Folkmother Else Christensen
1913 - 2005
Else Christensen was born in Esbjerg, Denmark in 1913. Although she was baptized Lutheran as a child she never felt a connection to Christianity. She even went as far as petitioning the government to declare her a non-Christian. She met her husband, Alex Aage Christensen in 1933. He was a woodcarver by trade. She worked as a handweaver until she injured her back and then moved on to teaching children and adults with dyslexia.
Alex introduced her to Anachro-Syndicalism, which is centered on the idea that power corrupts and any hierarchy that cannot be ethically justified must be dismantled. During the German occupation, they lived very well due to Alex’s woodworking. Since few had his talent, his services were in high demand by the wealthy. With the cash coming in they could buy whatever they wanted on the black market including guns and ammo. This caused a visit by the German police since citizens owning weapons was outlawed. She cooperated with them and handed over the pistols they asked for so they would not search the house and find other weapons, including a belt-fed machine gun. Near the end of the war Else and her husband were called in for questioning due to their political beliefs. She was held for less than 10 hours and Alex was sent to a concentration camp for six months, even though he was a member of the Danish National Socialist Party.
After the war, they bought a large sailboat and had intended to sail to Canada but the weather did not permit it. They ended up migrating to Canada in 1951. Living in Toronto, she worked as a waitress and struggled to learn the language. Eventually, she worked as an X-ray technician and assistant to the head of the hospital until she retired.
Else recalled being introduced to the writings of Australian Odinist Alexander Rud Mills in 1962 because it was the same year the book “Imperium” by Fransis Yockey was released. She started writing to Alexander Rud Mills until his passing and continued to correspond with his wife, Evelyn Price, until her passing. Else was heavily influenced by his ideas about reviving the worship of the ancient Norse deities. In 1968, Else and her husband started the Odinist Study Group with meetings in their home. A year later, they would form the Odinist Foundation and moved to Crystal River, Florida. She began touring North America to promote Odinism. Then in 1970, the Odinist Fellowship was born. She started reaching out to three prisons in Florida. She recalled that the study groups were small. She was the first to have Odinism recognized by any prison system. While working in the prison, she never had any misconception of her purpose. She recognized that most of the prisoners were rotten apples, but she held onto the fact that a small handful would come out and do great things. In 1971, the year Alex would pass away, is the same year the first publication of The Odinist was released. This publication took off like wildfire, especially within the prison system. She continued her building of Odinism and published The Odinist up until her death on May 4th, 2005.
Else Christensen was bestowed with the title Folk Mother due to her devotion to rebirthing Asatru after picking up the torch of Alexander Rud Mills. Her dedication to bringing people back to their ancestral roots, especially those in prison is something that should inspire us all.
The Asatru Folk Assembly holds a Day of Remembrance for the “Folkmother” on the 9th of May.
There is a memorial altar dedicated to her at Baldrshof, the third hof of the AFA.