View Full Version : mrahkonen

25-01-05, 17:28
Biography : I am a pianist, a lecturer and a researcher
Location : Helsinki, Finland
Interests : history, arts, travelling
Occupation : teacher at the Sibelius Academy
Researching surnames : I am looking for any information on Selma Borg (b.Gamlakarleby 1838, d. USA 1920's). She moved to Philadelphia probably in 1864. She was a translator (for ex. Topelius), a musician and a women's movement activist.
Researching places/parishes :

June Pelo
25-01-05, 17:38
I helped Eugen Söderström research Selma Borg about 6-7 years ago. I think he planned to add the papers to a collection for the K. H. Renlund Museum in Gamlakarleby.


25-01-05, 21:36
How interesting! I did not even know that such a museum existed...I'll have to contact them. And by the way: a couple of years ago I tried to find a person named Gunda Pelo - she probably lived in New York. She wrote (back in late the 1950's) an article about a person I was researching them. Do you happen to know anything about her?

June Pelo
25-01-05, 21:52
I just wrote something in the "Chit Chat" forum about Selma Borg. Do you have a copy of "Märkes-män och -kvinnor i Karlebynejden"? Some of the information I sent to Eugen Söderström is in an article in that book, and also a picture of Selma.

Yes, I know Gunda Pelo. She is my cousin and now lives in Florida. She is leaving this weekend to spend some time at her villa in Sideby. If you want to contact her, send me your e-mail address and I'll send it to her.


25-01-05, 22:01
It occurred to me that there is another Selma Borg in the emigration data base, put together by you, which I just found. This Selma was born in 1876. But I will check the chit-chat, if I can get there...I still feel somewhat clumsy at using this forum!
My e-mail-address is mrahkonen%40luukku.com

June Pelo
26-01-05, 01:42
Yes, I have Selma Borg, b. 1876, in my database. Her father Anders Gustaf Andersson Borg was married to Brita Johanna Andersdotter Björk. Anders' father was married twice and some of the family lived in Ludington, MI and knew my grandmother. The Borgs were related to her in many ways. I can give you more data if you are interested.

I sent your address to Gunda and hopefully she'll check her e-mail tonight.


26-01-05, 09:20
My interest lies in the earlier (b. 1838) Selma. I am basically trying to trace her steps in the US, although her roots in Finland are also of importance. I contacted the Renlund museum, since the e-mail address which I have for Eugen Söderström does not seem to get to him. I also got your e-mail, thanks. And thank you very much for all of your most kind help!

26-01-05, 09:52
-Estimated birth year 1939
-Birthplace Russia
-Race While
-Home 1920: Atlantic City, Atlantic, New Jersey
-Roll: T625_1015
-Page: 2B
-ED: 12
-Image: 0569

26-01-05, 09:57
-Name: Selma BORG
-Age: 40
-Estimated birth year: <1840>
-Birthplace: FINLAND
-Occupation: Histor. Lecturer
-Relationship to head-of-household: Something other than a direct relationship
-Home in 1880: Boston, Suffolk, Massachusetts
-Marital status: Single
-Race: White
-Gender: Female
-Father's birthplace: FIN
-Mother's birthplace: FIN

Year: 1880; Census Place: Boston, Suffolk, Massachusetts; Roll: T9_558; Family History Film: 1254558; Page: 65C; Enumeration District: 715; Image: 0437.

26-01-05, 10:02
One Selma Borg can be found:

- Name:Selma Mrs Borg
- Age in 1910:72
- Estimated birth year:1837
- Home in 1910:2-WD CAMDEN, CAMDEN, New Jersey
- Race:White
- Gender: Female
- Series: T624
- Roll:872
- Part: 2
- Page:130B
- Year:1910

I couldn't find her in the 1900 census?

26-01-05, 16:24
Selma is a boarder in the first record.

June Pelo
26-01-05, 17:43
Selma Josefina Borg was born 11 Oct 1838 in Gamlakarleby, died in America. Parents were Fredrik Borg and Margareta Sofia Hedman. Selma's mother was ill and couldn't take care of her so she lived with her mother's brother, sea captain Hedman in Gamlakarleby. She befriended Irene Franzén-Hornberg and together with Irene's mother Sofia Roos they went to Stockholm. According to the Biographical Cyclopedia of American Women; Daughters of America; and American Biographical Notes: She went to Philadelphia in 1864 - was a musician and a conductor; translated books from Swedish to English with a Miss Brown - working on novels by August Blanche, Topelius, Marie Schwartz; In 1876 published 23 songs under the title of "Lays of Sweden and Finland"; lectured about Finland and its culture; struggled for women's rights, etc. She knew Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. No one seems to know when or where she died. She visited Finland in 1882.


26-01-05, 22:29
Thank you again!
Where did the information on Selma's Finnish background (parents etc.) come from?

26-01-05, 22:33
Thank you, Hasse, also! The Selma of the 1880 census sounds like the right person to me. It is interesting (but quite possible) that she would have moved to Boston. You people seem to have access to most amazing records...

June Pelo
27-01-05, 00:35
I copied the pages about Selma from the book "Märkesman och -kvinnor i Karlebynejden" - submitted by Eugen Söderström.

I tried to attach both pages, but it wasn't allowed, so I'll send the other page separately.


June Pelo
27-01-05, 00:41
Here's the rest of the article.


28-01-05, 17:07
June Pelo: thank you for the print of the page. I'll try to get the book in my hands here in Finland.
Hasse: do you think that the three Selmas could actually be the same person, even though the information about them differs somewhat? I suppose the census into in the 19th c. was not all that accurate?