|Date of Birth||February 8, 1876|
|Place of Birth||Randers|
|Next of Kin||Elisa Oberg, mother, RimBogatan 6, Stockholm, Sweden|
|Trade / Calling||Clerk|
|Service Record||Link to Service Record|
|Force||Canadian Expeditionary Force|
|Enlisted / Conscripted||Enlisted|
|Place of Enlistment||Winnipeg, Manitoba|
|Address at Enlistment||Royal Oak Hotel, Winnipeg, Manitoba|
|Date of Enlistment||February 17, 1916|
|Age at Enlistment||40|
|Theatre of Service||Canada|
|Prisoner of War||No|
|Date of Death||May 15, 1944|
|Age at Death||68|
|Buried At||Brookside Cemetery, Winnipeg, Manitoba|
According to his attestation papers, Louis Anselius Martinus Oberg was born on 8 February 1876 in Randers, Denmark. Prior to immigrating to Canada around 1909 he had been living in Sweden where, according to his WW1 service record, he had served with the Västernanland Regiment from 1892 to 1898. At some point he had married and divorced, giving birth to son Karl Harald Gothe around 1902. The 1911 Canada census found Louis living in the Humboldt District in Saskatchewan, working on a farm for the Christian and Hannah Larson family. It appears that he applied for a homestead grant in May of 1910 but it was never fulfilled. He applied again in December of 1916, a parcel of land granted around Cote near the central Saskatchewan/Manitoba border in September of 1920.
With occupation given as clerk and his mother Elisa Oberg in Sweden as next of kin, Louis signed his attestation paper with the 197th Battalion (Vikings of Canada) on 17 February 1916 in Winnipeg. At the time he had been living and working at the Royal Oak Hotel in Winnipeg. Based in Winnipeg, the unit began recruiting during the winter of 1915/16 throughout western Canada, drawing on persons of Scandinavian descent. A Kenora Miner and News article of 23 February 1916 spoke of Sergeant Oberg as a well known Kenora man who was recruiting locally for the battalion. However it was later found that Louis had defective vision (corrected with glasses) and weak ankles that made walking of any distance painful. He was found medically unfit for military service and discharged on 12 February 1917 in Winnipeg.
By the next year Louis was living in Ottawa where he married Jenny Axelina Mariana Tollen that November. At the time his occupation was given as postal person, his marital status as widower, and his parents as NP Oberg and ER Wineberg. The daughter of Alex Tolén and Ida Marina Olsson, Jenny was born on 25 July 1892 in Malmö Sankt Pauli, Malmöhus (SkГҐne) in Sweden. She had immigrated to Canada in 1916, arriving in St John, New Brunswick aboard the Missanabie on 4 December. Listed as a cashier on the passenger list, she was on her way to her cousin in Wrentham, Alberta. At the time of the marriage she was living in Alberta.
It appears that Louis and Jenny moved to Louis’ homestead in Saskatchewan but that the marriage may have failed by the time of the 1921 census. Although Louis was listed as married and the head of the property on the census he was not present at the time. At the time of the census Jenny was living near Landenburg about 90 kilometres south of the homestead, boarding with the Charles and Ingrid Johnson family on their farm.
At some point Louis moved back to northwestern Ontario, finding work at the Sioux Lookout Airport. Although a resident of Sioux Lookout, Louis died on 15 May 1944 in the Winnipeg General Hospital. He is interred in a military plot in Brookside Cemetery in Winnipeg, year of birth inscribed as 1875 on his gravemarker.
By Judy Stockham
Louis’ gravemarker photo: courtesy of Bocephus on findagrave.com