Saturday, September 29, 2007

The Löve name in Iceland




The man on the first picture is Frederic Löve (b. 1843), my grand grandfather. The next picture is Sophus Carl Löve (b. 1876), my grandfather when he was a young man. The last picture is Carl Löve and Þóra G. Jónsdóttir (b. 1888), my grandmother with 4 of their grandchildren. She never used the Löve name. In Iceland, a woman keeps her name although she gets married. The picture is taken around 1952 att Hraunteigur 16, Reykjavík. I am not sure if the children are Leó, Sigrún and Denni? The one who has her arm in front of my grandmothers face might be Hilda?
Now to the story of the Löve name in Iceland.

My uncle, Jón, told me this story in Icelandic. My translation into English is as follows:
This story started in the year 1822 when Sr. Þorsteinn Þórðarson, born 1791 started to work as a priest on Staður att Snæfjallaströnd, in the northen part of Ísafjarðardjúp, in north and west Iceland. His children were: Þórður (born 1816), Þorsteinn the older one (born 1817), Ólöf (born 1819), Jón (born 1822), Guðbjörg (born 1823), Ólína Kristín (born 1828), Ólafur Helgi (born 1830), Guðrún (born 1831), Sölvi (born 1832), Rannveig (born 1833), Þorsteinn the younger one (born 1835) and Valgerður (born before 1940). Just Sölvi and Þorsteinn the younger one are persons of this history.
Sölvi Thorsteinsson got two children without beeing married. He went to Denmark and learned to be a seaman and participated in the war 1864. After that he moved back to Iceland and went to Ísafjörður were he settled down and worked att the harbour. Me married a 44 year old widow. They did not have any children. She was not very well. Aroun 1870 a young woman, 25 years old, started to work on their home. Her name was Sigríður Sæunn Jónsdóttir, born in Húnavatnssýslu 1845. She was my grand grandmother. Her uncle was Sigurður Jónsson a schoolmaster in Ísafjörður. Sigríður worked for many years on Sölvis home untill he got married again in the year 1890 and had some children after that. Þorsteinn Thorsteinsson started to work as a merchant in Ísafjörður and was also selected to be member of the Icelandic parliament for some time. He had two children before he got married. When he stayed for a while in Denmark, he learned to know a Danish woman, Amalie Löve, but she married to another man, named Viladsen. They did not have any children and mr. Viladsen died. In the year 1863 she married to Þorsteinn and moved with him to Iceland and they settled down in Ísafjörður. There they had 4 children. After the year 1870 her brother, Frederic Löve come to visit her and worked as a photograph in Ísafjörður for more than a year. He was single and did not have any children at all.
Late in the year 1875 a problem come up. Sigríður Sæunn was pregnant. Never the less, she continued her work with Sölvi's family and the child was born on Sölvi's home 31. janúar 1876. This little boy was my grandfather. When the little boy was to be christened, the priest registred that the mother was Sigríður Sæunn, that claimed that the father was Frederic Löve. In cases like this, it was usual to add if the claimed father did accept this, but in this case nothing was reported. Frederic moved to Reykjavík, no one knows when. The little boy was christened Sophus Carl, but the Löve name was not included att this timepoint. Sölvi Thorsteinsson and Sigurður Jónsson were registred as "vitni" (sorry, I do not have the English word) to the christening. Later Frederic moved from Iceland. The young boy was fostered by people that the Thorsteinsson brothers knew, far away from Ísafjörður. Neither the mother, Sigríður Sæunn, nor others could easily go and visit the young boy.
Now to the people in Ísafjörður. What did the people say about this? The people in Ísafjörður knew that Þorsteinn Thorsteinsson payed the people fara away for having the young boy. Some people claimed that he did this for his wife (the boys claimed father was her brother). In 1880 in common registry in Iceland, the boy is registred as Sophus Carl Löve as Þorsteinn had written his name for his foster parents, as people think.
In the summer 1888 Carl was told that Þorsteinn Thorsteinsson planned to send him and pay for him to study as a priest and he would hear more about this in the autumn to come. But Carl waited and waited and did not hear anything more about this. Late in the autumn he got the news that Þorsteinn had drowned when a boat he was travelling with, on his way to Denmark, had got lost. After that, no one payed anymore for Carl staying with his foster parents. When Carl was 12 years old he started to work on a fishing boat and worked all his live as a seaman. He married his first wife about 1900 and had 4 children with her. In the year he graduated as a skippter from Stýrimannaskólinn í Reykjavík and he divorced his first wife in the same year. After he married again, he had 7 children, 3 were born in Reykjavík and 4 in Vestfirðir.
Once in the year 1905, a strange thing happened. Carl had been travelling to Denmark because of his work, to take care of a construction of a new "machine boat". He used the change and decided to find his father, Frederic Löve and visit him. They planne to meet, but when the time come, his father did not come. Carl was rather surprised when the man he had always thougt was his father, did not show up. And Carl got the message that he did not want to have any contact with him. Frederic was not married and did not have any other childrens. Most of Frederics relatives lived in Denmark and Carl was supposed to be his one and only child.
Carl's contact with the Thorsteinsson family did not continue after 1888 when Þorsteinn Thorsteinsson died. Although his widow, Amalie, did well, she did not do anything for Carl (claimed to be a son of her brother). Carl did not have much contact to his relatives after he was 12 years old. The Thorsteinsson family later moved to Reykjavík. One of the daugthers, married to a man, that Carl knew very well. Once this man invited Carl to dinner to their house. But when Amalie heard about this, she become very angry and said to her son in law; " you can not bring this man into our house". Carl and this man then went to a restaurant for dinner. In this time in Reykjavík, restaurants were not very common and propably not part of common live. Much later, Áskell Löve, son of Carl, got to know Þorstein Thorsteinsson (a grandson of Þorsteinn?) a owner of Reykjavíkur apótek. Davið Scheving Thorsteinsson was the father of Þorsteinn. Davið was always very friendly to Carl. Þorsteinn calle Áskel always "frænda" (nephew?) without explanation.



Most part of this information come from books from the church or open registries. (manntal) Other parts come from Carl himselv, as reported mainly to Þráinn, his son. All the children of Carl have used the Löve name and a big part of their descendants. More information about the Löve family in Iceland can be found in books as Vestfirskar ættir, and Deildartunguætt. The children of Amalie did never use the Löve name.
Following information is known about Frederics Löve family: Niels Nielsen Löve (born about 1670), Margrethe Nielsdatter (born 1708), Niels Rasmussen Löve (born 1737), Rasmus Nielsen Löve (born 1788) and Frederic Löve (born 1843).

Following is the text in Icelandic:
LÖVE NAFNIÐ Á ÍSLANDI
Þessi saga hefst árið 1822, þegar Sr. Þorsteinn Þórðarson f. 1791 fékk prestakallið á Stað á Snæfjallaströnd við norðanvert Ísafjarðardjúp. Börn hans voru, með fæðingarárum, Þórður 1816, Þorsteinn eldri 1817, Ólöf 1819, Þórdís 1820, Jón 1822, Guðbjörg 1823, Ólína Kristín 1828, Ólafur Helgi1830, Guðrún 1831, Sölvi 1832, Rannveig 1833, Þorsteinn yngri 1835 og Valgerður fyrir 1840. Aðeins Sölvi og Þorsteinn yngri koma svo frekar við þennan þátt.
Sölvi Thorsteinsson eignaðist tvö óskilgetin börn, og hann fór síðar til Danmerkur, lærði sjómannafræði og tók þátt í stríðinu 1864. Eftir það settist hann að á Ísafirði og varð loks hafnsögumaður. Hann giftist þá 44 ára ekkju, en þau eignuðust ekki börn. Heilsa hennar var léleg, og um 1870 réðst til hans sem vinnukona Sigríður Sæunn Jónsdóttir fædd í Húnavatnssýslu 1845. Frændi hennar Sigurður Jónsson var skólastjóri á Ísafirði. Sigríður vann mörg ár á heimili Sölva þar til hann giftist í annað sinn 1890 og eignaðist fleiri börn.
Þorsteinn Thorsteinsson gerðist kaupmaður á Ísafirði og var eitt sinn alþingismaður. Hann eignaðist einnig tvö óskilgetin börn á yngri árum. Þegar hann var um hríð í Danmörku kynntist hann Amalie Löve, en hún giftist öðrum manni að nafni Villadsen. Þau voru barnlaus og maður hennar dó. Árið 1863 giftist hún svo Þorsteini og fór með honum til Ísafjarðar þar sem þau eignuðust 4 börn. Eftir 1870 kom bróðir hennar Frederik Löve í heimsókn og vann þar í meira en ár sem ljósmyndari. Hann var einhleypur og átti engin börn í Danmörku eða annars staðar.
Seinni hluta ársins 1875 kom upp sá vandi að Sigríður Sæunn var ófrísk. Hún fékk þó að halda áfram í vistinni, og barnið fæddist á heimili Sölva 31. janúar 1876. Þegar drengurinn var skírður skráði presturinn að móðirin væri Sigríður Sæunn sem ´lýsti föður Frederik´. Venja var í slíkum tilfellum að bæta við hvort ásakaði faðirinn gengist við, en hér var ekkert sagt. Frederik fluttist til Reykjavíkur, ekki vitað hvenær. Barnið var nefnt Sófus Karl, en Löve nafnið birtist hvergi. Vitni við skírnina voru Sölvi Thorsteinsson og Sigurður Jónsson. Frederik flutti síðar úr landi. Piltinum var brátt komið fyrir hjá fólki sem Thorsteinsson bræðurnir þekktu innst inni í Ísafjarðardjúpi. Móöirin og aðrir á Ísafirði gátu ekki farið í heisókn svo langa leið. Almennt var vitað að Þorsteinn Thorsteinsson borgaði með barninu. Sumir hafa haldið fram að hann hafi gert þetta sem greiða fyrir konu sína. Í manntali 1880 er drengurinn skráður Sophus Carl Löve eins og Þorsteinn hafði skrifað nafn hans fyrir fósturforeldrana, að talið er.
Sumarið 1888 var Karli tilkynnt að Þorsteinn ætlaði að kosta hann til prestnáms, og frekari tilskipun átti að koma um haustið. Hann beið og beið, en ekkert heyrðist. Loks kom sú frétt að Þorsteinn Thorsteinsson hefði drukknað þegar skip sem hann var farþegi á hvarf á leið til Danmerkur. Meðgjöfin hætti þá, og Karl Löve réð sig 12 ára gamall á árabát og vann svo alla ævi að fiskveiðum. Hann giftist fyrri konu sinni um síðustu aldamót og eignaðist 4 börn með þeirri konu. Árið 1916 tók hann skipstjórapróf við Stýrimannaskólann í Reykjavík og skildi við fyrri konuna. Eftir það eignaðist hann 7 börn með síðari maka, 3 fædd í Reykjavík og 4 á Vestfjörðum.
Eitt undarlegt atvik gerðist kringum 1905 þegar Karl var búinn að koma sér vel áfram og hafði farið til Kaupmannahafnar til að sjá um byggingu nýs vélskips. Hann notaði tækifærið til leita uppi Frederik Löve. En hann varð hissa þegar maðurinn sem hann hafði alltaf talið föður sinn vildi ekkert samband við hann hafa of forðaðist öll kynni við hann. Frederik var enn einhleypur og átti engin önnur börn. Ættingjar hans voru flestir í Danmörku, og Karl var eini sonurinn.

Samband Karls við Thorsteinsson fólkið hafði alveg slitnað þegar Þorsteinn Thorsteinsson dó. Þótt ekkjan væri vel stödd reyndi hún ekki að gera neitt fyrir hann. Hann hafði lítil kynni af þessum ættingjum sínum eftir það. Fjölskyldan flutti loks til Reykjavíkur, og ein dóttirin giftist manni sem Karl þekkti vel. Eitt sinn bauð sá maður Karli heim í hádegismat með fjölskyldunni. En þegar Amalie frétti af þessu brást hún bálvönd við og sagði ´Þú kemur ekki með þennan mann í þetta hús´. Þeir fóru því tveir í veitingahús. Löngu síðar kynntist Áskell Löve Þorsteini Thorsteinsson sem átti Reykjavíkurapótek. Faðir Þorsteins, Davið Scheving Thorsteinsson læknir, hafði alltaf verið mjög vingjarnlegur við Karl Löve. Þorsteinn kallaði Áskel alltaf ´frænda´ þótt á því fyndist engin skýring.
Mest af þessum upplýsingum kemur úr kirkjubókum og manntölum eða úr ættartölubókum. Annað kemur frá lýsingum Karls Löve, skráð eftir sögum sem hann sagði Þráni syni sínum. Börn Karls hafa öll notað Löve nafnið, og makar sem synirnir giftust hafa einnig tekið upp það ættarnafn. Mörg barnabörn nota sama nafn. Ættartölu Löve fólksins má finna í prentuðum bókum, þar á meðal Vestfirzkum Ættum og Deildartunguætt. Afkomendur Amalie hafa aldrei notað Löve nafnið.
Frá upplýsingum sem Dóris Löve safnaði má rekja forfeður Frederiks Löve með fæðingarárum eins og hér segir. Niels Nielsen Löve um 1670 , Margrethe Nielsdatter 1708, Niels Rasmussen Löve 1737, Rasmus Nielsen Löve 1788, Frederik Löve 1843.