Swedish Texans are excluded from the pamphlet series, previously mentioned in
our main article, it is probably due to the depth and detail of Dr. Larry E. Scottís
The Swedish Texans, an informative and entertaining book also published by The
University of Texas Institute of Cultures at San Antonio (1990).
as Mayor Carlson said, The Swedish Language Newspaper Texas Posten was
the history of the Swedish Texans. Published weekly from 1896 to 1982, it continued
to feature Swedish news on the front page and at least 25% of the text was in
Swedish up until it closed its doors. A competitor, Texas Bladet (1900-1909) started
publishing monthly in Hutto, moved to Elgin, went weekly, then Georgetown and
finally Austin where it was bought by Texas Posten. The Postenís strength was
in its contributing correspondents in every Texas Swedish community.
and Manor never became predominately Swedish, but served as hubs for the smaller
communities that were. Elginís first direct outside telephone line was to Swedish
Today the Swedish provinces that
furnished the most immigrants to the U.S. have the same number of people they
had in 1860. Many of the Swedish Texans transmigrated from northern US cities,
brought here by Texas Posten, since they enjoyed a healthy circulation outside
Two Swedish Colleges were formed.
Trinity in Round Rock, and Wesleyan in Austin. Trinity, founded in 1906, closed
in 1929. Wesleyan raised dairy cattle on land they purchased for 600 dollars in
1912. This land extended from what is now Red River Street in Austin to Waller
Creek and from 24th to 26th Streets. The Administration
Building became an office annex to the UT Law School when Wesleyan was purchased
in 1936 for 135,000 dollars. The building was demolished in 1976. Today, two barn-like
structures still stand behind a fence on Guadalupe directly across from Conanís
pizza. (There is no evidence of Conan being Swedish or Texan, but itís good to
know Barbarians have a place to hang out in Austin, instead of pillaging the drag
or barbecuing Bevo.
Govalle was once
the ranch of S. M. Swenson, another prominent Swede.
the most colorful character in this book is a Swede with the unlikely name of
Swante Palm. Although undereducated in Sweden, he did manage to learn English,
German, French and Latin before leaving home. This probably helped him when he
applied for the job as Postmaster of La Grange. He became Texasí foremost bibliophile
and amassed a library of 13,000 volumes. The German sculptress Elisabet Ney carved
a bust of Mr. Palm, which stands today at the Eugene Barker Texas History Center
at the University of Texas, the recipient of the bulk of Mr. Palmís library.
in this book, is a chapter on language and cultural borrowing of words, and another
chapter deals with how the immigrants adapted to problems that were unknown in
Sweden. Fortunately fire ants had not arrived at that time, or Texas wouldíve
been left without Swedes and a lot of other immigrant groups.
thanks again to Mayor Carlson, for piquing our curiosity.