Vise men say
that all living Icelanders descend from bishop Jón Arason
at Hólar in Skagafjörđur county, North Iceland.
And that includes of course all of you descending from Icelandic settlers in N-America. If you have ever received your ancestral family tree generated from an Icelandic genealogy database for - say - 12 to 15 generations you will without doubt find among your ancestors, bishop Jón Arason, who was considered one of the greatest chiefs Iceland has ever had. Jón Arason, born 1484, was the last Catholic bishop in Iceland and fearlessly he refused to adopt the Reformation when it was directly ordered by the Danish king Christian III that the Icelandic people should adopt the new faith with all that it implied.
Bishop Jón Arason´s struggle against the king's power ended by his being seized in the autumn of 1550 and beheaded 7 Nov that year with two of his sons, Björn and Ari, without legal proceedings on demand of the king's representative.
Jón Arason was not married, his mistress was Helga Sigurđardóttir and together they had four sons, Magnús, Sigurđur, Björn and Ari and the daughters Helga and Ţórunn. They all had descendants except Ţórunn.
You can see a very small file of Jón Arason's descendants
which I started nearly five years ago, but after the start I did nothing!
Do you know how you descend from Bishop Jón Arason?