They Came to America

It was long believed that the Bly family in America started with Christ and Andrew Bly who immigrated to America from Norway. Our oldest generation was told that their parents were Christopher and Karen. It wasn’t until the discovery of a Christopher Anderson buried near Foston, MN that we discovered that Andrew and Christ came to America with their parents.

Some digging revealed Christopher Anderson’s original homestead from 1891. A review of the original land grant showed not only that the property is still clearly identifiable from arial photography but that his burial was done at a church built on the corner of his original homestead!

The story here is mainly from oral tradition. It goes that the family came to America around 1870. Much of their records went up in the great fire in Chicago. However we have come to find some records that suggest when and how some of the family arrived through emigration records and one record in Quebec where they would have stopped off on the way to Chicago. After some unknown time in Chicago, they moved to Douglas County, Minnesota. It was at this time that they discovered Bly Creek which would later give our family its name.

Karen appears to have immigrated first, bringing four children with her. Bertha, Karelius or Torveig, Andrew and Christ. Nothing is known about the first two and they appeared to have died before 1900.  Christopher appears to have come at a later date as we do not find him on the ships manifest.

Through extensive review of a bydgebok found at the University of Minnesota by some experienced genealogists at, we have discovered much more about the family and their ancestors in Norway.

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