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 ship Norden and left some stories about the trip across the Atlantic. Not a very nice trip at all.
On July 4, 1864, Iver Halvorson, his wife Anne Guldbransdatter, and their seven sons, set sail aboard the Norden, en route to North America. The family left the comforts of their Norwegian farm (farm name; Kanten) to embark on a new life. While in Drammen, boarding the emigrant ship Norden, the Halvorson's ten-month-old son, Iver, was killed. No records remain describing how the child was killed but the accident was probably a result of being crushed by either the hundreds of people, or their belongings, being boarded on the ship. The baby was buried at sea, right in the port, before the ship set sail. The conditions for the family didn't improve much. Many of the passengers grew tired and weak from seasickness and the stench of the ship got the better of everyone's health. The lack of toilet facilities and the hundreds of people didn't make the voyage any more enjoyable. The stench of living in close quarters without bathing facilities, plus odours of food, strong cheeses and molds generated by damp air made the months of sea voyage difficult. The family arrived in Quebec, Canada, via the St. Lawrence River in late September. Many were relieved with the fresh air and solid earth beneath their feet. The Halvorson family, along with many other families, boarded cattle cars (pulled by trains) which left Detroit, Michigan and made their way to south-eastern Minnesota, arriving in mid-October. Riding on trains was not so bad as it was something new and a novelty- there were no trains in Norway at the time. Hundreds of Scandinavian families settled in Minnesota. Anders Kanten, who adopted the family farm name instead of adopting his father's name in Norwegian tradition, left the United States in the early 1900's to escape the droughts. Only three years old when he landed in North America, he too was setting out to make a new life for himself.
ANDERS (ANDREW) KANTEN along with his wife and children settled in southern Saskatchewan, Canada, in the Assiniboine region. There the family founded the town on Kantenville; consisting of a church, store and school. After years of drought in Saskatchewan, the family moved on to the Caroline- Raven region of west central Alberta. Here there are many Kantens who still reside within minutes of the old Kanten homesteads. There are upwards of 100 known Kantens in Canada and many more still in the United States; some bearing the name of Iverson. All relatives of the same ancestors, who came across the Atlantic aboard the Norden