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Arts & Life

"Dear Unforgettable Brother"


Pursuing a brighter future in the United States, Lars Stavig left his family in Norway and journeyed to the prairies of Dakota Territory. Though their paths never cross again, he and his brother continued to write, sharing their experiences across the sea. Over 130 years have passed since Lars Stavig first wrote home to Knut Stavig. Like the lives their authors lived, their letters reflect the challenges faced by families in both Norway and America. Covering the span of five decades, the communication among the Stavig relatives gives readers personal insight into the lives of those who emigrated and those who stayed behind. The annotated book, “Dear Unforgettable Brother,” is published by the South Dakota Historical Society Press and is the first time the letters have appeared in print. Jane Torness Rasmussen is the great-granddaughter of Lars Stavig and talked about the stories she's heard of her great-grandfather and the book.