Friday, 3 November 2017

So who are these Scandinavians that occupy 20% of my DNA? The Eliassen family.

So I find myself rather curious about these ancestry.co.uk DNA results, 20% Scandinavian? The only obvious ancestral links I can see are the Eliassen family. Looking at my paternal roots, I see that my great grandfather Frank Henry Simms married Matilda Amanda Eliassen in 1914. I was able to order her birth certificate as seen here-


My great grandmother Matilda was born in 1884 in Hull to Elias Eliassen & Matilde Knudson. My great great grandfather Elias his profession was listed as merchant seaman. This is also confirmed by the Hull 1891 census where Elias is listed as a head of his household, occupation 'Sailor'. At this stage it lists two children with Matilde Eliassen namely Magdalene age 10 & Odin age 4.


Here is a photo of their son Odin, he served with the West Yorkshire Regiment and died at the battle of Loos, France 1915.

I was able to locate Elias Eliassen & Matilda Knudson marriage license dated 1884.
It lists their ages as both aged 29....i'm not sure if that was completely true. Curiously, there appears to be a discrepancy in who my great great grandfathers listed father is as he is listed as Elias Davidson. Was this his step father perhaps?  Matilde's father is listed as Olaf Knudson. 

One additional record was the 1911 census and here it again states that Elias Eliassen was born in Sweden and Matilde Knudson as born in Norway. It still lists their ages as the same, this time both aged 55....so perhaps its true? Also living with them as this stage was their children  my great grandmother Amanda Matilda Eliassen and her half sister Eugenie Reinhartdsen. So I suspect Matilda Knudson was married previously before she married Elias. 

Digging a little deeper into my great great grandmother Matilde Knudson I see she does indeed turn up on the 1881 Census but living in Southhampton and married to a Mr Reinhartsen.
He appears to be not in the census which makes me wonder if that meant he was offshore at the time of the census?


Matilde was residing at 11, George Street, Southampton St Mary, Southampton, Hampshire, England and listed as Matilda Reinhartsen Wife (Head) Married age 30 born about 1851. Occupation: Yachtsmans Wife born in Norway.

The census also mentions her son August J Reinhartsen aged 2 born 1879 - Southampton, Hampshire, England and these other persons-
Johan Olsen Brother Single Male 23 1858 Seaman Norway
Thomine Reinhartsen Sister In Law Single Female 25 1856 Servant Norway
Unten Neilsen Boarder Single Male 32 1849 Seaman Norway
Eugene Reinhartsen Daughter Single Female age 0 born 1881 - Southampton, Hampshire, England

From the following records I can see Matilde's son died in 1882 at the time she had moved to Hull.

England & Wales deaths 1837-2007 Transcription

First name(s) AUGUST JOHAN ANCHOR
Last name REINHARTSEN
Gender Male
Birth year 1879
Age 3
Death quarter 4
Death year 1882
District HULL
County Yorkshire
Volume 9D
Page 179
Country England
Record set England & Wales deaths 1837-2007


England Deaths and Burials 1538-1991 Transcription

First name(s) August Johan Anchor
Last name Reinhartsen
Event year 1882
Burial year 1882
Burial date 25 Nov 1882
Burial place Hull, York, England
Place Hull
County Yorkshire
Father's last name Reinhartsen
Mother's first name(s) Matilda
Mother's last name Knudsen
Country England

----------------------------------------------------
England & Wales deaths 1837-2007 Transcription

First name(s) THORVAL AUGUST
Last name REINHARTSEN
Gender Male
Birth year 1883
Age 1
Death quarter 3
Death year 1884
District HULL
County Yorkshire
Volume 9D
Page 177

So definitely seeing some Scandinavian links here although struggled to find exactly when and where in Sweden Elias was born.