I knew there were Western Icelanders in North America, but somehow, I was not prepared to meet so many at the Icelandic Convention and hear of even more when we went on the Viking Voyage. To me, it was humbling to hear the stories of the Icelanders, how they overcame obstacles and endured.
I enjoyed the presentations on Friday and Saturday. I will say however, the program on Sunday morning on the Icelandic Roots impressed me the most.
During the presentation Sunday morning, I saw magic unfolding on the computer – on the icelandicroots.com website. I punched in the name of my son and in a moment a close relative we had no idea of appeared on the screen. She was a niece of his grandmother, had emigrated from the north of Iceland, from Húnavatnssýsla, and we learned where she settled and made her home, whom she married, names of her children and even where some of them lived.
We met half of the large team of volunteers that are creating this magic, most of them professionals in the computer science and people of Icelandic origin! The work is ongoing, photographs are being dug up and entered, stories of and valid information about the people added. What a rich source of nourishment for those with Icelandic Roots, be they in North America, in Iceland, or wherever our people may live.
Congratulations, Icelandic Roots and congratulations all Icelanders for a great convention!
með kærum kveðjum,
Bryndís Viglundsdóttir is a life-long teacher and is a pioneer in specialized education for those with disabilities. She has lived in Iceland, Boston, and then back to Iceland. She patiently talks Icelandic with me (Sunna) over Skype. Bryndís is a wonderful and giving person who cares deeply about Iceland and education. We appreciate her letter and those of many more.
Twelve IR Volunteers came to North Dakota for the convention and the Sunday presentation. Here are eleven of us. This weekend was sponsored and hosted by the Icelandic Communities Association of North Dakota for the Icelandic National League of North America's 98th Annual Convention.