Elena Schell 2015-09-12

Is it true that Elena’s grandfather changed his name from Karl Wilhelm Lundgren to William Williams? Tools used were World War I Draft card, ArkivDigital, Emihamn, Gothenburg passenger lists 1913, U.S. Border crossings from Canada to U.S. 1895-1956, 1910 United States Federal Census, 1920 Federal Census, and www.ancestry.com.

Elena ́s grandfather was William Williams b. 1875-11-08 in Sweden. A Swedish relative claims that he is identical to Karl Wilhelm Lundgren b. 1875-11-08 in Lerdal, Älvsborgs län. Elena would like proof that this is correct. William had told that he came over to U.S. when he was 17 years old. Her father have told Elena that he went to Montana together with his father (William) to meet with William ́s sister, Bertha Roll (Brita).

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There are several Public Member Trees on www.ancestry.com where William Williams is claimed to be identical to Karl Wilhelm Lundberg. None of them provides any proof.

First of all we need to figure out if William Williams really is born 1875-11-08. One of the Public Member trees refers to a World War I draft records for William Williams. In this record he has stated his date of birth as Nov 8, 1875 so that seems to be correct. And we know that this is the correct William Williams by the fact that his wife ́s name is Ella and that they live in Idaho Falls, Bonnewille, Idaho in 1918 (Encl 1-2).

Now we want to find Karl Wilhelm Lundberg in Sweden. We find his family in Lerdal 1876-1885. Nine children of which two dies very young (Encl 3):

Johannes Andreasson Lundberg b. 1844-09-30 in Rölanda m. 1865-11-10 Soldier
 Kerstin Larsdotter  b. 1840-05-21 in Råggärd
 Anders Johan  b. 1865-11-26 in Råggärd
 Stina Maria  b. 1868-03-08 in Lerdal
 Britta Kajsa  b. 1870-09-04 in Lerdal
 Anna Fredrika  b. 1874-01-25 in Lerdal
 Karl Wilhelm  b. 1875-11-08 in Lerdal
 Alma Sofia  b. 1877-08-25 in Lerdal
 Amanda Kristina  b. 1880-12-06 in Lerdal  d. 1883-09-16 in Lerdal
 Laura Elisabeth  b. 1883-01-20 in Lerdal  d. 1883-09-20 in Lerdal
 August Abdon  b. 1884-07-30 in Lerdal

Stina Maria moves to Järbo in 1890. Britta Kajsa moves to Råggärd in 1890 (Encl 4). The rest of the family moves to Järbo in October 1891 (Encl 5).

In Järbo Anna Fredrika moves to p 33 while the rest of the family moves to p 83 (Encl 6).

Karl Wilhelm leaves Järbo 1893-11-10 in order to emigrate to U.S. Britta Kajsa returns 1894-11-02 from Råggärd and brings an illegitimate son, Karl Johan Torstenson, b. 1891-07-30. 1896 she has an illegitimate daughter, Vendela Helena, b. 1896-02-08. Stina Maria moves 1894 to p 140 In order to marry (Encl 7).

In order to find the father of Karl Johan Torstenson we need to take a look at the place in Råggärd from which Kajsa Britta returned. She moves out from p 207 in Råggärd in 1894 according to the Moving-out Record for Råggärd (Encl 8). This is a place to which she has moved from the previous page in 1891 with her son (Encl 9). On the previous page we can see that Britta Kajsa is working as a housemaid for the unmarried homestead owner Torsten Teodor Örtenblad. He probably is Karl Johan’s father even though the Birth record does not say anythingabout it. Torsten Teodor Örtenblad emigrates to U.S. 1895-10-15 (Encl 10).

As we have seen before Karl Wilhelm Lundberg leaves home 1893-11-10, two days after his 18th birthday, in order to emigrate to USA (Encl 11). He cannot be found in any Swedish emigration records. So it will be difficult to prove that Karl Wilhelm Lundberg is identical to William Williams

However, if we can prove that Britta Kajsa is identical to Bertha Roll in Montana then her brother Karl Wilhelm Lundberg must be William Williams!

August Abdon leaves home 1902-03-14 in order to emigrate to USA. Britta Kajsa leaves her two illegitimate children, Karl Johan and Vendela Helena 7 and 2 years old, with their grandparents and moves to Norway in 1898-09-29. Her younger sister, Alma Sofia, moves to Norway 1907-09-27. Karl Johan goes to N. America 1910-03-11 and Vendela Helena goes the same way 1913-04-11 (Encl 12).

In order to find out the travellers ́destination it is common to use Emihamn. Enterring no names but just the parish, Järbo, and the year of emigration, 1913, gave an interesting result. Suddenly Britta Kajsa shows up together with two more children, besides Vendela Helena: Johan and Karl (Encl 13). The passenger list reveals the birth dates for the two extra children, 1904 and 1906, and they all have the surname “Roll”. Their destination is New York, N.Y. which normally is just the first stop in U.S. (Encl 14).

So this indicates that Britta Kajsa and her two children lives in Järbo when they emigrate to U.S. But where do they live and when did she come back from Norway? And what about the new surname Roll?

The Moving-out records (MOR) for Järbo show that she lives on p 76 at the time of emigrating (Vendela lives at p 72) (Encl 15-16).

On p 76 we find that Britta Kajsa has married Magnus Valfrid Larsson, b. 1883-04-18 in Färgelanda, 1902-07-27. Son Johan Hilmer was born 1904-01-28 in Sacksborg, Norway. Son Karl August was born 1906-04-15 in Sacksborg, Norway. The family moves to Järbo 1906-06-01. 1913-04-11 all but Magnus Valfrid leave for emigration to USA (Encl 17).

Even if Magnus Valfrid may have moved in in Järbo with his family he may have travelled to USA immediately. He could also have registered in Sweden but never set foot there but rather have taken off for USA when the rest of the family settled in in Sweden. But what about his surname Larsson? Britta Kajsa and the children had Roll as surname.

Since we know that Magnus Valfrid was born 1883 in Färgelanda we can check with is Birth record (BR) what the names of his parents are. Magnus Valfrid ́s father is Soldier Lars Magnus Roll and his mother is Anna Beata Andreasdotter. They live in Håbyn, Färgelanda when Magnus Valfrid is born (Encl 18). AHA! Mystery solved. Roll is a soldier ́s name.

The Järbo MIR (Moving-in Records) show that the family has moved from Sacksborg in Norway. With them also Britta Kajsa ́s younger sister moved, Alma Sofia Lundberg. She probably had helped in the household (Encl 19).

Now it is time to locate Magnus Valfrid in USA. We find him as Walfred Roll when he enters USA from Canada. He has departed from Liverpool, England and arrived at Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada 1910-04-22 (Encl 20).

Two days later we can see in the Border crossing document that he is traveling with Karl Johan Torstenson, 18 years old. He is mentioning his wife, Bertha Roll. The final destination is given as Red Wings, Minnesota (Encl 21-22).

Carl Thorstenson settles down as a boarder and Clay Digger in Goodhue, Goodhue, Minnesota which is not far from Red Wings (Encl 23-24).

1920 we find Walfred Roll, Bertha Roll and their children John (Johan Hilmer) and Charles (Karl August) at Swan River, Missoula, Montana. And we can see that both sons are born in Norway (Encl 25).

The conclusion is that Bertha Roll is identical to Britta Kajsa Lundberg, Karl Wilhelm Lundberg ́s sister, and therefore Karl Wilhelm Lundberg is identical to William Williams.

Kjell S. Andersson 2015-09-06


1 World War I Draft cards. William Williams
2 D:o. Registration card
3 HER Lerdal AI:21 (1876-1885) Image 293 / page 286
4 HER Lerdal AI:22 (1886-1890) Image 249 / page 235
5 HER Lerdal AI:23 (1891-1895) Image 204 / page 192
6 MIR Järbo B:3 (1861-1894) Image 73
7 HER Järbo AI:17 (1891-1895) Image 95 / page 83
8 MOR Råggärd B:2 (1861-1894) Image 93
9 HER Råggärd AI:19 (1891-1895) Image 219 / page 207
10 HER Råggärd AI:19 (1891-1895) Image 218 / page 206
11 MOR Järbo B:3 (1861-1894) Image 84
12 HER Järbo AIIa:1 Vera (1896-1914) Image 850 / page 72
13 Emihamn Järbo 1913
14 Gothenburg passenger lists 1913 with destinations
15 MOR Järbo B:4 (1895-1940) Image 500 / page 42
16 HER Järbo AIIa:1 Vera (1896-1914) Image 850 / page 72
17 HER Järbo AIIa:1 Vera (1896-1914) Image 890 / page 76
18 BR Färgelanda C:11 (1861-1885) Image 167
19 MIR Järbo B:4 (1895-1940) Image 360 / page 28
20 U.S., Border Crossings from Canada to U.S., 1895-1956. Walfred Roll
21 D:o Handwritten record
22 D:o Enlarged
23 Carl Thorstensen in the 1910 United States Federal Census
24 D:o. The record itself
25 Walfred Roll and Bertha with children in 1920 United States Federal Census. Swan River, Missoula, Montan