General Information on the Family LehikoinenThe oldest data of the Juva branch of Lehikoinen date from the year 1541. In 1571, the Finnish Silver Tax Register mentions Olli Lehickon, Pouell (Paavo) Lehikoin, Ioan (John) Lehikoin and also Per (Pekka) Lehikoin from Maivala, Juva. In 1544, Lau(ri) Lehikoinen lived in Muolaas and Pär Lähickoin lived there in 1561. Later, the name Lehikoinen is found in the annals of Hiitola, Ruskeala, Ilomantsi, Pielisjärvi, Juuka and also Parikkala, where Pawel Petrof Lehikoin lived in 1618. In 1617, there were two persons named Lehikoinen in Juva, Savonia. In addition, there was one person by that name in Kuopio and one in Mikkeli.
The surname Lehikoinen is a derivative of the Finnish word 'lehti', which means a leaf of a tree. The name Lehikoinen itself denotes a small breadleaf forest situated in the middle of fields.
The family Lehikoinen can be divided into three different branches. These branches are not necessarily related to each other. The largest of the branches is Juuka's branch which consists of 80% of the family. The Ilomantsi branch consists of 10% of the family. The other parts of the family are in Savonia. Some parts of the family can be traced back to formerly Finnish region, Karelia. Many of these people are related to the North Karelia branch of the family.
Lass Lehikoin, the Ancestor of the Juuka's Branch
As the result of wars, in 1600s, the population was almost totally changed in some parts of North Karelia. The Orthodox people moved to Karelia, Ingria, and some farther away. Lutherans from Savonia and Ostrobothnia gradually replaced the Orthodox people who in all probability left voluntarily. Some of the houses were deserted for years and some for decades. The new residents were sometimes called Lehikoinen.
It is assumed that Lassi Lehikoinen left from Savonia to Karelia in order to search a farm for himself. It was generally known that there were deserted farms in Karelia as the result of the war. In 1637, Pielisjärvi's cadastral register mentions the household of Lassi Lehikoinen in the Vaikko village. The household consisted of three men. In 1638, a fisherman called Lassi Lehikoinen lived in Ritoniemi; the tax register mentions his fishing ground in Kannaksenlahti. In 1639, Lassi Lehikoinen bought a meadow from Teppana Larinen and moved to Larinsaari. In 1640, the family Lehikoinen purchased an uninhabited house which had been owned by Peer Kosuinen. The house was located in Larinsaari. The current house in Larinsaari is called Kosula and it was built around 1830. It is in the possession of the family Lehikoinen. It is now a listed building of the Finnish National Board of Antiquities.
Larinsaari is a village located in the southeast corner of Juuka. The origin of the village can be traced back to the 1630s. In 1639, Larinsaari had four houses in the cadastral register. There were five houses in 1644, six houses in 1649 and eight houses at the end of the decade. One of these houses was in Larinsaari at the base of the cape called Pentinniemi. An another one was opposite to Telyvaara, on the eastern shore of the bay. Later, two villages, Ahmovaara and Nunnanlahti, were separated from Larinsaari.
Lass Lehikoin's Offspring
The family Lehikoinen become one of the largest families in Juuka. They lived on farming and forestry as well as hunting, fishing and related trades. The members of the family have always occupied many positions of trust in councils and in the church. They have always been interested in deciding matters of common interest. Since Finland won its independence, the family has had their representatives in the Finnish Parliament.
The members of the family Lehikoinen have been involved in all wars and they have always been willing to defend their country. During the Finnish War in 1808-1809, almost all the men called Lehikoinen were absent from Juuka for 3 to 6 years. This can be inferred from the visits for Communion. Previously the Communions had been scheduled to two or three times a year, but during that period there were none at all. However, all of the men appear to have returned back home.
During the 1800s, the family Lehikoinen became one of the largest families in Juuka. Nowadays, there are about 2800 people called Lehikoinen and they operate in all aspects of life. They live in different areas in Finland and also abroad. Nevertheless, the most part of the family is still in North Karelia.
The Events of the Impilahti Branch
The "ancestor"of the Impilahti branch is Markku Markunpoika Lehikoinen (b. 1666). He came with his family to Suistamo, Koitonselkä. His wife was Maria Laurintytär Piipponen (b. 1678). They came after the Greater Wrath in the 1720s. He is not mentioned in the register of the population in 1722, but the tax register mentions him in 1727. Markku Markunpoika Lehikoinen probably arrived in the area at that time, because they are not mentioned in the Suistamo register, at least not in the years 1681 or 1696. It is difficult to define the more accurate time of arrival and place, since no source material remains from the years 1697 to 1721. The family Lehikoinen seems to have been the only Lutheran family in Impilahti, Koitonselkä. In the late 1790s, the family moved to the Jalovaara village in the same parish.
The Lutheran minority of Suistamo belonged to the Impilahti congregation, and in the late 1800s to Soanlahti congregation that was separated from Impilahti.
For the sake of comparison, it is necessary to mention a few figures of the past times. According to the tax register in 1589, there were 18 houses and 85 empty houses in Suistamo region, a total of 103. The population was probably about 500 to 700. Suistamo was ceded to the Soviet Union 1944 in the forced peace treaty. Its Orthodox population consisted of about 7600 people and there were also 2600 Lutherans. At the beginning of the Winter War, the Suistamo Orthodox Church consisted of 7650 members and there were around 2600 Evangelical Lutherans in the parish. The Lutherans belonged to Soanlahti congregation because Suistamo had no Lutheran church. After the Continuation War, the removal of the parish population was completed on 7 July, 1944. The the parish was ceded to the Russians on 22 September, 1944.
The Offspring of Markku Lehikoinen
The relocation places of the people of Soanlahti were in Central Ostrobothnia: Nivala, Haapavesi and other surrounding parishes. The Havuvaara villagers were mainly relocated in Kärsämäki, also the family of Erik Lehikoinen.
The people of Suistamo were relocated mainly in Ostrobothnia, North Karelia and Savonia. Kiuruvesi, Iisalmi and Pielavesi were the relocation places in Savonia. The Lehikoinens of Suistamo left their homes at noon on 12 July, 1944. At first, their relocation parish was Laihia and then Juuka. Later on they were dispersed across the country. Nowadays the Lehikoinens of Suistamo or their descendants can be found even outside the borders of Finland.
The Lehikoinen Family Reunion on 10 July, 2010.
The Family Reunion begins with the service in the Juuka Church, then it will continue in the Juuka Sports and Culture Hall.
Inaugural meeting of the Genealogical Society of the Family Lehikoinen
Presentation on the genealogy of the family
Other presentations by the members of the family
Introduction of the children of the family
Exhibition of the artists and craftsmen of the family
A more detailed timetable and program will be published on this page later.
Dear member of the family Lehikoinen,
please distribute info about our meeting and about these web pages!
All members of the family Lehikoinen are lovingly welcome to visit Juuka next summer!