Bjug Aanondson Harstad Papers, 1848-1933  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Harstad, Bjug A. (Bjug Aanondsen), 1848-1933
Bjug Aanondson Harstad Papers
1848-1933 (inclusive)
6.5 linear feet, (6 boxes)
Collection Number
Papers of founder and first president of Pacific Lutheran Universiy. Papers also include information on the Aanondson/Harstad family and of the Norwegian Synod
Pacific Lutheran University, Archives and Special Collections
Archives and Special Collections
Pacific Lutheran University
12180 Park Avenue South
Tacoma, Washington
Telephone: 253-535-7586
Fax: 253-535-7315

Historical NoteReturn to Top

The founder of Pacific Lutheran University, Bjug Aanondson was born on December 17, 1848 on a farm named Harstad in Valle, Setesdal, Norway. His father was Aanond Tellefson AAkre and his mother was Torbjør Kittilsdatter Harstad He was one of ten children and they lived on a farm called Gangshei above Harstad. his family was very poor. Young Bjug took care of the cattle at the family farm during the winter months and in the mountains during the summer months. Bjug and his family emigrated to America in 1861 and settled in Illinois and Minnesota. He continued his education in the US and was accepted as a student at Luther College in 1865. It was there that he changed his last name to Harstad upon a suggestion of the president of the college. He studied theology at Concordia Seminary in St. Louis from 1871 to 1874 and it was his experiences there that became the model for the rest of Bjug's scholarly and religious life. After seminary, he traveled as a pastor to remote places in Minnesota where he built schools and churches. Bjug Harstad was married February 14, 1877 to Guro Omlid in Minnesota. She was a native of Valle and ws born September 29, 1858. In 1889, the church sent Bjug Harstad to the Pacific Coast. He visited Portland, Seattle and Tacoma and when he returned to Minnesota, it was decided that Brookdale, as Parkland was called then, should be the important Lutheran education center of the Northwest. The Pacific Lutheran University Association was incorporated December 11, 1890 with Bjug Harstad as president. The cornerstone for the first building, Old Main, was laid October 4, 1891. The occasion of the cornerstone was a grand event. Several Lutheran pastors spoke both in Norwegian and in English and the president of the Norwegian Synod sent greetings with his hope that the undertaking would succeed. Old Main was renamed Harstad Hall in 1960 in honor of Bjug Harstad. In 1917 the Norwegian Synod that Pacific Lutheran University was founded under, merged with the United Church, and the Hauge Synod to celebrate the four hundredth anniversary of the Reformation. Harstad refused to join the new Norwegian Lutheran Church, thus formally separating himself from the school he had founded. Bjug Aanondson Harstad died on 20 June 1933 at age 84. His wife Guro, eight of his children, and eleven grandchildren survived him.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The collection includes family records, correspondence, photographs and some oral histories.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Harstad family and Bjug Harstad's writings, 1866-1935Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Bjug Harstad's grades and class schedule from Luther College
Til hvem det maatte angå ( To whom it May Concern)
Bjug Harstad writes of his youth
Early family history, reminiscences and Pioneer Prattle by Bjug Harstad
Celebration of the silver wedding anniversary of Bjug and Guro Harstad including a speech given by Tobias Larson to the bridal couple
Includes a translation to English by Adolph Hartstadas in 1986
Tacoman celebrates 53 years as a pastor: A clipping concerning the family getting together after 17 years to celebrate the event
Whither are we drifting? A story about a Bjug Harstad sermon
A brief history of Valle Saetersdal and of some families from there by Bjug Harstad
Bjug Harstad obituary
A tribute to Rev. and Mrs. Harstad including a note written about Guro by her daughters
Four-Minute Man Certificate of Honor given to Bjug Harstad
A copy of a Certificate of Honor presented to Rev. B. Harstad on the occasion of his honorable discharge from the service of the United State and In recgnition of Loyal and Devoted Service as a Four-Minute Man of the Committee on Public Information during the War of 1917-1918. File also includes a copy of a letter from th White House signed by president Woodrow Wilson concerning the Four Minute Men
Bjug and Guro Harstad's children
Aanond Theodore Harstad and his family. Aanond was the oldest surviving child of Bjug and Guro Harstad
Correspondence between Esther Thune and Adolph Harstad regarding Bjug Harstad biography
Esther Thune's research regarding her Grandfather Bjug Harstad. Esther is the daughter of Aanond Theodore Harstad
Rough drafts concerning Bjug Harstad biography
Clippings concerning the Harstad family and Pacific Lutheran University
Thune family geneaology and obituaries
A reunion of Bjug and Guro Harstad's granddaughters
The White Picket Fence by Esther Thune & Threshes, Schools and Ships by Hartford Thune
Esther writes about her childhood in Parkland and outlying areas
Oliver Harstad, an obituary
Oscar Theander (O.T.) Harstad
Life story of Oscar Theander (O.T.) Harstad
Louise and Lydia Harstad's trip to Norway
An autobiography by Adolph Marius Harstad
Fifty Years as a family
Golden Wedding Celebration of Martha and Adolph Harstad at Parkland on August 6-13, 1981
Adolph Harstad correspondence
The Rev. & Mrs Bjug Harstad and their Descendants by Adolph M. Harstad

Harstad Heritage Up-Date, 1984Return to Top

Harstad, Ardyce
Container(s) Description Dates
Gro Aanondsdaughter Harstad, Volume I
"Gro Aanondsdaughter Harstad was born Oc.2, 1831, in Valle Norway and came to Seneca, Illinois in 1861; she was married in 1865 to Thore Jutland of Arendahl, in Arendahl, Fillmore County, Minnesota. Gro died Dec. 26 1884 and Thore died Oct. 5, 1901 both are buried in Arendahl Cemetery. They had five children. Their second child Knute Edward (1) died when he was about 4 months old and is also buried in Arendahl Cemetery. Knute Edward (2) changed his last name to Knutson and Aanond Owen changed is last name to Knudson.
Kittil Aanondson Harstad, volume II
"Kittil Aanondson Harstad, citizen name Charles Anderson born at Valle, Saetersdal, Norway, Feb. 19,1834 came to Seneca, LaSalle County, Illinois in 1854; was in the South in Mississippi and Louisian a year or two before the Civil War, came back to Seneca, came to Greenfield, Fillmore County, Minn. in 1865; married in Arendahl, Nov 27, 1866 to Mrs. Eli Fjeldstad, widow, maiden name Eli Knudsdaughter Espetvedt, born in Espetvedt in Saetersdal, Norway, March 14, 1837. Kittil died at the home of his son Ole, near Mayville, March 1, 1915 buried in North Prairie Cemetery, Fillmore County, Minn. Kittil and Eli had seven children."
Tollef Aanondson Harstad, volume III
"Tollef Aanondson Harstad was the third child of Aanond Tellefson Harstad and Torbjor Kittilsdaughter Harstad and was born June 16,1836 in Saetersdal, Norway. He married there in May of 1861 to Margit Salvesdaughter Nomeland, also born in Saetersdak, Norway, Aug.2, 1840. They came to Seneca,LaSalle County, Illinois in 1861 and settled later at Greenfield, (now Harmony) Minnesota, Fillmore county in 1867. Tollef died Dec. 9, 1907 and about two and one half months later, Feb. 20, 1908 Margit also passed away. They are both at rest in Greenfield (Harmony) Cemetery. They had eleven children."
Gjermund Aanondson Harstad, volume IV
"Gjermund Aanondson Harstad was born in Valle, Norway; emigrated to America in 1868, and after 1875 settled on land near Hillsboro, No. Da., and married there in March 1878 to Borhild Kittilsdaughter, also born in Norway. Gjermund served two terms as member of the North Dakota Legislature and as Judge of Probate of Traill county, No. Dak. In 1893 the family moved to Parkland, Washington where Borghild died from burns cased by an exploded lamps in the fall of 1897. They had eight children."
Ole Aanondson Harstad Anderson, volume V
"Ole A. Harstad Anderson was from his boyhood the best behaved and educted of all the six brothers, a conscientious and tender-hearted man who functioned as a reliable instructor and guide of the whole family. Ole Aanonson Harstad, citizen name Anderson, was born in Valle, Saetersdal, Norway and came to Seneca, La Salle county, Illinois, in 1861 and married in 1863 to Miss Anna Petersdaughter Helgeland, who was born in Stavanger, Norway in June of 1841. They farmed in LaSalle and Ford Counties, Ilinois. Ole died Sept. 13, 1872 laving Anna with four children, one son having preceded him in death, He was buried near Clifton, Ill. Anna passed away Sept. 18, 1897 and is buried in Harding LaSalle County, Ilinois."
Tjodje Aanondson Harstad, volume VI
"Tjodje Aanondson Harstad, was born in Valle Saetersdal, Norway, June 16, 1843. He came to Seneca, Illinois in 1861, and to Fillmore county, Minnesota in 1864. He was married at Arendahl, Fillmore County, Minn. on Feb. 16, 1868 to Eli Oldsdaughter Homme, born in Saetersdal, Norway on Nov. 12, 1843, they resided a few years near Arendahl, later located near Porter, Yellow Medicine county, Minnesota. Here he served as Postmaster for some years. They moved from there to about twelve miles west of Portlnd, Steele County, North Dakota. In 1906, they moved to Bonetrail, Williams County, No. Dakota and took a homestead. In 1912, they moved to Parkland, Washington. Tjodje died there May 13, 1915 and is buried in Parkland Cemetery. The widow Eli went east to Williston No. Dak. and lived with her sone Ole. She died there March 13,1919 and is buried in Parkland, Washington Cemetery. they had eleven children. Three of Tjodje's children, Torbjor, Olaf and Nels died March 12,13,14,1882 respectively and were buried in one casket in the Porter, Minnesote Cemetery. Then Halvor died March 23, same year."
Tone Aanondsdaughter Harstad, volume VII
"Tone Aanondsdaughter Harstad was born in Saetersdal, Norway february 23, 1847 and came to Senneca Illinois in 1861; married Aug.3, 1866 to Andrew (Andreas) P. Helgeland at Greenfield, Fillmore County (now Harmony), Minnesota, and located there the same year. Andrew was born near Stavanger, Norway, Nov. 13,1844. They had seven children. Tone died at their hom near Harmony, Minn. Sept 2, 1883 and was buried in Greenfield Cemetery."
Bjug Aanondson Harstad, volum VIII
"Bjug Aanondson Harstad was born Dec. 17, 1848 in Valle, Saetersdal, Norway, came with his parents to Seneca, Illinois in 1861 moved to Fillmore county, Minn. 1865 and entered Luther College, Decorah, Iowa in the fall that year, graduated there 1871, entering Concordia Theologicl seminary, St Louis, Mo. the same year from which he graduated in 1874. He immediatley accepted a call as missionary in the Red River Valley, north of the Fargo, N.D. Teritory, married Feb. 14 1877 to Miss Guro Svensdaughter Aamli (also written as Omlid) born Sept. 29 1858 in Aanebjor (Arneberg) Bygland, Saetersdal, Norway. In 1894 he founded Pacific Lutheran College serving as principal or teacher until 1899. He took part i the Nome gold rush hoping thus to aid the College, Bjug Harstad died June 20, 1933 at the age of 84. Bjug and his wife were parents of eleven children."
Ingeborg Aanondsdaughter Harstad and Birgit Aanondsdaughter Harstad, volume IX
"Ingeborg Aanondsdaughter Harstad was born in Valle, Saetersdal, Norwy July 15, 1851; came to Seneca, Fillmore County in 1861, to Minnesota 1865, and to North Dakota some years later; married to Charles Matson, farmer of Crookston , Minn., November 21, 1877; he was born in Sweden, Oct 24 1844, came to the US in June 1868; located on a farm near Crookston, Minn. Moved to Parkland, Wash. in 1914, Ingeborg died July 12, 1925 at Parkland and was buried there. Mr Matson continued to reside at Parkland. They had eight children. One child Ida Selmina died when she was five."
"Birgit Aanondsdaughter Harstad was born Dec. 19,1854 in Valle Saetersdal, Norway, came to Seneca, Ill. in 1861, and to Filllmore County, Minnesota 1865, married at Arendahl , Minn, March 17,1878 to Lars Hermanson of Fillmore County, he was born in Norway, Dec. 28, 1850,came to Fillmore County and located on a farm near Arendahl. Birgit died at her home there Aug 23, 1883, buried in North Prairie Cemetery, near Arendahl; Lars died in his home Apr 13, 1894 also buried in North Prairie Cemtery. They had three children."
1851-1925; 1854-1883
New Information and corrections for Harstad Heritage volumes

Bjug Harstad's travelsReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Thoughts on Home Missioons in Pioneer days of the Norwegian Synod by Bjug Harstad
Tre Uger i Telt fra Goose River til Mouse River, D.T. published in For Hjemmet,March 15
A Three Week Camping Trip (From the Goose River to Mouse River D.T) published in Devil's Lake Journal May 10
Devil's Lake Journal (Devils Lake N.D.)
A translated and published version of Tree Uger i Telt
A Centennial Edition of A Three Week's Camping Trip or From Goose River to Mouse River, Dakota Territory 1881 by Rev. Bjug Harstad
Harstad, Adolph M.
A translated version of Tre Uger i Telt by Adolph M. Harstad February, 1980
From the Mission Field by Bjug Harstad
"These reports "From the Mission Field" appeared in the Pacific Herold, the Norwegian paper published in Parkland, Washington in the interest particularly of PLU. In July of 1895 Rev. Bjug Harstad made an exploratory tour of the state of Oregon particularly in the Willamette Valley. The purpose will be seen as one reads the accounts written by him. That which we present herewith appeared in the July 17th, 24th and 31st, Aug. 7th and 14th and the Sept 1895 issues of Pacific Herold. The translation from Norwegian is by Adolph M. Harstad. The introduction was evidently written by the editor."
Reisen til Alaska . (Letters to Pacific Herold from Bjug Harstad)
51 sheets
Letters and Articles on a Trip into the Yukon Region by B. Harstad published in the Pacific Herold translated by Oliver Harstad
54 sheets
Letters and Articles on A TRIP INTO THE YUKON REGION by REV. BJUG HARSTAD published in Pacific Herold 1898 and 1899 translated from Norwegian by Oliver Harstad, 75th Anniversary edition
Harstad, Oliver
30 sheets
A trip into the Yukon Region 1898-1899 by Bjug Harstad published in the Concordia Historical Institute Quarterly
Concordia Historical Institute
21 sheets
Bjug Harstad's Alaska travel documents and route
Alaska Legacy - The Moosehorns
As Bjug Harstad and others were prospecting for gold in the Klondike, a Dr. Lee from La Crosse Wisonsin shot a moose for the groups winter meat supply. He gave the horns to Bjug Harstad for the university. They are part of the University Archives collecion and are now hanging over the fireplace in the Alumni Office.
The Alaska-Yukon Gold Book
Sourdough Stampede Association
A Roster of the prograessive men and women who were the argonauts of the Klondike gold stampede and those who are identified with the pioneer days and the Yukon Teritory
Retracing the Alaska-Yukon trip
Free Press (Firm : Mankato, Minn.)
Clipping from Mankato Free Press concerning Harstad decendants retracing the 1898 Yukon- Alaska trip
Journey to Los Angeles
"The Mission Committe of the Pacific District of the Norwegian Synod has asked the Parkland congregation to permit its pastr B. Harstad to serve congregations in Los Angeles and Santa Barbara, California who have given their pastor a leave of absence for a period of about five months, starting June, 1904." Pastor Harstad wrote letters to Pacific Herold describing his journey. His son Adolph Harstad translated the letters from Norwegian,they are included here.
Journey to Oregon
Oregon Railway and Navigation Company
File includes a first class ticket issued to B. Harstad by the company
Bjug Harstad's Mukluks worn in Alaska

Bjug Harstad, founder of Pacific Lutheran UniversityReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Newspaper articles and correspondence regarding founding of Pacific Lutheran University
Newspaper articles and correspondence regarding the founding of Pacific Lutheran University

Bjug Harstad and the ChurchReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Report of a Congregational Meeting regarding Bjug Harstad and the Norwegian Synod
This report was printed serially in AMERIKA, a Norwegian-American weekly Newspaper published in Madison, Wisoconsin, Rasmus B. Anderson, editor. Adolph M. Harstad has translated the report into English and it is included in the file.
Concerning authority of a congregation and organized synod
Parkland Lutheran Church. Early history and dedication of it's first building
This congregation was later renamed Trinity Lutheran church
Parkland Evangelical Lutheran Church dedication
Jubilee Thankoffering in commemoration of the 90th anniversary of the Norwegian Synod
Is the Bible Reliable? Book written by Bjug Harstad

Harstad HallReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
"Renaming and dedication of Old Main to be known henceforth as Harstad Hall"
Includes "Bjug Harstad- Man of Vision" and photo of Harstad family members who atended the event.

Bjug Harstad Monument in Valle, Saetersdal, NorwayReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Planning correspondence prior to the dedication
File also includes information on an optional Scandinavian tour.
Dedication of Monument in memory of Bjug Harstad
File includes dedication program, greetings from particpants, poems, a prolog read at the Summer Festival in the afternoon following the unveiling of the Bjug Harstad Monument. The Summer Festival was held at Tveitetunet, Valle, Norway, news releses and clippings.
June 26,1983
Scrapbook of the activities surrounding the Harstad Monument dedication
June 26, 1983
Correspondence regarding funding of Harstad Monnument.
Lists of Harstad descendants

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Personal Names :
  • Harstad, Adolph Marius
  • Harstad, Ardyce
  • Harstad, Guro Omlid
  • Thune, Esther Harstad
  • Corporate Names :
  • Pacific Lutheran University Association
  • Geographical Names :
  • Alaska Yukon Pioneers
  • Parkland (Wash.)
  • Valle (Norway)