Lee County Biography

Amund Hilleson
Willow Creek Twp.

Amund Hilleson, farmer, Lee County. The first Norwegian settler in Willow Creek township was Amund Hilleson, second son of Hilla and Emalino (Emmonson) Helge, born in Sonth Bergen stift (state), Norway, June 20,1821. His father died when he was six years old, and his mother being left in destitute circumstances with six children, the latter were bound out according to the custom of that country in regard to the poor, that is, each farmer takes one in his turn for a length of time corresponding to the amount of property he owns; while sometimes the poor are bid off at auction, the keepers being paid for their care and trouble. Mr. Hilleson was provided for according to the former method. When sixteen years old he was ablo to take care of himself, and hired out the first year for $5 and his clothing, the second year for $7 and clothing, and so on, gradually but very slowly increasing until he had worked thirteen years, the last two or three years receiving as high as $10 and a little clothing per year. Four years before he had enough money saved to emigrate he began to turn his thoughts wistfully toward America, and from that time worked with the sole object of coming at the earliest time he could be ready. That time arrived in 1851, and he came directly to Sublette township, where his brother- in-law, Lars L. Risetter, was living, and worked the first year in the employ of Thomas Fessenden through haying and harvest for $11 per month. In 1852 le bought the N.E. 1/4 Sec. 15 in Willow Creek twp. $1.25 per acre, and continued to hire out as a laborer until he had been here five years. In 1855 he began to improve his land, keeping house for himself two years, when, in 1857, he was married to Miss Emaline Larson, who was born May 8,1822, and emigrated to Sublette in 1855. They have had two children: Helge A., born in 1859, and Evaline, born September 6, 1863, and died December 16, 1866. The whole family belong to the Norwegian Lutheran church. Mr. Hilleson contributed liberally toward the erection of their house of worship, having given to that object some $600. In 1875 he bought tho N.W. 1/4 Sec. 15 for $8,150. He has one of the best improved and most desirable farms in the country, which is valued at $19,000. He is a republican and one of the solid men in means and character in Willow Creek township.

Transcribed by Christine Walters
History of Lee County Together with Biographical Matter, Statistics, Etc. Chicago by H.H. Hill and Company Publishers 1881


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