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The Johanson Family's Story - Bainbridge

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This article first appeared in the Bainbridge Island Historical Museum (BIHM) and was submitted by Bob Ostrand
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My grandfather, John Johanson, was bom in Kronoby, Vaasa, Finland on February 12, 1872. He immigrated to the United States and eventually came to Seattle, Washington where he found work building ships. He died September 13, 1939. My grandmother, Anna Louise Lindell was bom in Gamlakarleby, Vasa, Finland on July 4, 1882. She died on December 9, 1945 on Bainbridge Island. She came to the United States with four other girls when she was 17 years old to find work. Anna was very homesick and cried for many nights because she missed her family and home. She did not speak English nor did she know how to eat some of our foods. For example, a banana was new to her and she didn't realize it had to be peeled! She went first to Detroit where she found employment as a servant for a family and learned to cook some of these new foods. She made some mistakes along the way, like throwing away the tops of asparagus and cooking the bottom parts.
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