Thursday, May 15, 2014

Research Q & A - Norwegian Cemeteries

Here at the Chicago Genealogical Society we occasionally receive questions from our members and others reaching out to us. If you can help answer the question or have more information to add, please leave a comment below.

Here is a recent question received:

I am planning a visit to Chicago this summer to see the places where my grandparents lived when my father was born in 1903. I also hope to visit some of my Norwegian ancestor's graves. When my father was born in 1903 his father's occupation was "Grocery Business". It could be interesting to find where he had his locals.

Now I dare to ask you these questions:
1. My aunt died in Los Angeles in 1977, but her ashes were sent to Chicago where she lived most of her life. She was never married. I have tried to look her up in Find a for Chicago, but had no success. There was a life care fund established for her by her former employer. I have information about that and I have her Social Security Death Index. I don't ask you to do this job for me, but maybe can tell me how I can find this?

2. Could there be any historical records where I could find out about my grandfather's Grocery business?

3. Do you know any people who have general knowledge about Norwegians in Chicago around 1900, the Humboldt Park area? It could be interesting to meet such a person.

Craig Pffankuche replied:

1. There are many large cemeteries where her ashes could have gone. Your first "best bet" would be, because of her ethnicity, to try Mt. Olive Cemetery, 3800 North Narragansett Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60634.
2. Business records were only very rarely kept so the chance of finding business records for a no longer existing "Mom and Pop" store is exceedingly slim.
3. There is no specific Norwegian - American Historical Society located in Chicago. Check out the research links on for researchers that certainly could help you find more information.

Check out the link below to a blog from a Swedish researcher finding their roots at Mt. Olive Cemetery, where this photo is courtesy of. 
Anna-Karin's Genealogical Blog- A day in Chicago's Cemeteries

Have research questions? Have a mystery photo? Send it along with what you know about it to, or post it to our CGS Facebook Page.  We may not be able to answer every question, but we may post your question on the blog or in our newsletter.

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