Cherokee, Danish immigrants, Kirkebladet, missionary work


On April 1, 1892, a letter by Detlev Leerskov appeared in Kirkebladet, the church newspaper of the Danish Evangelical Lutheran Church Association in America, otherwise known to Danish immigrants as the Blair Church. Leerskov, who had emigrated from Denmark ten years earlier, married a Cherokee woman, and settled among the Cherokee in what was then Indian Territory, wrote to tell the readers of Kirkebladet how he had received a copy of their paper from his brother in Hutchinson, Minnesota, and that this had been "the first Christian reading in the Danish language" that he had seen in ten years. Moreover, he was excited by the fact that there was a group of Danish immigrants in this country who were carrying out the work of Christ among their fellow immigrants, and he praised God for their work. Leerskov, however, also hoped that this same church body would "help bring the glad tidings of the world's Savior to North America's red men, the Indian." In closing his letter, Leerskov promised that despite the fact that he now found it difficult to write fluent and correct Danish, he would correspond with Kirkebladet to inform the readers of life among the Indians.