R.I.P. Beverly Bonn Jonnes (1932-2019)

My Mother passed away peacefully yesterday after an 8-month battle with bile duct cancer.  She was 87.  She remained alert and witty until the last few hours. Her cancer is a rare one, but then, she was a rare woman. She was born Beverly…

Ancestry Discovery: Berthe Mikkelsdatter Vikheim Immigrated in 1866

  We've talked a lot about Bertha Bonn, my great-grandmother, who immigrated to America in 1883 at the age of 17 and became a milliner in Montevideo, Minnesota.  (See blog posts here and here.)  In the family chart shown above, she…

Longevity of Hafslo Ancestors

I mentioned in a previous blog post that Dorthe Eriksdatter Aaberge (1838-1938) is the oldest confirmed ancestor in our family tree.  Now I know why. Her father lived to be at least 89 years old and her grandfather lived to be 95! Ole…
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New Photographs of Bonn Great-Grandparents

This is a newly-obtained photograph of my great-grandfather, Bernt Olsen Bonn (1856-1937).  I got it last month from cousins in Sogndal, Norway.  I had never seen it before.  It seems to show Bernt in his late 30s or early 40s. Because…

Ancestral Farms in Eidsvoll, Norway

During last month's first-ever trip to Norway, one of my main goals was to drive around the village of Bøn in Eidsvoll Municipality to find ancestral farms. In particular, I wanted to see if I could pin down the precise location of a farm…
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David Reich Produces a Classic

I'm a little behind the curve on this because Prof. Reich's new book came out months ago, but I did want to draw attention to it.  Who We Are and How We Got Here: Ancient DNA and the New Science of the Human Past is simply the best summation…
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Ancestry Discovery: Photographs of Sogndal Ancestors

To me, discovering photos or images of an ancestor is as important as determining their vital statistics.  It puts a face to a name and reveals character and personality.  Even cooler, sometimes you can see a physical resemblance to yourself…

Hiatus II

We're on our way!  Leaving this week for England, Scotland, Netherlands, and Norway.  I thought I would have had time to put out another blog post or two before the big adventure, but not to be ... just too much going on.  I should have much…

DNA Health Report

Of all the major DNA testing companies, 23andMe is the only one that specializes in health reports.  Their Health+Ancestry Service costs $199.  (Their basic autosomal test is $99.)  The results provide customers a view into genetic predispositions…
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Discovery: 1885 Bonn Census Record

Talk about solving a mystery fast! Last week, I outlined some of the new information revealed by the homestead file of my 2nd great-uncle Christ O. Bonn (1858-1943).((Christ O. Bonn, (Marshall County) homestead file, final certificate no.…