Nov 21, 2008

Chery Kinnick


While growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, I heard many stories about my mother's large extended family and her childhood on a Norwegian-American farm in rural Minnesota. All of her great grandparents emigrated to the Midwest from Norway between 1855-1869. Among the earliest arrived in Coon Valley, Wisconsin and relocated to Minnesota after a few years. Both sets of her grandparents met and married in Chippewa County, a southwestern Minnesota area of tall grass prairie bordered by the Minnesota River.
I had wanted to write as long as I can remember. In college, my favorite activities were listening to history lectures and writing research papers. Everything seemed to come together when I discovered the joys of genealogy a few years ago. By participating in a genealogy certificate program and a local, very unique, writing seminar, I was able to build skills and collaborative friendships that will last a lifetime.

My interests and specialties include researching and writing about pioneer history, especially Norwegian-American, and early Pacific Northwest history--also identifying old photographs. As family historian, I also coordinated the repair of a 120-year-old tombstone marking the graves of three ancestors in Duluth, Minnesota. I currently work in Seattle and was previously a resident of the Scandinavian community of Ballard.



Norway fylke: Nord-Trondelag, Sor-Trondelag, Rogaland, Oppland

Minnesota counties: Becker, Chippewa, Clearwater, Goodhue, Polk, Renville, St. Louis

California, Iowa, North Dakota, Oregon (Marion), Wisconsin (La Crosse and Coon Valley)

Education & Training
  • Nearby History Seminar for Researchers & Writers, 2006, 2007 & 2008, Museum of History & Industry, Seattle
  • Genealogy & Family History Certificate Program, 2006, University of Washington
  • B.A., History, University of Washington

    Professional Experience
  • Supervisor, University of Washington Libraries, 1990-present
  • University of Washington Strategic Leadership Program, 2005 & 2009
  • University of Washington Supervisory Series Certificate Program, 1998
  • Library Technician, University of Washington Libraries, 1989-90
  • Library Technician, Lane Powell Moss & Miller, Seattle, 1986-89

  • Nearby History 2007 & 2008 - Project
    "The Gold Creek Kid" and "A Trip to Lake Chelan": from a book in progress about a Pacific Northwest photographer and explorer. 
    Nearby History 2006 - Project
    “Ole Johnson," a chapter for: A Long Way Downstream: The Life and Family of Thibertine Johnson Winje, Nowegian-American Pioneer.

    Genealogy & Family History Certificate Program - 2006
    Genealogy and history of Norwegian emigrant, Thibertine Johnson Winje (1841-1930) and her family.


    A Long Way Downstream: The Life and Family of Thibertine Johnson Winje: Norwegian-American Pioneer, Nordic Blue Press, 2008.
    Snoqualmie Pass, with John Kinnick. Arcadia Publishing, Images of America series, 2007.

          "The Broadax that Helped Save Seattle,"  Columbia, Washington State Historical
                   Society, Spring 2015, v.29, no.1.

          "Lawrence Denny Lindsley:  Curator of Nature's Great Art Gallery,"
                   Columbia, Washington State Historical Society, Summer 2013, v.27, no. 2.         

          "The Naturalist and His Camera," Old News, MOHAI (Seattle's Museum of History and
                   Industry), Spring 2009, v.9, no.1.
    Newspaper Articles
  • Seattle & Pacific Northwest History examiner for, Seattle, Spring 2008.
  • Contributor to the Snoqualmie Pass Times. 
  • Genealogy & Family History Certificate Program, University of Washington Extension, May 2015 and May 2016.
  • Alderwood Manor Heritage Association, General Meeting, April 25, 2010.
  • Nearby History Presents, Museum of History and Industry, January 2007, 2008 & 2009.
Contact Chery at