Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Gunnar Thorarinsson was born 25 April 1881 at Skalmarbaer, Thykkvabaerjarklaustur, Vestur Skaftafell, the son of Thorarinn Bjarnason, born 17 June 1849 at Hruni Kalfafell i Fljotshverfi, Vestur Skaftafell, died 21 February 1924 in Spanish Fork, Utah; and Brynhildur Jonsdottir, born 9 December 1849, died 4 March 1885 in Spanish Fork, Utah. Gunnar immigrated to Spanish Fork, Utah with his parents in 1883.
Gunnar moved to Cleveland, Utah in Emery County with his family. He married Isabelle Muir 8 February 1900 at Richfield, Utah. Isabelle was born 16 December 1880 at Richfield, Utah, died 28 July 1966 at Smithfield, Utah; she is buried in Richfield, Utah.
Gunnar worked at the Winter Quarters Mine near Scofield, Utah. 1 May 1900 was the day the Winter Quarters Mine blew up, killing at least 200 men. Gunnar was one of these miners. It was the worst single loss of life in Utah history and one of the five worst mining disasters in U.S. history. The Winter Quarters Mine record lists him as Gunnar Bjarnason from Richfield, Utah.


David Johnson said...

Thank you for this story. My great grandparents, Jens Peter "Johnson" and his wife Johanna Gudney Helga Sveinsdottir ("Thordarsson") also lived in the mining towns around Cleveland during this disaster in 1900. Jens was a carpenter and he worked many hours making coffins and Johanna was a wonderful seamstress who made many of the wraps and clothes these miners were buried in. I would like to believe they had a hand in the burial of their fellow Icelander Gunnar.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, this man is my great grandfather Einar Bjarnson's brother! Any other information you have on the family would be appreciated.

Mark Kinnison

David A. Ashby said...

Ihave more on the family. Let me know how I can share with you.