Looking for the family of my wife's grandfather-Ernst Hans Larsen (went by Hans in his youth) born about March 6, 1889. We figure that he knew the day and month he was born but the year may be off. Recent DNA results state that Ernst is of FINNISH/VOLGA-URAL ETHNICITY and not of Swedish/Norwegian/Danish ancestry.
One summer around 1900-4 he jumped on the Latvian ship "Roma" out of Riga, Latvia starting off as a cabin boy.Most everything we know of Ernst is based upon the recollections of a young man at the time he left home at about 14 years of age, never to communicate with his family again. In his handwritten autobiography written just before he died in 1956, he states that he is Norwegian. His US Naturalization certificate, the 1920 & 1930 US census all state that his name is Earnest, born c1889 & that he is Norwegian. Yet we have not found his name, etc in the 1900 Norwegian census.
He states he had 8 brothers and each summer he would enjoy the sea voyage to Riga to work on his uncle’s (Albert Walden/Wahlden? or Larsen?) nursery. His uncle was also his Godfather. Family lore states that his father name was Johan/Johannes and his mother was Mary/Maren/Mari/Maria (Wahlden/Walden?). But his death certificate states Christina was his mother and Hans was his father. We are beginning to believe that our Ernst probably was born in Finland or perhaps the Saint Petersburg area of Russia.
His writings make us believe that he spent 8-10 years at sea. He entered the USA in San Francisco, California on the Ship “FM Slade” on February 22, 1911 as per the ship’s manifest. It’s interesting to note that this document states that his nationality is Russian and that he was 24 years old in Feb 1911. That makes his birth date 1886.
Kindly contact me if you have some information. Thanks for your help in advance. Mike