Guide to the Jens Fredericksen Svinth Autobiography, 1924  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Jens Fredericksen Svinth
Guide to the Jens Fredericksen Svinth Autobiography
1924 (inclusive)
1 File (1 folder)
Collection Number
Recollections of Rev. Jens Fredericksen Svinth, born August 1849 in Ydby, Denmark. He married Karen Hansen and in 1891 Jens and his family immigrated to America. He wrote this autobiographical narrative in 1924.
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
Access Restrictions

This collection is available for research.


Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Jens Fredericksen Svinth was born 13 August 1849 in Tvolm, Ydby, Denmark. His father was Fredrik (Frederick) Svinth Kristensen (Christensen). Jens was the second of five brothers and sisters. He started working as a servant at about ten years old. He looked after the sheep and then the horses on Lars Djernis’s farm, where he received regular beatings. After leaving that job in 1864, he worked many places as a servant and then fished for lobster until 1871. In 1872 he served in the military in Copenhagen and in 1873 he returned to fishing. He met Karen Hansen through a friend and they married two and a half years after. They lived in Helligsø the first seventeen years of their marriage and had fourteen children, seven of whom died young. He and his wife were Christians and often attended believers meetings. They were active in the church and went to hear many guest pastors speak. Fishing and kindred work was his livelihood during this period. In 1891 Jens and his family immigrated to America. They moved to the forest and bought forty acres of land and picked hops for income. Three of their children found work outside the house. The family earned enough over thirteen years to make a trip back to Denmark in 1904 for six months. They moved to Tacoma, Washington, and became members of the United Norwegian Lutheran Church, which eventually became the English Lutheran Congregation. When Jens and his wife moved to Anderson Island they joined the Swedish Congregation. When Jen’s wife became ill, they moved in with their daughter and son-in-law in Enumclaw, Washington, where they joined the Danish Church.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The collection consists of a recollection of Jens Fredericksen Svinth about his life growing up in Denmark, becoming a Christian, immigrating to America and building a life here, and includes information about his children and their lives and families. It is a 14 page photocopy of a document typed in 1924 by Jens.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

Property rights reside with Archives and Special Collections Department at Pacific Lutheran University. Copyright resides with the creators of the documents or their heirs. All requests for permission to publish or quote from (the collection) must be submitted to the University Archivist. The reader must also obtain permission from the copyright holder.

Preferred Citation

Jens Fredericksen Svinth Autobiography, SIEmss_119, Archives and Special Collections, Pacific Lutheran University, 12180 Park Avenue South, Tacoma, WA 98447

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Danish Americans
  • Denmark--Emigration and immigration
  • Livestock
  • Lutherans
  • Religion
  • Personal Names :
  • Djarnis, Lars
  • Kristensen, Fredrik (Frederick) Svinth (Christensen)
  • Svinth, Elsie Marie
  • Svinth, Fredrik
  • Svinth, Hans
  • Svinth, Jens Fredericksen
  • Svinth, Lars
  • Svinth, Margrite
  • Svinth, Milankton
  • Svinth, Paul
  • Corporate Names :
  • Danish Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
  • English Lutheran Church (Tacoma, Wash.)
  • Swedish Lutheran Church (Anderson Island, Wash.)
  • United Norwegian Lutheran Church of America
  • Family Names :
  • Svinth family
  • Geographical Names :
  • Anderson Island (Wash.)
  • Denmark
  • Enumclaw (Wash.)
  • Tacoma (Wash.)
  • Form or Genre Terms :
  • Autobiographies
  • Essays
  • Family histories
  • Occupations :
  • Agricultural laborers
  • Clergy
  • Farmers
  • Fishers
  • Household employees
  • Titles within the Collection :
  • Memories from My Life