Welcome to Cape Ann Finns, a website that preserves information about Finnish families, their community, social and work lives from the mid-1800s to the present in Rockport and Gloucester, Massachusetts. Visitors are invited to contribute information by clicking Many, Finns, Many Stories, our archive (available early 2022). In addition, join CAF. Membership in our organization of over 270 gives full access to our online archive and space to record your family's heritage and that of other Finns. Use the Facebook icon above to join our group page, Cape Ann Finns.


Open to everyone, Cape Ann Finns is a not for profit, incorporated organization affiliated with Finlandia Foundation National. Rockport and Gloucester, Massachusetts, were home in the early twentieth century to 5000 Finnish immigrants whose imprint needs to be recorded by the last generation who knew them and the first generation of Finnish Americans that followed.

To preserve our Finnish heritage for future generations, members contribute primarily to an online record of all forms of media such as digitally recorded interviews, stories, memories, photographs, news articles, books, events, interest groups in order to create an accessible record of the Finnish families, their community life and work. CAF collaborates with established organizations to develop quality programs of interest to members, the public as they bring attention to our heritage locally, regionally, and nationally.

Directors of CAF for 2022 are Elana Pistenmaa Brink, Ann Thompson Freiss, Raymond Hildonen, Nikki Korkatti, Valerie Nelson, Fred Peterson, Robert Ranta, Barbara Greel Sachs, Dona Kaihlanen Shea, and Wayne Soini.


Membership provides:

  • Access to the Many Finns, Many Stories online archive of capeannfinns.com in which most of the heritage information is archived.
  • Automatic membership in Finlandia Foundation National, its quarterly newsletter,
  • Attendance at CAF-run group projects as participant or interested listener,
  • A minimum of two events annually at no cost,
  • A vote at the Annual Meeting.

Membership in Cape Ann Finns follows the calendar year. A $10 annual fee per household is due any time after January 1.

Join CAF now. Remit the fee when convenient.

To join, send your address, telephone number, email address, and Facebook name (if any):

by email to capeannfinns@gmail.com,
or call 202-420-8548,
or print, complete, and mail the application to:

Cape Ann Finns
P.O. Box 804
Rockport, MA 01966

Use the information above to contact CAF.


All Cape Ann Finns events are located by month in this calendar. CAF events and updates are shown in a dark gray / charcoal color. Or click the "Agenda" button for a list of events by month.

Explore events scheduled for other chapters as well. With sufficient interest, CAF might underwrite a portion of a van/bus rental to them.

Brought to you by Finlandia Foundation National Affiliate Events

Emigration Monument, Hanko, Finland, taking flight for North America

Immigration Monument, Bryant Park, Lake Worth, Florida, arriving in the U.S.

Rockport and Gloucester, Mass., home to 5000 Finns in early 20th century

Alexandra Varsamaki Seppala, right, and friends mending loomed riepumatto or rag rugs

Traditional sauvasauna (smoke sauna) of the Andrew Pistenmaa family, Lanesville, Gloucester, Mass.

Pelastaja Temperance Society, Wainola hall, Waino band members and families, Lanesville, Mass.

Valon Leimu (Glow of Light) Temperance Society members, Rockport, Mass.

The Finnish Workers Association’s Finn Hall, Lanesville, Gloucester, Mass.

Murtaja Socialist/workers hall, Squam Road, Rockport, Mass.

Finnish church (St. Paul Lutheran, Rockport, Mass.) Women’s Club

American Legion Band, Rockport, Mass.

The Finns’ Main Street , Finn Alley (Forest St., Rockport, Mass.) St. Paul Lutheran church on left, Valon Leimu far right, “Rentalas” or apartments, near right, for bachelor Finnish quarry workers

Finnish men dominated the qranite quarry labor force on Cape Ann.