Dalesburg Historical
History, heritage, community, and events


The Dalesburg WELCA group has been busy making quilts this year to give away to several charities. Since we have a surplus of quilts we have decided to sell some on Lord’s Acre Sunday, November 21. The quilts will be on display on the pews starting November 7. The profit from the quilt sales will go to the local charities we support. This is a great idea for your early Christmas shopping!

Dalesburg Scandinavian Association Updates

June 2021

Yes!  We will celebrate Midsummer in Dalesburg!  Yes!  We will celebrate Scandinavian and Rural Heritage!  Yes! We will celebrate Summertime!  We will celebrate on Friday, June 25 and Sunday, June 27, 2021, but it will be different.  It will be different from Midsummer 2019.  You should have received a Midsummer flier with information.  I am including some additional information in this letter. 

“Dalesburg Spelmän” is a fiddling group from Southeast South Dakota. They play traditional Swedish, Danish and Norwegian dance music on fiddle, nyckelharpa and guitar. The group is led by Bill Peterson and members include Tom Carlson, Tom Weisbecker, Carol Skallerud and Ken Duda; and they welcome other musicians interested in traditional Scandinavian music.  For information about “Dakota Road Music,” visit:  www.dakotaroad.com

Dalesburg Scandinavian Association did not have any activities in 2020.  We did not collect membership dues in January-February of this year.  We will hold over the membership renewals until 2022.  Financial information furnished upon request.  Thank You if you did donate in 2021.  Please contact me.  We did purchase two signs with money from the Arneson-Hoglund Fund.  A sign has been place on the grounds of Dalesburg Lutheran Church, telling the story of the unmarked graves in the churchyard.  Another sign was placed at the Clay Point Cemetery in Prairie Center Township, Clay County. 

We did not collect Friends of Midsummer membership dues in January-February.  The Friends of Midsummer memberships will also be held over until 2022.  Financial information furnished upon request.  Thank You if you did donate for 2021.  Please contact me.

Glad Sommar!  Happy Summer!

Ron Johnson

Midsummer Food Updates – Key Changes for 2021

WELCA is sponsoring a catered Swedish Meatball meal at a cost of $12 per plate. The meal will include meatballs, potatoes, two salads, a bun, and water or lemonade. Meals will be served – no buffet line – from 4:30 to 6:30 pm.

The DLC Youth will again host a food stand, which will include pie, fruit soup, and some additional food items to be determined.

Food will be served out of the narthex, and outdoor seating will be available under tents. No indoor seating will be utilized this year. All hospitality items (e.g., ticket sales, restrooms) will also be outdoors.

On Memorial Day Sunday 2021 at Dalesburg Lutheran Church, we had the “unveiling” of the sign, next to the wooden cross, southwest of the church.  Here is the text of the sign:

During the 1870’s and 1880’s burials of members of Dalesburg Lutheran Church, were made in this area of the churchyard.  The ages ranged from the young to the old – men, women and children.  The exact number of burials is unknown, and there is no cemetery map for this area.  The monuments still existing were removed in the 1940’s with the final monument removed and a wooden cross placed here in about 1960.  Blessed Be the Memory of These Early Members of the Congregation.

The funds for this sign are from Karin & Winfield Arneson and Virginia Hoglund of Michigan in memory of C.R. Hoglund.  The sign is placed here by Dalesburg Scandinavian Association in 2020.

This spring another sign was placed at the Clay Point Cemetery, an abandoned cemetery, between here and Vermillion in Prairie Center Township.  Here is that text:

Clay Point Cemetery
Cemetery of the
Clay Point Free Church
also called
Swedefield Mission Church
also called
Ansgarii House
also called
Cast Iron Church

Books for Sale!  HISTORY OF THE SWEDES WHO SETTLED IN CLAY COUNTY, SOUTH DAKOTA AND THEIR BIOGRAPHIES by August Peterson (1947) $25.00 / book plus postage, handling etc.    Available from Ron Johnson (ron@dalesburg.org or 605-253-2575) 

151st Annual Misommar at Dalesburg


DLC Midsommar Items Available

If interested in ordering please contact Rachel Olemann at 605-321-7262 or via email droelmann@gmail.com

Coffee Mug – $15

T-Shirts – $20

Polar Tumblers – $25

Lefse Sticks – $20

(Lefse Sticks are sold out but if there is enough interest we can reorder)

Thank you!

                                                                                         December 2020

Thank You for your support during the pandemic.  Thank You for your financial support and patience during these last ten months.

We decide to postpone the Annual Meeting of Dalesburg Scandinavian Association and to cancel the Lucia Celebration in December. 

Midsummer 2021 is scheduled for Friday, June 25 and Sunday, June 27, 2021, but stay tuned for more information. 

Midsummer 2021 received a grant from the American Scandinavian Foundation’s Scandinavian Folk Arts & Cultural Traditions:  Public Programs.  The band Jaerv (www.jaerv.com) from Gothenburg, Sweden has penciled Midsummer 2021 into their 2021 United States tour.  But… we will have to watch the course of the pandemic.  Again… stay tuned. 

You can follow up on Midsummer 2021 and other things, by contacting me at ron@dalesburg.org or 605-253-2575.  You can also visit:  www.dalesburg.org 

Pandemic or not, we are still in the midst of celebrating the 100th or 150th Anniversary of a number of things.  2018 saw the 150th Anniversary of the coming of the Swedes to Clay County, Dakota Territory.  In 2019 we celebrated the 150th Anniversary of celebrating Midsummer in Dalesburg.  This year Dalesburg Lutheran celebrates the 100th Anniversary of its basement and two towers.  Next year Dalesburg Lutheran Church and Dalesburg Baptist Church celebrate the 150th Anniversary of their founding.  In the coming years, many former country schools in Clay County will also see the 150th Anniversaries of their founding.  The pandemic cannot stop us from observing these anniversaries in some way!

These years also mark the 100th Anniversary of the Spanish Flu in our community, state, nation and world.  The effect of the Spanish Flu is found in the records of Dalesburg Lutheran Church and is found in the stories of those affected by the disease – stories passed on to future generations.  Just recently I learned how the flu of that period may affected my own family.

We have purchased a sign for the Clay Point Cemetery and a sign for the unmarked graves in the churchyard of Dalesburg Lutheran Church.  The signs were purchases with funds given by Karin & Winfield Arneson and Virginia Hoglund of Michigan in memory of C.R. Hoglund.  

Thank You for donations to Dalesburg Scandinavian Association and Thank You for donations to the Friends of Midsummer last winter or spring.

Have A Good Holiday Season however you celebrate it!  Think… and Stay Well!

God Jul och Gott Nytt År!  / Good Yuletid and Good New Year!

Ron Johnson, Dalesburg Heritage

Books for Sale!

HISTORY OF THE SWEDES WHO SETTLED IN CLAY COUNTY, SOUTH DAKOTA AND THEIR BIOGRAPHIES by August Peterson (1947) $25.00 / book plus postage, handling etc.    Available from Ron Johnson (ron@dalesburg.org or 605-253-2575) 

Here’s something to do during the pandemic!  Check out these websites!

Dalesburg Heritage Websitewww.dalesburg.org

(and www.angelfire.com/sd/dalesburg99/ is still in cyperspace).

Dalesburg Midsummer Festival on Facebook:                                                                      www.facebook.com/Dalesburgmidsommar 

“Welcome to Peterson Farm:”  www.petersonfarmsd.com/

Clay County Historical Society:  www.cchssd.org/

Clay County Historic Preservation Commission:  www.cchpc.org

Clay County Country Schools Project Website:                                www.flickr.com/photos/46877599@N08  

Dalesburg Lutheran Church Websitewww.dalesburglutheran.org

Komstad Covenant Church Websitewww.komstadchurch.org

Dalesburg Baptist Church Website:  www.dalesburgbaptist.org

Swenson Swedish Immigration Research Center:                                                                                                                www.augustana.edu/swenson/

Swedish-American Historical Society:  www.swedishamericanhist.org

American-Swedish Institute:  www.americanswedishinst.org

National Music Museum:  www.usd.edu/smm/

The image on the back page is used with permission from Jana Johnson Schnoor, Scandinavian Greetings, Iowa City IA.  Please visit:  www.janajohnsonschnoor.com/index.html

God Jul

Dalesburg Scandinavian Association – Annual Meeting

The Annual Meeting of Dalesburg Scandinavian Association has been postponed

2020 Lucia Celebration

The Lucia Celebration has been canceled.

One-Hundredth Anniversary 1920 Towers & Basement

It was Sunday, October 17, 1920. It was Confirmation at Dalesburg Lutheran Church. The new towers and new basement had just been finished. The bell had been returned to its lofty perch. In April of that year, the previous single tower had been removed and Mr. Crane from Centerville had raised the remaining structure so that a basement could be added under the building. Gottfrid Anderson, a local carpenter was hired to lead the construction of the basement and to build two towers of different height in the front of the church. Volunteers – men and women – helped with the project throughout the year. Sunday Services were held at the Garfield Township Hall. Gottfrid Anderson left the project in September to go to Sweden. Herman Zetterlund and Nils Johnson were the leaders who finished the project.

On October 26-27, 1920 the congregation hosted a gathering of the Sioux Falls District.* At this gathering a new altar, a new pulpit, new altar chairs and electric lights supported by an electric generating plant were blessed.

The beginning of 1920 had seen the Pastor and his wife affected with influenza.

*Sioux Falls District of the Minnesota Conference of the Augustana Synod.


Gottfrid and Nils (Nels) now rest from their labors at the Dalesburg Baptist Church Cemetery.  Herman now rests from his labors at the Dalesburg Lutheran Cemetery.  The volunteers also rest from their labors, and… the Confirmation students also rest from the labor of their Confirmation recitation. 

Thank Be To God. 


Anna’s Lilies: A Legacy of Hope

Read Anna’s Lilies: A Legacy of Hope at http://www.fyi-dakota.com/index.php/anna-s-lilies