Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890-1920

Biography of Anna Petrine Gjertsen, 1874-1950

By: Kiah Ranstead, student, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, Oshkosh, WI

Anna Petrine Gjertsen was born on January 26, 1874, in Madelia, Minnesota, to Andrew and Petronelle Gjertsen. Her parents, both born in Norway, had emigrated to Minnesota in 1866. Gjertsen embraced her Norwegian heritage, speaking at local Norwegian Independence Day celebrations in Minnesota.

Gjertsen had many siblings, including four sisters and two brothers that survived her. At the beginning of the twentieth-century, Gjertsen and five of her sisters moved to Minneapolis for employment. The sisters worked as dressmakers, three of them running a dressmaking shop from 1906 to 1923. During this period Anna Gjertsen also worked for the women's suffrage movement. Volume 6 of The History of the Woman Suffrage Movement notes that Anna was critical in organizing Scandinavian women in support of women's suffrage.

Anna Gjertsen never married. She died January 22, 1950 and was buried at Trinity Lutheran Cemetery in Madelia, MN.


"Minnesota Dressmakers: The Business of Dressmaking: "Helen:1906-1923." Minnesota Historical Society. (accessed 2017.)

"Anna Petrine Gjertson." Find A Grave. Memorial no. 88552953, citing Trinity Lutheran Cemetery, Madelia, Watonwan County, Minnesota, USA ; Maintained by DRK (contributor 46835914) . (accessed: 2017.)

Year: 1920; Census Place: Madelia, Watonwan, Minnesota; Roll: T625_866; Page: 7A; Enumeration District: 217, 1920 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2010. Images reproduced by FamilySearch. (accessed: 2017.)

Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA) Archives; Elk Grove Village, Illinois U.S., Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Church Records, 1826-1945 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2015. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. ELCA, Birth, Marriage, Deaths. Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, Chicago, Illinois. (accessed: 2017.)

National Archives and Records Administration (NARA); Washington D.C.; NARA Series: Passport Applications, January 2, 1906 - March 31, 1925; Roll #: 2357; Volume #: Roll 2357 - Certificates: 335850-336349, 28 Aug 1923-30 Aug 1923. U.S. Passport Applications, 1795-1925 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2007. Selected Passports. National Archives, Washington, D.C. (accessed: 2017.) Minnesota, Death Index, 1908-2002 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2001. State of Minnesota. Minnesota Death Index, 1908-2002. Minneapolis, MN, USA: Minnesota Department of Health. (accessed: 2017.)

Tenth Census of the United States, 1880. (NARA microfilm publication T9, 1,454 rolls). Records of the Bureau of the Census, Record Group 29. National Archives, Washington, D.C. Accessed at " and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 1880 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA:, 2010. 1880 U.S. Census Index provided by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints" Accessed 2018.

Stanton, Elizabeth,, eds. The History of Women Suffrage Volume 6, p. 317. [LINK]

"Nomannaheimen: Norge's Great Day," The Minneapolis Journal (Minneapolis, Minnesota) 10 May 1902. Page 22.

"Gjertsen," The Minneapolis Star. (Minneapolis, Minnesota) 24 January 1950. Page 24.

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