Bergine Johanne Strombotne, 18971994 (aged 97 years)

Bergine Johanne /Strombotne/
Given names
Bergine Johanne
Married name
Bergine Johanne /Arnsdorf/
Also known as
Gena /Strombotne/
Also known as
Gena /Arnsdorf/
Note: spelled Bergena Johanna elsewhere...
Birth February 19, 1897 40 37
Address: 316 2nd St NE Watertown, South Dakota, USA
Note: (State File Number: 563683) Birth Record

25th President of the United States
William McKinley
March 4, 1897 (aged 13 days)

26th President of the United States
Theodore Roosevelt
September 14, 1901 (aged 4 years)

27th President of the United States
William Howard Taft
March 4, 1909 (aged 12 years)

Death of a fatherJohn C Strombotne
July 20, 1910 (aged 13 years)
28th President of the United States
Woodrow Wilson
March 4, 1913 (aged 16 years)

Death of a paternal grandfatherChristopher Olai Johannesen
October 31, 1914 (aged 17 years)
29th President of the United States
Warren G Harding
March 4, 1921 (aged 24 years)

30th President of the United States
Calvin Coolidge
August 2, 1923 (aged 26 years)

31st President of the United States
Herbert Hoover
March 4, 1929 (aged 32 years)

32nd President of the United States
Franklin D Roosevelt
March 4, 1933 (aged 36 years)

Death of a motherAnna Jacobsdatter
February 7, 1935 (aged 37 years)
Address: Mount Hope Cemetery
MarriageVernon Brutus ArnsdorfView this family
May 29, 1935 (aged 38 years)

33rd President of the United States
Harry S Truman
April 12, 1945 (aged 48 years)

Death of a brotherChristopher Strombotne
July 13, 1945 (aged 48 years)
Cause: Heart Attack
34th President of the United States
Dwight D Eisenhower
January 20, 1953 (aged 55 years)

35th President of the United States
John F Kennedy
January 20, 1961 (aged 63 years)

Death of a brotherMartin Strombotne
May 18, 1963 (aged 66 years)
36th President of the United States
Lyndon B Johnson
November 22, 1963 (aged 66 years)

Death of a husbandVernon Brutus Arnsdorf
February 1, 1968 (aged 70 years)
37th President of the United States
Richard Nixon
January 20, 1969 (aged 71 years)

Death of a sisterOlga Mensena Strombotne
June 30, 1974 (aged 77 years)

38th President of the United States
Gerald Ford
August 9, 1974 (aged 77 years)

39th President of the United States
Jimmy Carter
January 20, 1977 (aged 79 years)

40th President of the United States
Ronald Reagan
January 20, 1981 (aged 83 years)

41st President of the United States
George H W Bush
January 20, 1989 (aged 91 years)

42nd President of the United States
Bill Clinton
January 20, 1993 (aged 95 years)

Burial of a fatherJohn C Strombotne

Address: Mount Hope Cemetery
Death December 11, 1994 (aged 97 years)


Memoirs of Gena Arnsdorf

Written May 30, 1984

My father, John Christopher Strombotne was born July 4, 1856, near Nemnes, Norway, on a farm called Stromen I botne, meaning bottom of the stream. He was a boat builder and spent the winters fishing in Lofoden. He had a brother Ole, who was a teacher in Oslo. His two sisters, Pernilla and the other both married teachers. When he was 26 years old, he came to America in 1882. His father, Christopher, lived with a daughter, and died at the age of 99 years. Father took the name of Strombotne for his last name instead of Christopherson, because of the uniqueness. He traveled to Meneota, Minn, to his cousin, Ole Myrvik, a farmer. He learned of a new town, Watertown, S.D. And knew there would be need of carpenters, and settled there.

He sent a ticket to Anna Jacobsen Tybeck in 1885. She sailed in steerage or third class. One month later she arrived in Watertown, South Dakota, USA. She worked for Ben Lee as a hired girl until they were married Jan. 25, 1886, by a Lutheran Pastor Nelson, grandfather of Leslie Mathieson. They lived in a room in the Goss Block, on the floor above Krieser Drugstore.

Later Father built a small home at 316 2nd St. N.E., then called Elm Street. The four children were born at home. He then remodeled the house. Jacob Martin was born July 9, 1888, Christopher July 6, 1890, Olga Mensena, July 20, 1894, Bergena Johanah, February 19, 1897.

Father built many homes in Watertown, and several farm buildings, for the Steins north of town. Some of the homes I know were Helbings in Southeast, Nelson of Nelson & Reed Hardware, Robert Best on maple and Fourth N. E. Abe Sherin (grandfather of Ford Sherin on 2nd st. N.E. & 4th Avew. Two cottages for Mrs. Jurney on 2nd St. N.E. (between 4th & 5th Ave.) across from Gus Hanson, also built by Father. The cottage owned by Jennie Sikkink (504 N. Brdy) and many more.

In the early years when it was too cold to build, he worked at Stokes Milling Co. There were some of his blueprints in the attic, but were not kept. He was naturalized in 1894, and I have the certificate. Anna Strombotne, my mother, told of the hardship of crossing the Atlantic with the storms and wind and conditions of the ship, which was probably a sailboat. She was not used to the cold winter winds in S.D., as there were no winds in Norway where she lived. She would like to go out on her snowshoes in Norway. She was thankful for the sheepskin robe to keep her warm as the house was not finished when they moved in.

Her first romance broke up as Mother’s older sister got the farm to live on and Mother could not live there. Her next love was a poor boy who was not considered financially secure, so her mother and sister broke up their friendship. My father and mother worshipped in the same Lutheran church but lived in a different fjord.

After their second son was born, Mother had several miscarriages, and stayed in bed 10 months so as not to lose Olga. She then became interested and was healed in Christian Science. Then Gena was born.

Mother’s sister Jacobia, (Jenny) came to America and worked in Minneapolis, married there, had a position of keeping house and cooking for several college students. Her husband, Mr. Matson, died and later she took up a claim near Minot N.D. She too became a Christian Scientist and used to stop in Watertown after attending a C.S. Association in Sioux CityIowa, USA. After proving up the claim, she bought a building in Minot, N.D. Where she had roomers and boarders. She married Albert Thompson and they had one child, Ethel, later married Al Johnson.

Martin, the oldest, learned Norwegian, his first language, but soon learned English at the Grant School. So Mother & Dad learned English quickly. While in Sioux City on one trip, Mother bought a large Webster’s Dictionary. We often had to look up words for her. She wanted the correct pronunciation and also the meaning. She hired my fourth grade teacher to come and correct her while she read the Christian Science lesson each week. So Mother lost her Norwegian accent.

Several friends called or came to see Mother for help or prayer which she gave lovingly without pay, sometimes she received a gift. We all had Mother’s help as long as she lived. All her grandchildren went to Christian Science Sunday School.

Martin and Chris were discriminate in school as their parents were from a foreign country. Mother spoke some broken English when we were young, so we did not have much help with our school work. Once she said, “You can correct me, but do not criticize.

Last change September 4, 202121:54:56

Family with parents
John Strombotne
Birth: July 4, 1856 40 37Strømbotne, Hemnes, Nordland, Norway
Death: July 20, 1910Watertown, Codington, South Dakota, USA
Anna Jacobsdatter
Birth: June 18, 1859 57 37Tybækken, Rana, Nordland, Norway
Death: February 7, 1935Watertown, Codington, South Dakota, USA
Marriage MarriageJanuary 25, 1886Watertown, Codington, South Dakota, USA
3 years
elder brother
Martin Strombotne
Birth: September 7, 1888 32 29Watertown, Codington, South Dakota, USA
Death: May 18, 1963Olmsted County, Minnesota, USA
22 months
elder brother
Christopher Strombotne
Birth: July 6, 1890 34 31Watertown, Codington, South Dakota, USA
Death: July 13, 1945Knoxville, Knox, Tennessee, USA
4 years
elder sister
Olga Strombotne
Birth: July 20, 1894 38 35Watertown, Codington, South Dakota, USA
Death: June 30, 1974
3 years
Gena Strombotne
Birth: February 19, 1897 40 37Watertown, Codington, South Dakota, USA
Death: December 11, 1994
Family with Vernon Brutus Arnsdorf
Vernon Amsdorf
Birth: May 30, 1898Minnesota, USA
Death: February 1, 1968Los Angeles, California, USA
Gena Strombotne
Birth: February 19, 1897 40 37Watertown, Codington, South Dakota, USA
Death: December 11, 1994
Marriage MarriageMay 29, 1935