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Halvor Olsen Kvool
Melhus, Norway

Excerpted from the History of Dunn County, H.C. Cooper, Jr. & Co, Minneapolis, 1925, p. 428-429

Halvor O. Kvool, a veteran railroad track man, for 40 years in the employ of the "Omaha" road and section foreman at Knapp for the last 34, was born in Melhus, near Trondhjem, Norway, Feb. 23, 1858, son of Ole and Maret (Halvorson) Kvool. The father was a deep sea diver who died at Spisburgen, Norway, in 1883.  In the following year his widow came to the United States, first locating at Roberts, St. Croix County, Wis., and later at Baldwin, in the same county. He died at the home of her son, Halvor O., in Knapp, on Aug. 24, 1903.

Halvor O. Kvool, after attending public school in Norway, had subsequently learned the mason's trade, which he followed in his native land until 1882, which was the year of his emigration to this country. He arrived in Baldwin, Wis. on April 17 and during the next two years was employed in sawmills there. It was at the end of that period that he entered the employ of the Omaha railroad, becoming a member of the extra gang employed on light construction work. In 1885 he was made a section hand at Roberts and in the following year was promoted to the position of section foreman and was transferred to River Falls, Wis., where he remained two years.  From there he went to Ellsworth, where he remained until Nov. 1, 1889, when he was transferred to Knapp, where he is now and has been ever since. For 19 years after first coming here he was sent out every summer to superintend the section.

He belongs to a number of societies, being a member of the Omaha Railway Benefit Association, the All Railway Employees Association, the Veterans Union, the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, the Rebekahs, and the Modern Woodmen of America. Naturally he is a man of wide acquaintance, and it may be said that most of his acquaintances are also his friends. 

Mr. Kvool was married at Baldwin, Wis., Feb. 27, 1883, to Gertrude Larson, who was born in Norway Oct. 2, 1852, and who, after a married life of 29 years, died Feb. 1, 1912. Of this union was born six children: Oscar L., Aug. 12, 1885; Benny Michael, Sept. 16, 1886; Anna Marie, March 8, 1888; Herman Gustave, March 20, 1890; Olga Amanda, Nov. 10, 1895; and Alfred D., Sept. 10, 1898.

Oscar L., who is now employed in the general offices of the Omaha road at St. Paul, married Marie Stockman and has one child, Alta. Benny Michael is a locomotive engineer on the Omaha road, living in Hudson. He married Eva Gunter, and is the father of three children, Donavan, Norman and Loretta.  Anna Marie is the wife of Dr. L. B. Langenderfer of St. Paul and has a son, Phillip. Herman Gustave, who is station agent at Humbird, Wis., married Alice Hessel and has had two childrne, Doris and Oral, of whom the latter is now deceased.  Olga Amanda is the wife of Willis Mitchell of the town of Lucas, Dunn County, and the mother of three children, Robert, James and Anna.  Alfred D., who is manager of the State Theatre in Minneapolis, married Lola Knapp.  For several years after the death of his first wife, Mr. Kvool remained a widower, but on Nov. 10, 1915, he married Mrs. Lillian Ida Cole, whose own family name was Steadman, she having been born at Cedar Falls, Dunn County, June 21, 1861, daughter of Henry and Mary (Fletcher) Steadman.  She was first married to Samuel W. Coates, a very early settler in Dunn County.


12 May 2001 01:02 PM

Copyright 2001 Linda K. Schwartz