Land of Opportunity: Missed Connection Kept Family Off Titanic

Father travels to America for work prospects, and his family’s passage on Titanic was changed to Lusitania because of a missed connection.

| Good Old Days

Grandpa Stromsoe had already traveled to the land of opportunity seeking better work prospects. He left Grandma and two children behind in Sweden. He sent for his family after saving enough money for the passage on the ship Titanic. When Grandma got the travel money, she made ready to leave Sweden and go to England to catch the great new "unsinkable ship." The children were excited about this trip to a faraway land across the ocean. They journeyed from the northern part of Sweden by train, then caught a boat to England. Fortunately, a missed connection kept them from sailing with the Titantic. There was nothing to do but transfer the tickets to the Lusitania and come on to Ellis Island in America. The ship took almost three weeks to cross the Atlantic in 1912. After being shuttled through the medical checks at Ellis Island, they boarded the train for Denver, Colorado. After settling in Denver, Grandma declared that since they were in America now they would only speak English. Grandma taught herself to read and write by studying the dictionary.

The two children were soon joined by another baby. Suddenly Grandma began to be terribly homesick for the old country.

My mother was their second child, who crossed the ocean three times to finally settle in America. She is no longer living, and I regret not asking more specific questions about those times.

Shirley Vogl
Fort Lupton, Colorado

Back in 1955 a call went out from the editors of the then CAPPER’s Weekly asking for readers to send in articles on true pioneers. Hundreds of letters came pouring in from early settlers and their children, many now in their 80s and 90s, and from grandchildren of settlers, all with tales to tell. So many articles were received that a decision was made to create a book, and in 1956, the first My Folks title – My Folks Came in a Covered Wagon – hit the shelves. Nine other books have since been published in the My Folks series, all filled to the brim with true tales from CAPPER’s readers, and we are proud to make those stories available to our growing online community. 



September 12-13, 2019
Seven Springs, Pennsylvania

Fermentation Frenzy! is produced by Fermentation magazine in conjunction with the MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR. This one-and-a-half day event is jam-packed with fun and informative hands-on sessions.


Subscribe today

Capper's FarmerWant to rediscover what made grandma’s house the fun place we all remember? Capper’s Farmer — the newly restored publication from the rural know-how experts at — updates the tried-and-true methods your grandparents used for cooking, crafting, gardening and so much more. Subscribe today and discover the joys of homemade living and homesteading insight — with a dash of modern living — that makes up the new Capper’s Farmer.

Save Even More Money with our automatic renewal savings plan!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our automatic renewal savings plan. You save an additional $6 and get 4 issues of Capper's Farmer for only $16.95 (USA only).

Or, Bill Me Later and I'll pay just $22.95 for a one year subscription!

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter

Free Product Information Classifieds

click me