The Ancestors in Sweden

Olu Bengtsson & Ohlu Bengtsdotter

The year was 1814. The United States was still embroiled with England in a controversy later known as the War of 1812. By this time two national censuses had been completed in this country. But in Sweden the census had been an annual event for well over a hundred years. A law had been passed in 1686 which directed the clergy of Lutheran Church, the state church, to keep the official records for the country. They were already recording the births, marriages, and deaths of their parishioners.

In the Osterlov parish, Kristianstad County, Skane Providence, the pastor was carrying out his annual survey. At the farm called Karstad #5 he found the family of Olu Bengtsson. Olu had been born on this farm on April 8, 1780. To this place he had brought his bride, Ohlu Bengtsdotter from neighboring Nosaby Parish. They were nearly the same age. Ohlu was born on April 13, 1780 making her a mere five days younger than Olu.


By the time the pastor visited the Bengtsson family in 1814 they already had three children.  A daughter, Svenborg, had been born on January 26, 1809.  Next a son, Bengt, was born May 8, 1810.  Then Anders was born July 17, 1813. The following year the parish priest recorded the birth of another son, Pehr, on October 15, 1815. Then in 1817 he recorded the birth of another daughter, Kirsten, on  November 23rd and the death of Ohlu Bengsdotter two days later on November 25, 1817.


Swedish Survey Book, Osterlof Parish, Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah, Microfilm #142020