Hauge Norwegian Evangelical
Lutheran Church

Part of a Genealogical Study of the Nels Knutson Ranum Line

Updated April 9, 2012

So much to write, so little time!

The Hauge Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Church once sat high on the crest of a hill just a few minutes walk across the fields south of the Ranum home farm. Our generation of Ranums remember it as "great grandpa Nels Ranum's church" but it was the church home to many families in that area. The church was built in 1887 on land donated by Nels' brother, the Rev. Knut Hageset who led his flock in the Haugen tradition.
This picture was taken around 1977, just a few years before the church was torn down in 1981. Click here or on the picture to the left to see more color exterior and interior pictures of the church.
This "New Hauge Church" was built to replace the much smaller historic Hauge Log Church built in 1852 located just north of Daleyville. It was there that the "Haugians" found themselves at odds with worshipers that desired a more formal and liturgical church setting that more closely resembled what they had been used to in Norway. That group separated to form the Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Church in 1854. They however continued to worship in the old log church until their new stone church was completed in December of 1858. That stone church was built in the village of Daleyville. There were a few uncomfortable years where the two groups remained at odds, using the same church building.

This picture (post card) shows work being done to the bell tower. If you look closely, you can see two gentlemen looking out of removed louvers of the front. Please contact me at mranum@ranumhistory.com if you have any information about this picture.

Photo courtesy of Willis and Judy Volden

The Haugians continued to worship in the old log church up until their "New Hauge" church was constructed in 1887. They however continued to hold services once a year in the old log church, probably to "offer a sweet fragrance to the past" as is written in the book "Sixty Years of Perry Congregation". From our frame of reference, it may be hard for us to fully understand the conflict these two groups were embroiled in. "Dig a Little Deeper" links are provided towards the bottom of this page that may help shed some light on this as well as give an overall better understanding of our Norwegian heritage.

The church we refer to as "Grandpa's Church" was located approximately 3/4 of a mile south of the Ranum home farm in Perry township. This short journey was taken faithfully every Sunday by the Ranums by horse, foot, and later by car for the many decades they worshipped there. It is a place where our ancestors worshiped, fellowshipped, laughed and loved. It is also a place many of our family found their final place of earthly rest.

"Dig a Little Deeper" Links:

As I was researching for this page, I ran accross a series of articles that I believe helps shed some light on why our ancestors imigrated to America. They also present a picture of the policical, religious, and physical conditions in both Norway and in America in that time of transition and crossing the great waters. These articles are written by Neil Hofland and are presented here to hopefully provide valuable background information.

How Norwegian Emigration Started - http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~anderson1836/start.htm

Norwegian Life in the 1800s - http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~anderson1836/norwegian_life.htm

American Backround - http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~anderson1836/america.htm

Sixty Years of Perry Congregation - written by C. O. Ruste in 1915 is a souvenir book created for the sixtieth anniversary of the founding of the Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Church of Perry, Dane County, Wisconsin. It covers in good detail the faith journey of two distinct groups of worshipers and the churches they built. This link is to the Mount Horeb Public Library Digital History Project where this wonderful book is made available online. It is also available at the Perry Historical Center at the Perry Lutheran Church in Daleyville in a reformated large print edition or as a searchable CD.

Sixty Years of Perry Congregation - http://mhpl.org/history/perrysixtyears/index.html

Historic Perry Settlement - This facinating work is produced by the Perry Historical Center located in the Perry Lutheran Church in Daleyville. It is a History and genealogy of Norwegian and German settlement in the Town of Perry in Dane County, WI. It Includes research regarding surrounding area and a cemetery list. Although a link is provided, again to the Mount Horeb Public Library Digital History Project online copy, it is available in hardcopy at the Perry Historical Center.

Historic Perry Settlement - http://mhpl.org/history/historicperry/index.html

A Prophet Behind the Plow - This is a powerful article about Hans Nielsen Hauge and his Ministry written by Steinar Thorvaldsen

A Prophet Behind the Plow - http://munin.uit.no/bitstream/handle/10037/2949/article.pdf?sequence=3

The Haugen Institute - Though Hans Nielsen Hauge never stepped foot in the New World, the influence of the Haugen Movement and the "Societies of Friends" in Norway had a dramatic impact on Norwegian immigrant life in America. Though mostly known as a lay preacher and revivalist, Hans believed that "doctrine and life" must be in balance and that as an entrepreneur one had the obligation to use accumulated wealth for the good of those around you. I find this site to be a fascinating introduction to Hauge, his Societies of Friends, and the movement that swept Norway during the 1800's and ultimately served to challenge the state church religious status quo even as brought to the New World.

The Haugen Institute, About Hans Nielsen Hauge - http://www.haugeinstitute.org/sider/tekst.asp?side=6

The Hauge Movement in America - Authors - S.S Gjerde & P. Ljostveit - Copyright 1941 - By the Hauge Inner Mission Federation. This is perhaps the most useful resource I have found to date to help understand the conflicts and differences of doctrinal opinion that caused the separation within the early Norwegian churches. It is not an easy read but is for those who want to dig deeper into their Norwegian/American heritage.

The Hauge Movement in America - http://www.haugeinnermission.com/site/default.asp?sec_id=180000138

You can help bring this page devoted to the church alive by contributing reminiscences, articles, or photos. Please contact me (Mark Ranum) at mranum@ranumhistory.com for more information.