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Descendants of Ekern

Replies: 9

Re: Descendants of Ekern

Posted: 1300577875000
Classification: Query
Surnames: Ekern, Snausen, Johannssen, Johnson
My g grandfather’s patronymic was Mikal Johannssen, but he was an Ekern by birth, b. 1842 on the farm named Ekern in Verdal, North Trondheim, Norway. They often used the name Ekern. When his family moved to another farm in Verdal named Snausen, they sometimes used the name Snausen. On the Norwegian 1865 census, he is shown as Mikal Johannssen, "domicile" Snausen farm. On that census his father is Johann Jacobssen b. 1813 (or 1811--I haven't entered all this in my PAF file but I remember it as 1813). Mikal immigrated to the US in 1868, apparently alone. His American name was Charles Johnson (just to make my life difficult!). Two sisters ended up in or near La Crosse by 1889, using Snausen.

He became infamous in 1889 for leading a mob outside of Blair, Trempealeau Co, which lynched Hans Jacob Olson. Killing him was not Johnson's intent—Olson was dangerous, and Johnson and others wanted him to leave the county. But mobs, even Norwegian mobs, can get out of hand, and this one did. Johnson pleaded guilty. He and three others served just short of five years of a life sentence at Waupun. This was the only instance in US history of Norwegians lynching another Norwegian. Beside your point, of course, but interesting.

I've noticed in some Trempealeau Co. cemetery lists a few Ekerns, and presume they must be related to me somehow. I'd love to know exactly how.

I found a family tree on Ancestry which showed some of my ancestors using a variety of names, including Snausen, but none using Ekern, though it did show some besides “Charles Johnson” born at Ekern. This tree went back to the 1700s.

Hope we can make some connections.

Doris
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