The lost sailor? A DNA mystery.

We are working on a DNA case where a man from Norway born in 1875, marries in Great Britain and has a family. He works as a sea carpenter. He must have taken a new name, because nobody in Norway, has the same surname. By using one DNA match, the number of centimorgans between the descendants today, the man could be the same as Gunerius Severin Torbjørnsen Hausland. More DNA tests will be taken. But in the meantime, we want to see what happened with Gunerius. And decide whether he should be included or excluded as a candidate.

Gunerius Severin Torbjørnsen Hausland was born May 1, 1870 and he is one of many children from his father’s two marriages. He was born on the farm Hausland in Fjære, Agder, which is in southern Norway.

His parents are Torbjørn Olsen Hausland (1830-1897) and Gunhild Marie Olsdatter (1831-1862).  An older brother is Gustav Martinius born 1865 and died in 1867.

Gunerius Severin was confirmed in 1885. His father was a farmer as well as a carpenter making ships. Gunerius went to sea in about 1888-1890, we find him in the seamans rolls where he sails to both England and France, link:

In 1890 he sails to Hamburg and later to New York. Where he “jumps ship” on May 29 1896. It is noted here.

In 1903 his sister Gusta Marie emigrates to the US. We find her on Ancestry here (subscription site). She is supposed to meet her brother Gust Thomsen. But Gustav Martinius died two years old! Could it be that she met Gunerius and that since he fled the ship, he took another identity? In the census of 1891 from Norway, Gunerius was believed to be in England as a sailor. And in the census of 1900 he was in the US.

There exists a picture of Gunerius where he is probably 60 years old, so about 1930. It looks like it is taken in the US. The picture was sent to his sister and he signed it, your brother Gunerius.

Was it possible to take another identity in the US?

And are there any sources (censuses, address books or other) that can help us find Gust Thomsen in New York? His address in 1903 was 355 Wanburn Street. (Could it be Washburn street?)

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