Voyage to America – 1865

Jan Hendrik and Harmen Jan te Selle
October 1865
S.S. Helvetia

Two te Selle brothers, Jan Hendrik (1838-1921) and Harmen Jan (1844-1919), along with Jan Hendrik’s wife Hannah Berendina Onnink (1841-1929), emigrated from Winterswijk, Netherlands to Gibbsville, Wisconsin, USA, in October 1865.  Harmen Jan te Selle describes their journey in interesting detail his Letter 2 dated November 26, 1865, in the Letters from America section.

The te Selle brothers embarked by ship from Liverpool, England, on October 12, 1865.  Although Harmen Jan does not mention the ship by name in his letter, research into passenger lists from that period reveals that the name of the ship was S.S. Helvetia.  The ship was  built in 1864 by Palmer’s Shipbuilding & Iron Co., Ltd.  The burden was 3,318 tons.  (Click on this link for more information about the S. S. Helvetia.)

On Page 6 of the passenger list, near the bottom, appear the following names:

  • J. H. Selle (age 27)
  • Hanna Selle (age 24)
  • H. J. Selle (age 21)

Apparently, the person recording the names on the manifest did not feel that the “te” in the name “te Selle” was important.  Follow the link below to read a more complete description of the passenger list and to see images of certain passenger list pages.

S. S. Helvetia Passenger List: Liverpool, England to New York City, New York; October 12 – October 30, 1865

For additional information about the migration from Northern Europe to America during the mid-1800’s, please visit the Norway Heritage website.