Family Group Sheet

Monday, July 11, 2011

A History About Anne Mathea (Matilda)

One of the documents I recently received from M.G. was a short personal history written about 1965 by Ethel Julian Millard Kendall. She is the daughter of Anne Mathea, Ole and Marie's daughter. I am posting the part that tells Ethel's version of Anne Mathea's history. It is posted just as I received it.

     I, Ethel Julian Millard Kendall, was born June 27, 1890 in Preston, Idaho.  The house is located on East State Street.  My father and mother are William Charles Millard and Anne Mathea Olsen (Peterborg) Millard.

    My mother Anne Mathea Olsen (Peterborg) Millard was born in Helgain Nes Sagn, Norway to Marie and Ole Olsen (Peterborg).  She joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints with her parents in Norway.  Her family lived on the Peterborg estate.

     When they joined the Mormon church, they were driven off the Estate and told never to return.  They spent two very hard years in Oslo, Norway while trying to save money to come to America, and to Zion, so they might rear their children among the saints. However, at the end of the two years, they had saved only enough to bring two of their children with them.  They brought their oldest boy ( who was 18, and would have been drafted, had they not), and the youngest girl, who was three years of age.

   Upon reaching Zion, her parents and the two children filed a homestead in Preston, Idaho.  Through the hardships, her mother took sick after three years, and on her death bed, her request was that Mathea ( or Matilda as she was called by her friends) be brought over from Norway to take care of her.

   So mother left her fianc√© in Norway and began her journey.  He was to come the following year.  When she had only begun her journey, she received word that her mother had already passed away.  She moved in with her father, and kept house for him.

   She became very lonely and homesick, so she let a rich farmer (Jacob Jensen) convince her to marry him in polygamy two years after she came. (Dec. 2, 1880).  She was his second wife.  After she had been married a little over a year she found that she was pregnant.  At this time, the farmer’s wife became uncontrollably jealous.  Mathea felt very hurt and unwanted.  After standing it as long as she could, she left and went back to her father.

   Three months later she gave birth to twins, Oliver and Hager Mathea. (13 April 1882). She took a stroke near the time of their birth, which almost took her life and the life of the twins.  Hager Mathea lived until October of the same year.  It was only through the special care given by a good neighbor lady, Mrs. Sophia Early, that Oliver’s life was saved.

   She met my father, William Charles Millard, when Oliver was one year old.  They fell in love and were married (24 Sept. 1883) civilly.  (Later after obtaining temple divorce – 19 April 1933 – from the farmer, they were sealed from time and all eternity in the temple. Dad promply adopted Oliver.  Mother and Dad had seven children.  I was the fourth child.  I was born 13 years after my mother came here—to this country.  The other children were Ada, Pearl, William, Lillia, Lavean and Carl.

As with any history written years after the event and by someone else, there can be inconsistencies. I found a couple of things that differ from some of the information I found as I have done research. I am showing a few of them, not to criticize but to clarify. 
In an earlier post I wrote about the "farm books" or "bygdeb√łke" and it showed that the name of the farm was Petterborg. The only reason I am bringing this up is because there was also a farm Peterborg and I don't want someone looking at the wrong farm information. I have seen where the family spelled their name as Peterborg and Petterborg. It changed back and forth from one to the other over the first 50+ years.

The family joined the LDS Church in 1866 but did not emigrate to America until 1876. They lived in Oslo about 10 years, not just 2.

Emil was 20 years old when they came to America and Beate was 12 years old.

I am grateful that Ethel took the time to write about her mother and share the things she knew about her.
I will be posting histories about Ole and Marie's family, written by other family members that I have been given. If anyone, reading this blog, knows of other histories that have been written about the family, please let me know so that we can share with others. Every little bit helps us learn more about this strong and courageous family.

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