- Project Runeberg -  Year-book of the Swedish-American Historical Society / Volume 7 (1921-1922) /
10

(1908-1925) [MARC]
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period indicated were fair representatives of the race.
The well to do, or moderately well situated had, of
course, no particular reason to change habitation. Nor
did this country at that time hold out any inducement
for the educated and cultured, especially not in this
territory. The accomplishments of such hardly fitted in
here, so as to command adequate compensation from the
English speaking inhabitants, and if they could have
been of some service to the Swedish immigrants the
latter were not able to pay therefor. With the
exception of a small colony in Illinois of the so-called
Jansonites, religious intolerance or persecution cannot be
assigned as a cause for the emigration from Sweden.
Better economic conditions seems to have been the prime
motive of those who left that country. This need was
most felt among the poor, the peasants, and servants.
And for those who depend upon a living by laboring
for others, the outlook was, perhaps, then more gloomy
in the country districts of Sweden than in the cities.
The consequence was that during the time before
refered to the Swedish immigrants were mostly from the
rural districts and were mostly the sons and daughters
of the renters, the peasants, or the common laborers.
But it must also be borne in mind that some means
were necessary, even in those days, to undertake the long
and tedious journey to this country, and so those of the
classes mentioned that came must have had more than
average energy and frugality to accumulate the
necessary wherewithal. If any one strayed here from the
upper classes it was likely a black sheep in the family,
or one of a roving, adventurous disposition that seldom
settled down to do any thing of worth in the development
of a new country. It should be noted that, at the

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