o The Promised Land In The West – The Story of the Erickson Family

To The Promised Land In The West – The Story of the Erickson Family

Till det forlovade landet I vastern…the phrase that Erick Erickson uttered to his family as they set out to immigrate from their homeland of Sweden to the United States in the year of 1876. Life as the family had known up until that point, before they sat sail for the land of free, would change forever. For their life would now become more than they could have ever imagined. For the Erickson family, life was about to begin in the 34th state named Kansas.

Erick and Karin Erickson were the parents of six children…Brita, Erick, Carrie, Peter, Hannah, and Jacob. The family, with the exception of Jacob, who remained in Sweden with an aunt, stepped foot onto the promise land and made their way out west to Dickinson County, Kansas. Where the prairie was open and a person could see as far as they set their sights. Where life was different than what they were used too. Where they could see their future and with each passing day, their nerves calmer, knowing that they made the best choice for their family.

The Erickson family began their life in Dickinson County living a short time in a two-story granary on the Olaf Kalin homestead. Mr. Erickson knew that this would not do for his family, so he set out and purchased an 80-acre tract of ground from Enos Comer. Erickson began building what would become the family home, a one-room house that consisted of an outside stairway leading to the upstairs, with additional rooms being built later on. This eight-room house housed two cellars, which were filled with food for the winter months. The stone for the Erickson house was taken from the pasture north of the house. The three boys, Eric, Peter, and Jacob, dug the rock out, loaded it onto a homemade sled, and drug it to the building superintendent, stonemason John Ostrom. Ostrom was responsible for the construction of many stone structures southeast of Enterprise. Son Jacob, who had initially stayed in Sweden with an aunt who wanted to adopt him, missed his family something terrible, and made his way back home to them.

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Dickinson County News-Times

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