Swedes in America, 1638-1938

By Adolph B. Benson; Naboth Hedin | Go to book overview

Inventors

JOHAN LILJENCRANTS

Baron Johan Liljencrants was born and educated in Sweden, where he was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the Royal Svea Life Guards, in 1906. Four years later he resigned, then pursued postgraduate studies at Princeton University, 1912-13, and obtained the Ph.D. degree at the George Washington University, in psychology and psychiatry, in 1921. Between 1926 and 1986, he was the Editor, successively, of The Swedish American Trade Journal and The American Swedish Monthly. In the preparation of the present chapter, he has been assisted by members of the John Ericsson Society of New York, particularly its President, E. Theodore I. Thygeson; and from the Swedish Forum of western Pennsylvania, he has received valuable suggestions.

INVENTIONS by Swedes and Swedish-Americans contribute, perhaps more than is generally known, to everyday comfort as well as to industrial development in America. Swedes are noted for technological skill; and Sweden has given to the world more than her due share of inventors. During the last decades of the immigration period, she also sent to these shores many well-trained young men, representing a fair quota of inventive talent. A complete survey of the field cannot be attempted in this connection, but a few examples will serve to illustrate what Swedish and Swedish-American inventors have contributed to American life.

The Swedish inventor best known and most honored in America is John Ericsson, not so much, perhaps, because of his mechanical genius and versatility, as because of the great service he was able to render the nation at a critical stage in the Civil War. His "cheesebox on a raft," the Monitor, in stopping the formidable Merrimac and establishing much-needed naval supremacy for the Union, made him a national hero. As an inventor, however, his accomplishments were many; and the list of his patents, numbering a hundred items, includes a share in the screw propeller, and several more inventions of first magnitude.

Ericsson's forefathers had, for generations, been associated

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Swedes in America, 1638-1938
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Swedish American Tercentenary Association ix
  • Editors' Preface xi
  • Contents xiii
  • Illustrations xv
  • Introduction 1
  • Colonists 5
  • Colonial Landmarks 35
  • The Swedish Language in America 52
  • Bibliography 72
  • Farmers 75
  • Pioneers of the Northwest 92
  • Geographical Distribution 107
  • Swedish Place Names in America 123
  • Religion 126
  • Charities and Self-Help 140
  • Colleges 154
  • Bibliography 180
  • Newspapers 181
  • Writers in Swedish 191
  • Magazines 206
  • Authors 209
  • Journalists 219
  • Translations of Swedish LIterature 237
  • Four Representatives of the Intellect Arrhenius, Berzelius, LInné, and Swedenborg 253
  • The New Church 279
  • Professors 282
  • Public School Educators 300
  • Lawyers 315
  • Public Officials 321
  • Doctors 338
  • Gymnastics 357
  • Sports and Sportsmen 366
  • Inventors 382
  • Engineers 407
  • Architects and Builders 416
  • Composers 435
  • Opera Singers 453
  • The American Union of Swedish Singers 469
  • Moving Picture Actors 473
  • Stage and Radio Performers 482
  • Painters and Sculptors 488
  • Soldiers and Sailors 506
  • Aviation 532
  • Manufacturers 551
  • Businessmen Gustaf Sundelius 572
  • Imports and Importers VIctor O. Freeburg 584
  • Index 599
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