Johan Andreas Holvik

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Johan Andreas Holvik
Born May 19, 1880
Howard, South Dakota
Died November 25, 1960 (age 80)
Clay County, Minnesota
Occupation professor, author
Nationality United States
Genre Linguistics

Johan Andreas Holvik (May 19, 1880 – November 25, 1960) was a Norwegian-American author and a professor at Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota.


Johan Andreas Holvik was born in Miner County, near Howard, South Dakota to immigrants Peder Holvik and Eli Jonsdatter from Nordfjord, Norway. Holvik attended Madison State Normal School in Madison, South Dakota. He graduated from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota (BA. 1907).[1] He subsequently studied at the University of Oslo and at Luther Theological Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota. Holvik graduated from St. Olaf College (MA. 1913).[2]


Holvik was a Faculty Member of the Norwegian Department at St. Olaf College during 1907–1908. Holvik taught at Waldorf College in Forest City, Iowa from 1913 until 1919. Holvik relocated to Concordia College in 1923. Holvik was an author of several textbooks dealing with the Norwegian language. In addition to teaching in the Norwegian department, Holvik also served as Concordia College band director for twenty-two years. He had the privilege of leading the college band on a tour of Norway during 1935.[3]

In 1925, Holvik served as the secretary of national administration committee of the Norse-American Centennial. Holvik was subsequently knighted by King Haakon VII of Norway as a member of the Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav. Additional he served as the translator of a number of books which were originally written in the Norwegian language. These included works by both Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson and Henrik Ibsen.[4]

Holvik also became involved in the national debate over the authenticity of the Kensington runestone. Holvik had participated in the Minnesota Historical Society investigation in 1910. Holvik formulated several key arguments used by those who contested the stone's authenticity. UCLA professor Erik Wahlgren, referenced many of Holvik's ideas in his 1958 book The Kensington Stone: A Mystery Solved.[5]

Personal life[edit]

Holvik married Caroline Heltne in Lake Mills, Iowa on April 12, 1912. Holvik died in November 1960. He is buried on the campus of Concordia College.

Selected works[edit]

  • Beginners' Book in Norse (Minneapolis, Minn. Augsburg Publishing House. 1910)
  • Second Book in Norse: Literary Selections (Minneapolis, Minn. Augsburg Pub. House. 1912)


Other sources[edit]

  • Wahlgren, Erik The Kensington Stone: A Mystery Solved (1958)

External links[edit]