Nelson's Scandinavia
Chicago, IL



Over a million Swedish citizens emigrated to North America from the 1850’s through the 1930’s. With the formation of the Swedish American Line and the maiden voyage of the SS Stockholm in 1915 Gothenburg became the departure point for most emigrants. Several passenger ships were added to the Swedish American fleet including the SS Drottningholm, the SS Kungsholm and a number of motor ships carrying the same names through to 1975.

There has been long standing interest in establishing a museum and research facility commemorating this important cultural shift and in 2004 this effort became a reality with the dedication of the House of Immigrants. The museum and research facility is located in the same building where officials reviewed documentation and granted permission to depart for the new world.

For those with ancestors that emigrated from Gothenburg a visit is especially meaningful. Mounted photographs show faces full of enthusiasm and hope and occasionally melancholy and uncertainty. The exhibition brings the reality of the departure to life as the moment of boarding the ship approaches with the uncertainty of leaving families, friends and the homeland.

A collection of memorabilia and articles from the period add to the flavor of the visit, and aggressive plans are underway that will further enhance the experience. An extensive research facility provides an outlet for emigration research.

Nelson’s Scandinavia can arrange a visit to the House of Immigrants by including a stop in Gothenburg during your Scandinavian adventure. Also a must is a canal and harbor tour on the famous canal boats of Paddan. A unique intimate hotel on a quiet street just a short walk from attractions is the Hotel Albelle, you may wish to ask us for more details.