The Kremlin Lutheran Church Begins, 1911

August Berg was one of original members of the first Lutheran Church congregation. His son Arthur (Art) Berg, in going through his father's papers many years later, came across the original handwritten documents of the two initial meetings to form the church. Art framed the historical treasures and hung them in the current Lutheran Church. Art and his grand-daughter, Anita Melby Solberg, share them here.

Many of the early arrivals in the Kremlin area were of Scandinavian descent. On June 14, 1911, a small group met in the little yellow two-room school house with the firm purpose of establishing a Lutheran congregation.

In that first meeting, they created and signed a handwritten document of intent to form a Lutheran Church. They followed the first meeting with a second meeting on July 2, 1911, drafting a detailed document of organization.

    Initial Meeting of Intent, June 14, 1911
    (click to enlarge)
Initial Document of Intent, June 14, 1911, page 1

These original documents have been translated for us by Marit Irene Lillebø in Norway. Another of the original members of the first Lutheran Church congregation, Theodore "Ted" Oltesvig, was her Grandmother's cousin, and Marit lives very near where Ted's family came from in Norway. Assistance was also kindly provided by Norway Heritage Community members at

The undersigned hereby declares willingness to participate in organizing a Norwegian Lutheran church in Kremlin.
        Kremlin Mont
        June 14, 1911

Theo Oltesvig with Maley
August Berg with family (4 children)
N Suckow with family (moved out)

Initial Document of Intent, June 14, 1911, page 2
R G Hauge
I Havskjold with family
Ole Haugen
Ole Sandven
John Christenson
Christin Haugen (moved out)
Marie Skjoldhammer (moved out)
Engebret Mikkelsen

10 voting card members:
O.   2
S.    3
B.    6
H.    7

    Church Organization Meeting, July 2, 1911
    (click to enlarge)
Initial Document of Organization, July 2, 1911, page 1

Church Organization Meeting
Kremlin Mont  July 2,1911
Meeting chairman Rev. Kjøs
Secretary Aug. Berg

The following officials were elected:
Deacon 1 year        R.G.Haugen
Deacon 2 years      Theo. Oltesvig
Deacon 3 years      N. Suckow
Trustee 1 year        I. Havskjold
Trustee 2 years      E. Mikkelsen
Trustee 3 years      Aug. Berg
Secretary 1 year     Aug. Berg
Treasurer 1 year     I. Havskjold

Decided that the church is called Oslo.
Decided that this church will stay in contact with the United Church, and authority was issued to the United Church administration related to servicing priests.

Initial Document of Organization, July 2, 1911, page 2

Decided that the church should provide according to ability.
Decided that the church seek membership in the United Church.
Decided that Rev. Kjøs serve on this church temporarily.
Decided that the worship service is held in Kremlin schoolhouse.
Decided that the Secretary buys a protocol on behalf of the church.
Reverend T.O. Kjøs

While the record states "10 voting card members", the list of numbers beside the initials below it add up to 18, to which is added 7, and a total of 25 listed. If you have thoughts on these mystery mathematics, please let us know via the Contact Us link.

type="text/javascript"var OBCTm='1301155540153';