"Jenny Lind Chapel" - Part II



    The Lutheran Journal, Vol. 61, #1, 1992 - Erwin Weber


In the last issue of the journal, Esbjörn's early life in Sweden, his preparations for the ministry, his marriage to Amalia, his conversion to Pietism, and his determination to accompany his flock to America were described.

In this article, a detailed account of his trip to America includes the voyage at sea, his arrival in New York, his arrival in Andover, his meeting with Jenny Lind, the chapel construction, and the establishment of the Augustana Synod appears in vivid detail. It concludes with the establishment of Augustana College in Chicago in 1860, and his return to Sweden where he died on July 2, 1870, and lies buried in the cemetery of the Lutheran Church in Ostervåla. His second wife and children returned to Andover. Although the basement of the chapel in Andover has been transformed into a museum, the chapel is used, as it has been for over 100 years, as a house of worship.

On the cover is my photo showing the Lutheran Church at Hille, Sweden, where in 1840 many in the congregation and almost the entire choir went with Pastor Esbjörn to America.