Friday, April 4, 2008


From Stockholm Sweden to Minneapolis, Minnesota. My wife's Grandparents relocate with all their possessions in one trunk. Trouble in our household, she is part Swede, I'm Finn, uh-oh. ;-) These is a lot of discussion lately about the immigration problems in this country, mainly about the illegal immigrants who come here to work. I understand that there is legal protocol that should be followed, but usually is not. There is work that needs to be done, illegal immigrants are willing to do the work that so many U.S. citizens refuse.
Looking back into my family history when my Great Grandfather Lehtinen immigrated from Helsinki Finland, he was illegal, living here with his family in northern Minnesota. The story is his neighbor was to travel to Duluth, MN to get naturalized as a U.S. citizen. Great Grandfather Lehtinen asked him if he would get the naturalization papers for him and he would watch both farms. This neighbor forget how to spell Lehtinen, but remembered the county Great Grandfather Lehtinen was from. That was how the family got a new surname and how he became naturalized as a U.S. citizen. Things were quite lax back then, I doubt if anything like this would ever happen in this day and age.


  1. Good of you to remind us how many people have immigration stories to tell. Perhaps I should mention the illegal immigrants that invaded the Indian Nations both when we colonized this country and in the 1800s when we expanded it - the U.S. That's you and me!

  2. What a fascinating story and so beautifully told. And what a gorgeous photography of a wonderful old trunk too. Loved it all.

    Thanks so much for asking about my dog - he's got an abscess but he gets them regularly. He was in a terribly state when I got him from a refuge. Had to have both eardrums removed and now, nearly two years later, is on fine form except for abscesses that form below the ears from time to time. Once this one bursts and pressure is gone, he'll be fine. He's on antibiotics as per usual.

  3. I love this story to go with your photograph! My parents are both immigrants from Europe. They were lucky enough to have skills the government wanted, so had no trouble becoming citizens. I think it's much harder now!