The Memoir

In 1963, Grandpa Victor Holm wrote a memoir for his cousin Harry Långström in Sweden. The first first 30 pages is a genealogy, but with some errors and omissions. By page 31, it gets into Grandpa Victor’s story, his life in Sweden, his journey to Kenora, and the seven years of his life there. He seemed to be mostly interested in recounting the difficult life he had in the days before labor unions and government regulation of working conditions. I wish that his memoir had included details about his service in the Swedish army and about his marriage to Frida Sorqvist, but it does not. I will be happy with what we have.

Click here to see translation of the memoir.


When Harry Långström died, a relative named Rosa Borg got many of his belongings including this memoir. In 2005, another Swedish relative, Laila Falk, brought a copy of the memoir to Jerry Longstrom, a fourth cousin of mine who lived in Arizona. Jerry sent a copy to my brother Carl in early 2006, and Carl gave me a copy.

Carl was sure that there was a handwritten diary that Jenny had given to our father. Dad showed it to Carl some time in the late 60’s or early 70’s telling him that it was the story of our grandfather’s life. It was written in Swedish. Dad read a small portion of it to Carl. After he died Carl asked our mother about it because he didn’t want it to get lost. They searched high and low, but never found it. Maybe something more remains to be seen somewhere or maybe that document was a second copy of this one.

Clicking here here will bring a PDF file of Victor Holm's Memoir in original handwritten Swedish to your screen. This is a huge file, 71.3 MB, so be sure you want to see it before you click. It features the original handwritten pages that Grandpa Victor wrote in his memoir, scanned from Xerox copies, combined into a Microsoft Word document and then written as PDF. I’ve inserted page numbers to make it easier to reference the original from the transcription and from the English translation.

A Transcription

I converted the handwritten memoir into a typed version in order to translate it. Clicking here should allow a PDF version of the transcription to load on your screen.

About the Translation

This translation is mostly powered by Google Translate. The process required me to type the text into a file. The transcribed text was then pasted into Google Translate. If Google’s translation made sense, I left it as it was. If it did not make sense, I used three reference books: Svensk-Engelsk Ordbok (Astrid Tornberg and Margareta Ångström, Saphrograph Company, 1965), Prisma's English Swedish Dictionary (University of Minnesota Press, 1989), and 201 Swedish Verbs Fully Conjugated in All The Tenses (Richard P. Auletta and Leif Sjöberg, Barron's Educational Series, 1975). After all that, there were still 19 words I could not translate, but Laila Falk helped me to get their meanings.

Often the translation is pretty rough. I’ve entered page numbers to show where in the original document the story comes from. I welcome any corrections you might supply so feel free to make your own translation.

I underlined words that I think are place names. I’ve added a few comments which I’ve listed as Editor’s notes and surrounded them with square brackets.

The Descendants of Olaf and Eva Anderson

The first 30 pages of the memoir list descendants of Anders Andersson, our great-great-grandfather, but this list is not completely accurate. Take it with a grain of salt. You can compare it with Helen Holm Hobert’s 1984 book The Descendants of Olaf and Eva Anderson which is linked to here, but also is very large, 91.3 MB. However, Helen Hobert's work also contains errors. For example, she gives the name of my dad's first wife as Betty Seebore instead of her correct name Betty Seehase. Use it with care also.

Albert Holm, 26 May 2015; Updated 1 Oct 2019