Welcome Forums Surnames and Families Scandinavian Family in St John's Area

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    Chrissie Baker

    Hi There

    I am interested to hear if anyone has found any Scandinavian families in Newfoundland St Johns and/or Harbour Grace area 1780s onwards?


    R Lindstrom

    Mine, Lindstrom, Russian Finn


    I continue to look for my great uncle CARL EFRAIM JOELSSON who arrived in the area as a single, 20 year old man from Vrigstad, Sweden in November 1890 on the ship, Caspian. He died in a fishing accident in February or March of 1896. No known subsequent wife or children. He seems to have arrived with a small group of other passengers with whom he left Goteborg, Sweden, sailed to Hull England, traveled by train to Liverpool, and then sailed on the Caspian, a ship operated by the Allan Line. Other 3 Swedes in his party were from southern Sweden as well: Oskar Anderson,age 20, Charlotta Skog, 22 and Carl P Johanson 41. Thank you!


    Hi There

    Not certain if this will help you but I happened on your post and I am not certain if this will help or not but it seems that there were a few Scandinavian men in the area. I know they were not Swedish, but Norwegian.

    I will let you know of 2 Norwegian fellows in and around the Harbour Grace area. Both were sea captains. One fellow Capt Olaf Olsen (1881-1945) was involved in whaling and had a few whaling stations as did a Capt.Johannes Borgen.

    I went for lunch one day with my sister and across the street from the diner was a museum. Neither of us had seen before.

    There was a bit of information on Olsen. Capt. Olsen bought an estate that belonged to Mr Carroll, one of the founding families, of the village of Holyrood. This Olsen also had some political type position/liason with Norway, Sweeden and Finland.

    Both men were fairly wealthy. Both men lived in the greater Harbour Grace/Conception Bay area.

    The other fellow was Capt. Johanne Borgen, he too had whaling ships, and owned Hawke Harbour Whaling Station in Hawke, Labrador. Capt. Borgen at one time worked for Aristotle Onassis. (This information I got from a friend of mine who is close friends with Capt. Borgen’s daughter.

    Mr Carroll’s estate, now Capt Olson’s property became the “Fjordheim” Property, meaning Harbour Home, it was his country home. The house including servants quarters, was started in 1931, echoing the architecture of Norway. The property had a rock wall and at the entrance had an arch constructed from a pair of lower jawbones from a right whale. The property including the large home is still standing. (Some add-ons over the years). It was used as a tearoom for several years, that only recently closed..

    As well as being active in the whaling and sealing industry, Olsen was consul to Newfoundland for Sweeden and Norway and vice-consul for Latvia and Finland. He was awarded the Latvian Order of Three Stars in 1939. King Haaken VI of Norway, deemed him a Knight of Order of St Olaf.

    Like I said not sure if this helps in anyway but thought I would put it out there..

    Allison Holwell


    Thank you so much Allison Holwell for taking the time to write to me about Capt. Olsen and Captain Borgen. I’m always interested in where and when Scandinavian natives settled in New Foundland. Although these men don’t seem to be related to my great uncle I will keep them in mind as I continue my search. Wouldn’t it be something if my Carl worked for one of them!
    Andrea Adamko (nee Samuelson)

    Sherry Bhutia

    Hello Andrea, I’m originally from Corner Brook, Newfoundland, born and raised and as far as I know, have no ancestry from Sweden. However, I moved to Sweden some years back and am a Swedish citizen. It’s shame I have no ancestors here. However, I have access to many resources here in terms of family ancestry research. If any of you need anything, I’d be more than happy to help.

    Sherry Bhutia

    Olsen would be from Norway, yes. The en name ending is from Norway and Denmark. In Sweden it is spelled Olson or Olsson. Anderson is spelled Andersen in Norway and Denmark, while in Sweden it’s spelled Andersson with two s. In Swedish, there is no apostrophes. So in English we would say: “Anders’ or John’s son, while in Swedish we would just add an s : “Johns son”. Hence the two s. The same is true for Johnasson. The “J” in Swedish is pronounced with a “y” sound. The last name “Skog”: skog is a Swedish word for “forest”.


    Hello Sherry.
    Thank you so much for your kind offer. I am in close contact with my second cousins who live all over southern Sweden, have visited them there several times and, as you can imagine, they continue to be enormously helpful to me in my search for my Swedish roots!

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