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Emigration and Immigration

Emigration from Denmark - An Introduction

M/S Island - A Danish Emigration Ship 1882-1905

In the 1800''s people across Europe where on the move, and especially after the 1840''s many people departed the "Old World" to seek a better life abroad. Along with millions of other emigrants from all over the European continent, many Danes emigrated via the ports in northern Europe. The most important ports of emigration for the Danish emigrants were Copenhagen, Liverpool (as to indirect emigration), Hamburg and Bremen/Bremerhaven. In the Scandinavian countries this emigration began a little later and did not reach sizable proportions until the end of the American Civil War. The Scandinavian contribution to the total European emigration were, however, relatively small—the share didn't amount to more than 4.5% in the period up to the First World War.

Read more: Emigration from Denmark - An Introduction

A few numbers and facts...

  • 500,000

    ...Danes emigrated up to 1968, and of these about 70% departed for the USA. In the 1800's alone a vast majority of 90% went to the USA. Read more...

  • 261,065

    This many individuals, comprising of 4.6 percent of all Danes, carries the surname JENSEN followed by NIELSEN, HANSEN, PEDERSEN and ANDERSEN. Read more...

  • 1,000

    Of the 5,000 basic words in modern English, as many as 20 percent are so-called loan words from the Old Norse language (ON). Read more...

  • 1769

    This year the first Danish census was taken. The next censuses were taken in 1787 and 1801 and from 1834 onwards every 5-10 years. Read more...

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