Jonas Swensson

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Jonas Swensson
Jonas Swensson.jpg
Reverend Jonas Swensson
Born (1828-08-16)August 16, 1828
Våthult in Jönköping, Sweden
Died December 20, 1873(1873-12-20) (aged 45)
Andover in Henry County, Illinois
Nationality American
Alma mater University of Uppsala
Occupation Clergyman
Religion Lutheran
Church Augustana Evangelical Lutheran Church

Jonas Swensson (August 16, 1828 - December 20, 1873) was a noted minister of the Lutheran Church and president of the Augustana Evangelical Lutheran Church.[1]


Swensson was born at the Snollsbo Östregård farm in Våthult parish, Jönköping County in Sweden. He was the son of church-warden Sven Månsson and his wife Katharina Jonasdotter. He attended high school at Växjö and studied theology at the University of Uppsala. He was ordained at Växjö Cathedral on October 8, 1851. His Swedish pastoral service was at Unnaryd, situated in Hylte Municipality, Halland County, Sweden (1851–1856). In 1856, he married Maria Blixt (1831-1874) and together they emigrated the same year to begin his work at Sugar Grove, Pennsylvania and later at Jamestown, New York. [2]

The organizing meeting of the Augustana Evangelical Lutheran Church was held at the Jefferson Prairie Settlement, near Clinton, Wisconsin from June 5–8, 1860. Jonas Swensson was part of the quartet of pastors, together with Lars Paul Esbjörn, Tuve Hasselquist, and Erland Carlsson who pioneered the Augustana Evangelical Lutheran Church also known as the Augustana Synod. After serving as secretary of the church for several years, he was president of the Augustana Synod from 1870 to his death in 1873. His wife, Maria, died the following year. Both Jonas and Maria Swensson were buried in the churchyard of Jenny Lind Chapel at Andover in Henry County, Illinois. [3] [4] [5]


  1. ^ A Standard History of Kansas and Kansans Archived 2012-06-26 at the Wayback Machine. (written and compiled by William E. Connelley. Chicago: Lewis Publishing Company, 1918)
  2. ^ Jonas Swensson (Archives - Evangelical Lutheran Church in America)
  3. ^ "Jefferson Prairie Settlement". Wisconsin Historical Markers. Retrieved January 1, 2018. 
  4. ^ "Jenny Lind Chapel and Museum". Retrieved January 1, 2018. 
  5. ^ "Jenny Lind Chapel Andover, Illinois". The Jenny Lind Chapel Preservation Project. Retrieved December 15, 2015. 

Primary Source[edit]

  • Eklund, Emmet E. (1988) His Name was Jonas, a Biography of Jonas Swensson (Rock Island, IL: Augustana Historical Society)

Additional Sources[edit]

  • Swensson, Jonas (1957) Two primary sources for a study of the life of Jonas Swensson (Rock Island, IL: Augustana Historical Society)
  • Gross, Ernie (1990) This Day in Religion (New York: Neil-Schuman Publisher)
  • Arden, G. Everett (1958) Half a Million Swedes, America's Lutherans (Columbus OH: Wartburg Press)

External links[edit]