Alf Birger Fristad I

Alf Birger Fristad was born 1894, in Bergen, Norway. His parents were Johann Johanneson Fristad and Marta Malene Kristensen. His father Johann was a "Politikonstabel" in the city of Bergen, serving in that capacity for at least twelve years. Arthur was the second of six children the Fristad parents had while living in Norway. These children included Sverre Leonhard (1888), Arthur Peder (1891), Hilda Ragna Sofie (1892), Agnes Marie (1896), and Solveg Wilhelmine (1899).

In 1903, Arthur's father moved to Brooklyn, New York, to work as a machinist. (Conjecture follows: Family lore claims Johann was a Naval Ordinance Expert, loaned by the Norwegian Government to teach the United States Navy how to install and use torpedoes.) He returned to Bergen briefly in October of 1904, then returned to New York City 13 Dec, 1904. Alf Birger and the rest of the Fristad family left Bergen in 8 Sept 1905 on the USS United States from Christianssand, arriving 18 Sept 1905 at Ellis Island. Johann and his family lived in Brooklyn for the next five years, during which time Alma (1907) was added to the family flock.

The 1910 census lists Alf working as a laborer in an ironworks, likely alongside his father who was also so employed.

Soon after the family returned to Norway - with the exception of eldest son Arthur Peder William. In his late teens, Arthur had become involved with work in the United States as well as valued friendships. He chose to make America his home and in due course became a naturalized citizen.

The timing is uncertain, but sometime before May of 1915 Alf returned to North America, where he registered with the Territorial Forces of Canada. He sailed for Bristol, England from Winnipeg, where he enlisted with the 1/6th Gloucestershire Regiment as Private A.B. Fristad, service number 4259, on 25 May 1915 at St MichaelŐs Hill. (The Soldiers of Gloucestershire Museum mistakenly lists his first name as Albert). His group landed at Boulogne, France and proceeded to the western front. Specific details are unknown at this time, but on Sunday March 16 1916, Arthur died of wounds sustained while fighting.

Older brother Arthur keenly felt the loss of his brother, naming his second son after him. Alf Birger William Fristad was born 29 November 1917.

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Alf c.1913