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Peter Anderson Cederstam papers, 1855-1902

Collection #:
MSS P:11

1 linear foot (2 boxes)

Creators: Cederstam, Peter (Pehr) Anderson, 1830-1902
Swedish (bulk), English

The collection is open for research onsite. A limited amount of photocopies may be requested via mail. 

Subject Headings: Clergy--Illinois--Biography.
Sermons, American--19th century.
Sermons, Swedish.
Chisago Lake (Minn.)
Chisago Lake Evangelical Lutheran Church (Center City, Minn.)
Processed by:

Swenson Center Staff
Finding aid updated by Lisa Huntsha, 2013

Swenson Swedish Immigration Research Center
Augustana College
639 38th Street
Rock Island, IL 61201

Custodial History

Hugo Larson, the grandson of P.A. Cederstam, deposited the papers at Special Collections at the Augustana College Library in 1979. The collection was transferred to the Swenson Center in 1981.

Biographical Sketch

Peter (Pehr) Anderson Cederstam was born on February 14, 1830 in Ranstorp in Glimåkra parish, Kristianstads län, Sweden. His father, Anders Oredsson died a few months before he was born and his mother was Arna Hansdotter. His mother remarried when Cederstam was around 1 years old. The relationship between him and the stepfather was not good and at the age of 10, his mother arranged for him to work with the parish clerk and schoolteacher in Broby to learn a trade before he was expected to go out and support himself. His mother wanted him to become a tailor, but it was not a trade he was interested in. Instead, he began working as a shepherd for a farmer in Fjelkinge parish. The 11-year-old boy was never allowed in the house on the farm besides from when meals were served and he lived in the stable for 1 1/2 years. An uncle arranged for his small inheritance to be paid out and he was sent to a schoolteacher who taught him to write and do basic math. He already knew how to read the catechism. At the age of 15, he was confirmed by T.N. Hasselquist in Glimåkra parish. After being confirmed, his stepfather made him leave the house and Cederstam decided to continue to study. In the spring of 1847, he left for Kristianstad to study at Lankasterskolan, which he did for three years. In 1853, he decided to spend the rest of his inheritance and purchase a ticket to America and he arrived in New York July 17, 1853.

In New York, he connected with T.N. Hasselquist and in the fall of 1854 when Hasselquist became involved with the publishing of the Swedish-American newspaper Hemlandet, Cedestram was asked to serve Hasselquist's congregations. After a meeting with Lars Paul Esbjörn and Erland Carlsson, the reluctant Cederstam was convinced that it was his duty to help his fellow people. He was given a temporary preaching license by the Northern Illinois Conference to serve the congregations in Galesburg, Knoxville, Wataga, Princeton, Monmouth, Abingdon, and Henderson in Hasselquist's absence. In 1855, Cederstam was called to the Swedish congregation in Chisago Lake, Minnesota. Until 1858, he was the only Swedish pastor in the state of Minnesota. Cederstam was ordained in Dixon, Illinois together with A. Andreen in 1856. Shortly thereafter, he married Johanna Laurentia Le Veau. From Chisago Lake, they moved to St. Peter and Scandian Grove (Minnesota) where they stayed until the Indian uprising in 1862 (also known as the Dakota War and the Sioux Uprising). The family fled, and eventually found themselves in Galesburg, Illinois where they stayed at Hasselquist's house until a call from the Swedish congregation in Geneva, Illinois was issued in 1863. Cederstam also served the congregations in DeKalb, Elgin, Batavia, Aurora, Sycamore, and Blackberry while in Geneva. Furthermore, he was a missionary pastor in Minnesota, served the congregations in Tailors Fall, Moor's Prairie, Friend's Home, Kansas, Knoxville, and he was also the President of the Minnesota Conference. Johanna died in 1890 after a long illness. Cederstam died on July 2, 1902. For further biographical information see the translation of his autobiography in this collection.

Content Description

The bulk of the collection consists of bound notebooks that contain Cederstam's sermons and pastoral duties and both professional and personal account books. Also included is a history from the 25th Anniversary of the Chisago Lutheran Church in Center City, Minnesota and some miscellaneous letters. The notebooks are written in both Swedish and English. There is also a translation of his autobiography by his grandson Hugo Larson and other biographical material.

Folder inventory

Box 1

1. Autobiography translated from the Swedish by Per Hugo Christian Larson and biography of Johanna Laurentia (Le Veau) Cederstam, typewritten and translated by Hugo Larson, dated Feb. 14, 1977. The original was written by P.A. Cederstam and published in Korsbaneret 1891.
2. Funeral announcement - Johanna Laurentia Cederstam
3. Marriage certificate, obituary of P.A. Cederstam and misc. memorabilia.
4. Journal of Ministerial Duties 1855, typewritten.
5. "Some Memory Notations of 25 years ago" (typewritten and published in Skaffaren) and "P.A. Cederstam", from History of Chisago Lake Lutheran Church, Center City, Minnesota.
6. Personal account book 1853-1868, and 1863-1867
(both professional and personal)
7. Augustana Evangelical Lutheran Church Synod Account Ledger 1901-1902.
8. Misc. letters, accounts - Augustana Ev. Luth. Synod.
9. Portrait of Hugo Larson, dated 1963

Box 2

1. Account book 1854 and calendar with notes and cash account records form 1869.
2. Sermon and speeches
Sermon published in Luthersk Kyrkotidning, November 15, 1872; Passionsbetraktelser 1868; and Ungdomstiden är en bönotid July, 25, 1888.
3. Sermons 1856, incl. lefnadsteckning af P.A. Cederstam, 1880-1881.
4. Handwritten Sermons 1861-1862 in bound volume.
5. Handwritten Sermons 1881-1883 in bound volume.
6. Handwritten Sermons 1884-1885 in bound volume.
7. Handwritten Sermons 1889-1892 in bound volume.
8. Handwritten Sermons 1898-1900 in bound volume.
9. Handwritten Sermons and speeches 1894-1896 in bound volume.
10. Certificate of incorporation for Swedish Evangelical Lutheran Church of Taylor Falls, Minnesota 1856.
11. Account and notebook 1870s.