BRANDON TOWNSHIP

 

(102-48)

 

 

 

     The township of Brandon, owing to its proximity to Sioux Falls, was one of the earliest settled townships in the county.  The soil is good, and streams of water at the time of the government survey in 1864, were flowing over twenty-seven sections of land.  The principal stream, the Big Sioux river, enters the township in the northwest portion of section 31, flowing thence northeasterly about three-fourths of a mile to the center of section 30, thence southeasterly through section 29, to the center of the south line of section 28, thence in a southwesterly course through section 33, leaving the township a little west of the center line of the section.  Three branches of Split Rock unite on the southwest quarter of section 10, and the stream from this point flows in a tortuous course through sections 15, 23, 26 and 35, leaving the township about three-fourths of a mile southeast from the village of Brandon, near the southeast corner of section 34.  The town line on the west was surveyed by W.J. Neeley in July, 1859, and the south line by Cortez Fessenden in July, 1862, and the north and east lines by M.K. Armstrong in October, 1864, at which time the town was sub-divided by the same surveyor.  It contains 23,007.60 acres of land.  It has one small village named after the township, located on the southwest quarter of section 34, which was platted by the Worthington & Sioux Falls R.R. Co.  The plat was filed on the 18th day of September, 1878, and comprised eight blocks divided into one hundred and thirty lots.  Brandon village is located on the Omaha railroad line and is 8.6 miles from Sioux Falls.  There is a post office at this place, which was established in 1878, and N.J. Ronlund was the first postmaster.  Since his resignation W.J. Jones, D.A. Wright, John T. Lee and Martin Brusveen have held this office, Mr. Brusveen being the present incumbent.  There is one elevator, two stores and a blacksmith shop in the village, also a Norwegian Lutheran church, which was built in 1883, and a school house built in 1885.  The first school was taught in the fall of 1873 by Celia Fauske, now Mrs. John Holden, in a sod house built for school purposes, which was located on the northeast corner of the southeast quarter of section 27.  There was only a dirt floor in this primitive school house during the first year it was occupied.  The whole structure cost nine dollars, and was paid for by subscription.

 

     On the southeast corner of section 22 there is a station on the Willmar & Sioux Falls railroad, now operated by the Great Northern R.R. Co., called Corson, named for Henry Corson, one of the first directors of this road.  It is eleven miles northeast of Sioux Falls.  May 12, 1888, E.A. Sherman filed a plat of Corson comprising ten block divided into eighty-five lots.  At the present time there is a post office, store and elevator at this place, and Ole E. Fauske is the postmaster and proprietor of the store.

 

     Nels Nelson Graff built the first house in the township in the fall of 1873.  It was built of logs with a shingle roof, and was located on the northwest quarter of section 35, where it is still standing and is a part of the building shown in the illustration of N.N. Graff’s residence. [page 809]  Mr. Graff settled in Brandon in May, 1870, and at that time only a few furrows of land had been plowed.  George Christianson constructed a dugout in 1869, and lived in it for awhile.  It was on the southeast quarter of section 33.  In the early seventies he moved into Split Rock and took a homestead, where he resided until his death a few years ago.  Mr. Graff lived in a dugout about three years before building his log house.

 

 

 

SPLIT ROCK NORWEGIAN EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH------This church was organized in the fall of 1871, with seven or eight families.  At the same time grounds for a cemetery were secured by the organization in the southwest corner of section 33 in Brandon.  The first person buried in this cemetery was Carl T. Lee, who died in the fall of 1871, aged 24 years, and the second one was a son of Nels Nelson Graff, 2 ½  years of age, who died the following year.  The church was organized by the Rev. E. Olson, of the Norwegian Synod.  The first regular minister was the Rev. O.O. Sando, who preached his first sermon in the fall of 1873, and remained in charge until the spring of 1880.  During the two years following, the Rev. Naseth, now professor in the Lutheran college at Decorah, Iowa, had charge of the congregation, and he was succeeded by the Rev. A.J. Lee, who remained until 1885, when the Rev. Olaf Stub became its pastor and remained until his death, which occurred in the fall of that year.  The Rev. Aanestad then had temporary charge of the church, until the Rev. Hans B. Thorgrimson assumed the duties of pastor in the summer of 1886, and remained until the spring of 1891.  The church then was without a pastor until the spring of 1892, when its present pastor, the Rev. N.N. Boe took charge.  The first trustees of the church were N.N. Graff, C.T. Clauson and G.O. Lillihaven.  Its first secretary was H.G. Hovdestad.  From 1875 to 1877, N.N. Graff was secretary, and since that time the office by successive elections has been held by John T. Lee.  In 1883 a church was built, and the money for its erection was raised by subscription among the members of the church.  The church building has a seating capacity of 300 people, and is well finished.  The tower of the church is seventy feet in height, and the whole work was done by members of the congregation under the direction of John T. Lee and N.N. Graff as a building committee.  The membership comprises about thirty-five families.

 

 

 

NORDRE SPLIT ROCK NORWEGIAN EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH----The members of this church organization reside principally in the northern part of Brandon.  In 1897 a neat and commodious church building was erected by T.O. Hokenstad on the northeast corner of section 11, at a cost of about fifteen hundred dollars, which amount was raised among the members.  The Rev. O.O. Sando was the first pastor of the congregation, and he was succeeded by A.J. Lee, and the Rev. H. Aanestad is the present pastor.  It is connected with the Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Synod of America.  There is a Ladies’ Aid society, and a Young People’s society, and the membership of the church comprises about eleven families.

 

 

 

BRANDON CO-OPERATIVE CREAMERY COMPANY----This company was organized in May, 1878.  C. Dillon was elected president, A.O. Risty vice president, M. Brusveen secretary, A. T. Ode treasurer, and John T. Lee director.  The building was erected a little west of the village of Brandon during the summer and fall of 1897, and opened for business on the 15th day of November of that year.  At first it received only 800 pounds of milk a day, but it has been constantly increasing, and some days it has received as high as 5,500 pounds.  This creamery is well conducted, and its products are shipped to New York, where the highest price is obtained for creamery butter.  The manufacture of the butter is in charge of Peter Anderson, who has had several years of experience in the creamery business.

 

 

 

 

 

BRANDON TOWNSHIP BOARD

 

 

 

     The first general election was held November 16, 1880, when the following persons were elected for the year 1881:  Supervisors, Nels N. Graff, Lewis Peterson, Jacob Keeler; clerk, Austin G. Risty; treasurer, T.I. Lathrop; assessor, J.E. Duganne; constables, Cash Crittenden, August Nelson; justices, N. Griffith, N.J. Ronlund; poundmaster, E. Erikson; overseers of highways, John Egge, Thomas Thorstenson, Albert Nelson.  January 17, 1881, board met at the house of Lewis Peterson, chairman of the board.  Bonds of officers were approved, and the township divided into four road districts.  The first warrant was issued to Wm. J. Jones in the sum of $30.

 

     1882:  Supervisors, Nels N. Graff, chairman, Jacob Keeler, John Egge; clerk, Austin G. Risty; treasurer, T.I. Lathrop; assessor, J.E. Duganne; justice, H.H. Barron; constable, Charles Hanson; poundmaster, Wm. J. Jones.

 

     1883:  Supervisors, John Egge, chairman, N. Griffith, Edgar Foster; clerk, Austin G. Risty; treasurer, N.J. Ronlund; assessor, J.E. Duganne; justices, Andrew A. Grinde, John Callender; constables, Tom Christopherson, John Anderson; poundmaster, E. Erikson.  Fifty-three votes were cast.

 

     1884: March 4, the annual town meeting was held in the village of Brandon, and the following officers were elected:  Supervisors, Edgar Foster, chairman, Nels Griffith, Tom Olson; clerk, A.G. Risty; assessor, J.E. Duganne; treasurer, N.J. Ronlund; justices, A.A. Grinde, John Callender; constables, Tom Christopherson, John Anderson.  June 23, Mr. Risty presented his resignation as clerk, which was accepted, and July 3, L.M. Estabrook was appointed clerk to fill the vacancy.

 

     1885:  Supervisors, J.W. Callender, chairman, N.N. Graff, Tom Olson; clerk, L.M. Estabrook; treasurer, N.J. Ronlund; assessor, J.E. Gorman.  June 16, board met in joint session with the town board of Edison, and agreed upon the division of the work on the town line roads.  Brandon township was assigned the second, fourth and sixth miles, commencing at the east end.

 

     1886:  Supervisors, Lewis Peterson, chairman, Nels Swenson, N.N. Graff; clerk, L.M. Estabrook; treasurer, N.J. Ronlund; assessor, Nels Ellefson; justices, W.J. Jones, Thomas Olson; constables, N.J. Ronlund, C.P. Halsted.

 

     1887: Supervisors, J.E. Duganne, chairman, L.M. Estabrook, Nels Swenson; clerk, J.A. Egge; treasurer, N.J. Ronlund; assessor, Nels Ellefson.

 

     1888:  Supervisors, I.N. Griffith, chairman, Ole J. Hegge, Tom Redwing; clerk, A.G. Risty; treasurer, J.A. Egge; assessor, J.E. Gorman; justices, L.M. Estabrook, J.E. Gorman; constables, Tom Christopherson, H.H. Barron.  March 6, it was voted by acclamation to raise the supervisor’s fee to $2 per day, and to have all town business moved to Corson as soon as a post office should be established at that place.  March 16, road overseers were ordered to open all roads in their districts on the lines where located as shown by the public records of the county and township.  July 12, a special town meeting was held for the purpose of voting on the question:  “Shall Brandon township be resurveyed?”  Fifty-six votes were cast, of which seventeen were in the affirmative, and thirty-nine in the negative.

 

     1889: Supervisors, Fred Messner, chairman, Tom Christopherson, I.N. Griffith; clerk, A.G. Risty; treasurer, John Egge; assessor, Nels Ellefson; constable, Nels Wahlstrom.  October 26, Jonas Carlson acted as chairman of the board, to which office he had been appointed.

 

     1890: Supervisors, Nels Swenson, chairman, Tom Christopherson, A.O. Risty; clerk, A.G. Risty; treasurer, John Egge; assessor, Nels Ellefson; justices, L.M. Estabrook, Ellick Griffith; constables, Ole Nelson, Charles Johnson.

 

     1891: Supervisors, N.N. Graff, chairman, John Carlson, Tom Olson; clerk, L.M. Estabrook; treasurer, John Egge; assessor, Nels Ellefson.  The reports of the auditors and treasurer showed that the township was entirely out of debt, and there was a balance in the treasury of $349.59.

 

     1892:  Supervisors, N.N. Graff, chairman, A.G. Risty, Nels Swenson; clerk, John T. Lee; treasurer, T.T. Redwing; assessor, Thomas Olson; justices, A.R. Griffith, L.M. Estabrook; constables, Chris. Christopherson, John Uhley.  June 28, a special town meeting was held to consider the question of resurvey.  A vote was taken which resulted in 57 for, and 14 against the resurvey.  September 24, a special town meeting was held to determine by ballot whether a special tax should be levied to defray the expenses of resurveying the township, the sum required being $400.  The vote was 32 for and 6 against special tax.  February 28, 1893, the business of the fiscal year was settled, and the treasurer’s report showed that $1,054.77 had been received, and $438.27 expended, leaving a balance on hand of $616.50.

 

     1893: Supervisors, John Egge, chairman, N.N. Graff, Nels Swenson; clerk, Ole Fauske; treasurer, Tom T. Redwing; assessor A.G. Risty; justices, L.M. Estabrook, I.N. Griffith; constables, John Uhley, C. Christopherson.  At the annual town meeting March 7, it was resolved that “uniform stones be put on section and quarter section corners, the size to be that of the larger paving blocks, when the resurvey is made.”  June 17, the board procured the services of John Langness for resurveying the township, and Nels Graff was awarded the contract for hauling stone to be used as corner marks.  September 8, Jonas Carlson was appointed supervisor to fill vacancy caused by the death of Nels Swenson.  September 15, a motion was carried for changing the lines according to the new survey as far as practicable during the fall.

 

     1894:  Supervisors, John A. Egge, chairman, N.N. Graff, John Carlson; clerk, O.E. Fauske; treasurer, T.O. Christopherson; assessor, Thomas Olson.

 

     1895: Supervisors, A.G. Risty, chairman, L.A. Harum, P.J. Swenson; clerk, O.E. Fauske; treasurer, T.O. Christopherson; assessor, T.O. Hokenstad.

 

     1896: Supervisors, A.G. Risty, chairman, P.J. Swenson, A.P. Ode; clerk, O.E. Fauske; treasurer, J.E. Holden; assessor, T.O. Hokenstad.

 

     1897: Supervisors, I. N. Griffith, chairman, A.O. Risty, Ole Nelson; clerk, O.E. Fauske; treasurer, J.E. Holden; assessor, T.O. Hokenstad.

 

     1898: Supervisors, A.O. Risty, chairman, A. Anderson, H.J. Heggen; clerk, O.E. Fauske; treasurer, J.A. Egge; assessor, T.O. Hokenstad.

 

     1899: Supervisors, A.O. Risty, chairman, A. Anderson, C. Dillon; clerk, O.E. Fauske; treasurer, J.A. Egge; assessor, T.O. Hokenstad.

 

 

 

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES

 

 

 

     ANDERSON, JOHN L., is a native of Halland, Sweden, and was born March 26, 1840.  He emigrated to the United States in 1871, and lived in Iowa two years; came from there to Dakota in 1873, and bought the northeast quarter of section 24 in Brandon, where he still resides, and has a good farm.

 

 

 

     ANDERSON, PETER, was born on a farm in Denmark, on the 26th day of December, 1864, and spent his early years on the farm.  In 1890, he emigrated to this country, and resided in Cleveland, Ohio, one year.  He went from there to Minnesota, and engaged in the creamery business for two years, and then removed to South Dakota, where he has since been in charge of creameries at different places.  He is now the manager of the creamery at Brandon, and gives excellent satisfaction to his employers.

 

 

 

    BARRON, HIRAM H., was born in the town of Locke, Cayuga county, New York, October 21, 1849.  When only five years of age removed with his parents to Wisconsin, where he remained until 1874, when he came to Dakota and settled in this county on his present place the southeast quarter of section 5 in Brandon which is now a good farm.  He served in Company K, 46th Wisconsin during the war of the rebellion, and has filled various town offices.  In 1892, he was nominated on the Democratic ticket for the legislature.  He is an enterprising farmer and a good citizen.

 

 

 

    BRUSVEEN, MARTIN, was born at Toten, Norway, on the 23d day of September, 1867, and received a high school education.  In 1886, he emigrated to the United States, and worked on the railroads in Iowa, Minnesota and Dakota, for several years.  In 1894, he settled at Brandon village, and engaged in the mercantile business with John T. Lee, under the firm name of Lee & Brusveen, and they continued doing business until 1896, since which time Mr. Brusveen has conducted the business alone.  He was appointed postmaster in July, 1896, which position he still holds, and has been justice of the peace ever since he came to Brandon.  He is a good citizen and is well liked.

 

 

 

    CARLSON, JOHN, was born in Umea, Sweden, August 6, 1844.  He came to the United States in 1868, and lived in Illinois until 1873, when he removed to Dakota, arriving in this county on the 18th day of April, of that year.  He took up a homestead in section 17 in Brandon, and purchased considerable land in the same township.  He resided on his homestead until his decease, which occurred on the 2d day of March, 1895.  He was a zealous Republican, and took great interest in the welfare of his town; was one of the supervisors of the town board for several years, and was a good farmer and a good citizen.

 

 

 

     CHRISTOPHERSON, OLE, is a venerable old settler of Minnehaha county.  He was born in Norway on the 19th day of June, 1828, and came to the United States in 1872.  He arrived in Dakota on the 25thday of May of that year, and during the following fall took up a homestead on the northeast quarter of section 26, and a tree claim in the same section, in Brandon, where he still resides.  He is a good farmer, and a good citizen.

 

 

 

     CHRISTOPHERSON, TOM, was born near Christiania, Norway, on the 3d day of January, 1860.  In 1872 he emigrated with his parents to Dakota, and remained a few months in Canton, but during the fall of that year his father Ole located on section 26, in Brandon.  The subject of this sketch has now a good farm in the same section, and is a good farmer and a good citizen.  He has held school district and town offices.

 

 

 

     DILLON, CORNELIUS S., was born in Delaware county, Iowa, February 11, 1846, and remained on the farm on which he was born for twenty-six years.  He then removed to Sac City, Iowa, and engaged in farming for one year; then engaged in the hardware business at Newell, Buena Vista county, four years, and then engaged in the same business at Alton, Sioux county, Iowa, until he removed to Sioux Falls, South Dakota, in the fall of 1888, and engaged in the shipping of livestock in addition to the hardware business. He was a resident of Valley Springs two years where he was connected with the flour mills.  In 1895 he returned to his first occupation, and engaged in farming and stock raising about one mile from the village of Brandon, where he has a fine farm, and resides at this writing.  He is an energetic business man, and to him more than all others, the people of Brandon are indebted for their creamery, of which corporation he is the president.  He is a good citizen and well liked by his neighbors.

 

 

 

     EGGE, JOHN A., is a native of Norway, and was born April 22, 1855.  In 1869 he emigrated to the Unites States, and lived in Wisconsin until the fall of 1871, when he became a resident of this county.  His father, Andrew Johnson, took up as a homestead the northwest quarter of section 11, in Brandon, and at his death in 1878 Mr. Egge became the owner of the place, and now resides there and has one of the finest farms in the county.  In the spring of 1892 he bought some land in section 36, in Edison, and he also owns considerable land in section 2, in Brandon.  He is a bright and enterprising farmer, and takes great interest in public affairs; he has been chairman and clerk of the town board, treasurer four years, and school clerk ten years.  He was elected to the house of representatives in 1894, and is a first-class citizen.

 

 

 

    ERICKSON, ERICK, is a native of Sweden, and was born September 27, 1849.  He emigrated to the United States in 1871, and lived in Illinois until 1873, when he removed to this county.  He took up as a homestead the northwest quarter of section 21, in Brandon, where he still resides and has a well improved farm.  He also owns 40 acres of section 16, in the same town.  He has frequently been a delegate to political conventions, has held several town offices, and is an active promoter of the interests of his town.

 

 

 

     ERICKSON, JOHN, a son-in-law of Erik Swenson, is the owner of the west half of section 4, in Brandon.  He resides on the southeast quarter and has a fine farm and is a good citizen.

 

 

 

     ERICKSON, JONAS, was born in Sweden, October 24, 1854.  He emigrated to England, where he remained one year, and then came to this country and settled in Ohio for a short time.  In April, 1873, he came to this county and settled on section 20 in Brandon.  He has added to his original quarter section, forty acres of section 16.  He is an industrious, honest farmer, and a good citizen.

 

 

 

     FAUSKE, OLE E., was born in Norway, February 21, 1861.  He emigrated to this country with his parents in 1862, and lived in Iowa until 1873, when they removed to Dakota and settled in this county.  After having become of age the subject of this sketch purchased a quarter section of land in section 10, in Edison, but sold it in April, 1893, to W.M. Boyle.  Mr. Fauske is now engaged in the mercantile business at Corson, where he is the postmaster.  He is clerk of the town board and is a good business man and a respected citizen.

 

 

 

     GRAFF, NELS NELSON, was born in Sweden, December 21, 1842, and emigrated to the United States in 1869.  He resided in Iowa a little less than a year, and settled in Brandon, in May, 1870.  He was the first actual settler of that township, and has resided there longer than any other person.  He took up as a homestead the north half and the southeast quarter of the northwest quarter, and the southwest quarter of the northeast quarter of section 35, and as a timber claim the southwest quarter of the northwest quarter of the same section, and has since bought several hundred acres of land in sections 25, 26 and 36.  He lived with his family in a dugout the first three years, and then built a log house, the first building in Brandon, which is still in a good state of preservation, and makes a part of his present residence.  Since the organization of the township he has held some prominent town office nearly every year, and during the years 1891-2-3 was chairman of the town board of supervisors.  He has also held offices in his school district, has frequently been sent as a delegate to the county conventions, and was a delegate to the Republican state convention at Chamberlain in 1892.  Mr. Graff is a prosperous farmer, a good neighbor, and an enterprising, upright citizen.  His son Martin lives on a fine farm in the northeast quarter of section 25, and Adolph, another son, is engaged in farming on the southeast quarter of section 26, and both are industrious farmers and good citizens.  The younger sons, NeElian and EnNelus, who are twin brothers, reside with their father.

 

 

 

    GRIFFITH, I.N., was born in Knox county, Ohio, January 20, 1841.  When fifteen years of age he removed to Iowa, and lived there until 1873, when he settled in this county.  He took up as a homestead the northeast quarter of section 6, where he still resides and has a good farm.  He has always taken an active part in town affairs, has been a member of the town board several terms, one year as chairman, and a member of the school board for about twenty years.  He says he has a pretty good family of children, there being one boy and six girls, one of them weighing two hundred and eighteen pounds.  Mr. Griffith is an enterprising farmer, and a good citizen.

 

 

 

    GUSARSON, PETER A., was born in the southern part of Sweden, July 14, 1841.  He emigrated to the United States and resided in Illinois for some time before coming to this county in March, 1883.  He bought the north half of the northeast quarter, and the north half of the northwest quarter of section 17 in Brandon for $1,000, where he still resides and has a well improved farm.  He is an industrious good farmer, and has held the office of school district director three years.

 

 

 

     HAKANSON, NATHANIEL, is a native of Westerbotten, Sweden, and was born January 30, 1853.  He came to the United States in 1872, and engaged in farming five years in Illinois, and from there removed to Dakota in 1877, and located in this county.  He took up the northeast quarter of section 21 in Brandon, where he still resides, and has a good farm.  He has been school director three years, and treasurer seven years, and is one of the enterprising citizens of Brandon.

 

 

 

    HALSTEDT, C.P., is a native of Sweden, and was born September 18, 1830.  He emigrated to the United States in 1868, and resided in Iowa until 1873, when he removed to this county.  He took up as a homestead the southwest quarter of section 12, in Brandon, where he still resides, and has a fine farm, under a high state of cultivation.  He also secured by pre-emption the southeast quarter of section 2 in the same town, but disposed of it.  He has held the office of constable for two years, is a good citizen and a good farmer.

 

 

 

     HANSON, CARL FREDRIK, was born in Lapland, Sweden, in 1837, and lived there until he was thirty years old.  At Yuletide they had only two hours of daylight in the twenty-four, while at midsummer it was never dark, only an hour or two of twilight, and the midnight sun could be seen.  He thinks Dakota is as superior to Lapland as day is to night, and after having been three years in England and two in Ohio, he came to Dakota and to this county in the spring of 1873, and found that this was just the place for him.  He entered as a homestead the northwest quarter and the east half of the southwest quarter of section 18, in Brandon, where he still lives.  He is a good farmer and a good citizen.

 

 

 

     HEDSTROM, JACOB, was born in Sweden, August 17, 1833.  He emigrated to the United States and lived in Illinois until he removed to Dakota in March, 1874, arriving in this count y on the 15th of that month. He secured a homestead in section 10 and 15 in Brandon, where he has since resided.  He has been elected to school offices, and is a good citizen.  His son Eddie is a promising young man and an efficient teacher and esteemed citizen.

 

 

 

    HEGGEN, HALVOR J., was born near Christiania, Norway, February 23, 1855.  He was raised on a farm, and received a common school education.  In 1868 he emigrated with his parents to the United States and located in Freeborn county, Minnesota, where they remained until in 1872, when they removed to Dakota.  His father, J.O. Heggen, took up a homestead in section 11 and 14, in Brandon, and a few years later the subject of this sketch took up a homestead adjoining his father’s on the east, in the same sections, to which he has added by purchase, and now has a good farm of 200 acres of his own.  He is at the present time one of the supervisors of the town board.  His two brothers, Ole and Gilbert, are also engaged in farming—Ole, the old homestead and a quarter section adjoining on the west side, and Gilbert, a farm about a mile father north.  They are all enterprising framers and good citizens.

 

 

 

     HOFF, GILBERT HANSON, was born in Norway, September 14, 1827, and came to the United States in 1868, and lived in Wisconsin two years.  In 1870 he removed to Dakota and resided in Lincoln county until 1872, when he moved to this county and took up as a homestead 40 acres of section 7, in Red Rock, and 120 acres of section 12, in Brandon, and a tree claim in section 7, in Red Rock.  He resided on his farm engaged in farming until 1892, when he moved into the city of Sioux Falls, leaving his farms in charge of his sons, Nels, John and Jens.  While residing in Brandon, Mr. Hanson was a school treasurer for about five years. He was a good farmer and a good citizen.  He died in Sioux Falls, March 14, 1897.

 

 

 

    HOKENSTAD, THOMAS OLSON, of Brandon, has been living in Dakota since 1871, but did not settle in this county until 1873, when he took up a homestead in sections 1 and 12 in Brandon, where he still resides and has a fine farm.  He also secured a tree claim in the same section, and has since purchased 160 acres in section 36, in Edison.  He built some of the first houses in Sioux Falls and also the Norde Split Rock Lutheran church in Brandon.  He is an enterprising citizen, and has held several township offices; was one of the organizers of school district No. 7, director of the school board six years, and afterwards clerk of the same six years.  He was born in Norway July 20, 1842, emigrated to the United States in 1868, and lived in Wisconsin until he settled in this state.  His family consists of his wife, seven boys and one girl.

 

 

 

     HOKENSTAD, O.T., the oldest son of T.O. Hokenstad was born in Green county, Wisconsin, April 12, 1870; came to this county with his parents, and received his early education in the district schools of Brandon, and later took a course in the Normal school and Business college at Sioux Falls.  He is traveling salesman for several machine companies, is an enterprising young man, and a good citizen.

 

 

 

     HULBURT, HENDERSON, was born in Mercer county, Pa., June 17, 1844, and lived on a farm until he enlisted in the war of the rebellion in 1861.  He was a member of Company G, 100th Pennsylvania Veteran Volunteers, four years and one month.  During the second fight at Bull Run he was quite seriously wounded.  After the war he went to Kansas and engaged in farming for a few years.  In 1883, he removed to Worthington, Minnesota, and since then has been in the employ of the Omaha Railroad Company, and is now located at Brandon.  He is a good citizen.

 

 

 

     JOHNSON, CHARLES, is a native of Sweden and was born in 1851.  He emigrated to the United States and lived in Illinois till 1873, when he came to Dakota and settled in this county, where he has since remained.  He took up a homestead and tree claim in section 17, in Brandon, and has a good farm.  He was constable in 1890-1 and clerk of the school board in district No. 11, in 1891-2, and is an enterprising, good citizen.

 

 

 

    JONES, WILLIAM J., is a native of Wales, Great Britain, and was born December 14, 1838.  When only four years of age he became a resident of the United States, and lived in Wisconsin fifteen years; from there he went to Iowa.  In September, 1861, he mustered in as volunteer of the 1st Nebraska Cavalry and remained in active service until July 1, 1866.  His career since coming to Dakota is best shown by his own words, copied from the Valley Springs Vidette March 4, 1893, where he says:  “I came to this section in the spring of 1873.  I homesteaded 160 acres, and took up a tree claim of 160; and later obtained by purchase 720 acres more—1040 acres in all.  Have 700 acres under fence, with three good dwelling houses, barns and outbuildings on the same.  With the exception of the grasshopper year, I have always had good crops.  What I own, I have accumulated right here in Minnehaha county.”  In 1878, he was elected county commissioner and served in that capacity for three years.  He resides on the northeast quarter of section 34, in Brandon, and is an enterprising and highly respected citizen.  His son Elbert O. Jones is one of the promising young lawyers of Sioux Falls, and is practicing law in partnership with B.C. Matthews.

 

 

 

     LATHROP, W.L., was born in Illinois, October 18, 1863.  He removed with his parents to Michigan, where he resided for about four years, and in the spring of 1873, located in this county. His father, T.I. Lathrop, secured 240 acres of land by homestead and tree-claim filings in section 31 in Brandon, on which he erected fine farm buildings, and engaged in extensive farming until his death, which occurred a few years ago, when the subject of this sketch took charge of the farm.  He is a good farmer and a good citizen.

 

 

 

     LEE, JOHN T., was born in Christiania, Norway, February 11, 1855, and came to the United States with his parents in 1867.  They resided in Iowa three years, and removed to this county in June, 1870.  When twenty-one years of age the subject of this sketch purchased a farm of 160 acres in section 2 and 3, and also 80 acres in section 1, in Split Rock, and engaged in farming until 1890, when he removed to Brandon, where he engaged in the mercantile business until 1896.  While a resident of Split Rock he was town clerk two years and assessor seven years.  After coming to Brandon he was appointed postmaster, which position he held while engaged in trade.  In 1891 he was elected county commissioner from his district, and re-elected in 1894-7, and has been chairman of the county board since January, 1893.  He is at this writing engaged in buying grain at Brandon, and carrying on his farm in Split Rock.  He is quite active in political matters, and an energetic, public-spirited citizen.  He is true to his friends and a companionable, all-around good fellow.

 

 

 

     LILLIHAVEN, GUNDER OLSON, one of the first settlers of Brandon, was born in Norway in 1835.  He lived in Illinois and Iowa before he came to this county in June, 1870, when he took up as a homestead the southeast quarter of section 29 in Brandon, where he and his wife still reside and have a good farm.

 

 

 

     NELSON, OLE, was born in Wermland, Sweden, December 29, 1861, and came to this country with his parents, stopping with them in Illinois; and after their coming to this county has assisted his father, Nels Olson, in taking care of the farm in sections 26 and 27, in Brandon, where he still resides with his family.  He has been in Brandon, where he still resides with his family.  He has been director of the school board several years, and was one of the supervisors of the town board in 1897; is a good farmer and a good citizen.

 

 

 

     NELSON, ENGEBRET, was born in Bergen, Norway, April 12, 1835.  He emigrated to the United States in 1864, lived in Wisconsin four years, in Iowa six years, and came to Dakota in 1874, when he took up his present homestead in sections 33 and 34 in Brandon, which is now a good farm.  He is an industrious farmer and a good citizen.

 

 

 

     NORDSTROM, JOHN S., has been a well-known resident of this county since 1874, when he came here from Illinois, where he had lived since coming to the United States in 1871.  He was born October 19, 1845, in Sweden.  He lives on his homestead, the northeast quarter of section 19 in Brandon, and has a good farm.  He has been a member of the school board, is a thrifty farmer and a good citizen.

 

 

 

     OLSON, ALLEN, was born in Norway, September 24, 1843.  He came to the United States July 3, 1869, and located in Iowa.  Six years later he removed to Dakota, and settled in this county on the 20th of October, 1875, taking up as a homestead the south half of the northwest quarter and the north half of the southwest quarter of section 24 in Brandon, where he still resides, and has a well improved farm and a large live stock.  He has been director of the school board.

 

 

 

     OLSON, NELS, was born in Wermland, Sweden, December 15, 1812.  He emigrated to the United States in 1870, and lived in Illinois two years.  In 1872 he removed to Dakota and settled in this county, taking up a homestead in section 26 and 27 in Brandon, where he still resides.  He also took up a tree claim, but disposed of it to one of his sons.  He has several well-to-do sons in this county who have good farms and are enterprising, good citizens; one of them, Nels Nelson Graff, being the first permanent settler in Brandon township.

 

 

 

    OLSON, O.D.J., was born in Mora, Sweden, October 7, 1834.  He lived in Illinois and Iowa before he settled in Dakota in 1872.  He came first to Sioux Falls, then a small village, but shortly after took up as a homestead the south half of the southeast quarter of section 2, and the north half of the northeast quarter of section 11, in Brandon, where he now lives.  He has a good farm and is a good citizen.

 

 

 

     PETERSON, LEWIS, is a native of Sweden, and was born December 16, 1841.  He emigrated to the United States in 1871, lived in Michigan a short time, then at Lockport, Ill., and came to Sioux Falls on the 23d day of April, 1873, together with sixteen other persons, also from Lockport, who all settled in Brandon.  On the first day of May, following, he made a homestead filing on the northeast quarter of section 10, and in March, 1874, he took up as a tree claim the northwest quarter of the same section.  In 1874 he built a stone house on his homestead, which was the first in the county outside of the city of Sioux Falls, and can still be seen on the farm, although it is no longer used as a residence, there being now a large two-story frame house for that purpose.  Mr. Peterson has been a very industrious man, and has one of the best improved farms in the county, having not less than thirty acres of trees, all set out by himself, a very fine orchard, and substantial buildings.  In addition to caring for his farm he has done considerable work as a stone mason.  He was foreman of the stone work when the penitentiary was erected, has built three stone dams across the Sioux river, and the abutments and piers for the Tenth street bridge in Sioux Falls, and several other large jobs of work in this line. Mr. Peterson has been chairman of the town board in Brandon two years, is one of the well fixed farmers of that township, and is a good neighbor and citizen.

 

 

 

    PETERSON, NELS, is another Swedish farmer who has lived in the county since 1883.  He has a good farm on the south half of the northwest quarter of section 36, where he resides engaged in farming.  He was born in 1836.

 

 

 

     RISTY, GULLICK O., one of the first settlers of Brandon, is a native of Norway, and was born October 14, 1832.  He emigrated to the United States, lived in Iowa for some time, and came to Dakota in 1870. At that time he took up a homestead and pre-emption in sections 32 and 33 in Brandon, to which he has since added by purchase several hundred acres of land, and has a very fine farm.  Mr. Risty is one of prosperous, reliable farmers of the county, and is a good citizen.

 

 

 

     RISTY, A.G., was born in Norway, in 1855, and emigrated to this country with his father Gullick O. Risty, and settled in Brandon.  He owns several hundred acres of land, and resides on the southwest quarter of section 33, and has a good farm with more than ordinary improvements.  He has held various town offices, and in November, 1896, was elected to the House of Representatives, and re-elected in 1898.  He is highly esteemed as a neighbor and citizen.

 

 

 

     SORENSON, IVER, was born in Norway, December 18, 1843.  He came to the United States in 1869 and lived in Wisconsin until 1874, when he came to this county and filed a pre-emption on the north half of the southwest quarter and the north half of the southeast quarter of section 1, in Brandon.  It is now a well cultivated farm, and he is still living there with his family.

 

 

 

     STUDEEN, PETER, a native of Sweden, was born in 1835.  He emigrated to the United States and lived in Missouri until he came to Dakota and settled in this county in 1877.  He filed a homestead on the southeast quarter and the southwest quarter of the northeast quarter of section 12, in Brandon, where he has since resided.  He is an industrious and contented farmer, and a good citizen.

 

 

 

     SWENSON, ERIK, is a native of Sweden, and was born June 8, 1819.  He emigrated to the United States in 1862, and lived in California, Mississippi and Illinois until in 1876, when he settled down in Dakota, and has been a well known resident of this county ever since.  He took up the southwest quarter of section 4, in Brandon, where he resides.  He also owns lots and houses on First and Second avenues in the city of Sioux Falls.

 

 

 

     SWENSON, CHARLES, a son of Erik Swenson, was born June 20, 1856.  He took up as a homestead the west half of the southwest quarter of section 15, in Brandon, but at the present writing lives with his father on section 4.

 

 

 

     SWENSON, NELS, is a native of Sweden, and was born in 1845.  He emigrated to the United States, and lived in Iowa, Missouri and Kansas before he came to Dakota in 1873.  At that time he entered a homestead and pre-emption on the south half of section 9, in Brandon, where he resided until in 1893, when he was accidentally killed.  He held the office of town supervisor, and was a good citizen.

 

 

 

     SWENSON, PETER J., was born in Sweden, June 4, 1847.  After his coming to this country in 1869 he lived in Illinois and Mississippi, and came to Minnehaha county March 28, 1874.  He took up as a homestead the northeast quarter of section 4 in Brandon, and the south half of the southeast quarter of section 33 in Edison.  He was one of the supervisors of the town board in Brandon in 1895, is a thrifty, industrious farmer, and a good citizen.

 

 

 

     THORESON, BORGER, was born in Norway, August 24, 1861, and came to the Unites States with his parents in 1868, and located in Fillmore county, Minnesota.  In 1873 they removed from there to Dakota, and took up as a homestead the southeast quarter of section 14 in Brandon, to which the subject of this sketch has added by purchase forty acres adjoining, and has a good farm.  He has held the office of school treasurer, is an enterprising, intelligent farmer, and a good citizen.

 

 

 

     VALGREN, HANS PETER, is a native of Halland, Sweden, and was born on the 28th day of May, 1843.  He engaged in farming for ten years in his native country, and emigrated to the United States in 1882, and settled in Minnehaha county.  He bought a farm, on which he resided until 1892, when he sold it, and bought the southeast quarter of section 13 in Brandon, where he has since resided, and has a good farm.  He has been one of the trustees of the Swedish Lutheran church for three years, and has been a director of the school board for the same length of time.  His son is one of the competent teachers in Brandon township, and a young man of good address and promising future.  They are both public-spirited men, and good and respected citizen.

 

 

 

     WAHLSTROM, NELS, is a native of Sweden, and was born September 21, 1853.  In 1878 he came to the United States, and settled in Minnehaha county.  He has a good farm on the northeast quarter of section 9 in Brandon, where he resides with his family, engaged in farming.  He formerly had a pre-emption consisting of eighty acres in Edison, but sold it.  He is an industrious, thrifty farmer, and a respected citizen.

 

 

 

     WILSON, LARS, came to the United States in 1868, and resided in Illinois and Iowa until 1883, when he came to Dakota and settled in this county.  He took up as a homestead the northeast quarter of section 13 in Brandon, where he has since resided and has a good farm.  He also owns about 400 acres of land in section 11, 14, and 23, in the same township.  He is an industrious farmer, an enterprising citizen, and is a native of Sweden where he was born May 30, 1833.

 

 

 

 

   
 

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