Wallace Tansem, the grandson of John O. Tansem
- The Ocean Voyage (on the bark Præciosa) in 1861 (1928)
This voyage account from the crossing on the Præciosa in 1861 was submitted by Holly Batton. It was written by Orabel Thortvedt who was the cousin of Holly's grandfather. She wrote the story in 1928.
- The Journey from Norway to America in 1867, on the ship Refondo (By Peter O. Stensven)
This account was contributed by Ann Dockwell. Ann Dockwell's grandfather and grandmother came to Quebec on the Refondo. The account was written by one of Ann's relatives who was also on the ship. It is interesting and tells about many people dying on the voyage.
- A journey on the S/S Tasso from Christiansund to Hull in 1880 (Ingeborg Olsdatter Øye)
This is the account of Ingeborg Olsdatter Øye's journey on the S/S Tasso in 1880. Parts of Ingeborg Olsdatter Øye's diary is printed in Dordi Glærum Skuggervik's book: "Utvandringshistorie fra Nordmøre"
- An Autobiography of an Early Settler - (voyage on the Sjofna 1853) (2000)
The story of a Norwegian family traveling on the Sjofna in 1853
- From Drammen to Quebec on the Sjofna in 1852. (Compiled by Albert G. Anderson, Jr., 1949)
This is an excerpt from "The ANDERSON FAMILY HISTORY" Written and Compiled by Albert
G. Anderson, Jr., 1949 and privately published. Submitted and prepared by Eleanor H. Erdevig
- Ole Løkensgård's account of the crossing on the Sjofna in 1857 (Ole Løkensgard)
Ole Lokensgard, "Pioneer Stories," The Lokensgard Family, a Collection of Reminiscences, St. Paul Minnesota, 1994. (2d Printing). Originally published under the title "Nybygger Historier," in Hallingen, a Norwegian language monthly publication by and for immigrants from Hallingdal, Norway.
- A JOURNEY TO AMERICA IN THE FIFTIES (on the ship Tegner) (BY CLARA JACOBSON)
This paper first appeared in Symra, 10:120-157 (1913), under the title "En Amerika-reise for seksti aar siden." The child who figures in this story was the author's mother, Nicoline Hansen Hegg, who was born in 1844. She married the Reverend Abraham Jacobson in 1865, and died in 1929.
- The horrifying voyage on the Valkyrien from Bergen to Quebec in 1873 (by C. K. Fjærestad )
The following description is based on a voyage account from 1873, written by C. K. Fjærestad. It was printed in "Nordmæmdeme i Amerika, deres historie og record", Minneapolis, Minn 1907. Translated and edited by Børge Solem in 2000.
- Migration from Northern Europe to America via the Port of Hull, 1848-1914 (1999)
During the period 1836 - 1914 Hull developed a pivotal role in the movement of transmigrants via the UK. During this period over 2.2 million transmigrants passed through Hull. For a long period of time this was the most common route for Norwegian emigrants.
- The gathering to Zion - Mormon emigration from Norway (2001)
On 11th September 1851 the first missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints arrived in Norway. The early Mormon missionaries experienced enormous difficulties as they travelled throughout Denmark, Norway and Sweden spreading the word of the gospel and the book of Mormon. They encountered widespread opposition to their missionary work and were regularly fined or imprisoned in an attempt to stop the growth of the church.
- The LONG Crossing of the Hannah Parr - Background Essay (Copyrighted 2000 all rights reserved)
The fascinating story of the Hannah Parr crossing the atlantic in 1868, the ship encountered serious trouble on the way. This is probably one of the best documented crossings of a norwegian emigrant ship of that era, thanks to Clair O. Hagen and James Overdahl
- A voyage from Norway to America in 1911 ()
A voyage from Bergen - Newcastle on the S/S Hera, Liverpool - New York on the S/S Mauretania. The story was told by Bastian Fylling from Fyllingen in Hamre Parish north of Bergen. The story is about his voyage from Norway to America in 1911. It is presented by Scott Thompson
- Statistics concerning the transatlantic crossing (16. april 2004)
How long did it take to cross the Atlantic by sail? What was the The average crossing time? How long did the longest voyage last? Find out more from our figures relating to data based on 589 voyages.
- Sanitary Condition of Emigrants arriving in the Port of Hull ()
This is the 5th of 5 reports dealing with the conditions of Scandinavian emigrants traveling from Scandinavian ports on the Wilson Line ships, to the Port of Hull. This 5th report is written by Hubert Airy, the Medical Officer in Hull. It is a report about the Sanitary Condition of Emigrants arriving in the Port of Hull
- Concerning the comfort and protection of emigrants passing through Hull ()
This is the 4th of 5 reports dealing with the conditions of Scandinavian emigrants traveling from Scandinavian ports on the Wilson Line ships, to the Port of Hull. This 4th report is written by W. Cowie., to the Board of Trade in England in 1882. This is a report about the landing and lodging situation for emigrants in Hull.
- Conditions for emigrants on the voyage from Christiania to Hull ()
This is the first of 5 reports dealing with the conditions of Scandinavian emigrants traveling from Scandinavian ports on the Wilson Line ships, to the Port of Hull. This first report is written by Charles P Wilson, Principal Officer at the Marine Department, Board of Trade in England. It is a report after he made a voyage on the S/S Angelo from Christiania to Hull in 1881 to observe the arrangements made for the conveyance of the emigrants.
- Conditions for emigrants on the voyage from Gothenburg to Hull ()
This is the second of 5 reports dealing with the conditions of Scandinavian emigrants traveling from Scandinavian ports on the Wilson Line ships, to the Port of Hull. This second report is written by Charles P Wilson, Principal Officer at the Marine Department, Board of Trade in England. It is a report after he made a voyage on the S/S Romeo from Gothenburg to Hull in May 1882 to observe the arrangements made for the conveyance of the emigrants
- Accommodation for emigrants in Hull ()
Reports relating to the conveyance & transit of emigrants 1881 - 1882
- Prospects from Hull (2002)
Many emigrants traveled via Hull on their way to America, they would have disembarked from their steam packet at the "Steam Packet Wharf". This landing stage was located within the Humber Dock Basin. This page shows a collection of prospects from the different places where the emigrants passed on their way.
- Memories from a voyage on the Christiane in 1851 ()
Excerpted from an account written in about 1905 by Ole Ellingsen Strand
- Cost of passage, Norway - America (2001)
A COLLECTION OF PRICE EXAMPLES
- Alardus - German fever ship from Hamburg to Queensland (March 2003)
Ian Gordon of Perth, Western Australia, has compiled a document concerning extracts from the newspapers of the day in connection to the passage of the fever ship Alardus. The voyage is known to have been one of the longest of any ship sailing from Germany to Queensland, she departed from Hamburg in Germany on November 11th, and arrived in Melbourne on April 26th, after 6 months at sea.
- THE SELVIG STORY ()
This story is an account from the crossing on the Fauna in 1868. It is chapter V in the book THE SELVIG STORY. The story was submitted by Bill Selvig, who's family was on the ship in 1868. Written by Mina Olivia Selvig Johnson, the daughter of Bernt Olsen and Hanna Caroline Christensen Selvig who was on the ship.
- AN IMMIGRATION JOURNEY TO AMERICA IN 1854 (1989)
This story about the voyage on the bark Fædres Minde from Norway in 1854, was printed in the "Norwegian-American Studies, Volume 32" which was published by the Norwegian-American Historical Association in 1989. The book this selection is drawn from is under copyright and permission has been granted for educational purposes and is not to be used in any way for any commercial purpose. It has been made available on the web by Neil A. Hofland.
- A story about the crossing on the Victoria from Drammen to Quebec in 1861 (Guri )
This articles was submitted by Karen Jeglum Kennedy. It is a wonderful story about the crossing on the Victoria from Drammen to Quebec in 1861. The story was told by Guri Thorsdatter Trøo Jeglum, wife of Kittel Jeglum, who lived in the town of Perry, Dane County, Wisconsin. Much of the interview was done by her niece, Gena Thompson.
- A burial at sea on board the S/S Oscar II in 1911 (Karsten Egeblad 2004)
These snapshots were taken by Peder Georg Christian Pedersen in 1911, when he sailed as an officer on the S/S Oscar II. Pedersen served on the Scandinavian America Line steamships from 1902 till 1920, and became the master of the S/S C. F. Tietgen. The pictures were provided by Karsten Egeblad, one of Pedersen's descendants. The text to the pictures are in Pedersen's own words.
- MACHINERY OF ATLANTIC STEAMSHIPS (Børge Solem, editor - 2004)
This article is a collage of edited cutaways from contemporary sources. It focuses on the development of the machinery used in the transatlantic steamships up till about 1910.
- A Thingvalla Line promotional pamphlet 1887 (Translation 2004 by Børge Solem)
This booklet was issued by the Thingvalla Line in 1887, and gives an interesting insight in the progress of emigration. This is a promotional pamphlet which was forwarded to potential travelers and emigrants. The booklet is written in Danish and Swedish, and is partly translated to English here. It gives a short introduction of the company, and it's fleet. It gives a short description of the conditions aboard the ships with details about the menu on the different classes. It has many details about the different matters an emigrant should be concerned with in connection with the purchase of tickets, the ocean travel, the arrival to Castle Garden and the inland voyage. There are also many interesting pictures.
- Account from the 1865 voyage on the Galathea (1956)
This is the diary of Johan Nilsen and wife, Pernille Nielsdatter (with children) as they traveled to America. The diary was printed in "The Nilsen Saga," written by Arnold Borshem during the last few months before his death in 1956. Permission to put this part of the family history on the web site has been given by Arnold's daughter, Janet Gray of St. Cloud, Minnesota. The story was made available for us by George Kline.
- Chronology - Hannah Parr crossing 1868 (Copyright 2000)
Compiled from the three voyage accounts, the Limerick Chronicle, and St. Munchin's parish records.
- The Gulbran Olsen Berge account from the Hannah Parr crossing in 1868 (Notes copyrighted 2000)
This fragment of Gulbran Olsen Berge's diary, in an anonymous translation, is owned by Diane
Hanson. Notes by Clair O. Haugen.
- The Iver Iversen Ruud account of 1868 Hannah Parr crossing (Translation and notes copyrighted 2000)
The following letter was written to friends and family in Gausdal by Iver Iversen Ruud, who with his wife and large family was a passenger on the Hannah Parr. Ruud was 44.
- The Michel Rentz account of the 1868 Hannah Parr crossing (Translation and notes copyrighted 2000)
From a version published in "En emigrants reise", Gausdals-minne (vol.2, 1987)
Translation and notes copyrighted 2000 Clair O. Haugen. All rights reserved.
- Accounts in The Limerick Chronicle - The Norwegian ship, Hannah Parr 1868 (2000 )
- The Diary of an emigrant leaving Trondheim on the ship "Juno" in 1893 ()
This is an extract from the diary of an emigrant who departed from Trondhjemn on the S/S Juno on June 1st - 1893, and arrived to Boston on the S/S Gallia of the Cunard Line on June 17th
- AN EMIGRANT VOYAGE IN THE FIFTIES (By H. Cock-Jensen, Translated by Karen Larsen)
This account by a former sea captain was published in Norwegian under the title "Emigrantfart for 50-60 aar siden," in Nordmandsforbundet, I: 51-57 (1908), and it is printed here in translation with the permission of the editor of that periodical. In the translation the supplied title has been slightly altered; literally it should read "An Emigrant Voyage from Fifty to Sixty Years Ago." Ed.
- The story of a journey from Norway to Quebec in 1861, on the ship Maple Leaf (1861/ 2000)
This story was written by Thor Sigurdson who traveled on the Maple Leaf from Skien to Quebec in 1861. It is a wonderful story, and it provides quite a vivid picture of the trek of many emigrants from Norway. The story is presented to us exactly as it was found, and has not had anything added, changed, or corrected in any way.
- The Mads Knudsen Fauske account of the crossing on the Marie in 1864 (1999)
The story below is part of a biography written by Mads Knudsen Fauske. The ship Marie of Bergen, mastered by Capt. Christensen, was hit by a hurricane, and lost the rig on way Bergen - Quenbec
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