After 1870 the small iron mills dotting the forests of central Sweden were not able to compete against new mills using the more efficient Bessemer steel process, which used fossil coal imported from Germany.The small mills went out of business, and steel manufacturing moved to large mills on the coast, close to the imported coal. It takes more coal than iron to make steel, so this made more sense, and economies of scale demanded that steelmaking was concentrated to a small number of large mills. Swedish industry had not yet started to take off, so many of those who lost their jobs looked west, and emigrated to the US, including several branches of the Elg family.

These are the stories of some of these families:
Minnesota: Gustaf Elg and Maria Sofia Bork
Wyoming: Life on the Johnson ranch
Christina Elg and Johan Bork
Washington:(to be constructed)
California:The children of Lars and Stina Elg

(to be continued)

Created by Lennart Elg. Last updated 02-10-22, 13.46