"First, let's talk about pigs", Juernjakob Swehn writes from his farm in Iowa. "In America, pigs have a curly tail and talk in Low German so I can understand them." Swehn builds a log house and makes a success of farming, marries a woman who's "a whole different nation that has its confidence from the inside", raises a family, and becomes an elder in the Lutheran Church. He recognises his good fortune but acknowledges that memories of his village grow stronger every year, that "being homesick is the best thing that home can do for you...no power on earth holds on to you like your homeland". It is the sense of home, both in Iowa and in Mecklenburg, that makes Juernjakob Swehn appeal to today's readers as much as he appealed to readers in 1916.
Publisher: University of Iowa Press