of Mitchell and Worth Counties, Iowa
J. F. Clyde and H. A. Dwelle, Editors. Volume II. Chicago:
S. J. Clarke Pub. Co., 1918.
Biographies submitted by Gordon Felland.
L. McEnelly, operator of the Machine Tile Press of Fertile and thus
a very active factor in industrial circles of that city, was born in
Fertile township on the 1st of September, 1892, a son of George and
Jane (Booth) McEnelly. The father is a native of Vermont, while the
mother's birth occurred near Mineral Point, Wisconsin. In young manhood
George McEnelly left the Green Mountain state and removed westward to
Iowa, settling in Fertile township, Worth county, where he purchased
a tract of land of one hundred and sixty acres. The district was then
wild and unimproved and all the new settlers had to face the hardships
and privations of pioneer life. Mr. McEnelly made investment in one
hundred and sixty acres of prairie land, on which he built a log house.
Not a furrow had been turned nor an improvement made upon the place,
but with characteristic energy he began the development of the fields.
His plowing was done with oxen in the early days but as the years passed
he added all modern equipment and improvements to his farm, which he
continued to operate until 1902. He then bought a small farm in Fertile
township and practically retired from active business, having just enough
land to engage his attention when he feels in the mood for work. He
has now reached the age of seventy-three years, while his wife is sixty-eight
years of age. He gives his political allegiance to the Republican party,
of which he has ever been an earnest supporter. His religious faith
is that of the Christian church and fraternally he is connected with
the Knights of Pythias. He has been called upon to serve in various
positions of public honor and trust. He held the office of deputy sheriff
of Worth county and at all times he has stood for progressiveness in
public affairs. During the period of the Civil war he was on a hospital
boat in the United States service on the Allegheny and Mississippi rivers.
His wife came to Iowa in early girlhood with her parents, who settled
in Cerro Gordo county, where Mr. Booth purchased farmland, which he
continued to cultivate for a number of years. He then sold that property
and removed to Fertile township, Worth county, spending his remaining
days in the home of Mr. and Mrs. George McEnelly.
Upon the old homestead
farm in Fertile township Clifford L. McEnelly remained through the period
of his boyhood and youth and early became familiar with all phases of
farm life and work, but he did not desire to make agriculture his life
occupation and on leaving home entered the employ of the Fertile Clay
& Peat Company of Fertile, with which he remained for three years.
He afterward again spent some time on the home farm and later became
associated with the Hegney Cement & Tile Company. He has since remained
with that firm and is now operator of the machine tile press, thus filling
an important and responsible position.
In 1917 Mr. McEnelly
was united in marriage to Miss Hazel Calhoun, a daughter of Oren and
Celia (Halverson) Calhoun. Mrs. McEnelly was born in Miller, Iowa, where
her parents had settled in pioneer times. Later they removed to Clear
Lake, where Mr. Calhoun engaged in the implement business, and at a
subsequent date he took up his abode in Fertile township, Worth county,
where he is now cultivating a farm. Mr. and Mrs. McEnelly are well known
young people of Fertile and enjoy the warm regard of those who know
them, while the hospitality of the best homes of the community is freely
accorded them. Mr. McEnelly votes with the Republican party but has
never been an office seeker, preferring to concentrate his efforts and
attention upon other interests.
A valuable farm
property of two hundred acres pays tribute to the care and labor bestowed
upon it by the owner, Andrew H. Mehus, who has always resided upon this
place, which is situated on section 15, Hartland township, Worth county.
He was born upon the farm March 13, 1865, his parents being Hans and
Gunver (Tromo) Mehus, who were natives of Norway, both born in the year
1847. The father was brought to the United States by his parents on
a sailing vessel in 1857, at which time the family home was established
in Rock Prairie, Wisconsin, where they remained for two years. On the
expiration of that period they came to Iowa, settling in Hartland township,
Worth county, where they purchased a farm of one hundred and sixty acres
situated on section 15, Hartland township. This is the property on which
Andrew H. Mehus still resides. The family lived for a time in a log
house which had been built ere the farm came into possession of the
grandparents of the present owner. The grandmother died upon this place
and the grandfather afterward became a resident of North Dakota, where
he remained to the time of his demise. The old homestead was purchased
by Hans Mehus, who thus came into possession of one hundred and sixty
acres of land, to which he added from time to time as his financial
resources increased until within the boundaries of his farm there was
to be found four hundred and forty acres of rich and valuable land.
He also further invested in farm property, owning an extensive tract
in Bigstone county, Minnesota. He likewise became the owner of city
property in Northwood and thus from his realty holdings derives a most
gratifying annual income. He is now living retired, having put aside
the active work of the fields to enjoy in well earned rest the fruits
of his former toil. He makes his home with his daughter, Mrs. 0. H.
Thompson, on a farm on section 25, Hartland township, and has reached
the age of seventy years. His wife passed away in March, 1914.
Andrew H. Mehus
spent his youthful days upon the home farm and acquired a district school
education. When his textbooks were put aside he continued to aid in
the work of the fields and thus was well qualified by practical training
for the work which he has chosen as a life occupation. Eventually he
began farming on his own account and now has two hundred acres of valuable
and productive land, from which he annually gathers rich harvests. His
farm is thoroughly modern in its equipment and there are fine frame
buildings upon the place. In the rear of an attractive residence stand
large barns, and outbuildings, furnishing adequate shelter for grain
and stock, and the latest improved farm machinery facilitates the work
of the fields.
On June 3, 1914,
Mr. Mehus was united in marriage to Miss Helma Harmon, a daughter of
Harry and Aase (Ellingson) Harmon, who are natives of Norway and came
to the United States with their respective parents in childhood. Both
the Harmon and Ellingson families were among the early settlers of this
section of the state. The parents of Mrs. Mehus are now living in Northwood,
Iowa, the father having retired from active business cares. Mrs. Mehus
was born in Silver Lake township, Worth county, and by her marriage
has become the mother of one child, Danine Geneva.
Mehus is a republican and keeps well informed on the questions and issues
of the day but does not seek nor desire office. He belongs to the Norwegian
Lutheran church, guiding his life according to its teachings, and his
genuine worth is recognized by his fellow townsmen, who have had opportunity
to witness his record from boyhood, to the present time. The traits
of character which he has developed are commendable and have gained
for him the respect and goodwill of those with whom he has been associated.
G. Mellem is a representative agriculturist of Grove township, living on section
31, and belongs to the oldest pioneer family of Worth county. He was
born December 23, 1868 on the farm which is still his home, his parents
being Gulbrand O. and Carina E. (Swensrud) Mellem, of whom more extended
mention is made in connection with the sketch of Ole Mellem on another
page of this work. To them were born the following children: Hans, Ole,
Elling, Caroline, Andrine, Jennie, Andrew, Lewis, Edwin, Charles, Minnie
Charles G. Mellem spent his
youthful days upon the old homestead and early became familiar with
the best methods of tilling the soil and caring for the crops. He attended
the district schools and afterward spent two winter seasons as a student
in Valder College of Decorah, Iowa. In 1902 he was united in marriage
to Miss Randine Myli, a daughter of Halgrim and Ingeborg (Teigen) Myli,
who are natives of Norway and came to the United states in early life,
settling first at Rock Prairie, Wisconsin, whence they later removed
to Mitchell county Where their father cultivated a farm for a number
of years, while subsequently he took up his abode in Danville township,
Worth county. Later he removed to Hartland township in the same county
and there he and his wife still reside. Their daughter, Mrs. Mellem,
was born near St. Ansgar, in Mitchell county, and by her marriage has
become the mother of four children: Hartwick, Carlin, Harold and Clarence.
In his political
views Mr. Mellem is a republican, giving stalwart support to the party
because of his belief in the efficacy of its principles as factors in
good government. He an his wife are consistent members of the Norwegian
Lutheran church and they are held in the highest esteem by all who know
them because of their many excellent traits of character. Mr. Mellem
has always devoted his life to general farming. After completing his
education he returned to the old homestead, whereon he has since reside
and his labors have brought the place under a high state of cultivation.
He has added modern improvements and utilizes the latest improved farm
machinery to facilitate the work of their fields, which annually rewarded
his labors with good crops. The place presents a most neat and attractive
appearance, indication his careful supervision and his progressive methods.
LEWIS G. MELLEM makes his home in Northwood, where he is surrounded by all of the comforts and some of the luxuries of life. While now living retired, he was for many years actively identified with farming interests and his unfaltering labor, diligence and perseverance constituted the elements in the attainment of the prosperity which is now his. His life record illustrates what may be accomplished through individual effort. He was born in Grove township, Worth county, November 29, 1864 , and is a son of Gulbrand 0. Mellem, who is mentioned elsewhere in this work. His youthful days were spent upon the home farm and he pursued a district school education, after which he continued' his studies in the Breckenridge Institute at Decorah , Iowa . When his school days were over he took up the active work of the farm and in 1888 began the operation of a tract of land which he had acquired from his father. But he was still single then and it was not pleasant to live alone, so he returned home and assisted in the operation of the old homestead with his parents until 1894. The following year he was united in marriage to Miss Sophia Butler, of Kensett township.
Soon afterward Mr. Mellem accepted a position as second hand with the Farmers Butter & Cheese Association of Northwood and not long afterward he was made secretary of the association in which position he served for two ears more. In 1899 he removed to Griggs county, North Dakota, where he entered into partnership with his brother, Elling G. Mellem, in the ownership and cultivation of eight hundred acres of land. He carried on farming there for two years and he still owns four hundred and eighty acres of valuable farming property in Griggs county. Early in 1901, however, he returned to Worth county and settled in Northwood, owning a city residence. With the exception of three years spent upon his farm in Lincoln township, near Manly, he has since made his home in Northwood and is one of the well known, highly respected and valued residents of the city.
In 1902 Mr. Mellem was called upon to mourn the loss of his wife, who died in that year, leaving two children, Esther Viola and Inger Geneva. In 1905 Mr. Mellem was again married, his second union being with Miss Signe Rorvig, of Binford , North Dakota , and to them have been born a son and four daughters, but the son has passed away. The daughters are Agnes Catherine, Pearl Valborg, Virginia Lenore and Elvira Anne.
In his political views Mr. Mellem is a republican and has always given allegiance to the party since age conferred upon him the right of franchise. He and his wife are members of the Norwegian Lutheran church, to the support of which they make generous contributions, and they are interested in all those forces which make for the uplift of the individual and the betterment of the community at large. Mr. Mellem is now living retired, enjoying a well earned rest, his only activity being the supervision which he gives to his farming and invested interests. He owns a farm of two hundred and twenty-two acres near Manly, Worth county, and another valuable tract of land of one hundred and two acres two miles from Northwood and these properties, together with his land in North Dakota , constitute a most gratifying source of income. His investments have been most judiciously and wisely made. He has watched his chance for the purchase of property which he believed would increase in value and as the years have passed he has lived to see this belief substantiated. He is today one of the prosperous citizens of Northwood, with his money in the safest of all investments-real estate -and as a modern economist has expressed it, "there is no better investment in all the world than good productive farm land."
Ole G. Mellem is
a retired farmer living at Northwood. For many years he was actively,
prominently and successfully identified with agricultural pursuits,
but in 1916 put aside the work of the fields and is now enjoying a rest
that he has truly earned and richly merits as the reward for his persistent
labors of former years. His life record indicates the attractiveness
of Worth county as a place of residence and the advantages here afforded,
for he is not only a native son of the county, having been born in Northwood,
November 23, 1853, but he has the distinction of having been the first
white child born in Worth county. His parents were Gulbrand 0. and Carina
E. Mellem, who were among the earliest of the pioneer settlers of this
section of the state, establishing their home here when the work of
progress and improvement seemed scarcely begun in northern Iowa.
Ole G. Mellem spent his youthful days on the old homestead
farm, two miles west of Northwood, no event of special importance occurring
to vary for him the routine of farm life with its work in the fields
and the acquirement of a district school education. After his textbooks
were put aside he turned his attention to commercial interests and for
two years was employed in the general store of Peterson, Gulickson &
Sime, of Northwood. At the end of that time, however, he became convinced
that be preferred agriculture as a life work and located on a farm in
Kensett township, purchasing two hundred and forty acres of land. With
characteristic energy he began its further development and improvement
and from time to time be extended the boundaries of his place until
he was the owner of four hundred acres, which he continued to cultivate
and improve until 1907, when he turned over the management of the property
to his son, Gaylord, but continued to reside upon the farm for four
years thereafter. He then removed to Northwood but continued to supervise
the management of the farm until 1916. In September, 1917, he sold the
property and is now enjoying a well earned rest. He is a stockholder
in the Worth County State Bank and his other investments have been so
judiciously placed that he derives therefrom a very substantial income,
supplying him with all of the comforts and some of the luxuries of life.
On May 23, 1883, Mr. Mellem was united in marriage to
Miss Nellie Wigen, a native of Manitowoc county, Wisconsin, and a daughter
of Ole and Ragnild Wigen, who were natives of Norway. Mr. and Mrs. Mellem
have become parents of four children: Nettie, the wife of A. E. Hauge;
and Gaylord, Ralph and Grace, at home.
Mr. and Mrs. Mellem hold membership in the Norwegian
Lutheran church and they are hospitable people who extend good cheer
and a cordial welcome to their many friends. In politics Mr. Mellem
has always been a republican since attaining adult age, and although
he has never sought nor desired public office, has ever been loyal in
matters of citizenship and has cooperated heartily in well defined plans
and measures for the upbuilding and progress of his city and community.
the owner of an excellent farm property situated on section 7, Danville
township, Worth county. He, moreover, is numbered among the native sons
of Iowa, his birth having occurred near St. Ansgar, Mitchell county,
on the 13th of March, I870, his parents being Halgrim H. and Ingeborg
(Teigen) Myli. At the usual age he began his education in the public
schools and mastered the branches of learning therein taught. His training
in farm work was received under his father's direction and he early
became familiar with the best methods of tilling the soil and caring
for the crops. He was ambitious to engage in business on his own account
and in early manhood he purchased his present farm of his father, who
removed to Hartland township and there bought another tract of land.
Erick H. Myli has practically spent his entire life on the farm which
is now his place of residence. He has an excellent tract of land, the
soil being naturally rich and productive, so that his fields respond
readily to the care and labor, which he bestows upon them. Everything
about his place is indicative of his careful supervision and progressive
methods. The farm is divided into fields of convenient size by well-kept
fences and the latest improved machinery is used in promoting the cultivation
and care of the crops. There are also good buildings upon the farm to
provide ample shelter for grain and stock. In addition to producing
the crops best adapted to soil and climatic conditions here, Mr. Myli
has become a director of the Farmers' Savings Bank of Hanlontown.
In 1896 was celebrated the marriage of Erick H. Myli
and Miss Clara Knutson, a daughter of Elling and Randi (Gilbertson)
Knutson Mrs. Myli was born in Danville township, Worth county, while
her parents were natives of Norway and came to the new world in one
of the old-time sailing vessels, establishing their home near Spring
Grove, Minnesota. In 1875 they crossed the border into Iowa and took
up their abode in Danville township, Worth county, where Mr. Knutson
purchased farm land north of the present home of Mr. Myli. He secured
two hundred acres, which he developed and improved, becoming recognized
as one of the most progressive agriculturists of the community. He is
now living in Kensett, but his wife died a number of years ago. They
were both consistent members of the Norwegian Lutheran church. To Mr.
and Mrs. Myli have been born ten children: Ruth, Blanche, Hilma, Alva,
Ida, Thelma, Edna, Nina, Ethel and Gail.
Mr. and Mrs. Myli
adhere to the religious faith in which they were reared and are members
of the Norwegian Lutheran church. His political endorsement is given
to the republican party and for twenty years he has filled the office
of township clerk, making a most creditable record in that position,
the duties of which he discharges with marked promptness and fidelity.
He has also served as a school director and the cause of education finds
in him a stalwart champion. He is actuated by a progressive spirit in
all that he undertakes and whatever he attempts he carries forward to
successful completion. He is today a prosperous farmer and is highly
esteemed by all who know him, having many admirable and sterling traits
of character which have won him warm regard and friendship.
H. Myli is the owner of a well-developed farm on 160 acres situated on section
15, Hartland township. Worth county is largely indebted to those of
Norwegian birth and descent for her development. The unremitting industry
which characterizes the sons of Norway has wrought for the continued
improvement of the agricultural interests of this section of the state.
Among those who have come from the land of the midnight sun and are
now actively engaged in general farming in Worth county is Halgrim H.
Myli, who was born in Hallingdal on the 16th of October, 1846, a son
of Halgrim and Randi (Trulsdatter) Myli. The parents were also natives
of Norway, where they were reared and educated. Following their marriage
they began their domestic life in that country and continued residents
of Norway until called the home beyond, never coming to the United States.
Halgrim H. Myli, whose name introduces this review,
spent the days of his boyhood and youth in his native country, remaining
under his father's roof until 1867, when at the age of twenty-one years
he bade adieu to friends and family and sailed for the United States,
crossing the Atlantic on one of the old-time sailing ships that made
Quebec its port of destination. He then proceeded westward to Rock Prairie,
Wisconsin, where he was employed at farm work for a time, but eventually
he came to Iowa, making his way first to St. Ansgar. For a year thereafter
he was employed as a farm hand in Mitchell county, and on the expiration
of that period began the cultivation of a tract of rented land, which
he operated for three years. He then removed to Danville township, Worth
county, where he invested in 80 acres of land, to which he added until
he was the owner of a quarter section. He afterward sold that farm to
his son, Erick H., and in 1891 purchased his present property, comprising
160 acres on section 15, Hartland township, on which he erected new
buildings. Upon this place he has since made his home and has today
one of the highly developed farm properties of the township, his fields
having been brought under an advanced state of cultivation, while all
of the accessories and conveniences of a model farm of the 20th century
are to be found upon his land.
In April. 1967, in Norway, Mr. Myli was united in marriage
to Miss Ingeborg Teigen, a native of that country and a daughter of
Halvor and Ingeborg Teigen. Soon after their marriage Mr. and Mrs. Myli
set sail for the United States. They have become parents of nine children,
namely: Halgrim, Halvor, Erick H., Randena, Ingeborg, Anna, Carolina,
Knute and Henry.
Mr. Myli has never had occasion to regret his determination
to come to the new world, for here he has found the opportunities which
he sought, and in their utilization has made steady progress along the
highroad to success. He is now most comfortably situated in life, deriving
from his farm a gratifying annual income which supplies him with all
the necessities and many of the luxuries of life.
Ole H. Myli, who
follows farming in Danville township, his home being on section 7, is
well know in Worth county as a progressive and representative agriculturist.
He was born in Ness, Hallingdal, Norway, on the 31st of March, 1849,
and is a son of Halgron and Randi (Trulsdater) Myli. The parents were
also natives of Norway, were the father devoted his life to farming,
and both passed away in that country..
Ole H. Myli spent
his youthful days in Norway, where he remained to the age of eighteen
years and then located south of St. Ansgar, in Mitchell county, Iowa,
where he purchased one hundred and sixty acres of land. This he developed
and improved, continuing the cultivation of that farm for seven years,
Previous to this time he had bought eighty acres east of Moriah, in
Mitchell county and he also cultivated that farm for period of three
years. At a later date he came to Worth county, establishing his home
in Danville township. It was in 1880 that he became owner by purchase
of his present farm, which comprises two hundred and forty acres of
rich and productive land. The excellent improvements upon his farm are
an indication of his progressive spirit. He started in life without
means and is today the owner of an excellent property from which he
derives a substantial annual income. He works diligently and there are
few idle hours in his life. Moreover, he has studied the best methods
of tilling the soil and he practices the rotation of crops, so that
he keeps his fields in good condition.
In 1870 Mr. Myli
was united in marriage to Miss Ingre Olson a daughter of Ole and Carrie
Haugen, who were natives of Norway, Mrs. and Mrs. Myli have become parents
of thirteen children: Randena, Helmer, Carolina, Betsy, Olaf, Tilda,
Olaf, Teman, Carl, Alma, Eddie, Inga and Clara.
In political faith
Mr. Myli is a republican, while his religious belief is that of the
Norwegian Lutheran church of which his wife is also a member, Mr. Myli
came to the new world a poor boy, He spent seven weeks on the ocean
as passenger on a sailing vessel and when the long and tedious voyage
was complete he disembarked from the ship Oscar and stared westward
to find a home in the United States. Most of the intervening time has
been passed in Iowa and for long period he has been a resident of Worth
county. While he came to the new world with very little means, he has
steadily advanced through his earnest efforts and is today the owner
of one of the valuable and productive farms of Worth county. His life
illustrates what can accomplished by individual effort, supplemented
by integrity of purpose an honorable dealing.