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California Genealogy and History Archives

Sonoma County



After a life of twenty-five years as a sailor on the high seas Ole Hansen settled down to the life of the landsman in Sonoma county, Cal, and that he is a man of versatile ability needs no further verification than a glance at the ranch of which he is now the owner, everything about the place, crops, buildings, fences and implements, indicating that he is a man who understands the work in hand and is appreciative of details. A native of Denmark, he was born in 1840, near the town of Holbeck, where he imbibed a love of the sea, and when little more than a boy made his first ocean voyage. This was the beginning of a career which he was destined to follow for twenty-five years, during which time, in 1859, he came to the United States for the first time, landing at Port Townsend, Wash.

On a subsequent voyage Mr. Hansen came to Bodega Bay, July 4, 1861, when he saw Sonoma county for the first time. He then went on a trip to Denmark to visit his old home, from there going to the East Indies and finally back to England, touching all the principal points on the way. After a second trip to India, upon which he entered all the prominent ports, including Bombay, he returned to England and from there came to the United States, entering port at Boston, Mass. Re-embarking, he came to San Francisco by way of Cape Horn, arriving in 1867. During his service on the high seas covering four years and eight months, he had served on only three different ships. On January 11, 1868, he was on the schooner Moonlight when it was wrecked in Bodega Bay. Although he had made up his mind to settle in this part of the country, for three years after locating in San Francisco he continued his association with nautical affairs, first running on the sailer Wellfleet under Captain Rich, then on the Belle Creole, under Captain Knowles for two years, following this by a coasting trade service of about sixteen years. He then entered the revenue service as a detective for the government in 1875-76, and afterwards acted as special policeman in the city until 1877.

In the meantime, in 1874, Mr. Hansen had formed domestic ties by his marriage with Miss Mary Doland, and established his home in San Francisco, which continued to be their home until about 1880, when they came to Sonoma county and settled on the ranch which has ever since been their home. Here Mr. Hansen has two hundred and three acres of choice land, twenty acres of which is under cultivation to orchard, and the remainder is fine timber land. He also has eight head of live-stock. Mr. Hansen is one of the progressive and broad-minded men of his neighborhood, and aside from bearing an honored and respected name, has won recognition on his own merits as man, rancher and friend. Mrs. Hansen is the daughter of Edward Doland, a native of Ireland, who immigrated to the United States in 1856 and here rounded out his useful life. With her husband Mrs. Hansen enjoys the esteem and high regard of many friends and acquaintances.

History of Sonoma County, California
Biographical Sketches of The Leading Men and Women of the County Who Have Been Identified With Its Growth and Development from the Early Days to the Present
History By: Tom Gregory
Historic Record Company, Los Angeles, California (1911)

Transcribed by Peggy Hooper 2011