The Memoir

In 1963, Grandpa Victor Holm wrote a memoir for his his cousin Harry Långström in Sweden. It covers a little bit of Grandpa Victor’s life in Sweden and then his journey to Kenora, Canada, and the seven year's of his life there. He seemed to be mostly interested recounting in the difficult life he had in the days before labor unions and government regulation of working conditions. I wish that Grandpa Victor’s memoir had included details about his service in the Swedish army and his marriage to Frida Sorqvist, but it does not. I will be happy with what we have.

When Harry Långström died, a relative named Rosa Borg got many of his belongings including this document. In 2005, another relative, named 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 Carl in early 2006, and he 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 on the link below should allow a PDF file to load on your screen. This file shows the original handwritten pages that Grandpa Victor wrote in his memoir. The individual pages were 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.

The Transcription

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

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 I was able to get assistance from Laila Falk of Sweden to get their meanings. Often the translation is pretty rough and I certainly welcome any corrections you might supply.

I’ve entered page numbers to show where in the original document the story comes from. Feel free to make your own translation if you want.

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 may not be completely accurate. Take it with a grain of salt. You should compare it with Helen Holm Hobert’s 1984 The Descendants of Olaf and Eva Anderson, which also is linked to below. 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.

Albert Holm, 18 February 2014

Document Date Size
Victor Holm's Memoir in original handwritten Swedish 19 Feb 1963 71.3 MB
Victor Holm's Memoir transcribed 5 Jan 2014 270 KB
Victor Holm's Memoir translation 18 Feb 2014 315 KB
The Descendants of Olaf and Eva Anderson, by Helen Holm Hobert July 1984 91.3 MB