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Midtlyng Genealogy

Horg and the Midtlyng gaard

Horg lies in a beautiful valley 30 miles south of Trondheim with rivers and lakes reflecting the blue skies and beautiful woods and hills of the area. It has a hilly terrain. The Midtlyng gaard and other farms sit in the bottom of the bowl so to speak surrounded by high hills. Someone has said Gauldalen has two dimensions: one up and one down. Those of us who have been there will agree that’s an apt description of Horg.

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A Memorable visit to Horg, June, 1962

I took the train from Trondheim to go to my father’s birthplace at Midtlyng’s farm near Horg in the Gauldalen Valley. I went through Lundamo and on a few more miles to Horgoyen, which was just a depot placed along the tracks. There I got off. When I looked up I could see the Horg church on a hill. It was a landmark with great significance to me and I looked forward to my visit there. Once I had gotten my bearings I began to inquire how to find the John Midtlyng gaard. "Not hard to find-only a half mile away. Go up past the church and up another hill then past the Alterdom’s Hjem," I was told. That was clear enough.

Now I could take my silent stroll through the church cemetery before announcing my presence at the farm. It was like paging through a family album. I saw names I had heard my parents talk about: Samdahls, Lyngens, Hovin, Lundamo, Roskaft, Ostlyngen and Midtlyng. I also found the grave of Peder Horg, the venerable clerk of Horg church who had prepared a slektstavle for Lydia in 1938. The clerk of a church in Norway has many duties: keeps records, directs singing, teaches school and helps with the service. Here in this church was the archive of our ancestors: birth, baptisms, marriages and deaths.

After my walk through the churchyard I proceeded up the next hill which took me past the Ostlyngen Gaard and on to the Midtlyng place where many of our forebears were born. I looked at the nicely kept yard and thought of my father when he was a child playing with Beret and Andrew in this year. The whole valley was green and lovely, apple blossoms were about to open, buildings were in excellent repair and this was the place where Grandpa John and his sisters and brothers came from, where their romances flourished and where the farewells were said in 1871.

Kaare and Gunhild Midtlyng -- so named because they live on the farm of that name -- received me and treated me royally. I was thrilled to be able to sleep there that night. This was a large old house, beautifully kept & decorated with handmade lace on pillows. I awoke early the next morning before the family of four children (John Olav, Ola, Geir and Marit) were up, crept out to take pictures in the morning sun. I walked to the barn and found the renter’s wife milking cows by machine. The barn was as spic and span as the other buildings. Since Kaare had a plumbing business, he had rented out the farm and renters lived in a separate section of the house.

Hilda Lyngen Erickson of Two Harbors had told me I must go to visit Gjertrud Solem. I spent a pleasant evening in their cozy old house which was being replaced by a new one John was building for his mother. Solems are relatives of Ingeborg Lyngen. Gudrun, one of the daughters, married Einar Roskaft of our grandmother Gunhild’s family.

Son Don met me in Norway when his school closed in Germany and we returned to Horg to drive around. It rained and rained that day -- no good for pictures in that picturesque valley.

I would love to go back to Norway, particularly Horg cemetery, after this family tree hunt. I would know more specifically what to look for and be able to find fascinating stories among those familiar names.

Kaare died at the age of 51 in 1971, and is buried at Horg cemetery. He was the grandson of the man who bought the Midtlyng farm when Grandpa John sold it. No kin of ours, but a wonderful friend. Uncle Halvor on a return trip to Norway attended the wedding of his father.

-- Gunda Mitlyng Carlson

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By Lydia Mitlyng Pokrass:

Excerpts from a letter to Dad (Lars Johnson Mitlyng), July 22, 1938

 

Written At Midtlyng gaard:

Only a corner cupboard and the dining room table are left from your time here. After we had been around the house we had coffee again and went on a circular tramp to other gaards. We went to Halvor Lyngen, who is a grandnephew to Uncle Halvor’s second wife. Next we went to the farm where Ole Lyngen was born. Esten’s brother, Andreas Lyngen, has the place. We went on down the hill to the east to another Gurie Midtlyng who is Ingebrigt Lyngen’s sister. There I found a picture of you and Mother and Gunda and Adolph taken at Moose Lake. They were so anxious to talk about the relatives in America ....

The next day has been coffee from morning till night. We had coffee in bed, then got up to breakfast, took pictures and finally announced we’d have to leave for Oslo that night. That meant we wouldn’t come back to the M. gaard in the evening because we’d be a Roskaft’s and the church. We said good bye to Midtlyng farm and stopped at Iver’s to say good bye and had to have wine and wafers there. On we went to the school teacher who is also "Klokkar" in the church. And, Dad, your birthday is June 10, not June 2. You’ve been celebrating the wrong birthday! I saw the baptismal records. When we came there, the Klokkar said he could see I was a Midtlyng and he had figured out the ancestry on the Midtlyng side way back to 1658 and now I have it as well as a short history of the vicinity that shows a Midtlyng relative, Norway’s strongest man. We visited the new church and saw pictures of the old that burned. The baptismal font where all our ancestors even to 1658 were baptized was saved and is still used in the new church. The old altar is kept upstairs in the new church.

 

I’m sitting in the front room in the house where Grandma Roskaft was born. Two elderly ladies, descendants of Grandma, are fixing dinner. Anne R. is the sister of Esten Roskaft and Kari is Esten’s wife. Anne’s father was Grandma R’s brother. Even Roskaft.... First they asked which of the family were living and they asked about a brother of yours by the name of Esten. I didn’t know you had a brother by that name. When they heard we were leaving that night they were really put out because we hadn’t come sooner. Evjen’s, who are your cousins, wanted to take us to the saeter for the weekend. I was disappointed, too, but it wasn’t so interesting for Winnifred who couldn’t understand Norwegian. We have lots of Roskaft relatives living. We were treated royally. First we had ale to drink. Then in about fifteen minutes, coffee and cookies; again in fifteen minutes wine and cakes, and in an hour "middag" which was fish balls, potatoes, flatbrod, puffed rick and tittebaer with cream for dessert. Then as we left they wanted us to have coffee but we escaped without it.

 

-- Lydia Mitlyng Pokrass

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Last modified: September 11, 1997