Friday, February 25, 2011

1908 Ship Passenger list for Lars Hansen Madsen

Great Grandpa Louie is the sweet looking man
in the front of this picture
I'm always amazed and in awe of my pioneering ancestors, whether they forged their way West via horse and buggy to settle throughout the United States, or they came by ship to start a new life in a new land. My Great Grandpa Louie, otherwise known as Lars Hansen Madsen, was one such pioneer. Grandpa Louie was born on September 24, 1893, on a farm called Risemark on the tiny island of Ærø in Denmark. Our family there goes back to at least the early 1600s.

Grandpa Louie came to the United States with his older sister, Hansine, and her family in 1908. He was just 14 years and 6 months old. They arrived at Ellis Island, New York, on April 26, 1908, on the Arabic. Here's the ship's Passenger List that lists him and his family.

Some things I learned about my Great Grandpa Louie from this wonderful document:
  1. He had blond hair and blue eyes.
  2. He was 4'9" tall at the time.
  3. He was listed as a "labourer."
  4. He was headed to meet his older brother, Hans Terkelsen Madsen, in Livermore, near San Francisco.
  5. He and his family first traveled to Liverpool, England. The ship, Arabic, left Liverpool on April 16, 1908, and took 10 days to arrive in New York.
  6. His father paid the fare for his journey.
  7. He did not have a ticket to his final destination (San Francisco).
  8. He did have at least $50 in his pocket.
  9. He and his sister's family were traveling with another Danish family from Ærø, the Groths, who would also settle in Livermore, California.
  10. He was neither a Polygamist or an Anarchist (!!!)
Grandpa Louie passed away on May 8, 1971. I'm fortunate that I got to know Grandpa Louie and that he was one of the many brave souls in my family to forge their own path in America.

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