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Laura Goodman Salverson fonds. - 1922-1970. - 2 m of textual record and other material.

Biographical Sketch

Photo of Laura G. Salverson

"Laura G. Salverson, author at age 14, 4 years before she started to write".

Laura Goodman Salverson was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba in 1890, the daughter of Icelanders who immigrated to Canada in 1887. She is considered a descendant of the last of the Viking nobles. Salverson spent her early years in Winnipeg, in North Dakota, and in different parts of Canada and the United States as her parents wandered. Following her marriage to George Salverson in 1913, a railway worker of Norwegian ancestry, she lived in almost every region of Canada. Her writing career began in Regina with the encouragement of Austin Bothwell. Her first three novels focus on the immigrant experience in the West, the sense of betrayal, and the question of cultural identity. The Viking Heart (1923) is a historical novel that covers the immigration of 1 400 Icelanders in 1876 to the area of Gimli, Manitoba, their settlement and integration, and their disillusionment resulting from Canada's participation in World War I. Pacifist and integration themes remain central in her next work, The Dark Weaver: Against the Sombre Background of the Old Generations Flame the Scarlet Banners of the New (1937), which won the Governor General's Literary Award in 1937. She received another Governor General's Literary Award in 1939 for her autobiographical Confessions of an Immigrant's Daughter (1939). Her Immortal Rock: The Saga of the Kensington Stone tells the story of the Paul Knutson expedition to Greenland and to Minnesota in the 14th century which received the Ryerson Fiction Award in 1954. She published a volume of poems Wayside Gleams, in 1925. In addition to her writing, Salverson taught creative writing, gave dramatic recitals of the Norse sagas and edited the Icelandic Canadian.

Scope and Content

The Laura Goodman Salverson fonds includes the typescripts of Lord of the Silver Dragon, The Dove of El Djzair, The Dark Weaver, Black Lace, Confessions of an Immigrant's Daughter; the typescripts of published and unpublished poems and short stories; correspondence; scrapbook; photographs; and clippings.

Immediate Source of Acquisition: acquired from George Salverson.

Language: material in the fonds is in English.

Restrictions: none.

Finding Aid: finding aid available.

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