Norwegian Immigrants Part 2 February 2007
by: Irene Davis
my article was about Norwegian immigrants, this month is part 2 to that article.
Being in the Sons of Norway has given me the opportunity to speak with two
immigrants who belong to our lodge. This article is about their first hand
experience on moving to America.
Agnes Deeb came to America at the age of 14. She came by ship which took eight days. She came to America with her mother and brother. Her father and sister were already in America. To pass the time on the ship Agnes met many friends and listened to music. She does miss the mountains and fjords of Norway, but would not move back to Norway. Agnes has been in
America for 57 years and still speaks fluent Norwegian. “I love America and also my birth country of Norway!” says Agnes. Her father enrolled Agnes and her brother in school. They could not speak English but had an understanding teacher. They learned English very fast. Agnes was in awe when she first saw the Statue of Liberty, and shortly after arriving in America she saw a St. Patrick’s Day parade.
Lise Fleming came to America at the age of 23. She came by plane. She said it was a long trip with several layovers. She went from Oslo, Norway to Copenhagen, Denmark, from there to New York, then onto Los Angeles. In New York her cousins that live in Brooklyn came to keep Lise company during her five hour layover. She came by herself and did not know English very good. Though she went through the emigration requirements before leaving Norway, she is
still a Norwegian citizen. “After living in America longer than I lived in Norway, I consider myself to be an American. It is nice to visit Norway, but my home now is America.” states Lise. Like Agnes, Lise would not move back to Norway. Lise said that before coming to America, she thought everyone in America was wealthy and would see movie stars walking down the
street. After getting here, she found that not everyone was rich, and movie stars didn’t walk down the street but did learn to love fast food like McDonalds. During Lise’s first week in America, she soaked up everything, and learned a lot of English. Her new neighbors threw a party for her arrival, which to her, was nice since people in Norway wouldn’t do something like that. Lise really likes how things are here in America.
I want to thank Agnes Deeb and Lise Fleming for answering my questions for this article. I learned so much! Tusen Takk!!