Saturday, July 9, 2011




                Erik was born 16 December, 1854, a son of Johan Simonsson Kock and Anna Lisa Andersdotter Kajser.  He was the third of her six children, he was born on the Kock Farm in Karvat, Vora, Vasa, Finland.  His Mother was the second wife of Johan’s, married her about four months after his first wife died.  The first wife gave him four children, she was only about 40 or 41 years old.  The Kock Farm is many miles north of Vora.  Goran Holms showed me the area around Kock.  I especially remember the lovely well kept Park where Fredrika, the Granddaughter gave to the little town in Karvat.  

Erik was about fifteen when his Mother died and nineteen the families moved to Holms. 

                His Father had remarried for the third time in 1868 to Maria Brita Karl-Johansdotter Strandback (Maria Beck), two years after his mothers death.  There would be six more children born to this family, and all would emigrate to America. 

Holms Purchace
                Eriks Father, Johan Simonsson Kock and Mickle Raback had answered an add and had bought Holms in 1873 and ran the farm until he died in 1893, Simon Johansson would have been the eldest son born in 1844 but he chose to stay at Kock.  Johan Johansson was born in 1847 must have inherited his father’s portion of Holms.  Johan on his last return from America did purchace the farm and is listed as the last farmer of Holms.  Erik being his seventh would not inherit Holms from his father he did purchase something with his American earnings on his first return from America.  I have often wondered if the Murkais/Kneck/Hagglof  family owned one of the six small farms/torpares when Holms was purchased from Solvin.

                1st December 1876, one year after coming to Holms Erik marries Brita Hermansdotter Murkais.  She was born 7 February, 1848 in the village of Koskeby (Kneck), Vora, Vasa, Finland.  Kneck I believe was the farm name besides being part of the family name, but it will take a lot more research to understand her genealogy.  Her Father was Matts Herman Eriksson Hagglof-Kneck and her Mother was Lisa Mattsdotter Murkais-Pahls who was a Topare (owner of a house but may not have owned the land on the farm she worked).  When Matts died at the young age of 35 Lisa moves back to Murkais at Makipaa.  

                Brita, my Great Grandmother's last name is a very confusing bunch of farm names.  She took the Murkais name and it was only recently that we found out that she was also a Hagglof- Kneck.  Her sister Beata who was born 2 February 1850 and Matts a brother, who was born in 20 February, 1853 were Hagglof-Kneck's.  The youngest brother's name was Johan Hermansson Hagglof-Murkais and he was born in 30 July 1858.  What makes this interesting to me is that when he marries Ulrika Eriksdotter Nyberg, the oldest son and heir is named, Johan Erik Holms.  Their children were the Holms that I found in Bingham Canyon so long ago and quit following them because I couldn't find our relationship.   Johan Erik was my cousin, Debbie Halinen’s grandfather. 

                 The genealogy of the Hagglof family goes back to 1710 when the Father was an Ohls, his son was Staffan Hagglof who was a vargerings karl ( a military man).  He was in an army  similar to our National Guard, while fighting in a battle he was reported missing in action in 1788 and presumed dead.  The war was against the Cossacks during the time of Peter the Great, when they rode through Finland looting and burning. 

                Brita's Father died when she was only 10, two weeks before her baby brother was born, her Mother would then take her four children back to her place on Murkais in Makipaa to live.  She must have been educated because she wrote letters to her son here in America. 

                When she was 25 years old she married Jakob Jakobsson Skarper (Pottas) who was born 23 September, 1841 in Karvsor and died 22 July, 1875.  Death had ended the marriage in a brief three years, there were no children.  She then married my Great Grandfather, Erik Johansson Holms on the 3 November, 1876 in Rokio. 

                Their first child, Johannes Eriksson Holms was my Grandfather, he was born 29 May, 1878 at Holms in Rokio, Vora, Vasa, Finland.  His sister, Lisa Eriksdotter Holms was born 28 May, 1879, died 16 June, 1879.  A brother Erik was born 12 September, 1881 and died three days later on the 15'th of September, 1881. 

                1881 was also the same year Erik first immigrates to America, The first of all the Holms to leave Finland.  A child dying and a husband leaving was a sign of hard times.  John Holmes a son of Matts Hoijer said many left Finland to gain money, they had food but no money.  There was taxes to pay to buy their way out of the imperial Russian Army, taxes on the farm and then there many large buildings on the farm that always needed repair.  Most all the Holms came to Utah to work in the mines, we believe this is where he went.  After working a few years he returned to Holms, we hope he returned with some money because he returned in a year or two suffering from the effects of breathing the metal dusts in the mines.  John Holmes (who was born Verner Hoijer) said his father, Matts Hoijer and Erik worked in the same mine, both  returned and died from the lead in some unknown Frisco Mine.  Erik was only 46 years old when he died 5 April, 1900 at Holms. 

                I have no idea what their life was like at Holms, but John Holmes (Hoijer) said, "We lived a good life and we were never hungry, there was always plenty to eat.  I have a picture of my great Grandparents, Erik and Brita at this time and they were a very distinguished couple.  This is the only picture of him that we have.  The only other thing that I have heard about Great Grandfather was that he was a good cabinetmaker and carpenter. 

                The year 1900 was a bad year, Erik dies, his only living child Johannes Eriksson Holms (my grandfather) immigrates to America leaving his Mother, Brita, wife, Lisa and two small children to never return and Johannes' and Lisa's two year old son, Werner Johansson Holms died later that same year. 

                From my Mother's writings (Signe Johannesdotter Holms Halverson) she said, "Both Edith and my Mother, Lisa loved the Holms Farm and Brita Murkais Holms and it was a sad day when it was time to leave Finland and go to America.  They left in 1903.  Edith said, "We lived in a rather large and separate part of Grandma's house, and we loved her very much".  We don't know what house she was taking about, the Holms estate house or another large house on Holms. 

                Brita married for the third time, an Anders Mattsson Trask-Knooka who was born 3 September, 1840 in Rokio at Knuts.  They were married 24 July, 1902 in Lillkyro and lived there until he died 9 October, 1921.  Brita then moved back to Holms, to her Stuga (cottage) behind the Weather Mill on Holms Hill. 
Gunnar Norrgard said, "I remember how my Mother, (Anne-Beata Antbrams Nygard) used to wonder how her sister Lisa had it in America.  I sometimes went with my Mother to Holms Moster's house at Holms Berget behind the Weather Mill.  I was 10 years old when Mosters cabin burned (1934).  I remember very well how I looked out the window and how the sky was red in the West.  There is nothing left of Mosters things anymore except for a little mirror that stood on a chest of drawers that I have now in my possession."  I have a picture of my Great Grandmother sitting in front of this mirror and chest of drawers and Gunnar has sent me a picture of it in his house. 

                I understand she then went to live with Maria Murkais at Murkais in Makipaa where she died 27 December, 1939.  Sjalvbetalande means she paid Maria to care for her here at Maria's home. 

In the school on the last line of the Holms Scroll are the names of the last three owners of Holms; Johan Kock (Goran’s Great Great Grandfather), Mickel Holms (Raback) and Matts Hoijer.  Both Johan and his oldest son had died on the farm, all of his other children had immigrated to America.  It is unknown how much of Holms Brita would now own.  In 1907 these Landsmen would donate the estate home, the peasant building and the land needed for the school.  The donation was written on a letter called the "Gavobrev". 

Brita Iso-aho had been writing back and forth for about three years now and she had found my Grandmothers family in Vora alive and well, they were the Antbrams and the Ohlis.  Now they are the Norrgards, Gunnar is the one I have been writing to.  Last week Brita wrote another letter welcoming me into her family, the "Hagglof's".  "What a pleasant surprize", her father was a Hagglof and my Great Grandmother Brita Murkais Holms was also a Hagglof. 

Brita Iso-aho had asked for the Hagglof family in America and I responded by sending all that I could find.  I was unprepared to receive the book Johannes Dalkarl had compiled and published, a most wonderful accomplishment.  ERIK STAFFANSON HAGGLOF-KNECK 1788-1845 and his four sons is the title and it tells of all their descendants, hundreds and hundreds of them.  The book covers history as well as genealogy. 

JOHAN ERIK HAGGLOF-KNECK'S descendants was the Grandlund, Kneck, Kamis, Knubb, Dalkarl and Sigfrid families.

ADOLF FREDRIK HAGGLOF-KNECK'S descendants was the Haggloff and Alho families.  (Brita Iso-aho's family)

MATTS HERMAN HAGGLOF-KNECK'S descendants was the Holms family and unlike the other Hagglof's a majority immigrated to Utah.  Matts was my Great Great Grandfather.  

CARL GUSTAV HAGGLOF-KNECK'S descendants was the Holmberg and Lillund families.

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