Saturday, July 9, 2011

HOLMS FINISH TRIBES


FINNISH TRIBES

by EUGENE H. HALVERSON


                No one really knows where the Finns originated from but it wasn't always Finland.  Some say the language has been traced back to Central Russia between the Volga River and the Ural Mountains.  The Finish people just appeared there and remained there from the earliest of times.  Many have tried tracing their origin by their language since it is so different from any other country except maybe a similarity to the Hungarian, Estonian and Lappic Languages. 

                I found it quite interesting that when they traced it back to as early as they could they found a name that the people called themselves, I can't recall the name but it means "Fish People", and all the ancient grave markers looked like the bow of a ship. 

                They had a great respect for the animals and only killed for food.  After killing a bear they would have a ceremony where they would ask the Bear Gods to forgive them because the people needed the meat and it's skin.  They were very superstitious and worshipped the trees, rocks, water, etc. there were many sacred places.  They offered food and possessions to their different Pagan Gods who they believed would care for them in times of need. 

                Finland has been a small land situated between greater powers, Sweden and Russia.  Causing them to fight either power, mostly allied with one or the other but not always.  They were contented to be a part of Sweden until the Queen of England (from the Romanov family) sent Lord Nelson to war with an unsuspecting Denmark and sunk their entire fleet of ships.  So, England, Russia (and the Romanov Czar of Russia) and Sweden were able to change the map of Europe, namely taking Norway from Denmark and giving Finland to Russia.  A war was soon fought but Norway and Finland lost.  Finland never ever forgave Sweden for their part in this.  Their hatred of Russia, especially the Cossacks goes back to the beginning of time.  But being a Grand Duchy of Finland wasn't really that bad until Nicholas the II became the new Czar of Russia.  Then Russia forbid the people speak their language and remember their customs.  Ethnic groups were considered "Enemies of the State", but the people of the Urals forgot neither.  One old lady who was isolated from her people since childhood was asked, "How could you remember your language and people so clearly for so long".  "It was easy, I talked to God everyday in my language, and he helped me".  Finish words are extremely long and hard to pronounce but they can be soothing and melodic.  February is Helmikuu means the "Pearl Moon", April is Toukukuu the "Sowing Moon", August is the "Harvest Moon".  Brita's last name is Iso-aho and means something like land that was once forested is now a land of grass and valleys.  By simply using the K's, S's or rolled R's a person can speak harshly.  If you notice in their songs the men sing harshly, kind of Russian like.  The language has survived several hundred years of foreign domination and is only recently listed as the official language of the country. 

                We are supposed to be Swedes in a Swedish part of Finland.  Our only records are early Swedish parish records.  Our Swedish ancestors came to conquer and christianize Finland.  After accepting Christianity all of Scandinavia also had to accept the "Patronymic Laws".  With all the Finns and Swedes in Finland now named after a few saints, how can it be possible to tell for sure who is Finn and who is Swede on the genealogy charts?  There are no Finnish records.  And there are no records that I know of before the 1500's before the Swedes came.  Aunt Edith said, “We are Swedes".  But I wonder we seem to act like the original Finns but who knows for sure.  We could be Pohjalla or Swede or are we both?  Or are we from other parts of Europe and were we were simply employed by the King of Sweden.  Both Finns and Swedes are blue eyed and fair but some of us in the Vora area possesses a darker skin.  I have asked about this but there will never be an answer. 

                Now that Finland is free many of the people that know their old ancestral names are taking them back. 

TRIBES;
Raili Fuller said; We have many tribes in Finland and each one is a little bit different from the other. 

                The Hame tribe is very quite, they don't talk much and stories about them depict their quiet and
slow nature.  A simple question maybe answered with a yes or a no next week. 

                The Karilian tribe, like me (Raili) are very friendly and happy and we talk, talk and talk.  ---When Russia took our City we left it for Finland, Mother took us and five children on a train to find a new
home. 

                The people from the Salvo tribe, are quick witted they tell tall tales and stretched short ones. 

                You are from the Pohjala tribe from Vasa.  You are a rather stiff, bashful, yet dignified
individuals.  Pohjalan’s are all very hot headed and usually wears a knife, they will pull it fast.  Raili said,
"Your Grandpa looks like a Pohjala".  The wedding picture on the farm are of these people.  It is a very fancy wedding and the bride is wearing a wedding crown made of grass.

Antti Tuuri said;

The Laiha is stereotyped with extreme thrift or stinginess. 

The Jurva is still known today for its wood carvers and furniture making.

The Harma evokes a connotation  of aggressive behavior, tough guys, and loud singing.

The Pahjanmaa or Ostrobotha “Vasa” were the “Ruffians with the Knives”  One day in the trenches a man from Salvo came to entertain us and perk up our spirits, but soon gave up.  We were sober faced and did not laugh.  Maybe that’s where people get the idea the men from Ostrobothia are a humorless and a sober lot. 

The Karillians were noted as friendly in his Winter War Book and were always singing and talking but were known as traders who sometimes were not always honest. 

Well now,  Like it or not there may not be much difference between Swedes or finns or what we call ourserves.  I see some of us with wealth, some of us seems tobe quite sober and some of us get angry.  But only a few of us like to sing and talk each man has a knife andit  is a fight until one or both is down, cuts are shallow and death is caused by a loss of blood.

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