In Norway, the farms are named and numbered, with lots of identifying information that followed them through time.
The farm that I think your family came from was Valdal, also spelled Valldal, Waldal, Waldahl. These spellings changed over the centuries, sometimes just on the whim of who ever was the local parish minister, who entered the information into the church and record books. It could depend on where he was educated, or how he thought it should be spelled.
In 1886 there was a farm tax census, that shows that at the main farm Valdal, there were several subfarms. In Norway, the word for 'main farm' is gaard (gård) and the word for 'subfarm' is bruk.
Fylke: Møre og Romsdal (county)
Kommune: Norddal (municipality or main parish)
Sogn: Norddalen (local church name)
Gårdsnummer: 8 (main farm number 8)
Gammelt matrikkelnr: 8 (old numbering system)
Navn på gård: Valdalen (name of this main farm)
Antall bruk registrert på matrikkelgården: 9 (total subfarms at the 1886 farm tax census is 9)
løpenr Bruksnavn Brukers navn Skyld i
Mark-Øre Skyld i
1 21 Valdalen Mons Torsen 4-68 2-3-7-0
2 22 Valdalen Ole Andersen 4-31 2-2-6-0
3 23 Valdalen Lars I. Olsen 4-31 2-2-6-0
3 23 Valdalen Ole Larsen 4-31 2-2-6-0
4 24 Valdalen Ole Nilsen 4-31 2-2-6-0
5 25 Valdalen Lars P. Olsen 3-63 2-0-9-0
6 26 Valdalen Mons Olsen 3-63 2-0-9-0
7 27 Valdalen Jakob Ellingsen 2-71 1-2-17-0
8 28 Valdalen Ole M. Nilsen 1-85 1-0-5-0
Your subfarm is Valdalen, main farm # 8, subfarm # 5. The old subfarm number was 25. That might be helpful to keep in mind for older records. The owner is Lars P. Olsen, and the tax amount is given in two types of currency. At some time the currency changed in Norway.
Even the Municipality they lived in, Norddal, has a number, it's 1524 Norddal. That also is sometimes helpful to know.
So on the 1900 census, you can see that the same farm numbers apply. Farm number 8, subfarm 5.
Person list Circuit Circuit Farm no. Farm unit no. Farm Outhouse No. of pers. No. of persons No. of pers. domiciled Grain, potatoes Cattle Poultry Bee-hive Vegetable garden Orchard
74 11 Nordalen 3 8 5 Valdal n 4 4 4 j j j n n j
Household no. Given name Last name Sex Resident Family pos. Marital status Occupation Year of birth Birth place Nationality Religion
404 1 Lars Peter O. Valdal m b Hf g Gårbruger 1842 T N S
405 Elisabet Valdal k b Hm g Gårdmanskonne 1841 T N S
406 Peter L. Waldal m b S ug Dreng Jordbrug 1876 T N S
407 Elias Valdal m b S ug Søn Jordbrug 1885 T N S
If you click on the link above, it shows you what the farm produces, which is interesting.
grain j means Ja, yes. and potatoes, cattle poultry, and an orchard. No beehive or vegetable garden.
The next look at the farm is on the 1910 census,
But where did their two sons go!? To America?
and then the last time to see it is in 1950 when there was another tax census, which unfortunately does not show the name of the farmer. Usually the oldest son inherited the farm and the upkeep of the aging parents.
That was their only retirement plan at the time.
The farm in question is Farm #5 on the list below. Plus by 1950 there were a lot of little parcels sold there, probably for houses? Cabins? You can tell by the tax amount, which farms or parcels are worth the most.
Matrikkelutkastet av 1950
Møre og Romsdal
8 Valdal Valdalen (overstrøket)
1 Valdal 4 mark 58 øre Valdalen (overstrøket)
2 Valdal 4 mark 31 øre Valdalen (overstrøket)
3 Valdal 3 mark 23 øre Valdalen (overstrøket)
4 Valdal 2 mark 21 øre Valdalen (overstrøket)
5 Valdal 3 mark 55 øre Valdalen (overstrøket)
6 Valdal 2 mark 19 øre Valdalen (overstrøket)
7 Valdal 2 mark 15 øre Valdalen (overstrøket)
8 Valdal 1 mark 57 øre Valdalen (overstrøket)
9 Fredsberg 0 mark 24 øre
10 Fredly 0 mark 05 øre
11 Bedehuset 0 mark 03 øre
12 Lunheim 0 mark 68 øre
13 Solheim 0 mark 63 øre
14 Teigene 2 mark 10 øre
15 Fresberg 0 mark 80 øre Fredsberg (overstrøket)
16 Bøbakken 0 mark 01 øre
17 Berglund 0 mark 55 øre
18 Nyheim 0 mark 10 øre
19 Bøbakken 0 mark 01 øre
20 Nystad 0 mark 02 øre
21 Svetun 0 mark 09 øre
22 Bergflot 0 mark 28 øre
23 Heimly 0 mark 05 øre
Now, back to a little searching. I think that their youngest son, Elias Larsen Valdal, born 1885, emigrated in 1906 from Ålesund to Colorado. At least that was his destination.
7307 129 Mars 22 1906 Elias Larsen Valdal m 1885 ug Nordalen gaardsdreng Hvide Colorado a. Rodesed. Nei
Leaving March 22, 1906, Elias Larsen Valdal, male, born 1885, unmarried, from Nordalen parish, farm worker, White Star shipping line, going to Colorado. I think he worked his way over, because where it says ticket, the answer is no. Sometimes they could barter their ticket if they worked.
Here's an intersting guy too, a married Ole Valdal, going to Minnesota, but I think he was already in Minnesota. The birth year is good, about 1867, for the brother Ole who left for Minneapolis quite a few years previous. He could have been home for a visit.
5756 221 April 7 1903 Ole Valdal m 36 gift Nordalen gaardbr. Cunardlinjen Minnesota Udv.till. Her
As far as I can determine, the only brother left in Norway in 1910 was Peter Larsen Waldal, going by the name Peter Waldal, and he was a teacher on the 1910 census. Unmarried.
or this view of the census (same census, 1910)
Census year: 1910
Municipality number: 0135
Name of domicile: Gammelsrød skole
Number of persons in this domicile: 2
Name Family status Marital status Occupation Birth year Place of birth Ethnicity
Peter Waldal Lærer ved skolen ug Lærer ved folkeskole 01.09.1876 Norddalen
Edle Jens. tj ug Husbestyrerinde 27.09.1879 t
He is a teacher at the Gammelsrød Folk School, He has a hired girl, taking care of the house.
Here is a history online of the Gammelsrød Skole (school) and it mentions Peter Waldal.
Peter Valdal was the teacher there from 1905 to 1917.
Peter Valdal ble ansatt som lærer ved Gammelsrød skole i 1905. I 1912 ble han syk av tuberkulose og måtte på sanatorium. Da han kom tilbake etter noen måneder, var han erklært frisk. Allikevel vegret foreldrene seg for å sende barna i skolen. Dette ble det en stor sak av. Den endte med at så godt som alle foreldrene tok elevene ut av skolen og opprettet en privatskole på Holer. Den var i drift i ca. to og et halvt år. Valdal satt tilbake med èn eller to elever som trosset "smittefaren". Saken løste seg på et vis, men skapte mye uro i kretsen og læreren følte seg nok "dolket i ryggen" av dem han følte burde ha støttet ham.
Peter Valdal was installed as teacher at Gammelsrød school in 1905. In 1912 he became sick with Tuberculosis, and must go to a sanitorium. Then he came back after several months, and was declared healthy. All the same, parents hesitated to send their children to the school. It became a big thing. It ended with almost all the parents taking the students out of the school, and opening a private school at Holer. It was for about 2 1/2 years. Valdal sat there with one or two students who trusted the "diseased" teacher. The issue solved itself sort of, but created a lot of worry in the area, and the teacher probably felt stabbed in the back, of those he thought should have supported him.
Peter Waldal was then living in Råde kommune (municipality) in Ostfold county, southern Norway.
Since there is no mention of a family for Peter Waldal, I wonder if he was never married.
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