My Afi was Jón Þ Björnsson Schoolmaster in Sauðárkrókur. My father emigrated from Iceland in 1948 and I am a first generation Canadian. My family went to Iceland to visit in 1961 and in 1966 when I was 17, I was sent to Iceland to work for the summer.
Before the birth of the Internet, I had come across parts of my family tree, it took me some time to identify a few of the names in our genealogy and find them in the Sagas. I soon became amazed at the depth of our Icelandic heritage and traced our family tree back as far as it would go! As I realized that we all share the same tree I became more interested in my Icelandic neighbors in the Swan River Valley and made a few tentative efforts to identify their ancestors. I came up with the immediate problem of Anglicized names and since I live in the same area I was able to talk to the families and find their correct names. Making a tentative effort to connect with Iceland I received a warm welcome from Hálfdan and found that my father and his had gone to school together. and with the help of Halfdan have identified many of the Icelandic settlers who came here.
My area in Canada has only been settled since 1898 and to some pioneer families that is when their feeling of history begins, since I have been back to Iceland and know that the people who emigrated from Iceland to North America have not been forgotten I have been a facilitator or advocate of Iceland and all things Icelandic.
My area of expertise is the Swan River Valley, Manitoba, Canada. I am happy to be a volunteer for Icelandic Roots.