A relative sent me a copy of the Stord bygdebok. A bygdebok is a book that gives the local and historical information about a specific geographic area, in this case Stord. For more on bygdeboks see Martin Roe’s post. This particular book, written in 1973, has information on the history of the Digernes farm.
I had a cousin who can read Norwegian much better than me translate for me. The information given in the book is displayed here.
Some fascinating history of the farm starting with it being plundered by the Scots in 1667.
Of the two farms that were created, Digernes number two is the one that was held by my family.
Up until the early part of the last century, Norwegians had three names. The first name was their given name, such as Ernest or Carl.
The second name was the patronymic name identifying the father. If Carl was the father of Ernest, then the patronymic name for Ernest would be Carlsen or Carlson, and if Carl had a daughter his daughter’s patronymic name would be Carlsdatter or Carlsdotter.
The third name was the name of the farm, in this case Digernes.
When my family moved to the US in the late 1880s and then to Canada, some kept the patronymic name, some kept the farm name, and Digernes eventually evolved to Degerness for my familial line.
It should be apparent that if we moved in the 1880s we are not the branch of the family that kept working on the farm.
In order to explore how we were related to the current owners (as of the writing of the bygdebok), I created this descendant chart.
So, Clifford Degerness is third cousins to the owners that were there at time of writing. Pretty cool that the farm is still in the family, even if it is getting to be shirt-tail relations.