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Anders Olsen Fossum
[from Sørbakken-Fossum, Soknedal, Norway]

North Dakota: Richland County History Book, 1977, p. 559

FOSSUM, Anders:
     Like so many of his countrymen, Anders Fossum looked to the USA for new frontiers.  In 1868 he emigrated from Trondheim, Norway, and settled in Menomonie, WI.  His livelihood was found in the lumbering industry.
     By 1870 the lure of a homestead in the Red River Valley caused him to move towards the plains of ND.  Anders (taking the name of Andrew) and Syvert Lium obtained a team of oxen in Alexandria, MN, and meandered out to the area of present-day Christine in Dakota Territory.  They chose land adjacent to each other along the Wild Rice River, approximately two miles west and 3/4 of a mile north of the eventual town site.  With a minimum of farming tools, the development of a successful pioneer farm was slow and tedious.  To provide needed income, Andrew became a part-time carpenter and spent some summers working at Fort Abercrombie.  He married Kjertrud Hoel, who also had emigrated from Norway.  They had four children: Ole, the oldest who died from diphtheria at the age of 14; Carrie; John; and Julia.  In later years Carrie was to become Mrs. Anton Johnson, and they moved to the Aberdeen, SD area; John married Olga Satermoe, and they spent their lifetime in the Climax, MN, and Christine areas; and Julia married Martin Myhre, and they moved to the Seattle, WA area.
     After his wife Kjertrud passed away, Andrew returned to Norway and brought back to the USA Ingri Moen, who was to become his second wife.  They also had four children:  Gust, Olaf, Arthur and Delia.  Gust married Bordelie Flaa, and they lived in the communities of Walcott, ND; St. Paul, MN; Portland OR; and Richland, WA, before they eventually returned to Abercrombie.  In 1975, Gust was the only living son or daughter of Fossum family.  Olaf married Marble Erickson, and in 1930 they left their farm in Richland County and moved to Dawson Creek, British Columbia.  Arthur married Mollie Myhre, and they eventually took over the Fossum farm.  The youngest of the Fossum children, Delia,  married John Flaa, and they made their home in Fargo.  Soon after Delia's birth, Ingri died (1899) and Carrie, with the help of "hired girls" assumed a mother's responsibility and raised the second family.
     In later years Andrew Fossum entered the business world along with his farming interests, and became a prime stockholder in the First State Bank of Walcott.  He became the bank's second president and served in the capacity until his death.  He expanded his farm holdings locally, as well as speculated in land purchases in Canada.  He passed away at his farm home in 1919.
Written by Duane Fossum.

Contributed by Susan Feulner

12 May 2001 07:33 PM

Copyright © 2001 Linda K. Schwartz