Continuing our weekly look at artifacts from the BHHA Collection, this week we are showcasing a mid-19th century canvas tapestry created by one of Olof Johnson’s daughters (either Olivia or Lillian).
Olof Johnson (1820-1870), had been the financial advisor for the Colony. He is given credit with naming the city of Galva, an anglicized name of the Swedish seaport Gavle where many of the Colonists departed for the new world. Olof was born in Soderala, Halsingland, Sweden where many of the Bishop Hill Colony leaders had lived. He was also instrumental in helping with the dissolution of the Colony in 1861.
Olof Johnson and his wife, Christine Jonsdotter, had an infant daughter die enroute to America in 1846. Olivia and Christine were born in the Bishop Hill Colony. Another daughter, Lillian, was born after the family had moved to Galva in 1861 to an impressive house built on the north side of Wiley Park. Olivia and Lillian spent their final years in Seattle, Washington.