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Sortavala Teachers’ College Women’s Choir on concert tour in Joensuu

    This file contains a photograph of the Sortavala Teachers’ College Women’s Choir. Rosa Emilia Clay, standing at center in the back row, was born in Omaruru, Namibia, in 1875. Her guardians, the Finnish missionaries Karl and Ida Weikkolin, brought her to Finland in 1880, where she remained and as a young woman studied to become a primary school teacher at the Sortavala Teachers’ College. She graduated the year after the photograph was taken, and in 1899 she became the first African woman to receive Finnish citizenship. She emigrated to the United States in 1904, where she remained active in the Finnish immigrant community. She married theatre director Lauri Lemberg and is known in Finnish-American sources as Rosa Lemberg, although she later divorced him. A biography in Finnish, Arvo Lindewall’s Rosalia (Yonkers, NY: Kansallinen Kustannuskomitea, 1942), was published during her own lifetime, and in 2020 a public square in Tampere was officially named after her.

    Original source name : Sortavalan seminaarin naiskuoro konserttimatkalla Joensuussa
    English translation : Sortavala Teachers’ College Women’s Choir on concert tour in Joensuu
    Creator : Culture
    Document- type 2 : photograph
    Reference number : HK19610829:3
    Language(s) : N/A
    Geographical coverage : Finland
    Time range : 19thc.
    Year(s) : 1897
    Theme 1 : education
    Theme 2 : experience of migration
    Link to the item in the catalogue :
    Publication(s) : Ellen Ndeshi Namhila and Werner Hillebrecht, “Rosa Emilia Clay: From Omaruru via Sortavala to Chicago,” in Intertwined Histories: 150 Years of Finnish-Namibian Relations, ed. by Marjo Kaartinen, Leila Koivunen and Napandulwe Shiweda (Turku: University of Turku, 2019): 60–67 []
    Archive name : Museovirasto
    Archive name (English) : The Finnish Heritage Agency
    Archive address : Sturenkatu 2a, 00510 Helsinki
    City : Helsinki
    Country : Finland
    Official website and institutional resources :
    Finding aid(s) :
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