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Old 03-08-2015, 06:25 PM
 
Location: Finland
1,401 posts, read 1,125,534 times
Reputation: 769

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Quote:
Originally Posted by uptown_urbanist View Post
I'm still skeptical of that photo; I've looked at many a historic photo from that era and haven't seen anything like it. Not to detract from the larger question of the thread, but I'd like to know who made that photo and why. Let's say it IS original. Who made it, and why? A joke for the papers back home? I'd take it as a comedic photo, not as a true representation of Finnish culture in Northern Minnesota.
I don't understand why you guys care so much about that photo

Quote:
Suomalaissiirtolaisista Minnesotassa Yhdysvalloissa 1910-luvulla otettu studiokuva. Kuvan takana oli teksti: "Pojat pontevat Pohjanmaan. Takana Savelan Hemppa Haapajärveltä ja Vihtori Isomäki (lippalakki), jotka olivat rautatietyömaalla. Tältä näyttävät pojat jonkin aikaa USA:ssa oltuaan.
Direct translation:
"A studio photo taken in Minnesota, USA in the 1910's. Text behind the photo says: Big boys from Pohjanmaa. In the back row Hemppa Savela from Haapajärvi and Vihtori Isomäki(wearing a cap), they worked at railways. This is how the boys looked like after some time in the USA."
HS Ilta: Yhdysvallat on suomalaistenkin maahanmuuttajien kansakunta - Helsingin Sanomat - Kotimaa - Helsingin Sanomat

So they were showing off to people back home. Many times immigrants would take photos like this to show how good they are doing in the US. Everyone smoking and drinking alcohol indeed was their culture(especially the alcohol part).

Happy now?

Back in middle school I remember seeing this one photo of a Finnish American cabin. It had huge windows, bigger than normal. In Finland they couldn't actually afford glass windows at all
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Old 03-08-2015, 11:13 PM
 
Location: Washington state
4,680 posts, read 2,307,327 times
Reputation: 13694
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ariete View Post
It might be Matari. That's a name and a suburb near Helsinki.
Some of my grandmother's relatives on that side are still alive. I'll call them one day and find out how to spell it. It's supposed to be a very common name.
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Old 03-09-2015, 12:38 AM
 
5,799 posts, read 4,820,957 times
Reputation: 17499
When I posted "scan of an original" I just meant that it is obviously a period photograph, which has been scanned for the internet. I'm agreeing with you that it is a real photograph. I think Uptown must not have studied historic photography as much as some of us here. Portraiture of groups of young men in comedic and/or occupational poses was very common in the late 19th and early 20th c. (for the young people reading this, maybe think of such photos as having served the same purpose as today's "selfies".)

The communist history of Finns in MN isn't bad at all, it's really very very interesting, and is very much a part of the story of unionization of the mines and of American labor history in general. Also, there were many local stores which started as communist cooperatives. Communist social halls were very much a part of local social life.

Also, I wanted to mention that many of the Finns in Minnesota shortened their original Finnish surnames in America. For example, from the Finnish surname "Ojakangas", there are families in the same town who use the surname "Oja" while other (related) families use "Kangas." Same with the surname "Ojamaki". Many here use the surname "Maki". There are lots of other examples; I just can't think of them right now.

Here's a link to the Laiskianin sledding festival held annually in Palo, MN:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=21cQeSLDrIQ. You can see that it has been Americanized with the addition of traditions from other cultures.

Oh, also - check out the Finnish American homestead at Old World Wisconsin. http://oldworldwisconsin.wisconsinhi...xploreMap.aspx They moved this cabin down to the historic site near Eagle, WI from near the town of Bayfield - near Lake Superior. It was built by a Finnish immigrant family named Ketola.

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Old 03-09-2015, 08:47 AM
 
Location: Minnesota
3,997 posts, read 5,144,963 times
Reputation: 4508
Quote:
Originally Posted by old fed View Post
sadly i don't know how or why my ancestors ended up in the US. my paternal grandmother's parents settled in sebeka (grandmother was US born) and my grandmother somehow ended up in minneapolis. my paternal grandfather was born in finland and arrived in the upper peninsula with his mother when he was 5 or 6. his father either had died in finland or on the journey over, it was never clear. how he ended up in minneapolis i don't know either. heck, my last name isn't even my grandfather's original last name as his mother remarried in the US and my grandfather adopted the step-father's surname.

both of them corresponded regularly with relations in finland until their deaths. again, sadly, i have no more information than this. when i was young, none of this seemed important or interesting. oh, the follies of youth. and oddly, they both seemed to have been "americanized" to the point of not embracing their heritage much except when around family. it wasn't so much of a shunning of their heritage as much as having become american. i have no memory of any Finnish traditions/recipes (except coffee ) being discussed or practiced. odd.
Still plenty of Finns in the hood. Can't barely throw a rock without hitting one.
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Old 03-09-2015, 10:01 AM
 
Location: Finland
1,401 posts, read 1,125,534 times
Reputation: 769
Quote:
Originally Posted by 601halfdozen0theother View Post
When I posted "scan of an original" I just meant that it is obviously a period photograph, which has been scanned for the internet. I'm agreeing with you that it is a real photograph. I think Uptown must not have studied historic photography as much as some of us here. Portraiture of groups of young men in comedic and/or occupational poses was very common in the late 19th and early 20th c. (for the young people reading this, maybe think of such photos as having served the same purpose as today's "selfies".)

The communist history of Finns in MN isn't bad at all, it's really very very interesting, and is very much a part of the story of unionization of the mines and of American labor history in general. Also, there were many local stores which started as communist cooperatives. Communist social halls were very much a part of local social life.

Also, I wanted to mention that many of the Finns in Minnesota shortened their original Finnish surnames in America. For example, from the Finnish surname "Ojakangas", there are families in the same town who use the surname "Oja" while other (related) families use "Kangas." Same with the surname "Ojamaki". Many here use the surname "Maki". There are lots of other examples; I just can't think of them right now.

Here's a link to the Laiskianin sledding festival held annually in Palo, MN:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=21cQeSLDrIQ. You can see that it has been Americanized with the addition of traditions from other cultures.

Oh, also - check out the Finnish American homestead at Old World Wisconsin. Explore Map - Old World Wisconsin They moved this cabin down to the historic site near Eagle, WI from near the town of Bayfield - near Lake Superior. It was built by a Finnish immigrant family named Ketola.
Thanks for the clarification!

I don't remember his name but I saw this documentary about this Finnish factory worker who actually founded a communist party chapter in Michigan I believe... Also after the Soviet Union came to exist some Finnish Americans moved there It was only some thousands though. By "Communist cooperative" you propably mean "osuuskunta" https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cooperative . Yes some Finns founded farms like that but it is not seen as "communists"... It is a fairly commond type of a firm in Finland even nowadays Just like limited company etc. Finland's biggest food retailer is this type of a firm, also one of the biggest banks.

Ah that's cool to know

Laskiainen! It's faschinating to see that happening on the other side of the world

America's oldest log cabin is built by Finnish settlers: C. A. Nothnagle Log House - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
6 things you might not know about the oldest log cabin in the United States, N.J.'s Nothnagle Cabin | NJ.com
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Old 03-09-2015, 08:02 PM
 
10,630 posts, read 22,773,272 times
Reputation: 6687
I suspect I've studied historic portraiture more than most people on this forum. My issue was with the photo being presented as it if it were an accurate depiction of a family portrait or the like; it's clearly not. It's posed, and clearly supposed to be a joke (or a temperance commentary? The temperance movement in northern MN was in full swing, including in the Finnish community). And yes, I know there were funny posed photos from the time. I suspect that seeing the rest of the photo -- the mount, the photo itself, the writing -- would be valuable for authenticating purposes.

And again, I realize that has nothing to do with the gist of the original post, and it's irrelevant whether it was "real" or not. The portrait was just distracting, that's all.
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Old 03-09-2015, 10:11 PM
 
1,188 posts, read 1,051,939 times
Reputation: 2082
my dad has a photo of my great grandpa and his brothers that looks just like that except they are smoking cigars instead of pipes
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Old 03-09-2015, 11:44 PM
 
141 posts, read 111,118 times
Reputation: 301
I've been told Finns are the laughing stock of other Minnesotan Scandinavian.

Such as "build by a Finn" = "poorly made"
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Old 03-10-2015, 03:34 AM
 
Location: The canyon (with my pistols and knife)
12,994 posts, read 17,133,404 times
Reputation: 14300
With all the Scandinavian influence in Minnesota, how come there's not much heavy metal music to come from there? I mean, Bob Dylan and Prince are good, but their music doesn't kick people in the face like this:



So what gives?
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Old 03-13-2015, 02:19 PM
 
Location: Finland
1,401 posts, read 1,125,534 times
Reputation: 769
Quote:
Originally Posted by tjasse View Post
my dad has a photo of my great grandpa and his brothers that looks just like that except they are smoking cigars instead of pipes
You great granpa sounds like a reasonable man
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