Norwegian heritage celebrated in Spring Grove
SPRING GROVE — Spring Grove is taking another step in celebrating its Norwegian heritage with the opening of the Giants in the Earth Heritage Center tonight.
It's in a renovated historic building and is named in honor of the famous book by O.E. Rolvaag. The book details the hardships and history of early Norwegian pioneers in the prairie country to the west. Many of those early pioneers came through Spring Grove before going further west to open the prairie.
Tonight's event will also honor Georgia Rosendahl who is helping keep that heritage alive through genealogy research. Her father Oscar Kroshus, and her neighbor, Percival Narveson, were the historians who first kindled Georgia’s passion of learning the history of people’s families. They kept newspaper accounts of people in the area, and Georgia soon started pasting obituaries and articles into scrapbooks.
When computers came, Rosendahl began keeping files on people and now has 40,059 names on file. People regularly contact her for information about their relatives.
She is an active member in the Houston County Historical Society’s board of directors and also the Sons of Norway Lodge in Spring Grove.
The center's room was painted recently by an artist from Norway for her rosemaling. Walls around the room show their interpretation of the areas of Norway from which immigrants of this area came and historic aspects of life in Spring Grove through time.