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Posted: 1405484332000
Classification: Query
This post was deleted by the author on 19 Aug 2014 9:29AM GMT

Re: OFTEDAL, OFTEDAHL from Germany

Posted: 1405547848000
Classification: Query
This is a message board for Norway. What connection in your query to Norway?

lchunnme responds

Posted: 1405617135000
Classification: Query
After posting the following message to THIS message board;
Localities > Scandinavian and Baltic States > Norway > General

lchunnme (View posts)
Posted: 15 Jul 2014 10:18PM GMT
Classification: Query
Is anyone out there related to Oftedal, Oftedahl, or other variant spelling from Germany, but who was in the United States in the period 1884-1885?
Thank you.

My short response and linked advice was an attempt to point out that this is not a message board for Germany. I have seen the name Oftedal/Oftedahl in Norwegian records. So I was sent the charming message below by 'lchunnme' --
7/16/2014 8:29 PM

The Message Board to which I post last night and that your message refers to was for SURNAME OFTEDAHL and OFTEDAL. It was NOT a Norwegian board!!! Perhaps my posting automatically showed up on your board.

Given that I don't have to explain my actions to you or anyone else, and given that you do not even deserve a response, I will say this: I have a PhD and have been researching my ancestors for over 40 years. I have already posted two specific messages looking for this mystery man, my great-grandfather to which I've had no reply. We do not even know his first name. I have waited several years to re-post, and this time I chose to do it in a very general manner to see what responses I might get, if any. How I post is MY business and not yours!!! Unlike you, most people are very helpful in responding to any and all messages with courtesy. To you I say the following: Mind your own business, make a concerted effort to be courteous, and do not let your sanctimonious attitude allow you to assume that you know more about the poster and posting that the contributor does.

Thank you for being absolutely no help at all.

Sincerely yours,


Re: lchunnme responds

Posted: 1405619753000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1405619891000
To lchunnme,

Thoraway is correct. Your post appears on the Norway message board. Go to the web page where your post appears (this web page) and look at the top of the page. You'll see the location of your post noted there. (Scandinavian and Baltic States - Norway - General)

The location of the post seems to be a mistake, since you say this family was German. Thoraway helpfully pointed this out so that you can move your post - if you so choose.

Otherwise, the board administrator might move it, as one role of board admins is to ensure posts are properly positioned.

Hope this clarifies.
-- a volunteer researcher

Re: lchunnme responds

Posted: 1405627580000
Classification: Query
Judging from the message Thoraway received, Ichunnme seems to have _thought_ the original post was going into the Oftedahl surname or some other message board, rather than Norway - General. While "user error" is the obvious first conclusion, this sort of message misdirection seems to happen depressingly often. It makes wonder whether Ancestry's message board system is at least partly responsible?

In any case, Ichunnme's response was unnecessarily harsh, judgmental and unwilling to admit the possibility of a mistake on their part. Might be time to click the "Report Abuse" button (the little "flag" icon).


Re: Oftedahl from possibly Norway

Posted: 1405638242000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1405685423000
Turns out there is a Norway connection.

According to the OP, in past message board posts, an unknown male Oftedahl lived in or visited Dwight, Richland county, North Dakota OR Brandrup township, Wilkin, Minnesota circa May - June 1884 (at least).

He had a relationship with Gena/Gina Oleson Sagrusten, who immigrated age 27 (ca 1882-1883) from Gudbrandsdalen, Norway. (presumably in Oppland fylke)

Gina had a son Frank O. Haraldson (O stood for Oftedahl, according to the OP; took Haroldson name after his stepfather Gunder Haroldson). Mr. --?-- Oftedahl split.

Family oral history and local legend gives Frank's birth father as Mr. Oftedahl, said to be a "German freemason" but DNA tests provide strong evidence he must be Norwegian.

Frank's original birth certificate destroyed by fire. New certificate issued with changed information.

All the above is according to the OP.

Question is: Who is Mr. Oftedahl? Makes sense that he would be Norwegian, as he made a connection with a Norwegian girl. Family members now in their nineties are mentioned as being keen to know the answer.

Brandrup, Wilkin, Minnesota
George Haroldson 44 b Norway
Gena Haroldson 44 b May 1856 Norway, to USA 1883; married 1889; has had 4 children, 4 are living
Harry Haroldson 15 born June 1884 Minnesota
Frank O Haroldson 15 born March 1885 Minnesota, parents born Norway
Thomas Haroldson 9
Albert Haroldson 8
Annie J Haroldson 5
George Haroldson 3

Frank still in Brandrup, 1905 Minnesota state census

Deerhorn, Wilkin, Minnesota on the Walter Peet place...
Frank O. Haroldson, age 24, hired man, single, born about 1886 Minnesota, parents b Norway

1918 World War I Draft Registration
Frank Oscar Haraldson
Born 06 March 1885
Address: Breckinridge, Wilkin, Minnesota
Occupation: farming
Height: Medium, Build: Medium, Blue eyes, Light hair

same guy?
Rosebud, Polk, Minnesota
Josephine Haroldson 30 b Minnesota, father b Wisconsin, mother b Germany
Frank Haroldson 40, brother, both parents b Wisconsin

same guy?
Island Lake, Mahnomen, Minnesota
Frank Haroldson 48, single, born about 1882 Minnesota, father born Wisconsin, mother b Norway

Frank O. Haraldson
Birth: 06 March 1885
Death: 20 Jan 1975 in Le Sueur county, Minnesota
Mother's Maiden Name: Olson

Brandrup, Wilkin, Minnesota
Gina Haroldson 63 b abt 1857 Norway, to USA 1883
Albert Haroldson 28
George Haroldson 22

Brandrup, Wilkin, Minnesota
Gena Mee Haroldson 73, born about 1857 Norway, to USA 1883
Albert Haroldson 37

Brandrup, Wilkin, Minnesota
Gena Haroldson 84 b abt 1856 Norway
Harold Haroldson 55 b abt 1885 Minnesota; divorced
Albert Haroldson 48

Border Crossings: From US to Canada (
Name: Harold Haroldson - traveling with Myrtle Haroldson
Age: 45
Estimated birth year: abt 1885
Arrival Port: Estevan, Saskatchewan
Date of Arrival: 24 Mar 1930
Birth Location: Brickinridge, Minnesota <-------------------------
Gender: Male
Citizenship: American
Race of people: NORWEGIAN
Nearest relative in country whence you came: Albert Haroldson, brother

Breckinridge is the county seat of Wilkin County, Minnesota.
Apparently Harold is the son of a first wife of Gunder?
Pinpointing Gina's location would be helpful.

Quite a few Oftedals heading to Minnesota from Norway. Some of them, here:

I wonder if "German freemason" is a real clue - or was that urban legend?

Re: Oftedahl from possibly Norway

Posted: 1405646398000
Classification: Query
It was easy enough to locate Frank's mother, grandparents and sister in Norway. "Gina" birth/baptism record, confirmation, and listing in the leaving the parish record are all online.

I had suggestions and ideas for finding the actual name and origins of the birth father IF a connection with Norway was confirmed.

You will understand if I no longer have any interest in that.
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