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Norwegian man searches for relatives

Martin Ludvig Olsen Submitted

Nikolai Bøe Olsen, a Norwegian man, sent the News-Chronicle an interesting request this week. He thinks he might have relatives in Two Harbors or Knife River.

The story started when Catherine, a Fergus Falls resident, posted a request in Nikolai's hometown newspaper in Hadsel, Norway. Her grandmother had emigrated from Norway in the early 1900s and lived her entire life in Minnesota. Nikolai responded to her request and they turned out to be cousins--Nikolai's grandfather was the brother of Catherine's grandmother.

Now, Nikolai asked us to enlist our readers to help solve his own family mystery. Nikolai's grandfather immigrated to Knife River and stayed in the area for 5-10 years before returning to Norway. However, there's rumor in Nikolai's family that his grandfather may have left a child behind.

Nikolai sent us everything he knows about his grandfather.

Martin Ludvig Olsen was born June 16, 1863 in Hadsel, Norway and immigrated to the U.S. with his brother Tomas Lie Olsen and another family member Dalmar Tideman Davidsen. They left on March 3, 1910 from Trondheim, Norway and arrived in Liverpool, England on March 25. Then, they took the S.S. Empress of Britain to Saint John, New Brunswick where they landed on June 1.

Martin then headed to Knife River where he met his friend Ludvig Carlsen. Nikolai knows that Martin lived for some time in Two Harbors and was an unskilled worker. He may have worked at a lumberyard or in the iron ore industry during his stay.

He returned to Norway sometime between 1915 and 1922 and married Emilie Davidsdatter (Davidsen). He died Oct. 10, 1932 in Hadsel, where Nikolai still lives today.

Nikolai is hoping someone has information about his grandfather and any children he might have had in Minnesota. If any readers recognize the names in the story or the photo of Martin, e-mail, write, call or stop in the News-Chronicle office and we'll get in touch with Nikolai.