John Anderson (publisher)

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John Anderson (March 22, 1836 – February 24, 1910) was a Norwegian-American publisher.[1]


John Anderson was born in Voss, in Søndre Bergenhus Amt, Norway. He was brought by his parents to Chicago in 1845. John Anderson became a printer and in the 1860s he began to print books as well as job printing. Anderson worked initially for the Chicago Tribune. Anderson decided in 1866 to leave the Chicago Tribune to start his own Norwegian language newspaper.[2][3]

Together with Iver Lawson and Knud Langeland, Anderson founded Skandinaven, a weekly or semi-weekly Norwegian language newspaper. Anderson purchased the subscription lists of Norske-Amerikanerne, a failing Norwegian language newspaper. Langeland and Lawson left Skandinaven in 1872 and established Amerika, a rival paper. Skandinaven merged briefly with Amerika in 1873 to form Skandinaven og Amerika. Starting the 1870s Skandinaven published a magazine that contained articles of interest, stories, and poetry. It carried works by Norwegian-American writers including Hjalmar Hjorth Boyesen and Rasmus B. Anderson. In 1901, John Anderson was knighted by King Oscar II in the Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav for his work in Skandinaven. [4]

Skandinaven became one of the most influential and successful newspapers in the Scandinavian immigrant community. Through the success of the paper, Anderson was able to build a publishing business that became one of the largest venture of its kind. The newspaper was in operation from May 1866 until October 1941. When Skandinaven suspended publication, Reidar Rye Haugan established the Norwegian language newspaper Viking on which he served as both editor and publisher.[5]


Other sources[edit]

  • Øverland, Orm (1986). Skandinaven and the beginnings of professional publishing (Northfield, Minn: Norwegian-American Historical Association)
  • Strand, A. E. A History of the Norwegians of Illinois (Chicago. 1905)
  • Wist, J. B. Norsk-amerikanernes festskrift 1914 (Decorah, Iowa. 1914)
  • Hansen, J. S. Skandinaven and the John Anderson Publishing Company (in Norwegian-American Studies, bd. 28, Northfield, MN 1979)

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