Famous Emigrants

Charles Lindbergh and plane, ca. 1925 Charles Lindbergh Jr., ca. 1925
Library of Congress

The most famous is probably Charles Augustus Lindbergh, Jr., the first man to fly across the Atlantic. His father, Carl Lindbergh Sr., was born illegitimately in 1859 in Stockholm, Sweden to Lovisa Galen, the nineteen year old mistress of Ola Månsson, who was a member of the Swedish parliament and a bank officer. When accused of bribery and embezzlement, Månsson changed his name to August Lindbergh, left his wife and seven children, and fled to the United States with his mistress and their illegitimate infant son in 1859. Lovisa became Louisa and little Carl became Charles August Lindbergh, Sr. They settled in Melrose, Minnesota, and had six more children. August worked as a farmer and a blacksmith for 26 years before marrying Louisa in 1885. Charles Augustus Lindbergh, sr. was a lawyer and served as a Minnesota congressman from 1907 to 1917. He married Evangeline Lodge Land, chemistry teacher. Their son Charles Augustus Lindbergh, Jr. was born on February 4, 1902 in Detroit.

Another noteworthy Swedish emigrant is Carl Wickman, the founder of the Greyhound Bus Company. He was born in Sweden in 1887. He moved to the US and in 1914 he started his first bus company transporting iron ore miners in Minnesota. Over the years he merged with other bus companies until in 1926 his business became known as Greyhound Lines. One of his specialties was making transcontinental trips from California to New York.

Last but not least John Ericsson (July 31, 1803 – March 8, 1889) was a Swedish inventor and mechanical engineer, as was his brother, Nils Ericson. They were born at Långbanshyttan in Värmland, Sweden. In 1826, he moved to England where his inventions did not work out as intended due to the circumstances there. As a result he moved to New York in 1839 where he actively pursued his skills.

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