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Last Letter Home
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Considered one of Sweden's greatest 20th-century writers, Vilhelm Moberg created Karl Oskar and Kristina Nilsson to portray the joys and tragedies of daily life for early Swedish pioneers in America. His consistently faithful depiction of these humble people's lives is a major strength of the Emigrant Novels. Moberg's extensive research in the papers of Swedish emigrants in archival collections, including the Minnesota Historical Society, enabled him to incorporate many details of pioneer life. First published between 1949 and 1959 in Swedish, these four books were considered a single work by Moberg, who intended that they be read as documentary novels. These new editions contain introductions written by Roger McKnight, Gustavus Adolphus College, and restore Moberg's bibliography not included in earlier English editions. Book 4 portrays the Nilsson family during the turmoil of living through the era of the Civil War and Dakota Conflict and their prospering in the midst of Minnesota's growing Swedish community of the 1860s-90s. "It's important to have Moberg's Emigrant Novels available for another generation of readers.”—Bruce Karstadt, American Swedish Institute

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Title page, copyright page
  2. pp. i-iv
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  1. CONTENTS
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Introduction to the Emigrant Novels
  2. pp. ix-xx
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  1. Introduction to The Last Letter Home
  2. pp. xxi-xxv
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  1. Bibliography for the Emigrant Novels
  2. pp. xxvii-xxviii
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  1. Suggested Readings in English
  2. p. xxix
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  1. PREFACE: The Country that Changed Them
  2. pp. xxxi-xxxii
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  1. PART ONE
  2. p. 1
  1. 1 Old Abe Calls
  2. pp. 3-12
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  1. 2 I AM CONCERNED WITH YOUR ETERNAL LIFE
  2. pp. 13-22
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  1. 3 THE FIRST COMMANDMENT FOR EMIGRANTS
  2. pp. 23-34
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  1. 4 THE SETTLERS' HOLY DAYS
  2. pp. 35-46
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  1. 5 THE TOMAHAWKS ARE BEING SHARPENED
  2. pp. 47-55
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  1. 6 KRISTINA DESERTS HER MILKING STOOL
  2. pp. 56-65
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  1. 7 HAS GOD INFLICTED THIS UPON US?
  2. pp. 66-75
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  1. 8 THE LETTER FROM SWEDEN
  2. p. 76
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  1. PART TWO: The Astrakhan Apples Are Ripe
  2. p. 77
  1. 9 THE RIVER OR THE FONT?
  2. pp. 79-90
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  1. 10 THE ASTRAKHAN APPLE TREE BLOOMS
  2. pp. 91-99
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  1. 11 KRISTINA IS NOT AFRAID
  2. pp. 100-105
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  1. 12 AND A NEW CIVIL WAR BROKE OUT
  2. pp. 106-119
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  1. 13 EVERY WHITE MAN MUST DIE!
  2. pp. 120-130
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  1. 14 WHILE KARL OSKAR KEPT NIGHT WATCH
  2. pp. 131-140
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  1. 15 THE ASTRAKHAN APPLES ARE RIPE
  2. pp. 141-146
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  1. 16 THE THIRD COFFIN
  2. pp. 147-150
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  1. 17 SONG UNDER THIRTY-EIGHT GALLOWS
  2. pp. 151-153
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  1. 18 ONE MAN DID NOT WISH TO SUBMIT
  2. pp. 154-162
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  1. 19 THE LETTER TO SWEDEN
  2. pp. 163-164
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  1. PART THREE
  2. p. 165
  1. 20 THE FIRST CHILD TO LEAVE THE HOUSE
  2. pp. 167-182
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  1. 21 THE BRIDAL CROWN WITH PRECIOUS STONES
  2. pp. 183-192
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  1. 22 THE FARMER AND THE OAK
  2. pp. 193-202
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  1. 23 THE LETTER TO SWEDEN
  2. pp. 202-203
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  1. EPILOGUE
  2. p. 205
  1. I. THE MAP OF LJUDER
  2. pp. 207-228
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  1. II. THE LAST LETTER HOME
  2. pp. 229-230
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