Ragnild Bjornsdtr Skolt (1809-1900)
Ragnild Bjornsdtr Skolt was born on 04 Jul 1809 in Skolt, Aalrust, Hemsedal (Hallingdal), Buskerud, Norway as the tenth child of Bjorn Sveinson Hallbjorshus Skolt and Kari Olsdtr Markegolo Skolt. She had nine siblings, namely: Birgit, Svein, Margit, Ola, Bjorn, Birgit, Birgit, Rangdi, and Jon. Ragnild Bjornsdtr Skolt was baptized on 09 Jul 1809 in Nes i Hallingdal, Buskerud, Norway. She grew up in rural Norway, helping her parents herd cattle in the mountain pastures and doing household work such as churning butter and making cheese.
When she was 23, she married Christian Oleson Rukke,son of Ole Thorson Tollefsgardie and Jöran Christiansdtr Gire, on 09 Apr 1833 in Nes, Buskerud, Norway (Hallingdal).
Christian Oleson Rukke and Ragnild Bjornsdtr Skolt had the following children:
- Ole Christianson Rukke was born on 04 Oct 1834 in Nes, Buskerud, Norway (Rukke). He died on 11 Jan 1836 in Nes, Buskerud, Norway (Rukke).
- Ole Rukke Christianson was born on 23 Oct 1837 in Nes i Hallingdal, Buskerud, Norway. He married Kari Hillson on 15 May 1860 in Udolpho, Mower, Minnesota. He died on 30 Apr 1918 in Mower, Minnesota.
- Jorand Christiansdtr Rukke was born on 08 Apr 1838 in Nes, Buskerud, Norway (Rukke). She married Guttorm Hillson Wenaas on 27 Jul 1857 in St Ansgar, Mitchell, Iowa, USA. She died on 16 Mar 1906 in Dodge, Minnesota, USA.
- Björn Christianson Rukke was born on 11 Nov 1841 in Nes, Buskerud, Norway (Rukke). He married Barebo Engebretsdtr Torset on 10 Jul 1870 in Mower, Minnesota. He died on 16 Oct 1932 in Udolpho, Mower, Minnesota.
- Kari Christianson was born on 05 Jul 1846 (in ship sailing to America). She married Erick Nilsson Lostegaard on 06 Apr 1868 in Minnesota. She died on 11 Jun 1904 in Freeborn, Minnesota.
- Randi Christiansdtr Rukke was born on 27 Feb 1849 in Rock, Wisconsin. She married 1) Nils Johnsen Bjerke and 2) Hans Reierson Rukke. She died on 19 Jan 1890 in Mower, Minnesota.
- Margit Christiansdatter was born on 28 Apr 1852 in Dane, Wisconsin. She died on 31 May 1867 in Mower, Minnesota.
In 1846, Christian, Ragnild and their three living children departed for America. They sailed on the ship Columbo. Ragnild gave birth to her fifth child while they were on the ship crossing the ocean. So, when they arrived in New York, they were a family of six. The family settled in Wisconsin, buying land in Dane County. After many years in Wisconsin, the family moved again. This time, in 1855, they made a trek to the wilderness of Minnesota. They settled near the present-day town of Blooming Prairie. As a pioneer wife, Ragnild had to set up housekeeping in a a hastily built log cabin. She wove and knitted clothing for the family using wool from the family sheep. She used hides from deer and elk to make leggings, caps, shoes and other items. Ragnild fed her family depending heavily on the milk produced by the family cows, the wheat and corn that was grown in the family fields, the wild berries that could be gathered, and the wild game that could be hunted. The nearest store was 100 miles away, and it took two weeks with oxen to make the round trip, so the pioneers mainly made due with the abundance of natural resources found around them. The first years were difficult, but gradually, the standards of living improved and the population of the area increased.
The family were charter member of Red Oak Grove Lutheran Church which was organized a few years after the settlers arrived in Minnesota.
Ragnild became a widow in 1874 when her husband passed away. But she lived another twenty-five years, residing among her children.
Ragnild Bjornsdtr Skolt died on 23 Apr 1900 in Udolpho, Mower, Minnesota. She was 93 years old at the time of her death. She was buried on 24 Apr 1900 in Red Oak Grove Lutheran Church Cemetery, Austin, Mower, Minnesota.
Where is she in the tree?
How can I learn more?
The Christianson Family book covers the life and descendants of Ragnild. Check out the Christianson page for information on how to obtain a copy.
Ancestry.com, Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, Records, 1875-1940 (Provo, UT, USA, Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2015).
Arkivverket Digitalarkivet (Norway), Baptism record for Ragnild Bjornsdtr. Kildeinformasjon: Buskerud fylke, Nes, Ministerialbok nr. 6 (1808-1814), Fødte og døpte 1809, side 56-57.
http://www.arkivverket.no/URN:NBN:no-a1450-kb20060127050421.jpg. Baptism record for Ragnild Bjornsdtr Skolt. http://www.arkivverket.no/URN:NBN:no-a1450-kb20060127050421.jpg; digital images, Arkivverket Digitalarkivet.
Christianson, B.M. 1972. From the Land of the Midnight Sun to the Fertile Prairie of Minnesota. Albert Lea, Minnesota: Printed for the author by Church Offset Printing.