Sunday, February 24, 2008

Norwegians on the South Coast.

If you listen to A Prairie Home Companion, you probably know that Minnesota is home to a lot of Norwegians. In a more general sense, the largest Norwegian-American communities may be found in the Upper Midwest. However, there is also a small but venerable Norwegian-American community in my home region of Southeastern Massachusetts. Today's edition of my hometown paper has a short article on SouthCoast Norwegians, which I post here simply because I'm proud of where I grew up and enjoy sharing stories about the area:
David Lyng, manager of the Kinsale Inn, was a little bemused when Mattapoisett resident Luana Josvold first approached him with the idea of having his most Irish establishment host a Norwegian dinner.

"I reminded them that the Vikings founded Dublin as a trading post and we both eat salmon and potatoes, so he agreed," Ms. Josvold said.

The idea has proved a popular one. Three of the informal dinners have been held, with another one scheduled in the future.

"It's been good for us," Mr. Lyng said. "It offers something different at what is usually the quietest time of the year."

Ms. Josvold, who teaches Norwegian language classes several times a week and plays Norwegian music on the accordion, organized the dinners as a way for the Norwegian community along SouthCoast to get together periodically.

"There are a lot of Norwegians here, mostly associated with fishing," she said. "If you look in the Seamen's Bethel, some of the earliest names there are the Larsens, the Andersens and the Karlsens. These gatherings offer us an opportunity to socialize, listen to some familiar music and eat some authentic Norwegian food."

Johan Gundersen, owner of Scandia Propeller Service on Union Street in Fairhaven, said many of the Norwegian people who came to this area to fish were from the island of Karmoy, which had long ago forged an unusual link with the United States, since the copper used in the Statue of Liberty was mined on the island.
For the rest - and there isn't much more - click here. AMDG.


Post a Comment

<< Home