Archiver > NOR-VOSSELAG > 2008-03 > 1204944585

From: Robert A Norheim <>
Subject: [NOR-VOSSELAG] Norheim
Date: Fri, 7 Mar 2008 18:49:45 -0800 (PST)
References: <009101c87faf$1fb59f60$6401a8c0@Family>
In-Reply-To: <009101c87faf$1fb59f60$6401a8c0@Family>

Greetings to the list,
I've been lurking for some time but I suppose, now that my surname has
actually popped up in a recent email, it's time for me to introduce
myself. Sorry if this is a little rambling. If it gets boring, skip to
my question in the last paragraph.

I'm Robert Norheim. My great grandparents are Wiking Brynjulvson Nordheim
(1857-1939) and Inger Oddsdatter Fletre (1865-1945), both from Voss but
married after they both came to Chicago. The Nordheim (Norheim, Nordhem)
surname was mentioned in in the Per Sampson Een email the other day, as he
married Sigrid Gitlesdatter, sister to my great-great grandfather Brynjulv
Gitleson (1819-1908).

Per Sampson Een was also the father to Nils Sampson (Een) (1849-1907) who
married my great-grandfather's sister Barbara Brynjulvdtr (1852-1935).

I was very lucky to have a cousin (Helen Fletre, wife of well-known Voss
artist Lars Fletre) research our family's pedigree in the Kindem books.
So, on the Norheim side, I can go back to 1603, and on the Fletre side, to
1505 (Aslak Brattåker). She did this after we had an influx of family
visitors from Norway and I asked "how am I related to all these people".
Little did I know.

It is so fun to look at a map of the Voss area and see all the names of
the farms that also appear in my pedigree ... Norheim, Fletre, Klove,
Ringheim, Nesheim, Rokne, Gjøstein, Repål, etc. So I am sure that I am
related to many of you, if we go back enough generations. Similarly, when
I walk down the street in Voss with my cousin, he is constantly pointing
out people that are cousins to him -- seemingly half the town.

My great-grandfather was one of 10 children, most of whom came to America.
Gitle was the eldest and the first to come, to Chicago. He made a small
name for himself and is in the Rene book. His brother Wiking, my
great-grandfather, founded ( with the Highland (Høyland) family) the
Nordhem-Highland Company, furniture manufacturers (also mentioned in the
Rene book). Two of their Uncles also emigrated to America and settled in
Decorah, where I still have fourth cousins. Several of their nieces and
newphews also came to America as well.

My impression is that Gitle Nordheim (Jetlee Nordhem after he came to
Chicago) was the person to see for many recent Voss immigrants to Chicago.
Certainly he helped out many other Nordheims who came over, such as Per
Sampson Een's (from the email the other day) son Nils Sampson who married
Gitle's sister. Their children (Paul and Nora Sampson) were well known to
my father. There was quite a community of Nordhems in Chicago in the
1920s that my father was born into. My father was an only child so his
many cousins were very important to him. As a result, I know many third
cousins, now all around the country.

Last October I visited the house that Gitle built in the Logan Square area
of Chicago. The house was in the hands of the family through 1968 when an
elderly relative died; the house has been in the hands of only two
families since then and the current occupants were eager to hear more of
the history of the house.

We have stayed in close touch with the family back on the farm at Norheim;
in fact I took my family there just last month, their first visit, my
fifth. My eight year old daughter was very taken with her 35 year old
fourth cousin who has her own sheep farm over near Hamar; now my daughter
wants to be a sheep farmer. My third cousin who currently has the farm
did a PhD in the states so he was one of our many visitors when I was
growing up.

As you can tell I am as interested in current generations as well as the

Given that I am mid-career, mid-remodel, and raising a family, I am not
doing any current research on the family. The work that Helen Fletre did
on the pedigree was great, and I have filled in more recent generations of
cousins. I do have some questions that I would like to research someday,
filling in some of the brothers and sisters in the earlier generations
where I currently just have the pedigree (not too hard perhaps from the
Kindem book), and finding out which ships the various emigrés came over

One question that you on the list may be able to help me on. It turns out
that my wife's brother-in-law is from the Dale farm in Ulvik. They know
(but they haven't gotten the actual lines to me) that they are related to
the famous Knute Rockne. I know that, in my Fletre line, I am related to
a Knut Rokne (I don't have dates on him but his son Per Knutson (Store)
Ringheim was born in 1698). I know that there are multiple Rokne farms
and I am wondering if anyone can tell me whether the Knut Rokne in my
background is actually related to the football coach. If so, I will
pursue it further with my brother-in-law's family to get their genealogy
to connect the dots between him and me.

Thanks for reading and if anything I have mentioned sparks a question,
please ask!

Robert Norheim

PS See for an explanation
about Nordheim/Norheim/Nordhem

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