Welcome to Rishede.net

This website is based on my interest in history, local history and genealogy. 
You can read about Danish immigrants in the United States in the late 1800', local and family history in Denmark and the United States, and find photographs, documents and letters.
Happy reading and please share your knowledge of my ancestors with me.

My first translated story:
A poor old woman from a poorhouse in Denmark emigrated to America during the late 1800's. She succeeded in becoming a self-supporting immigrant in America. This poor old woman was my great-great-grandmother, and for the first time you can now read her story and her letters to my great-grandfather in Denmark: Letters of Danish immigrants 1885-1892 (link)

All the siblings of my great-grandfather also emigrated to America:  

  • Soren Peter Hansen was a potter at U.S. Stoneware Company in Akron, Ohio
  • Peter Hansen was a farmer in Luck, West Denmark, Wisconsin
  • Johanne Hansen married a widower in New Jersey and died in childbirth of her second child. (One letter from her)
  • Johannes Moller Hansen was a Midwest railroad worker. (One letter from him)
  • David Peder Hansen worked in the woods; he was very ill much of the time
  • Maren Hansdatter. Maybe she disappeared into New York's slum, vividly described in the book How the Other Half Lives by Jacob Riis, the famous social documentary photographer, writer, and social reformer, who was another poor Danish immigrant in the USA at the same time

This homepage belongs to Gudrun Rishede. I live in Ribe - the oldest town in Denmark and in all of Scandinavia, approx. 50 km north of the German border. 
Ribe was also the hometown of Denmark's most important emigrant, Jacob Riis. He was another poor immigrant in the United States at the same time as my great-great-grandmother. However, he managed significantly better and became a famous social documentary photographer, writer, and social reformer. Jacob Riis is best known for the book "How the Other Half Lives". He was called the most useful citizen and the ideal American by President Theodore Roosevelt. In the summer of 2019, Riis was honored in his hometown by the opening of the Jacob A. Riis Museum in Ribe. I'll tell you about this museum another time.