Many know that St. Patrick chased the snakes from Ireland. But did you know, that St. Urho got rid of the grasshoppers that ruined the grape crops in the ancient Finland? (Yeah, grapes..). St. Urho is celebrated in the Finnish communities of US on March 16., a day before “the whateveririshsaint”.
When we toured Minnesota, we just had to visit the town of Finland and see the St. Urho totem.
This state actually has a lot of rich Finnish heritage and many residents have roots in Finland. Everyone you talk to, knows where our country is. That is actually rare. You see mailboxes with familiar family names that you are likely to find everywhere in Finland, too.
They say that you have to know yourself before being able to learn about others. Both of us have learned that our ancestors travelled across the Atlantic. They left Finland to see if life could be better. Mikaela’s father’s ancestors from Kuhmo left to the US to find better sources to support the families. Pekka’s ancestors left Kuopio to see the life in the “New World”, as well. Some stayed, some returned. Minnesota is one of the states that had a future for anyone who knew about farming in harsh conditions, the lumberjack, the miners. And frankly, we are not surprised.
Minnesota feels a lot like home away from home in many ways. It’s understandable that the immigrants felt at home by the lakes, in the middle of the evergreen forests. The four seasons.
Have you visited a place on the other side of the world that is surprisingly similar to your own hoods?
“Heritage Found” will be one of the themes as we blog.