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Question for Triciae & anyone else doing genealogy research

9 years ago

I recently started toying around on genealogy sites and now am hooked. My main interest is tracing my maternal grandfather, an immigrant, back into Sweden. Although I've had very little information to go on, I've managed to put many pieces of the puzzle together, but have hit a snag regarding his immigration.

The 1940 census indicated that his immigration year was 1900. However, I also found a 1910 passenger manifest for a ship he took from Sweden to Ellis Island. So, I thought that the 1900 date must have been a mistake in the census.

Today I located his naturalization records via the ND Historical Society. I've ordered copies, hoping for some more clues, but the index told me the dates of his declaration of intent (1903) and naturalization (1908). And, the 1908 matches the date that my uncle mentioned in a letter to my mom back in 1982. I checked back to the passenger manifest, and sure enough, someone had written in his naturalization date. So clearly, 1910 must have been his second trip to America.

However, I can't find any record - either leaving Sweden or arriving here - for 1900. He had at least three other siblings who came over before him, so I'm thinking perhaps he initially came over with one of them and then returned by himself? Finding info on the siblings has been very difficult, so that hasn't provided any help.

Any idea as to why there wouldn't be a record of the 1900 trip? Were passages earlier in time not as well documented?

Also, is it common to have discrepancies as to birth dates? His birth years range between 1877 (1910 passenger manifest), 1879 (1905 state census, the year on his grave marker, and the year he wrote himself on his WW1 draft registration) and 1881 (1925 state census, 1930 federal census).

Also, are there any general genealogy sites that might be helpful?


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