Anders William Ramstad Oral History Interview, 1981  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Creator
Ramstad, Anders William
Title
Dates
1981 (inclusive)
Quantity
3 file folder
3 photographs
1 sound cassette
2 compact discs
Collection Number
t047
Summary
An oral history interview with Anders William Ramstad, a Norwegian immigrant.
Repository
Pacific Lutheran University, Archives and Special Collections
Archives and Special Collections
Pacific Lutheran University
12180 Park Avenue South
Tacoma, Washington
98447
Telephone: 253-535-7586
Fax: 253-535-7315
archives@plu.edu
Access Restrictions

The oral history collection is open to all users.

Additional Reference Guides

Languages
English
Sponsor
Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.


Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Anders Ramstad was born on June 2, 1891 in Dennison, Minnesota to William and Josephine Ramstad, both of whose parents were from Norway. Anders was one of eleven children, and he spoke Norwegian until he began school. Anders attended St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN, after which he went to seminary in St. Paul. While attending seminary, he met his wife Emma Kvindlog. They have three children: Alice, William, and Helen (Toppy). After they were married and graduated, Anders became a minister at Phinney Ridge Lutheran Church in Seattle, WA. He was later elected a board member at Pacific Lutheran College and was eventually nominated as a teacher as well. He began teaching in 1925, and at this time, none of the teachers received regular pay. The faculty did not begin to receive regular pay until President Eastvold came in 1943. While at PLC, Anders also coached the girls' basketball team and started the first PLC football team. Anders retired from PLC at the age of seventy, after which he arranged for retired PLC workers to use PLC facilities so that he could keep up his hobby of golf. Anders was not a member of the Sons of Norway but was an active member of the Kiwanis Club and attended Trinity Lutheran Church in Tacoma. Anders spoke Norwegian in America "for fun," and he visited Norway in 1935 and 1965. Overall, Anders was glad he was Norwegian.

Lineage

Full Name: Anders William Ramstad. Father: William Ramstad. Mother: Josephine Martie Ohnstad. Paternal Grandfather: Ole A. Ramstad. Paternal Grandmother: Ragnild Valsengen. Maternal Grandfather: Rognald Johnson Ohnstad. Maternal Grandmother: Martha Iverson Skeim. Maternal Step-Grandmother: Perine Otterness. Brothers and Sisters: Rognald Olaus Ramstad, Henry Julius Ramstad, Randi Mathilde Ramstad, Edgar Benjamin Ramstad, Melanchton Albert Ramstad, Lydia Josephine Ramstad, Ephraim Jonathon Ramstad, Janna Elizabeth Ramstad, Mamie Christine Ramstad, Melvin Philip Ramstad. Spouse: Emma Kvindlog Ramstad. Children: Alice Margaret Ramstad Gonzales, William Kvindlog Ramstad, Helen Ruth Lydia (Toppy) Ramstad Kyllo.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The interview was conducted with Anders Ramstad on March 14, 1981 at Pacific Lutheran University's University House in Tacoma, Washington. It contains information on family background, education, marriage, employment at PLU, and Norwegian heritage. The interview also provides three photographs of Anders at the time of the interview, a small book about Anders written by his wife, Emma, and a memorial tribute from PLU's news magazine, Scene, July 1981. The interview was conducted in English.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

There are no restrictions on use.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

The partial interview transcription highlights important aspects of the interview. Numbers may be used as guides to important subjects. Two numbers separated by a slash indicate that the first number is for cassette and the second for CD.

Container(s) Description
Cassette
47, side 1 009/11: PERSONAL BACKGROUND
He was born on June 2, 1891 in Dennison, Goodhue County, Minnesota. He has eight brothers and sisters. All the children were born at home.
47, side 1 027: PARENTS
William Ramstad was a farmer (grain/threshing machine). His mother's name was Josephine Ohnstad Ramstad.
47, side 1 032: GRANDPARENTS BACKGROUND
Paternal grandparents were from Østlandet near Oslo. His maternal grandparents were from Aurland in Northern Norway.
47, side 1 043: MINNESOTA
Minnesota was his early place of residence in the Norwegian community and with a Swedish community nearby. He spoke Norwegian until school.
47, side 1 060/12:
English was spoken at home after marriage.
47, side 1 060: SCHOOL DAYS
Confirmed. Started high school, lived with aunt and uncle. Attended St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota. He experienced problems. He missed school when working on the farm. He graduated ahead of his class.
47, side 1 079: GLACIER PARK
Summer employment as a dishwasher and he was later head porter.
47, side 1 124:
Employed in the Auditor's Office in St. Paul, Minnesota. He was bored with it so he quit.
47, side 1 129:
Attended seminary the next year in St. Paul. He met his wife there, Emma Helen Kvindlog. They married and graduated. He became the minister at Phinney Ridge Lutheran Church in Seattle, Washington (formerly the Bethel Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Church). He discussed housing and the changing of the name of the church.
47, side 1 160/13: PACIFIC LUTHERAN COLLEGE
He was elected a board member then nominated as a teacher.
47, side 1 182: IMPORTANCE OF CHURCH LIFE
Language in the church, the congregation's children.
47, side 1 202: PACIFIC LUTHERAN COLLEGE
Arrived in 1925 and taught anything. There were 85 students.TEACHERS AT THAT TIME: Xavier, Stuen, Kreidler, and Hauge.PAY: No pay for teachers at that time.HOW THEY EARNED MONEY: Stuen worked at Parkland Light and Water Co.
47, side 1 232: STUDENTS
Where they came from. They were local. He was the Girls Basketball Coach. He discussed sports at PLC.
47, side 1 246/01: ANDERS
Started the first football team at PLC.
47, side 1 264: PARKLAND
Early day impressions. Mostly Norwegians
47, side 1 264: BUSINESSES
Two stores owned by Mr. and Mrs. Hans Dahl and Mr. Lehmann. F.B. Ellingson owned Parkland Light and Water Co.
47, side 1 289: PARKLAND SOCIAL ACTIVITIES
Ladies Study Club, Kiwanis, and Rotary.
47, side 1 289: TRANSPORTATION
Streetcar from Spanaway to Tacoma.
47, side 1 304: PACIFIC LUTHERAN
Difficult getting groceries for the students. The Boarding Club. In 1917, the PLC reopened, three churches helped. The Everett and Spokane schools became children's homes.
47, side 1 333/02:
Instructors and families lived in dorms. They had a cow at the college. Farming in the area is discussed.
47, side 1 350:
Norwegian language faded when the old folks died. Taught English school for Norwegians.
47, side 1 366: LANGUAGES OFFERED AT PLC
Norwegian, Latin, and German.
47, side 1 377: DEPRESSION
No raise in pay if paid. Started getting regular pay when Eastvold came in 1943 with money from the church.
47, side 1 394/03: GARDENING
Produced enough to eat. Sold milk in exchange for a tailor made suit.
47, side 1 409:
Teaching Chemistry at PLC. The first lab became a restroom.
47, side 1 429: EARLY PARKLAND
He discusses church life specifically Parkland Lutheran Church and the languages at the church.
47, side 1 458: OUTSTANDING CHANGES IN PARKLAND
: Pacific Avenue was paved. Parkland Light and Water Co. He worked off his bill when he was short of money.
47, side 1 490/04: PAN-A-VIEW(?) MOVIE SCREEN
His invention. Hollywood took it over.
47, side 1 508: NEW INVENTION
Square root theory.
47, side 1 538: RETIREMENT
Age 70, worked for 36 years at Pacific Lutheran. He discussed the classes he taught. The students changed, all nationalities were represented. He always liked to teach.
47, side 2 055/05: SONS OF NORWAY
Not a member.
47, side 2 068: KIWANIS CLUB
Very active member.
47, side 2 075: ANDERS AND HIS KNITTING MACHINE
Learned to knit at age 11. Amusing knitting machine story.
47, side 2 098:
Parents were both born in the U.S.. They are deceased.
47, side 2 103: HOBBY
Golf. He arranged for retired PLC workers to use the PLC facilities.
47, side 2 113:
Two trips back to Norway. In 1935, he taught one year at Franklin Pierce High School and made money for the second trip. Describes the trip.
47, side 2 153: NORWEGIAN TRADITIONS
17th of May, a big day.
47, side 2 171/07: CHILDREN'S NAMES
See lineage.
47, side 2 180: SPEAKING NORWEGIAN
For fun sometimes.
47, side 2 191: TRADITIONAL NORWEGIAN FOODS
Flatbrød.
47, side 2 196: IMPORTANCE OF NORWEGIAN HERITAGE
Glad he's a Norwegian. Describes Norwegians as workers.
47, side 2 214: SPOKEN NORWEGIAN
Says the Norwegian Table Grace.
47, side 2 228: THOUGHTS ON PACIFIC LUTHERAN UNIVERSITY TODAY
Good reputation.
47, side 2 238: CHURCH
He is a member of Trinity Lutheran Church.

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Basketball--Pacific Lutheran College
  • Depressions--1929
  • Education--United States
  • Family--United States
  • Football--Pacific Lutheran College
  • Gardening
  • Knitting machines
  • Marriage service
  • Norwegian-Americans--Ethnic identity
  • Norwegian-Americans--Northwest, Pacific--Interviews
  • Norwegian-Americans--Social life and customs
  • Personal Names :
  • Ramstad, Anders--Interviews (creator)
  • Gonzales, Alice Ramstad
  • Kyllo, Helen (Toppy) Ramstad
  • Ramstad, Emma Kvindlog
  • Ramstad, Ole
  • Ramstad, William Kvindlog
  • Valsengen, Ragnild
  • Ohnstad, Rognald
  • Otterness, Perine
  • Ramstad, Josephine
  • Ramstad, William
  • Skeim, Martha
  • Corporate Names :
  • Bethel Lutheran Church (Seattle, Wash.)
  • Kiwanis Club (Parkland, Wash.)
  • Pacific Lutheran College
  • Pacific Lutheran University
  • Parkland Lutheran Church (Parkland, Wash.)
  • Phinney Ridge Lutheran Church (Seattle, Wash.)
  • Rotary Club (Parkland, Wash.)
  • St. Olaf College
  • Trinity Lutheran Church (Parkland, Wash.)
  • Family Names :
  • Gonzales family
  • Kvindlog family
  • Kyllo family
  • Ohnstad family
  • Otterness family
  • Ramstad family
  • Skeim family
  • Valsengen family
  • Geographical Names :
  • Dennison (Minn.)
  • Northfield (Minn.)
  • Seattle (Wash.)
  • St. Paul (Minn.)
  • Tacoma (Wash.)
  • Form or Genre Terms :
  • Oral histories
  • Occupations :
  • Clergy
  • Teachers