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Backman Family papers

 Collection
Identifier: MSS 108

Scope and Contents

The Backman Family papers, 1876-1953 and undated, has been arranged into four series: Carl Backman, Helen Backman, Olga Backman, and Family Photographs.

The Carl Backman series (1876-1953 and undated) contains Backman's journals, autograph books, correspondence, essays, sermons, and artifacts. The journals are all written in Swedish, but seem to contain personal musings, notes on daily life, and financial records. The essays and sermons are in written in English.

The Helena Backman series (1903-1952 and undated) contains biographical and personal articles and clippings. Helena’s involvement with missions and her longstanding membership and participation in various organizations are exemplified by these documents.

The Olga Backman Peterson series (1908-1911) consists of Peterson's postcard correspondence to family and friends. Many of the postcards are from her sister Lillian and some are from her brother Carl. The pictures on the postcards depict Augustana and Rock Island scenes.

The Family Photographs series (1903-1952 and undated) contains images of members of the Backman family.

Dates

  • 1876-1953 and undated

Creator

Language of Materials

English and Swedish

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on the use of this collection.

Conditions Governing Use

Unpublished manuscripts are protected by copyright. Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from Augustana College Special Collections and the copyright holder.

Historical Note

Carl August Backman was born 24 May 1853, in Safsnas, Dalarne, Sweden. He came to the United States in 1868 and began to study at Augustana College in 1875. Backman received a BA in 1881 and graduated from Augustana Theological Seminary in 1883. In October of 1883 he married Helena Hoogner. After two years as a pastor in Ishpeming, Michigan, he accepted a position at the Swedish Lutheran congregation in Galesburg, Illinois, in the summer of 1885. He was well known in the area for his sermons and published essays. After her husband’s death 6 March 1888, Helena Backman went on to participate in her own civic and church activities until her death 30 June 1950. She was a member and served as president of the Augustana Women’s Missionary Society, for which she developed the successful “My Missionary for a Day” program. She was also a member of the Red Cross and Galesburg Cottage Hospital. Carl and Helena had three children: Lillian, Carl, and Olga. Olga, the youngest child, born in 1888, was an art student at Augustana College and died in 1973. Her postcards are included in this collection.

Extent

0.6 Cubic Feet (/ 2 boxes)

Abstract

The Backman family was active in Galesburg, Ill., in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The head of the family was Carl August Backman, who immigrated to the United States in 1868 and began to study at Augustana College in 1875. Backman received a BA in 1881 and graduated from Augustana Theological Seminary in 1883. After two years as a pastor in Ishpeming, Michigan, he accepted a position at the Swedish Lutheran congregation in Galesburg, Illinois, in the summer of 1885. The Backman Family papers, 1876-1953 and undated, contains the personal papers of Carl Backman, Helen Backman, and Olga Backman, and a number of family photographs.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Received from Helen Peterson Kaalstad, 1995.

Processing Information

Processed by Kirsten Mathisen. Revised by Atticus Garrison, June 2016.
Title
Backman family papers, 1876-1953 and undated.
Status
Completed
Author
Atticus Garrison
Date
June 2016
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Undetermined
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
English

Repository Details

Part of the Augustana College Special Collections Repository

Contact:
639 38th Street
Thomas Tredway Library
Rock Island Illinois 61201 United States