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Minnesota Territorial Pioneers


The Minnesota Territorial Pioneers is an active organization of descendants of pioneers who lived in Minnesota Territory.

Click to Visit the Minnesota Territorial Pioneers website Descendants of Amund Thorsen  (Thor's grandfather) and Bjorn Gunderson (also known as Ben Benson, Gunil's father) lived in Minnesota in the 1850's. Their descendants qualify for membership in MTP. Visit the MTP website for more information and a membership application for Minnesota Territorial Pioneers. 


The following documents can be used as proofs for both (all are in pdf format):



Amund Thorsen Bjorn Gunderson
Proof of Minnesota Residence prior to 1858
1857 Minnesota Territorial Census
Houston County - Twp 104
Dwelling 51  Family 54
Click Here for document image
1857 Land Patent
Accession/Serial# MN2300_.440
Fillmore County - Twp 104-N
Click Here for document image

Proof of Descent
Sissel as Amund's Daughter
The record of Mikkel & Sissel's marriage
Kviteseid Churchbook 1836-1858  (1850)
Telemark, Norway
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Gunil as Bjorn's daughter

The record of Gunild's baptism from the MN: Fillmore County Baptisms 1854-1883 database

Click Here for the document image 


Torger & Thor as Sissel's Sons
1880 US Census
Minnesota,  Fillmore Cty, Norway Township

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Kristi's Baptism
Kviteseid Churchbook 1836-1858
Telemark, Norway
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Gunil as Thor's wife
Clarifies Gunil's many surnames

Gunil & Thor's Marriage License

Thor's Children

Thor's obituary lists all of his children

Thor Hegland Obituary

McIntosh MN Times

October 30, 1941 Page 1

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Torger's Children

1910 US Census

Minnesota, Fillmore County, Norway Twp

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Kristi's Children

1900 US Census

North Dakota, Barnes County, Thordesjold Twp

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Sophie & Allette as Gunil's Children

Thor Hegland Obituary

McIntosh MN Times

October 30, 1941 Page 1

Click Here for the document image

Proofs for Thor's Grandchildren

Click on the parent's name(s) below to view a document that can be used to prove  relationship to their children.

*Lorentz: Proof  of descent provided using his wife's memorial folder

Proofs for Sophie & Alet's Children

The 1930 Census can be used as proof of descent for both Sophie's and Allette's children.



Proofs for Successive Generations

Proofs for successive generations may/may not be on the website.  Copies of published obituaries, birth/death certificates, church and school records are acceptable proofs
Click for larger image in a new windowNorwegian Statehood
Pioneer Project

The Norwegian Statehood Pioneer Project offers certificates to direct descendants of Norwegian immigrants or their children who arrived in Minnesota before 1920.  An application fee is required. Proofs listed above can be used to support an application. 
A sesquicentennial book published by the project includes brief biographies of Amund Thorson and Bjorn & Helge Gunderson as Statehood Pioneers, and Thor and his family are listed as Century Pioneers.

Visit the NSPP website for more information..

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