Cerro Gordo County Iowa
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Globe Gazette
Mason City, Cerro Gordo County, Iowa
Saturday, April 14, 2012, by Kristin Buehner

North Iowan related to passenger who died when Titanic sank

NORTHWOOD — Books and movies about the sinking of the Titanic on April 15, 1912, have special meaning to Donald KALVIG, of Northwood.

KALVIG, 86, is related to Johannes "John" KALVIK, who was one of the roughly 1,500 who died when the luxury liner sank on its maiden voyage 100 years ago.

Johannes KALVIK was among the immigrants in the steerage class, traveling from Norway. He was a brother of Donald Kalvig's great-grandfather, who was also named Johannes.

"He came over to see if he could find his brother," KALVIG said of his relative.

Johannes KALVIK was just 21 when he boarded the Titanic, alone, on April 10, 1912, headed for America and a place called Story City, Iowa.

The farm boy from Akrafjorden, on the west coast of Norway, was headed to Iowa in search of a better life for him and his fiancee, Anne.

He traveled by boat from Haugesund, Norway, to Newcastle, England, and from there by train to Southampton, where he boarded the Titanic, said Donald's son, Karl KALVIG, of Chantilly, Va.

Back home in Norway, Johannes and his older brothers, Nils and Gotskalk, had a construction company, Donald Kalvig said. "I guess the construction business in Norway wasn’t doing very well."

Gotskalk, the middle brother, had emigrated to America to live in Montana, KALVIG said. "He disappeared. Nobody heard anything more from him."

"John set off to settle in Iowa with the intent of finding out what happened to his brother," Karl KALVIG said.

Years later, it was discovered that Gotskalk KALVIK was killed not long after his arrival in Montana in a gunfight between cattlemen and homesteaders, Karl KALVIG said.

The exact year is not known.

Transcription by Sharon R. Becker April of 2012



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