Torval Jorvig was born in Peterson, Minnesota to Norwegian parents on March 30, 1896. He grew up as the only son of a single mother, and made his living as a telegraph operator for Western Union. At age 22 he is listed as the sole support of his mother. He met his wife Edna, another telegraph operator working in Owatonna, while chatting in Morse Code. The couple married in 1920 and they had three sons: Robert, Roland, and David.
The 1930 Census shows the family living
in Minneapolis, but shortly after that they moved to St.
Louis Park. The reason they chose the Park was that
they wanted to be close to Edna's sister and brother-in-law,
George and Jennie Fornell. The Fornells are shown in
the 1935-36 Park directory living 2944 Alabama, built in
1934. Their children were Margaret and Willard.
The Jorvigs first moved to a house on Natchez in the Fern
Hill neighborhood. In the 1933-34 directory they are
shown at 3248 Yosemite, which Bob remembers as being new;
records show it was built in 1927. The Jorvig
and the Fornell children went to Fern Hill Elementary
School, Lincoln School, and the new High School (Central).
Bob remembers that some of his classes were at Lincoln and
some at the High School, and thought that going through the
tunnel under Highway 7 was fun.
Jorvig served the Park well until his retirement in 1961, never refusing a phone call, even during dinner. He died on February 4, 1971. The City of St. Louis Park has honored him by naming Park's oldest park after him. Jorvig Park, at 37th St. and Brunswick Ave., is the home of the Historic Milwaukee Road Depot.
Read more about the Jorvigs in Something in the Water.
This information comes from a variety of sources: newspapers, books, yearbooks, phone directories, interviews, etc. Given the varied sources, we cannot guarantee that all of this information is correct, and welcome any additions and corrections. Please contact us with your contributions and comments.