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T.Alatalo
08-11-14, 23:27
My great grandfather Johan Petter Bomström was born in 1847 in Alatornio, Finland. He had, among other siblings, a nine years older sister named Karolina. She moved to Northern Norway. In 1866 she is joined in marriage with Thomas Heikkurainen. Their wedding took place in Tromsö which is a small city in far up in the north.

Johan Petter followed his sister to Norway and fished some years in the Arctic Ocean and, according to family tradition, even in the Atlantic Ocean. Probably he fished together with his brother-in law Thomas Heikkurainen. Norwegian records from that time and that area are scanty. Consequently, I have not found any information about Johan Petter’s movements in Norway. According to family tradition, he visited Norway even later, maybe several times. In March 1937, Johan Petter Bomström passed away at the age of 89 years, after having being run over by a horse on a street in Tornio.

Karolina remained in Norway for some years. She and her spouse Thomas moved from Tromsö to the uttermost north, to a city named Vadsö. Their son Karl Arvid was born in 1868. About three years later the Heikkurainens entered a ship which took them to Trondheim. And in the beginning of August 1871 a ship named DS Tasso sailed from Trondheim and took course towards England. Karolina, Thomas and Karl Arvid Heikkurainen travelled with that ship. Their destination was New York. The most common was that the ride went to Hull and thence overland to Liverpool which was the port of departure to America. The voyage across the Atlantic took about three weeks.

Even a fellow named Petter “Hikurainen” (misspelling) and his wife Maria Lisa were onboard. Maybe Petter was Thomas’ cousin. Anyhow, he was born in Alatornio. Thomas seems to have been born on the Swedish side of the border, near Tornio.

Here I lose all tracks. I have searched on the internet, in all conceivable manners, but without any results.

What I have is:
Karolina Heikkurainen, nee Bomström, born in Alatornio/Nedertorneå, Finland 1838,
Thomas Heikkurainen born in ”Taarna” (Tornio??) Sweden 1839,
Karl Arvid Heikkurainen, born in Vadsö(or possibly Tromsö), Norway 1868.

Thomas’ profession is, according to the wedding record, fisherman. Maybe they settled on the cost?
Later a number of Karl Arvid's cousins took the leap across the ocean, among them my father’s two uncles. Perhaps the idea of emigration took root and grew through the example of Karolina and by stories told by the fireplace over winter evenings when the frost banged in the corners. Perhaps a letter arrived every now and then.

Any information about these persons will be very gratefully received.

T. Alatalo