Hans Olsen Magleby

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The Unique Friendship between Oluf Christian Larsen and Hans Olsen Magleby

 Oluf           Hans Olsen Magleby

    Oluf Christian Larsen                                       Hans Olsen Magleby

One day while doing a Google search for "Oluf Christian Larsen," I was directed to the web site operated by the descendents of Hans Olsen Magleby.  I knew from Oluf's own journal that he had many interactions with a man called "O.H. Magleby."  Upon finding the http://www.magleby.org/ website, I realized that Oluf had Magleby's initials in the wrong order.  I learned that "O.H. Magleby" was in fact Hans Olsen Magleby.

Oluf LarsenOluf writes in his life history that he was baptized on a very cold evening on April 6, 1857, in Drammen, Norway.  We know that Elder CCN Dorius (Carl Christian Nicoli Dorius) was instrumental in the conversion of Oluf in Norway.  Oluf also states that on 8 April 1857, he was confirmed a member of the church by Elder Hans Olsen Magleby.  Elder Magleby had just replaced Elder Dorius who had been released from his mission.  This event would start a life time friendship between Oluf Christian Larsen and Hans Olsen Magleby.  Hans Olsen Magleby also ordained Oluf a Priest in the Aaronic Priesthood in Norway.

After Oluf was baptized, he was called on a mission to serve in his home country of Norway.  One of his first traveling companions would be Elder Hans Olsen Magleby.  Oluf wrote of the numerous times the police tried to arrest him with Elder Magleby. 

Eventually Oluf completed his mission and he was allowed to immigrate to Utah.  While on board the ship "Electric" Oluf married Emila Christine Amundsen, another recent Mormon Norwegian convert.  Oluf and Emila crossed the ocean, traveled to Council Bluffs, Iowa, where they joined a handcart company and began their walk across the American plains to Utah.  Upon arriving in Utah, Oluf met his missionary friend Hans Olsen Magleby who invited the Larsens to live with his family for a time.  Hans also provided Oluf with his first job in Utah.  Eventually Oluf would make his way to Ephraim, Utah where he established his new home in Zion.

Almost twenty years later, Oluf received a missionary call to return to Norway for a second mission. 

Future Brother-in-Laws

When Oluf landed in Scandinavia for his second mission, he had early success with the conversion of two sisters, Hannah and Anna (or Ane) Christensen from Copenhagen, Denmark.  Hannah and Anna (or Ane) immigrated to Utah leaving their family behind in Denmark.  (We know from the Johannah Christensen Larsen history that her mother, Margarethe eventually joins the church and so did all the rest of her children in Denmark.  All of them, except Lars Christensen, the father, would join the LDS Church and immigrated to Utah. 

Johanna Christensen Larsen

Johannah (Hannah) Christensen Larsen 

Upon arriving in Norway, Oluf was met by Elder Hans Olsen Magleby who was also serving his second mission to Norway.  Both Oluf and Hans had been missionaries together in Norway twenty years previously.  I suspect that Oluf may have told Hans about the conversion of the two Christensen sisters, but we have no actual evidence of this conversation.

At the conclusion of Oluf's second mission, Oluf returned to his home in Ephraim Utah.  The community held a party for Oluf to welcome him home.  In attendance at this party were Hannah and Anna Christensen, his Danish converts, and Oluf was so pleased that both of these girls had remained faithful to the gospel. Shortly thereafter, Oluf's bishop, CCN Dorius (the same man that had been instrumental in Oluf's conversion in Norway), encouraged Oluf to marry either Hannah or Anna Christensen.  With the approval of his wife, Anna Marie, Oluf married Johannah Christensen on 16 July 1884 in the Salt Lake Endowment House.  This would be Oluf's fourth marriage. Although we do not have evidence of a conversation between Oluf and Hans Olsen Magleby, it seems fair to assume that Oluf encouraged Hans to marry Anna Christensen.  Both Hans and Oluf were living in Ephraim, Utah at the time.  (Note:  Oluf spells her name as "Anna Christensen."  The Hans Olsen Magleby journal has her name spelled as "Anne Larsen."  LDS church records have her name spelled as "Ane Larsen."  The Magleby family records indicate Anne changed her last name to "Larsen" when she arrived in Utah.  Hans Olsen Magleby married "Anne Larsen" on 8 May 1884, about a month before Oluf and Johannah's marriage. According to the Larsen family records, Johannah (birth name was Johanne) Christensen Larsen was born in 15 January 1860 in Jyllinge, Roskilda, Denmark.  According to the LDS Church Family Search records "Ane Larsen" was born 8 January 1857 in Jyllinge, Copenhagen, Denmark.  These two women are only 3 years apart in age.

Lars Christensen                               Margarethe Nielsen

     Lars Christensen                                                                Margarethe Nielsen Christensen       

The Larsen family records show that Johannah Christensen Larsen's father was Lars Christensen and her mother was Margrethe Nielsen.  LDS Family Search records show that "Ane Larsen's" father was Lars Christensen and her mother was Margrethe Nielson.  The LDS record also indicates that Ane Larsen was married to Hans Olsen Magleby.

With this information, we now have evidence that Hans Olsen Magleby's life history is correct-Oluf Christian Larsen and Hans Olsen Magleby were in fact brother-in-laws as well as lifetime friends.

Margarethe N. Christensen family

Margarethe Nielsen Christensen family.  Husband Lars Christensen remained in Denmark.

Johannah, born 1860; Jens, born 1847; Mette K., born 1852; Christen, born 1854; Ana, born 1857.  Photo: the Margaret JoHannah (Joan) Larsen Combs collection.

Latter-day Saints Millennial Star

A page from the 16 May 1881 edition of the Latter-day Saints Millennial Star where mission calls for the April Conference were announced. If you look under "Scandinavia" you will see Oluf C. Larsen, Ephraim. This would be Oluf's second mission. Notice that Oluf's future brother-in-law, Hans Olsen Magleby of Monroe, Utah was also called on a mission to Scandinavia at the same conference. The cost for this edition was 1 penny.

By:  Lewis Larsen

October 24, 2007

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