Astrid Aase Løvoll Oral History Interview, 1984  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Løvoll, Astrid Aase
1984 (inclusive)
3 file folders
1 photograph
1 sound cassette
Collection Number
An oral history interview with Astrid Aase Løvoll, a Norwegian immigrant.
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
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Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Astrid Aase Løvoll was born in 1907 in Liasgard, Volda, Norway. Her parents were Odin Kornelius Gjerder Aase and Anne Severine Sivertsdatter Liaskar, and there were five children in the family: Borghild, Astrid, Sigrid, Jenny, and Sigvald. She married Alf Løvoll, who was born in Koparnes, Norway, and had three children: Magnar, Odd, and Svanhild. All of the children were born in Bjoerlykke, Norway.


Full Name: Astrid Elisa Aase Løvoll. Maiden Name: Astrid Elisa Aase. Father: Odin Kornelius Gjerder Aase. Mother: Ane Severine Sivertsdatter Liasgard. Paternal Grandmother: Johanne (?). Maternal Grandfather: Sivert Tobia Knutsson Ulvestadhaug. Maternal Grandmother: Ane Berte Gabrielsdatter Liasgard. Brothers and Sisters: Borghild Aase, Sigrid Aase, Jenny Aase, Sigvald Aase. Spouse: Alf Løvoll. Children: Magnar Løvoll [+1951], Odd Løvoll, Svanhild Løvoll.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The interview was conducted with Astrid Løvoll on June 14, 1984 in Volda, Norway. This interview was conducted in Norwegian and the tape is in a heavy Norwegian dialect; it has been partially translated. Also available is a copy of Astrid's memoirs, which were written in Norwegian. Also see Alf Løvoll.

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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
260, side 1 075: NAME
She was born Astrid Elisa Aase, and her married name is Astrid Løvoll. Astrid was born on May 16, 1907 on a small farm called Liasgard in Volda, Norway. Her father's name was Odin Aase, born on Andøya and her mother was Ane Severine Liasgard. Astrid was born on the mother's family farm. Parents got a piece of land from an aunt so they built a farm there after a while. Her parents met when Ane was a maid at Runde and Odin was working as a fisherman in the area. Astrid's father traveled on ships as boatswain, and was away from home for long periods.
260, side 1 130: LIASGARD
Several people lived at Liasgard, her aunt, maternal grandparents, and five siblings, four sisters and one brother. At that time, she felt it was the best place in the world. Her father was away a lot, her grandfather died when he was 69, and her aunt was sick a lot, so it was her mother that ran the farm. Her mother died when she was 46, she was worn out. Kids helped when they could but her mother had the main responsibility for the farm. Astrid was married when mother died and had given birth to her oldest son.
260, side 1 163: SCHOOL
She attended school in Morkabygda, not so far from Liasgard.
260, side 1 176: WORK IN NORWAY
Astrid worked as a maid after confirmation and she remembers several episodes from that time. Once, in Ørsta, she worked at a farm, and it was a long way to the summer dairy. The hills were steep, the terrain was generally difficult, and she had to walk with large milk cans. She walked the distance every day. She walked up during the afternoon, slept up in the summer dairy and walked home with the milk in the morning. She was not 16 years old, and the family she worked for was tight with the money. Once, after returning from the summer dairy, the lady of the house had made waffles. She asked for one, but she could not get any, although she was very hungry. They had a lot of meat and fish and Astrid wonders how it was possible for them to have so much money and food. She was there for two winters and one summer and she was not allowed to go home during this period. However, she worked at some nice places as well, because some places she got both room and board. She also worked for the bank manager's home.One time she was there she was unlucky and smashed a white vase that belonged to them, she was afraid of them so she hid the destroyed vase in the pantry. Astrid also remembers one employer that demanded that she worked very fast. They had straw-mattresses, and it takes time to make good beds with straw-mattresses, she was told to work fast, so the beds was bad to lie on.
260, side 1 265: SALARY
The salary was 20 NOK/Month, and then she got some food from the people she worked for.
260, side 1 292: MEETING ALF
She worked as a maid close to the family farm until she was 22, then she left to work for the farm that was close to the farm Alf was on. Her maternal cousin worked in the area and she managed to get a job for Astrid at a house, where a teacher lived with his two sisters. These were strange people that talked about people, however, that were how Alf knew about here. They had a telephone there and he called the first year, wanted her to come to his place, she did not want to, but when he called again the next year, she decided to move in with him.
260, side 1 314: WEDDING
Alf and Astrid got married on September 25, 1930. The wedding was held in Liasgard and they had 80 guests. Her people were mostly from Volda and her brother, sisters, aunts, and uncles all got there for the wedding. The wedding dinner was meat and gravy and they had dessert. They also had a layer cake and a cook was responsible for the food in the wedding. Astrid remembers that the family had to wash the whole house before they could hold the wedding and she could not believe how they were able to cook dinner for 80 people in the little kitchen that was on the farm. She got a nice white dress and blue coat and overall she thought it was a nice wedding.
260, side 1 354: OWN FARM
They moved to their own farm after the wedding. When she got there, she thought: "Where should I start?" She had not owned a farm before and she was not used to having responsibilities. Her cousin was there and helped her. Her cousin was 18, she was 23. One task the cousin helped her with was to bake breads. Alf and Astrid had not planned to go to America when they got married. She remembers Alf wanting to go back to America, but when she did not go, he stayed as well.
260, side 1 393: THE FARM WHEN ALF WAS AWAY
They still kept the farm, and until the whole family left for America, two hired men helped them with the work on the farm. However, she still had the responsibility that all the work was done and she had the three little kids to take care of. They had a large, white horse cart on the farm they used to get around with. She was afraid of the horses, but she managed to harness the horse and the horse was always nice to her.
260, side 1 425: AMERICA AFTER THE WAR
She was looking forward to see Alf again after seven years. She brought the children but the oldest boy did not want to leave. He wanted to take over the farm, but he liked USA as well when he finally got there. Their daughter did not recognize her father, she was two when father left, and now she was nine. She remembers when she prayed to get some butter because the family did not have any. Some hours later one of the neighbors asked if she wanted to buy 1,5 kg of it.
260, side 1 472: SEATTLE
The family moved directly to Seattle. She felt alone in the beginning, she did not know the language, but they helped a lot in the stores. She met a lady from Larsnes and they met a girl named Mabel that had Norwegian parents, so Mabel helped them learn English, since she understood both languages. She talked a lot with her, and she learned a lot of English words and phrases. Astrid was 39 years old when she got there, so she caught up on the English fast. Alf was away a lot and it was difficult for Alf the first time he had to leave after seeing the kids again.
260, side 1 489: WOMEN'S CLUBS
She joined a free church organization, they took turns on using their home for prayer meetings the whole period that the family was in America. The women were around the same age as Astrid. They were very kind, and she was very well acquainted with Mabel. Astrid was more positive about living in America after she learned English from her.
260, side 1 502: WORK IN AMERICA
Astrid did not work the first years but she had some cleaning jobs in the last years, because she felt secure when she started to know the language. She worked far away from home and had to take two busses to be able to get to the job. The bus journey was exciting, but she knew the language so she could talk to the bus drivers and let them know when she wanted to get of the bus. She still means that the people she met in America were very helpful.
Astrid still keep contact with some of the friends, she regularly writes letters to them. Alf and Astrid had several friends, especially through the churches. They joined the First Lutheran Church, but joined a Pentecostal church after a while. She wanted to stay in America, but they decided to return to Norway. After they returned, she felt it was nice to come home as well.

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Emigration and immigration
  • Family--Norway
  • Marriage service
  • Norwegian-Americans--Northwest, Pacific--Interviews
  • Norwegian-Americans--Social life and customs
  • Return migration -- Norway
  • Personal Names :
  • Aase, Johan
  • Løvoll, Magnar
  • Løvoll, Odd
  • Løvoll, Svanhild
  • Ulvestadhaug, Sivert Tobia Knutsson
  • Aase, Odin Kornelius Gjerder
  • Liasgard, Ane Berte Gabrielsdatter
  • Liasgard, Ane Severine Sivertsdatter
  • Løvoll, Alf
  • Løvoll, Astrid Aase--Interviews (creator)
  • Family Names :
  • Aase family
  • Liasgard family
  • Løvoll family
  • Ulvestadhaug family
  • Geographical Names :
  • Bjørlykke (Norway)
  • Koparnes (Norway)
  • Volda (Norway)
  • Form or Genre Terms :
  • Oral histories
  • Occupations :
  • Domestics
  • Farmers