About Us

About Astri My Astri Publishing

Astri My Astri Publishing specializes in bilingual English Norwegian books on Norwegian Heritage, Culture, History, Language and Genealogy. The books have won National Awards including the prestigious G. K. Haukebo Heritage Resource Award for Historical Emphasis. Deb Nelson Gourley, who received both her Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees from the University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN, solely owns the company. Deb has two sons and they both assist with the bilingual books: Alexander Knud Huntrods, aka Alex Huntrods, (translates from Norwegian to English) and Benjamin Keith Huntrods, aka Ben Huntrods, (transcribes from Dano-Norwegian Gothic script).

Deb was raised on her families’ Norwegian ancestral farm in Fillmore County, Minnesota that was started in 1853, five years before Minnesota became a state. Since childhood she had developed an interest in genealogy and researching her 7/8 Norwegian and 1/8 English ancestry. Also learning more about her g-g-g-grandparents, who where both killed in the 1862 Sioux Indian Uprising, Belmont Massacre, Jackson County, Minnesota.

In 1976, Deb did her Masters Degree Intern at Oslo University, Norway. She was the first person in her family to return to Norway in over 100 years. All contact had been lost, thus she began researching her elusive ancestors: Nels Nelson, Knud Knudson, Lars Larson and Bendick Bendickson. In all, Deb had 27 ancestors (1 g-grandparent, 10 gg-grandparents, 15 ggg-grandparents and 1 gggg-grandparent) who began emigrating as early as 1845 from various areas of Norway including Hallingdal, Numedal, Telemark, Voss, Sognefjord, Valdres and Selbu near Trondheim.


Astri My Astri Publishing Name

The name “Astri” comes from the name “Astri Herbrandsdatter 1812” that was written on an old immigrant trunk. Deb rescued the trunk from the burn pile at age eight on their Amherst, Minnesota family farm. It was later discovered that the trunk belonged to “Astri Herbrandsdatter Børtnes Syversrud”, Deb’s g-g-g-grandmother, who had emigrated from Norway in 1857. The name “Astri, My Astri” comes from “Astri, Mi Astri”, the name of an old Norwegian folksong. The song was based on the 2,000-year-old Horace’s Ode to Lydia. Deb’s genealogy research lead to the first book she wrote and published, “Astri, My Astri: Norwegian Heritage Stories” . . . "An old trunk, a handwritten note, cemetery and courthouse records–these become the skeletal framework which the author then clothes with flesh, blood, and bunads."

Astri My Astri Publishing's international team

  • Alexander Knud Huntrods (aka - Alex Huntrods - Deb's son), audio recording and translates Nynorsk and Bokmål Norwegian into English
  • Benjamin Keith Huntrods (aka - Ben Huntrods - Deb's son), transcribes 100-year-old Dano-Norwegian Gothic (1883 Fraktur Font) into Norwegian word documents, so ready for translating. Ben served as a 19D Cavalry Scout in the United States Army
  • Christian Wilse, Anders Beer Wilse project coordinator, United Kingdom
  • Odd Steinar Dybvad Raneng, translates the transcribed 100-year-old Dano-Norwegian into English, born in Norway, lives in Australia
  • Erik Anundsen, a fourth-generation printer and owner of Anundsen Publishing Company, Decorah, Iowa, website sales distribution
  • Chris Shelton, book cover graphic design, South Korea
  • Margit (Nysetvold) Bakke, genealogist and editor, Flom, Minnesota
  • Kari Gronningsæter, simplification of Norwegian text, Telemark, Norway
  • Erik Halber, Design / Development, Maine
  • Blaine Hedberg, genealogist, Westby, Wisconsin
  • Gunlaug Nøkland, author and editor, Vest-Agder, Norway
  • Anders Kvåle Rue, illustrator and author, Telemark, Norway
  • Jim Skurdall, translates Norwegian into English, Norway
  • Vigdis Sundsvold, translates English into Norwegian, Norway
  • Kelly J. Warren, Mind's Eye Audio Productions, Madison, Wisconsin

Astri, My Astri — Astri, Mi Astri

(5 verses in English on Kings of Norway CD)
Astri! my Astri! your heart mine alone was,
in those old days of our joy and delight!
You always wept when our eventide flown was,
tho’ we did then meet each Saturday night.
Then ’twas my heart, Astri, you stole from me,
happier I was than princes can be.

(6 verses in Norwegian on Kings of Norway CD)
Astri, mi Astri som eine heldt ’tå meg,
den tid du var meg so inderleg god,
den tid du gret kvar ein gong eg gjekk frå deg,
som var kvar laurdagskveld; minst du det no?
Då var i bygda eg sælaste gut,
inkje eg bytte med prest eller fut.

Recorded for Astri My Astri Publishing by:
Mannskoret Klang (Klang Male Chorus)
of Lillehammer, Norway; Dag Leonardsen, conductor;
Knut Litsheim, soloist