PLAIN VIEW HERITAGE FARM,

RURAL BRYANT, SD, PRESENTS:

"Summary of the Holbek Root in Norway,"

by Arne Aage Holbek

I will try to give a summary of the information I have of our common Holbek ancestors in Norway. The sources are: “Holum Gardshistorie” by Bjørn Slettan 1976,

Notes from Nils Holbek, Erik Torp and Pernille Pettersen,

given to me by Tor Sibjørn Feed.

I have also got information from Torgeir Bue and from searching the web.

As you know, Bergit, Katrine and Andreas's grandparents were (and also grandparents to my grandfather) Andreas Andersen Holbek (1812 – 1882) and Berte Katrine Tormundsdatter Greipsland. (1817 – 1886).

They married in 1839. They first lived in Møll area; on the small farm called “Henrik Clausens plass” [Henrik Clausen's Place]. In 1853 they moved to “Vatnedal”. The farm was small, and difficult to cultivate. They did not have a horse on the farm [in Mandal]. There was no road for vehicles [to get] to the farm. Although they did not starve, they were poor people and had to work very hard for the living.

Mandal, South Norway

Lawrence Lundring, Son of Kathrine Holbek Lundring, & Vatnedal Church Picture

He [Andreas Anderson Holbek] was a teacher for the children in Holum until 1853. He led the singing in church and had other tasks in the community. He also step in as “lensmann” (may be translated as sheriff? it may not be exactly right) for his uncle Syvert. He acted as spokesman for the rule district some years.

He is specially known for his work for “The British and Foreign Bible Society”. (The following I found on the website for Plain View Farm:

He acted as an agent in selling Bibles and Christian literature. As a token for long and faithful service as a colporteur, he was presented with a large Bible by the British and Foreign Bible Society. The Bible was published in Kjobenhavn, Denmark, in 1877, and it was signed by the British Society in handwriting. This Bible is now in the possession of his granddaughter, Mrs. Alfred Stadem. If possible I wish I could get a copy of the handwriting).

He also preached the gospel in several group meetings in the southern part of Norway. In the book “Den norske kirke i det nittende århundre” ["The Norwegian Church in the 19th Century?"--Ed.]; volume II, it is told about him on page 533 – 537. I can not translate the whole chapter but in the first part it says:

“In Mandalen was a competent and highly regarded preacher Andreas Holbek. He had a better education than others, [instilled] from his father. He also had education from a school in Mandal. He became a newborn Christian in 1842. (I have to write more... ). [The account] ends like this: “Holbek was an honest preacher. He was counted among the group connected to “Hans Nilsen Hauge”. He spoke with gravity; he was a very good singer. He was strict with himself and knew his own weakness.”

Hans Nielsen Hauge

Andreas’s father was Anders Andersen Holbek (1786 – 1855). In 1808 he married Berte Jonsdatter Bringsdal (1786 – 1837). They lived on the farm called “Holbek familiens plass.” [Holbek Family Place]. Anders was the teacher for the children who lived on the eastern side of the river. He also had the same position in the church as his father—his father’s name was - Anders Rasmussen Holbek (1738 – 1802).

Anders Rasmussen Holbek married Inger Syvertsdatter Lindland (1749 – 1840) in 1766. He was a good singer and had the same position as his father. He had was better off economically and could lend out money. He did business with bark, and took part in the floating of timber. Many in the Holbek family were leader for the timber floating, because they could write and calculate.

Anderes was the son of the first Holbek we know about in Holum his name was Rasmus Andersen Holbek (1711 – 1770) He came from Kristiansand. He had education from the school called “The Latin school” If you fulfilled this school you could study at the University. I do not believe he finished at the school. Pernille thinks he first came as a house teacher for the children of the “clergyman” (word from Church of England) living at Vig near Mandal. What we know for sure is: In 1734 he became “degn” for the Churches in Holum, Øyslebø and Laudal. This employment as “degn” must be explained because I don’t know an English word for it. His task was to assist the clergyman. He took care of the book keeping, led the singing of hymns during the service, funerals and weddings. He was also responsible for the education of the children. He was an important man in the society, among the group of officials. Rasmus married Pernille Nilsdatter ( - 1752). She was daughter of Nils Reiersen and Karen Jensdatter They lived in an area called Stranda. Rasmus and Pernille lived on the same farm, later called “Holbek-familiens plass” [Holbek Family Place]. Their first son was Anders. Rasmus married 2 times after the death of his wife. (This should be continued..).

Rasmus was the son of Anders Rasmussen Holbech and Kiersten Andersdatter. They lived in Kristiansand. The first I knew from him is that he was the first teacher in a school started in 1722. This school was for children from poor people. In an article from 1800 it is written that he came from Denmark and he was an ordinary man.

He was only at the school for 1 year, then he came to the hospital in Kristiansand where he looked after the patients. He died 18.des. [December?] 1728. In the account book is this written: “1 coffin for the funeral of Anders Rasmussen, paid 2 –16”

Holbek or Holbæk is a small village in Denmark. (Old drawing will be furnished here). [From the web: Today it is a seaport, no longer a village, of about 22 thousand inhabitants.--Ed.].

Did you note the evangelist Hans Nielsen Hauge connection?

Did you see the reference to our ancestor being a "newborn Christian"?

Did you note the involvement in Gospel preaching, teaching, and serving in the local church and community in a special intermediary role representing the pastor?

Did you note the Bible and Christian literature selling on travels to promote the Christian faith? This was a portable or traveling Bible bookstore by an intinerant Gospel preacher, so to speak.

Did you note the compassionate involvement helping the poor and sick? Educating people is important, but people first have to fed and made well.

THESE ARE OUR MOST SPIRITUAL ROOTS ON THE HOLBEK SIDE AMONG OUR ANCESTORS:

The New Birth,

the Gospel of Jesus Christ,

the Compassion for the Poor,

the Teaching and Preaching,

the Work of an Intermediary in the Local Church,

the Spreading of the Gospel

and Bible and Christian literature selling across the country...

STADEM AND HOLBEK DESCENDANTS: TEACH THEM TO YOUR CHILDREN AND GRAND-CHILDREN, OR THEY WILL NOT KNOW THEM OR TEACH THEM TO THEIR CHILDREN IN TURN AND THEY WILL BE LOST, NOT KNOWING WHERE THEY CAME FROM, AND NOT KNOWING WHERE THEY ARE GOING.

For further research and reading:

Our Immigrant Ancestors," by Rennard Svanoe

Links to other sites on the Web

Stadems Saga Home Page


Plain View Heritage Farm Home Page 1


Central for Tributes


Bergit Holbek Stadem's Life, a Short Biography by Mrs. Walter Kloster


"The Victory of the Voyage of Faith," Centennial Tribute to the Epic Voyage of Bergit and Katrine Holbek from Norway to America, 1903, and Further Onward, by Grandson and Nephew, Ronald Ginther

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