Man on quest to restore grandmother's citizenship 87 years after her death

Author:
Updated:
Original:

A Minneapolis man is seeking to re-establish the citizenship of his deceased Minnesota-born grandmother, who was stripped of it nearly 100 years ago by a little-known law, the Duluth News Tribune reported.

Elsie Knutson Moren was born in Skibo Township, between Brimson and Embarrass, and lived in the state until she died in 1926, at the age of 35, from complications of child birth, the newspaper reports.

Her grandson Daniel Swalm, while doing some family research in 2008, discovered that the Expatriation Act of 1907 revoked citizenship for women who married an unnaturalized immigrant. Among other indignities, Moren had been unable to vote in 1920 when the passage of the 19th Amendment gave women the right to cast a ballot.

“That really frosts me,” Swalm said.

His grandmother had married Carl Moren in 1914, who immigrated from Sweden in 1911, Swalm wrote in a guest column in the Star Tribune, where he offers more details of her story. The two danced, fell in love, were married and had three kids, he wrote. They lived a quiet life until she died a noncitizen, he said.

One expert tells the News Tribune that tens of thousands of women were divested of their citizenship as a result of the Expatriation Act of 1907. It wasn't until 1940 that Congress scrapped the last bits of the 1907 legislation, Swalm noted.

Now Swalm is appealing to Congress for a posthumous restoration of the women's citizenship, or at the least, an official apology. To increase awareness of his campaign, he created a “Justice for Elsie” Facebook page.

Next Up

leech lake band of ojibwe sign

11,760 acres of land wrongly taken from Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe will be returned

The Senate and now the House have passed a bill that effectively returns the land. It's now headed for the president's signature.

Karl-Anthony Towns

Timberwolves release first half of 2020-21 regular season schedule

The second half of the schedule will be announced at a later date.

reindeer como zoo

Watch live: Como Zoo's live reindeer cam is back for December

The live feed will run 24/7 allowing you to keep an eye on Santa's antlered helpers.

sleeping

Three simple ways to boost your immune health heading into winter

Eating right is one thing, but there are other ways to stay healthy as the days shorten.

Taylor Rogers

Why Twins fans shouldn't give up on Taylor Rogers

The Twins closer struggled in 2020 but could rebound next season.

Co. Rd. 2 crash, Wakefield Twp.

Teen driver leaves road, crashes into three trees

Fortunately, the 16-year-old was not injured.

mndot deer  tunnel 1

Minnesota is getting its first highway crossing for animals

This will provide a safe way for animals to cross the street, and hopefully limit deer-vehicle collisions.

Screen Shot 2020-12-04 at 11.00.30 AM

Money Gal Coaching: Habits of a millionaire, just in time for the holidays?

Kelly Blodgett started Money Gal Coaching after paying down nearly $50K in debt in 18 months.

Mayo Belle Plaine

Mayo temporarily closes 5 clinics in southern MN amid COVID surge

The Mayo is reallocating staff to other sites as it deals with the COVID outbreak.

soda pop

MDH finds 'troubling' trend in how many sugary drinks students are consuming

Nearly half of students have a sugary drink a day. Health officials recommend limiting it to one per week or fewer.

Related

The Edmund Fitzgerald remembered 37 years after wreck

Saturday marks 37 years since the Edmund Fitzgerald sank in Lake Superior on Nov. 10, 1975. A crew of 29 men died in the shipwreck. The freighter carrying taconite traveling from Superior to Detroit made its last contact with a nearby ship, the Arthur M. Anderson, a little after 7 p.m. that fateful day. Minutes later, the ship disappeared from radar screens.

Local DJ fighting for citizenship

Local DJ Sothiphakhak and his family fled to the United States from a refugee camp in Thailand when he was just 2-years-old. Now, he has discovered that his father -- who passed away when he was a young boy -- never completed the process of making him a U.S. citizen.

Former Superior man to be put to death in SD

South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard does not plan to intervene in Monday's execution of a former Superior resident, the Duluth News Tribune reports. Eric Donald Robert, 50, is scheduled to die by lethal injection at 10 p.m. for the killing of prison guard Ronald Johnson during a failed escape attempt at the state penitentiary in Sioux Falls.

Dupre once again attempts his quest to summit Alaska’s Mount McKinley

Lonnie Dupre of Grand Marais hopes the third time's a charm as he tries to become the first person to reach the top of Alaska's Mount McKinley in January 2013, the Duluth News Tribune reports. Dupre, 51, will begin his solo winter climb in December.