Hilma Leontina Anderson

Hilma Leontina Anderson was born August 15, 1879 at Kandla Farm on Lake Ljusnaren, near Ljusnarsberg, Örebro, Västmanland, Sweden.  Following Swedish patronymic naming, she would have been Hilma Leontina Jansdotter, since her father was born Jan Alfred, but she probably adopted her father's surname when she left Sweden.  Her parents were Alfred Anderson and Louisa Johnson.  She emigrated to the USA on April 7, 1882 with her parents.  She was confirmed in the Lutheran Church in Ironwood, MI on April 2, 1893.  She married Charles Sandin on March 20, 1897.  She had ten children, one stillborn.  She died November 16, 1918 during the flu epidemic and is buried in Hillcrest Cemetery, Bessemer, MI.  Hilma shares a cemetery lot with four of her children, Arthur, Earl, and twins Marion and Margaret.  Hilma was the first of eight children, one of whom died in infancy.  Her brothers John Albert and Charles Godfrey and her sister Anna Theresa were born in Commonwealth, WI.  Sisters Alma Marie, Hilda Cecelia, and Edith Ellen were all born in Bessemer, MI.  Picture is Hilma in about 1902.

Alfred Anderson was born October 3, 1854 in Rällsfall, Ljusnarsberg, Örebro, Västmanland, Sweden (however, the birthyear on his tombstone is 1853).  He was born Jan Alfred Andersson, but dropped the "Jan" and Americanized the last name by dropping one "s" when he emigrated.  Alfred’s father was Anders Ersson and his mother was Stina Lisa Persdotter (his father is listed on Alfred's death certificate as Andrew Anderson, his mother as unknown).  Alfred had four brothers and a sister.  Anders August remained in Sweden, Frans Axel and Jan Erik also lived in Bessemer, Carl Erik immigrated in 1881 and I haven't found him in the US, and Christina Mathilda lived in Duluth, MN.  Anders and Stina Lisa emigrated to the US on April 14, 1888, coming to Bessemer where three of their sons resided.  Anders took the name Andrew Erikson.  He died May 17, 1897 in Bessemer.  Stina Lisa took the name Christina Elisabet Erikson.  She died March 19, 1913 in Bessemer.  They are both buried in Hillcrest Cemetery.  Alfred Anderson died December 2, 1914 in Bessemer.

Louisa Johnson was born December 13, 1856 at Ljusnarsnäs Farm, in Ljusnarsnäs, Ljusnarsberg, Örebro, Västmanland, Sweden (however, the birthyear on her tombstone is 1855).   At that time Ljusnarsberg was known as Nya Kopparberget.  Louisa was born Anna Lovisa Jansdotter, but dropped the Anna, Americanized the spelling of Lovisa, and started using Alfred's last name when she emigrated.  Alfred and Louisa married on June 29, 1877 in Ljusnarsberg.  Hilma was born in 1879.  Alfred, Louisa, and Hilma left for the USA on April 7, 1882.  Their address at the time of departure was Ljusnarsnäs number 252.  After traveling overland from Ljusnarsberg, they left from Göteborg harbor aboard the "Marsdin" to Hull, England, eventual destination New York.  Their emigrant agent was C. W. Hällström at White Star-line.  In the USA, they settled first in Commonwealth, WI, where three more children were born.  In 1889, they moved to Bessemer, MI, where the last three children were born.  Alfred died December 2, 1914 and is buried in Hillcrest Cemetery, Bessemer, MI.  Neil Sandin remembers that Louisa lived in a house near and across from the Washington School in Bessemer, though he didn't recall her name.  He would see her occasionally when he was going to or coming from school and they would greet each other.  He knew she was his great-grandmother, but, for some reason, there was no other socializing.  Charleen Bennett remembers "She lived across from our grade school (Washington) on the second floor of a white wooden house.  Very steep steps up to her three rooms, which I visited at least once a week.  She was a heavy lady, pulled her white hair back into a beautiful bun.  Always greeted me with a "Holsa" and a hug.  Always had Swedish candy - white with red stripes - and very sugary.  Also always had ginger cookies - and many times gave me a nickel.  Maybe that's why I visited - but I guess I so missed my mother."  Louisa died October 31, 1939 and is also buried in Hillcrest Cemetery, Bessemer, MI.  Louisa and Alfred share a cemetery lot with Hilda and Harold Marshall, Louisa's sister and her husband.

Family hearsay was that Charlie Sandin and Hilma Anderson were first cousins.  This hearsay turns out to be "half" right.  Jan Jansson (the old rogue) was born December 5, 1805 in Salbofall, Ljusnarsberg.  On May 11, 1834 he married Brita Göransdotter, who was born October 1, 1807 in Hällefors.  They were the parents of Brita Stina Jansdotter, born January 30, 1846 in Ljusnarsnäs.  Brita Stina was the Christina Johnson that Charlie listed as his mother.  Brita G. died June 23, 1847 in Ljusnarsnäs.  On May 18, 1848 Jan Jansson married Carolina Larsdotter, who was born April 8, 1826 in Hjulsö.  Louisa was the fourth child of that union.  That family in birth order consisted of Anders August, Augusta Carolina, Johanna Matilda, Anna Lovisa, Anders August, and Carl Johan.  Last names were Jansson for the males and Jansdotter for the females following typical Scandinavian patronymic style.  As you can see, Charlie's mother Brita Stina and Hilma's mother Louisa were half-sisters, making Charlie and Hilma half-first-cousins.  Jan Jansson was the first of six children born to Johan Andersson (1783-1864) and Stina Jansdotter (1784-1854).  Jan's siblings were Erik, Anna Stina, Maja Cajsa, Petter, and Fredrik (again Jansson and Jansdotter).  I know that in text form this is a little hard to follow.  Better perhaps is to visit the Johan-Stina tree, appropriate pages of the detailed family tree as supplied by our Swedish genealogist, or the summary one-page Jan's pedigree supplied by Pono (who can barely remember his way home, let alone ten generations).

Jan Jansson died on December 2, 1888 in Ljusnarsberg, SE.  After his death, his widow Carolina Larsdotter emigrated to Bessemer, where she took the name Carolina Johnson.  She died in Bessemer on March 24, 1899 and is buried in Hillcrest Cemetery.

Of Hilma and Charlie's ten children, one was stillborn, Arthur and Kenneth’s twin Melvin died in infancy, and Earl, Margaret, and Marion died in early childhood.  Mildred survived long enough to marry and have two children, but also died at only 28.  Mother Hilma died at a relatively young 39.  Father Charlie and his three sons Clarence, Elmer, and Kenneth were the only ones in the Sandin family to live long lives.

The devastation to the family caused by the influenza epidemic also may have left emotional rifts.  Fear of approaching individuals and homes that harbored influenza resulted in those infected being left to fend for themselves.  Help from others in and out of the family might have resulted in the saving of lives or the loss of more individuals, but survivors were left to wonder.  However, years pass and memories dim.

Clarence, Elmer, and Kenneth and their wives saw each other regularly in the 60s and 70s.  A set of pictures exists of the three brothers, each balder than the next, with not enough hair between them to match their father Charlie at the time of his death.  Clarence, the firstborn, died last, proud of the fact that he had outlived his brothers and had lived more years than his father had.

Lucille J. Kelly was Charlie’s second wife.  She was born on June 6, 1905 in St. Paul, MN, where she grew up and remembered being very poor.  She married a man named Tutt.  She had a male child in MN and gave him to a nurse in the hospital where she gave birth.  She married Charlie Sandin in 1937 and outlived him by just a few months, dying on May 14, 1962.  Lucille was an accomplished artisan and did beautiful needlework.  She is buried beside Charlie in Hillcrest Cemetery, Bessemer, MI.  The picture to the left was taken in about 1944 and shows Kenneth and his wife Naida with Charlie and Lucille by Charlie’s house in Anvil Location, MI.