Grahnar i USA

I helgen hade släkten Grahn från Skog släktträff i USA. Det bor nämligen många Grahnar där och de träffas vart femte år. Tröjornas färg visar vilken gren av familjen de hör till. (Foto: Ariana Lindqvist)
Och precis som förra gången ville de ha en hälsning direkt från Sverige och Skog.

Stanley Almqvist, som själv är en Grahn-släkting satt uppkopplad mot festsalens projektor för att rapportera. Det här är vad han såg av festen: skyltarna med programpunkter och en liten, liten bild till höger från festen som hölls i en gymnastiksal. Man kan i alla fall se att ättlingarna från Jakob Grahns olika barn har olika färger på T-tröjorna. Som ni ser inleddes festen med nationalsångerna för USA och Sverige.

Så här såg festen ut på Skog-sidan: Stanley ensam, inklämd i en fåtölj för att filma med datorn, med manuset på tre minuters hälsning på engelska. Bara ett fåtal släktingar i USA kan någon svenska. (Foto: Elin Almqvist)

Så här såg publiken ut på andra sidan Atlanten. (Foto: Ariana Lindqvist)

Det här blev hälsningen från Skog och Mark till Malung och Roseau i Minesota, USA:

Hi, I’m Stanley, live from Skog: the village with the original Grahn homestead, situated in the middle of the Scandinavian peninsula close to Norway, near the Scandinavian mountain ridge right between the Atlantic and the Baltic sea.
Some of you I know from internet and a few I’ve had the pleasure to meet here in Skog. Jakob Grahn was my maternal grandmothers grandfather 
an’ I’m in the Alfred branch of the Grahn family.

3 villages
I wanna tell you a little somethin’ from three small villages here in Lapland, Sweden, which are important to our family history. It’s Djupdal, Skog and Mark. Funny names by the way. In English they mean: Deep valley, Forrest and Land.

Let’s start with Djupdal. It’s just 23 miles from Skog. (
You Lundqvists and others — are not forgotten in Grahn territory.) We visit the Djupdal village a couple of times every year, 
to explore and learn more about the family history.
This summer we took a hike into a ravine near Djupdal known for it’s nature and flowers. It’s name may be hard for American tunges: Mullramle. The connection to our family is that one of our ancestors lived there, a Sami family named Wanik.
The Grahn and Lundqvist family is mainly Swedish settlers. But we have some indigenous Sami people tucked in here and there. What family hasn’t? And we are looking for more …

What’s new from Mark village? the origin of Lapp-Lisa :
The Vikström family house is sold an’ a young couple have moved in so now there are 9 inhabitants in Mark—a small village indeed!
Our latest exploration there was of the small chapel that a man called Kebbe built. He was the grand son of the first settler in Mark. This Kebbe is connected to Lapp-Lisa because of a love story in their youth. She became the unhappy love of his life. He never shared his wooden sofa with anyone, so he lived for his calling like a hermit or a munk.
The chapel is left untouched as he left it. Photos, magazines, books, pots and pans and everything is still there. It’s a time capsule. Just a few people have had the chance to come inside before.
What about the Grahn connection? This Kebbe figure influenced the whole area and literary half the population in Skog and Mark became born again christians in his movement. Even Emma Grahn joined them and that’s how she became the the spritual leader here, famous for her profound christian love and persistent prayers.

With Emma Grahn we’re back in Skog.
We are still 40 inhabitants. An influx of German immigrants and a new born baby compensates for the loss of others.
Livin’ in Skog means discovering unknown relatives. Last time we went to the café we met Roland Grahn and his wife, and E Grahn joined us from her little hut by the creek.
About the creek: we just fund out that the old Sami name for Skog Creek was Water Lilly Creek. It gives a nice picture of tranquillity eh?

Earlier today we had the village summer fair celebrating the traditional life of lumberjacks with eating bacon pancakes fried over open fire—the woodsmens’ fast food.
Not to forget the Swedish fika the jumble sale and old friends on holiday. Its the hight of the holiday season now in Sweden.

Disappointing though this year is one of those fifty degrees Fahrenheit summers: cold and a lot of mosquitos. I’m sure you know what it’s like …

The Grahn family is a spiritual bunch so even a Swede can say: God bless you!
and may the prayers of Mother Emma Grahn follow you all, 
in all of your life.

Thank you …

Här orienterar man sig i familjeträdet under Jakob Grahns yviga polisonger. (Foto: Ariana Lindqvist)

Grahn-släkten präglas av andlighet, som sagt. Den här bilden från släktträffens bekräftar i viss mån det. (Foto: Ariana Lindqvist)

Stanley Almqvist
en Grahn-kotte

3 kommentarer tillGrahnar i USA

  • Ruth Waggener

    Tusen tack, Stanley. It is wonderful to have your contact now back in Lapland.
    Happy to hear about Emma Grahn being a spiritual leader in the Skog area. We have heard that Tekla Wikstrom was a spiritual leader in Mark. Have you also heard that? We understand it was the Salvation Army folk that came up there to evangelize and Tekla was one that was converted. Maybe that was also the case for Emma Grahn?
    Well, many thanks for this report from that wonderful homeland! Blessings!

  • I know Tekla was a fiddler and of corse she continued to play after being saved. But I don’t know much more about her.
    Emma Grahn was a pious person of lutheran faith according to the Swedish Church, until she met Jesus in the pentecostal movement that Kebbe introduced in this valley. The chapel in Skog vas built on her homested. In fact two chapels in different decades.
    It is told that there are indents in the floor of the Grahn house, after her knees where she had her place for praying. She was that persistent in her prayers for family and village.

  • Ruth

    I think much is written about Tekla in some of Lapplisa’s books. Her son Reinhold Vikrtom was also a leader in Mark. Much to learn and explore.

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