The Degerfors theory of Rambo origins

+5 votes

The origins of the Rambo family in the vicinity of Gothenburg seem to be pretty well established - Wikipedia mentions a preserved letter home to a sister of Peter Gunnarsson - and I have seen somewhere that there is also DNA evidence.

However, the alternate theory proposed by Ormond Rambo in 1948, suggesting an origin in the village of Rambo in what later became Degerfors parish, in the far north of Sweden still hangs around. It is, for example, mentioned in Swedish Wikipedia. Of course it is also represented in WikiTree, in the shape of an invented father, Gunnar Mattsson Rambo and his father Matt Rambo.

Is there anywhere a published refutal of this theory?

WikiTree profile: Gunnar Rambo
asked in Policy and Style by Eva Ekeblad G2G6 Pilot (246k points)
retagged by Eva Ekeblad
Eva, you could perhaps add the tag "New Sweden" to the question so the ones interested in the project sees this?

The book "Svenskarna och deras fäder de senaste 11000 åren" by Karin Bojs and Peter Sjölund is the book that mention DNA evidence. That part can be read in Swedish [ here]
Takes so many letters typed to get NEW_SWEDEN appear that I didn't think it was among the known tags.

I've got Bojs & Sjölund, thatnks for reminding me.

When Beverly Rambo was almost finished with writing the original volume of her book (shortly before she died) I translated the letter Peter Rambo had written to a contact in Gothenburg -- although I don't recall its having been to his sister, I thought it was addressed to the postmaster.  Anyway, it's in the front of that book, and I have the book somewhere (in my garage, where it is currently very cold -- so I'm not looking at it just now).  I can dig it up, if it's of any interest.  I was also working with Peter Craig on that 1693 census, as its chapters were originally serialized in the Swedish American Genealogist magazine.  I don't think there's any real doubt that he brought his surname, or adopted it on the Delaware, from the Ramboberget on Hisingen.  Other theories had been advanced -- including, I believe, one involving a French placename, Rambouillet.  Then there was some Huguenot fiction invented, to work that into the family tree, much in the manner of the "Marquis de Hulingues" tale repeated by Rev. Stapleton.

1 Answer

+1 vote
The link below is always the story that I had been told.

I cannot read the Swedish Wikipedia, and have never heard of a Rambo village before.  I am interested though, so hopefully someone has information to share.
answered by

The story you link to is the one that is verified by all kinds of sources.

The story they still see fit to refer to in Swedish Wikipedia as an alternate theory, without calling it disproven, in mentioned in their Note #1, an article from 1948:

Ormond Rambo jr, "The first pioneers: The Rambo Family", American Swedish Historical Museum: Yearbook 1948, utgiven av American Swedish Historical Foundation, s. 1 ff

I think it is completely bogus. There is a small village by name Rambo up in northern Sweden - on the map today, and probably also in 1948, but having looked in old parish records I suspect it wasn't even settled until the 1830s - the first time it appears in the book is in 1836, one crofter family. In 1848 the family living there are still "nybyggare" (new settlers).

Your linked story explains the Rambo name very well, I think.

"The name Rambo is most likely derived from the place where Peter Gunnarsson Rambo was born, Ramberget. Ramberget is a rock on the island of Hisingen, today a part of the city of Gothenburg. The name means “Raven’s rock”. In Swedish the suffix -bo means “homestead” or “farm”. Consequently, “Rambo” means the “Raven’s homestead”."

...although I might add that "-bo" also can refer to an inhabitant, like "Peter who lives at Ramberget"

Anyway, it's not so strange that other places have also been named Rambo - we have lots of ravens and lots of settlements in raven country :-)

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