October 9, 1825, the sloop Restauration arrived in the United States, marking what is frequently considered the first planned emigration from Norway to the U.S. Norsemen from Greenland and Iceland were the first Europeans to reach America, led by Leif Erikson around the year 1000. They founded a settlement in present-day Newfoundland, Canada, but didn’t endure due to struggles with the indigenous people.
On July 4, 1825, a group of 52 Norwegian immigrants boarded the single-masted sloop Restauration (also known as Restauration, Restoration, Restaurasjonen, and Restorasjon) in Stavanger harbor. Often called the Norwegian Mayflower, it was only about half the size of that famous ship. During the three-month voyage, the ship’s habitation increased by one, with the birth of Margaret Allen Larsen.
The Restauration finally arrived in New York on October 9, 1825. Upon entrance in America, the captain was arrested for carrying 52 passengers, far too many for such a small ship. President John Quincy Adams pardoned him a month later. The passengers from the ship established their first settlement at Kendall, New York. Over the next century, some 800,000 Norwegian settlers would follow them to North America, with most settling in the U.S
Leif Erikson Day is a United States observance happening on October 9. It honors Leif Erikson, who led the first Europeans known to have set foot on North American soil. In 1964, Congress authorized and requested the President to create the observance through an annual proclamation. Lyndon B. Johnson and each President since have done so. Presidents have used the proclamation to praise the contributions of Americans of Nordic descent generally and the spirit of discovery
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