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Bernt / Barney - one wife or two?

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Surnames/tags: Arenson Johansen
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Bernt (Berndt/Berut) "Barney" Arenson
and
Cecelia (Cilia) "Sarah" Johansen (Johnson / Arneson / Arnes)

There is confusion in the records regarding the names of Anna (Arenson) Mason's parents as they appeared in the records over time:

Date Father Mother Source
1874 Bernt Arneson Cecelia Johansen marriage record[1]
1879 Berut Arneson Cecelia Johansen daughter Anna's birth record[2]
1880 Berndt Arneson Cilia Arenson 1880 US Census[3]
1884 Barney Arneson Cecelia Johanson daughter Cornelia's birth record[4]
1885 Barney Arenson Celia Arneson 1885 Iowa Census[5]
1899 Bernt Arenson Sarah Johnson daughter Anna's marriage record[6]
1900 Barney Arenson Sarah Arenson 1900 US Census[7]
1920 Barney Arenson Sarah Arnes 1920 US Census[8]
1926 d/o John Johnson Sarah Arenson's death certificate[9]
1947 Barney Arneson Sarah Arneson daughter Anna's death certificate[10]


Her father Bernt "Barney" Arenson was born in Norway in February 1845 and immigrated to the United States in 1868. He settled in Decorah, Iowa (in Winneshiek County) where he appears to have remained for the rest of his life. He appears in the records as:

His wife appears as both "Cecelia" and "Sarah", although I'm not sure if this is a single woman named Cecelia who became know as Sarah about the time Bernt became know as Barney ; or a first wife "Cecelia" and a second wife "Sarah". Anna's mother appears in the records as:

  • Cecelia Johansen [1][2]
  • Celia Arenson [5]
  • Cilia Arneson [3]
  • Sarah Johnson [6]
  • Sarah, daughter of John Johnson [9]
  • Sarah Arneson [7][9][10]
  • Sarah Arnes [8]

These were first and second generation Norwegians using traditional patronymic surnames. "Arneson" and "Johanson" (or "Johnson") being the son of (or more broadly, childen of) of Arne and John. In 1875 a law was passed in Norway to begin changing to a set surname so family names at that time were in transition.

For their profiles, I use "Bernt Arneson" and "Cecelia Johansen" as their given names at birth, since that is what was listed on their 1874 marriage record. It seems likely that "Berndt" and "Berut" are mis-spellings of "Bernt". By 1884 Anna's father was known as "Barney" and continues to appear in the records by that name until his death.

Cecelia Johansen was clearly the mother of Barney's children as she is listed by various spellings of that name on records from their marriage in 1874 through the 1885 Iowa census. The children were born 1874 (Thomas), 1879 (Annie), 1882 (Bertha) and 1885 (Cornelia). After 1899 the woman listed as Barney's wife is named "Sarah", but retains the maiden name of "Johnson". Anna lists "Sarah Johnson" as her mother on her 1899 marriage records. I think it likely both are the same woman, although it is possible that a first wife named Cecelia Johansen died after the birth of Cornelia in 1885, and Barney married a second wife named Sarah Johnson prior to Anna's marriage in 1899.


References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1874 Marriage of Bernt Arneson and Cecelia Johansen : "Iowa Marriages, 1809-1992," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/XJWR-K47 : 3 December 2014), Bernt Arneson and Cecelia Johansen, 12 Apr 1874; citing Decorah, Winneshiek, Iowa, reference Vol. B p.234; FHL microfilm 1,026,659.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 daughter Anna's 1879 birth
    • "Iowa Births and Christenings, 1830-1950," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XVG9-3XD : 3 December 2014), Berut Arneson in entry for Anna Josephine Arneson, ; citing Winneshiek, Iowa; FHL microfilm 1,026,656.
    • "Iowa Births and Christenings, 1830-1950," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XVG9-3X6 : 3 December 2014), Cecilia Johansen in entry for Anna Josephine Arneson, ; citing Winneshiek, Iowa; FHL microfilm 1,026,656.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 1880 United States Census, database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/MDL5-KSZ : 13 July 2016), Cilia Arneson in household of Berndt Arneson, Decorah, Winneshiek, Iowa, United States; citing enumeration district ED 342, sheet 71C, NARA microfilm publication T9 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.), roll 0370; FHL microfilm 1,254,370.
  4. 5.0 5.1 5.2 1885 Iowa State Census
    • "Iowa State Census, 1885," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/HDBN-H6Z : 15 November 2014), Barney Arneson household, West Decorah, Decorah, Winneshiek, Iowa; citing p. 32, 1885, State Historical Society, Des Moines; FHL microfilm 1,021,702.
    • "Iowa State Census, 1885," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:HDBN-6MM : 15 November 2014), Celia Arneson, West Decorah, Decorah, Winneshiek, Iowa; citing p. 32, 1885, State Historical Society, Des Moines; FHL microfilm 1,021,702.
  5. 6.0 6.1 6.2 daughter Anna's 1899 marriage record
  6. 7.0 7.1 7.2 "United States Census, 1900," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/M9GM-HCY : accessed 2 April 2017), Sarah Arneson in household of Barney Arneson, Decorah Township (Excl. Decorah city, incl. Luther College) West Decorah town, Winneshiek, Iowa, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) 128, sheet 15A, family 305, NARA microfilm publication T623 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1972.); FHL microfilm 1,240,466.
  7. 8.0 8.1 "United States Census, 1920," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/MHNN-TWS : accessed 2 April 2017), Sarah Arnes in household of Robert Mason, Wenatchee Ward 2, Chelan, Washington, United States; citing ED 20, sheet 14B, line 70, family 303, NARA microfilm publication T625 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1992), roll 1921; FHL microfilm 1,821,921.
  8. 9.0 9.1 9.2 Sarah's 1926 death certificate - "Washington Death Certificates, 1907-1960," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/N3P9-18N : 5 December 2014), Sarah Arneson, 15 Nov 1926; citing Wenatchee, Chelan, Washington, reference rn 259, Bureau of Vital Statistics, Olympia; FHL microfilm 2,022,312.
  9. 10.0 10.1 10.2 daughter Anna's 1947 death certificate
    • "Washington Death Certificates, 1907-1960," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:N3Y4-Y2K : 5 December 2014), Barney Arneson in entry for Annie Mason, 28 Oct 1947; citing Wenatchee, Douglas, Washington, reference 33, Bureau of Vital Statistics, Olympia; FHL microfilm 2,032,610.
    • "Washington Death Certificates, 1907-1960," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:N3Y4-Y22 : 5 December 2014), Sarah Arneson in entry for Annie Mason, 28 Oct 1947; citing Wenatchee, Douglas, Washington, reference 33, Bureau of Vital Statistics, Olympia; FHL microfilm 2,032,610.




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