History of the Norwegian People in America – Free eBook

Learn all about your Norwegian Ancestors!

This ebook covers the geography, history and people of Norway, as well as their immigration to America.

It also discusses Norwegian:

  • Education
  • Religion
  • Social and Political Aspects
  • Industries
  • Language
  • Culture

Included are many maps and tables illustrating immigration statistics and comparing the movement and settlement of Norwegian people with that of other groups, such as the English, Celts, Dutch, French, Germans, Swedes, Danes, Icelanders, Finns and others.

A large part of the book concerns the period from 1825 to 1860, when much of the Norwegian immigration took place. By 1860, Norwegians were well established in the United States and Canada, with an additional 300,000 immigrating between 1860 and 1890. Immigration continued between 1890 and 1925, paralleling the growth of prosperity, industry and railroads.

You will also learn about Norwegian American occupations, publications, culture, inventions, sports and public service.



At the Second General Convention of the Norwegian Lutheran Church of America held in St. Paul, Minnesota, June 8-15, 1923, a resolution was adopted providing for the proper celebration of the centennial of the sailing of the sloop, “Restaurationen,” from Stavanger, Norway, July the Fourth, 1925, with fifty-two emigrants on board, constituting the first contingent of the nineteenth century emigrations to America. The President, the Right Rev. H. G. Stub, D. D., was authorized to appoint a committee of five members to make arrangements for the centennial celebration to be held in the summer of 1925. The President appointed the following Centennial Committee : Rev. George Taylor Rygh, Chairman; Rev. R. Malmin, Secretary; Rev. C. S. B. Hoel, Treasurer; Rev. O. S. Reigstad, Professor G. M. Bruce.

The Committee was given three definite instructions, as follows : (a) to make provision for the universal and simultaneous celebration of the centennial in all the parishes of the Church throughout the United States and Canada; (b) to secure the production of a centennial cantata; (c) to provide for the publication of a scholarly, comprehensive and authoritative history of the Norwegian people in America. The present volume by Professor O. M. Norlie is the result of the effort of the Committee to meet the third item in its instructions.

Dr. Norlie is a prolific author, having a large number of books, pamphlets and brochures to his credit. He is well known as a Church statistician and as an authority on data connected
with the Lutheran Church in America. Among the numerous degrees conferred upon him by various institutions of learning may be mentioned the following: Ph.D., Pd.D., S.T.D., Litt.D. Dr. Norlie is as modest and unassuming as he is scholarly and studious. A few of his best known works are: The Open Bible, Elementary Christian Psychology, Principles of Expressive Reading, The School Calendar, 1824-1924.

The present History is the product of a lifetime of research, giving ample evidence cf the author’s untiring energy and painstaking accuracy. It will prove a mine of information, from which future historians of America will produce many nuggets of historic worth. His elucidation of the discovery of America by the Norsemen is quite enough to determine the opening chapters of any future history of our country worthy of the name.

Dr. Norlie has for all time fixed the place of the Norwegian element in the making of the American nation, than which no other component holds a worthier place. For good citizenship,
industry, thrift, enlightenment, and character, the Norwegian element ranks second to none, and this History is the demonstration of that fact. In peace and war, the American of Norwegian ancestry knows but one loyalty, loyalty to the principles and ideals of America.

The Church Committee is proud to have had some little share in the production of this History by Dr. Norlie. It desires, however, to make clear that the volume is the sole work of the author whose name is attached to it. We believe that it will prove a notable contribution to the history of our beloved country.

This is a great free resource for anyone wanting to do Norwegian ancestry research, a history project, or to just find out about who they are as a people.

Download History of the Norwegian People in America
by Olaf Morgan Norlie, 1876

Formats: mobi and pdf together in a zip file.
For computers, mobile phones, and Kindle readers.

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About the Author


Curious about historical events, people and places - I love to learn and share the stories I find with others.

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