Progenitor Petter Hällström

Petter Hällström (1702-1781), a descendant of a ferryman family from Helsingborg in Sweden, came to Finland after the Great Nothern War around 1721. His master, a Swedish officer, had a residence in Ostrobothnia, in Vöyri. The province that had been badly damaged in the war and under the Russian occupation offered this energetic young man great possibilities. In 1724 his master had to change residences and therefore Petter was to earn his living independently. He requested the governor of Ostrobothnia the right to serve as the parish tailor in Ilmajoki. He was conceded the right even without the professional training that was needed that time. He married Elisabet (1702-1788) in Kauhajoki in 1726. She was the daughter of Simon Ariin, the assistant vicar of Kuortane. She had fled the Russian army to the home of her relative in Kauhajoki. Later on in 1741 Petter became a farm owner as he bought a farm in Palonkylä of Ilmajoki. He run the farm of Jussila until 1774. Petter Hällström who was the progenitor of a large Ostrobothnian peasant and upper-class family was respected and had many confidental posts in his time.

Branches of the Family

Petter and Elisabet had nine children, six of them grew up to be married. All of them expect their youngest daughter Hedvig bacame progenitors of their own branches of family.

1. Helena (1726-1796) was married to Anders Jaakonpoika Westman, the merchant from Kristiinankaupunki. Their offspring earned their living from trade and fishing in the coastal towns of the Gulf of Bothnia. The family increased with new family names Nagell and Lind.

2. Elisabet (1734-1812) was married to farm-hand Jaakko Heikinpoika. They cultivated the croft of Latva-Jussila. Their offspring became farm owners and tenant farmers, most of whom lived in Ilmajoki but also in Teuva, Jurva, Ylistaro and Lapua. Third generation family names were besides Latva-Jussila: Kentta in Teuva and Ala-Ranta, Latva-Ollila, Hirsimäki and Yli-Huikku in Ilmajoki.

3. Maria (1736-1815) was married to Matti Pertunpoika, the son of the farmer of Hyövälti. Their descendants set up the strongest branch in Ilmajoki. This branch extended in third generation to farms of Ala-Hyövälti, Yli-Hyövälti and Latva-Hyövälti, as the land of Hyövälti had been devided into plots between three of the siblings. Other siblings run the croft of Ranta and the farms of Yli-Ojanperä, Rinta-Jussila and Talvitie.

4. Carl (1741-1809) became a clergyman and as the only son he inherited the farm of Jussila. He married Anna Rein, the daughter of the vicar of Vähäkyrö. All of their five sons matriculated and three of them continued their studies in the Academy of Turku. Carl’s sons were bright and successful. The best known is Gustav Gabriel, the vice-chancellor of the Academy of Turku, who is mentioned to be the pioneer of the physical research in Finland. Carl and Anna’s two daughters were married to clergymen. This branch consists of highly educated officials, estate owners and doctors. Those who were doctors by profession were so many that people in eastern Finland could ask: “Who is the hällström in this parish?”. Third generation families had names af Hällström, Chydenius and Hällström. Later Hällström-families adopted Finnish names Helasvuo and Pankakoski. The families of this banch lived mainly in eastern Finland, in Karelia and in the area of Lohja.

5. Katariina (1743-1823) was married to Simo Antinpoika, son of the farmer of Kurki in Virrat. They had a pioneer farm (Jaskari) in Kurjenkylä in Virrat. Their offspring is the most numerous, most of the descendants were pioneer farmers, tenant farmers and farm owners in this area of Virrat. The immediate surroundings of Virrat, especially Hirvijärvenkylä in Jalasjärvi and Kihniänkylä in Peräseinäjoki, were also populated by the descendants of Katariina. The families living in Virrat had names Hirvi, Jaskari, Niemelä and Leppänen, those in Jalasjärvi were kown by the name of Komsi and Ventelä and in Peräseinäjoki by the name Viitasaari.