Carl & Minnie Olson

Carl M. Olson was born in Norway, and came to the United States as a young man. His boat fare across the ocean cost $35, which was paid for by his brother in Minnesota. Carl's first job was on his brother's farm, where he worked long enough to repay his debt, and where he became familiar with the language.


The Great Northern Railroad was being built, so Carl got a job helping to build the grade on which the tracks would be laid. He was impressed by the flat prairie land around Norwich, so when his work with the railroad was completed, he filed a homestead claim near Norwich, McHenry County, in 1900.

He became an American citizen, and proved up his homestead on the same day in 1905.

He married Minnie Olson, the youngest daughter of Ingrid and Anders Olson. They lived on the homestead, except for six years when they farmed land south of Granville, on some land that Carl had purchased.

Carl and Minnie Olson had seven children.

Carl had learned the meat cutting trade in Norway, so when hard times came, he butchered cattle and sold meat to add to the family income. For a time, he ran a butcher shop in Norwich. He also furnished freshly butchered meat for the cook cars, which were part of every threshing outfit. In later years, he butchered meats for markets in Minot.

Carl didn't retire from the farm until he was seventy-eight, at which time he and Minnie moved to Minot. When he died at the age of eighty-five, he was buried in the Norwich cemetery, only a few miles from the homestead that he loved.

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