Eteläkarjalainen maisema

Eteläkarjalainen maisema
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lauantai 12. marraskuuta 2016

General shareholder's meeting of the American Finnish Printing Company, 10/05/1879

Apostolic Lutheran Church in Calumet (1873)

I have written in the past about the early stages of the Finnish American Paper (Amerikan Suomalainen Lehti) in a biography of its editor-in-Chief, Alexander Leinonen. So, I will write it also here:

"Leinonen was invited Copper Country to re-establish Finnish American Paper.  Newspaper project's background team included a group labeled by their opponents as "alliance of three". It consisted of the clerk in the Apostolic Lutheran Congregation, David Castrén, as well as of the members of the Evangelical Lutheran congregation, Nils Majhannu and August Nylund. Their aim was to collect funds for a printing house and newspaper whose readership would consist of all Finns across religious lines. The establishment of the newspaper was realized in the summer of 1879. Papers sample number appeared on 06.13.1879 and the regular appearance it started at the beginning of July. To this way born Finnish American Paper was called editor-in-chief from Texas, Aleksander Leinonen. Leinonen, who from the beginning was also a shareholder of the company, avoided the religious disputes and tried to follow the fairness when writing about the competing churches. Instead, he lashed his former homeland's clergy and the state church. Majority of the printing company's shareholders, which were a total of 65, seems to be Apostolic Lutherans, among them the parish priest, a layman Johan Takkinen. Printing company's shareholders' meetings were held in the parsonage Apostolic Lutheran Congregation. However, the first elected chairman was non-Apostolic Lutheran watchmaker August Nylund. The Pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran congregation, A.E.Backman, who was also printing company's shareholder and many other non-Laestadians were quite soon sidelined in the project. However, the American Finnish Paper remained relatively independent under Leinonen's management, and it wasn't used only as an Apostolic Lutheran voice. However, the Paper's line in local religious disputes was often Apostolic Lutheran form-fitted and critic to the Evangelical Lutherans. But otherwise, the paper's line was all the time very liberal. When interest in the publishing business waned among Apostolic Lutherans because of increasing internal disputes, Alexander Leinonen acquired full ownership of the paper. "
Notice of the  American Finnish Printing Company's shareholder's
meeting  in Johan Takkinen's apartment. ASL 07.11.1879

The newspaper was printed by American Finnish Printing Company, which held several shareholder's meetings since the launch of the newspaper in the fall and at the late summer of 1879. At the beginning of October (10/5/1879) held meeting, it was found that the project was successfully started and was decided that the company does not admit new shareholders. In the following story is told proceedings of the meeting and presented company's shareholders and the number of their shares. Because I think this is an important milestone in the Finnish-American History, I wrote it down:
ASL 10/05/1879

American Finnish printing company (ASL 10/15/1879)

held general shareholder's meeting last Monday evening in the parsonage of the Apostolic Lutheran congregation, where it was decided and studied a few of the company's affairs. First, there were sold more company shares, and then Treasurer's accounts were audited, which showed that the company had paid all the debts and there was small amount of money left. Almost a year ago, the first step was taken in this company, and because the printing company is now already in practice, as well as on the serious foundation, so it was decided that the company no longer will sell new shares. At the end of the meeting, the company's chairman expressed his joy that this important institution for preserving our language and nationality in America had with luck finally been carried on solid foundation. He wished good luck and success in the inspiring of the Finnish American intellectual life and consensus. Also, the chairman said on behalf of the entire company fondest gratitude to the Treasurer Johan Laiti [1], which had from the beginning and with the highest precision, without payment, managed the company's financial affairs. Finally, was read the complete list of the Company's shareholders, which showed they were 65 men, who owned 106.5 shares, namely,

Isak Hirvaskari 7, Isak Andersen 4, Jacob Ojanperä 4, Johan Abram Alanenpää 3, Antti Johan Hilli 3, Johan Takkinen 3, Alex Leinonen 3; Lahnala Matti, Petter Ostrom, Johan Eckrea, Anders Nylund Haapala and August, each of 2.5, August 2 Pekkala, Johan Pirttikangas 2, David Castrén 2, Frans Wuornos 2, Stefan Lohvansuu 2, 2 Johan Laitinen, Stefan Olson Hill 2, Isak Rovainen 2; Matti Hannula, Matti Mertala, Alex Paulus, Erik Pikkarainen, Anders Eriksson, Nils Majhannu, Erik Käkelä, Nils Petter Starkka, Jacob Anttila, Emil Westerlund, Erik in Nara, Wilhelm Järvelä ,, Rahtu Henrik and Henrik Nikkilä each 1.5; Johan Vehkoja 1, AEBackman 1, Isak Niva 1, Erki Grass 1, Tapio Adolf 1, Petter Pikkarainen 1, Johan Oskar Snabb 1, Karl Frisk 1, Matti Nurmi 1, Karl Mark 1, Henrik Laplander 1, Petter Suaningi 1, Erik Maunu 1, Anders Piippola 1, Nils Petter Nilson 1, Abram Mällinen 1, Frans Oskar Salmonson 1, Johan Alamaa 1, Karl W. Tervo 1, Johan Ruonavaara 1, 1 Peter Lustig, Matti Peteri 1, Salmon Ruona 1, Karl Sankala 1 Johan Petter Johanson 1, Johan Hiltunen 1, Peter B. Henrikson 1; Peter Anton Putty and Edvard Frisk half.

In this meeting were also given $ 14 to the printing company as a gift.

1. Johan (John) Laiti was involved in almost all the Finnish-American activities when living in Copper Country in the 1870s and the first half of 1880s. Johan Laiti was born on 08/14/1844 in Kemi, Finland, moved from there to Norway, from where moved to USA and settled Red Wing, Minnesota. Laiti family moved to Copper Country in 1870s. He was married in 1872 in Hennepin County, MN with Sofia Matleena Rautus. Sofia was born in 1844 in Kittilä, Finland, moved in 1869 to Cokato Minnesota. Johan Laiti and his family moved in 1885 from Copper Country to New York Mills, Minnesota, for farming. He died in 1920. See. Ilmonen 1923, 207.

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