Friday, July 15, 2011

SweAme User Recognition Award

The SweAme Board of Directors expresses a sincere appreciation to Per Hellsten, for his contribution to the Swedish America Heritage Online website.

This User Recognition Award is intended to recognize specific individuals such as Per, who has demonstrated a major desire to research, document and share his family ancestral heritage.  Per has accomplished this by submitting data and photos of his ancestors and relatives who were part of the major migration from Sweden to America.

Per began his participation with SweAme on June 29, 2011, when he found on the SweAme data base two of his relatives who were documented in the original Swedes In Texas book printed in 1918.  These two relatives were Carl Gideon Olson (page 257) and his brother Fred Olson (page 788). 

Per Hellsten resides in Mölndal, Sweden, south of Göteborg on Sweden’s west coast, with his wife Lena and their three children; Sven, Elsa and Maja.

He works for the Ericsson Telecommunications company and his wife Lena is the principal at the Halmstad upper secondary school.  As you can tell, Per and his family enjoy the summer time and swimming in the lake.  But Per also stays up late at night working on the very large number of excellent family photos he has collected and is digitizing for future preservation.
These family photos have become very important to Per and his actions reflect his desire to protect and share them.  He has noted that some of the pictures only exist in one copy and that makes them vulnerable to all kinds of destruction.  Some of the pictures that he has in his possession were sent back home to the Old Country to tell how life in the New World turned out.  At the time it was obvious who was in the picture - so no one bothered to make notes.  And, now a hundred years later no one remembers.  
The Carl Magnus Olson family (including Fred and Carl Olson) photographs were thrown in the trash when the house of his grandparents was cleared out after they passed away.  It was just coincident that Per found them before it was too late.  This Olson family had immigrated to Gladstone, Michigan (a small town in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan).    From there, both Fred and Carl moved on to become Lutheran ministers and served at Swedish churches in Central Texas.
Per has stated that the ability offered by the SweAme website to share these photos with others is very important.  In addition to contributing some of his many photographs, he has contributed genealogy data on more than 60 family members.
I am sure that you will find the Carl Magnus Olson family information (and family photos) very interesting reading and viewing.
To view the basic data that Per has contributed in a Tree Chart format:
To view a sample of Per’s outstanding photos:
You can send your greetings to Per Hellsten at .