Karl Oskar and Kristina Nilsson, with their family of young children have left Sweden as emigrants and at the beginning of this novel, have arrived in New York in the summer of 1850. They journey to Minnesota Territory where one of their countrymen has settled, and where they intend to stake a claim to land for farming. With very few reserves of money or food, they build a log cabin on some land at Ki-Chi-Garo Lake (now known as Chisago Lake), and begin their new life in America.
Glanceabook: It is said that “The Emigrant” series was intended to be read as a documentary, and the story is based on detailed research into Swedish settlements of the 1800s in Minnesota. The characters’ daily lives are portrayed in fascinating detail to bring to life the hardships of the settlers. Although it is very interesting, at times it becomes repetitive, especially when the characters’ feelings are described. After reading the first in this series (The Emigrants), I felt keen to follow the journey of this family, and I wasn’t disappointed.
The Culture Trip: “The Emigrants‘ gripping tale is part history, part drama – and it will give you a deeper understanding of why Swedes have such a complicated relationship with both their own history and with America.”
“Since stepping ashore in America not many hours ago, he had felt foolish more often than during his whole life in Sweden.”
“Their journey continued in the river furrow, and more great stretches of prairie opened up. The new country was showing its size to them, and the more they saw of its vastness and immensity, the smaller they felt themselves; more than ever before during this long journey they felt lost and strayed ion the world.”
“… they might sleep at German Fischer’s inn; lodging there would cost only ten cents a night for each person; they would, of course, have to sleep with other people, but never more than four in the same bed; and the host was quite strict and let no-one wear his boots in bed. The Fischers were particular and cleanly people and maintained good order at their inn.”
Author: William Moberg
- The Emigrants (Utvandrarna)
- Unto a Good Land (Invandrarna)
- The Settlers (Nybyggarna)
- Last Letter Home (Sista brevet till Sverige)
- The Emigrants (Swedish: Utvandrarna) is a 1971 Swedish film directed and co-written by Jan Troell and starring Max von Sydow, Liv Ullmann.
- Kristina från Duvemåla (“Kristina from Duvemåla”) is a Swedish musical written by former ABBA members Björn Ulvaeus (lyrics) and Benny Andersson (music).