Stevens County, Minnesota

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Biographies



Edward Bahe
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota. (Publ. 1907) Transcribed by Marilyn Clore

BAHE Edward J, Hancock. Editor. Born May 8, 1870 in Faribault Minn, son of Conrad and Mary (Thurnau) Bahe. Married Feb6, 1899 to Mabelle V Thayer. Educated in graded and high schools Faribault. Learned printing trade in office of Faribault Republican 1885-90; of firm of Wright & Bahe publishers of Springfield (Minn) Advance 1891-93; foreman Albert Lea Evening Tribune 1898-99; established Hancock (Minn) Record of 1899 and has published same to date. Sec Hancock Realty Co; Judge of probate Stevens county 1903-1907.


George W. Beise
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota. Publ. 1907 Transcribed by Rhonda Hill

BEISE George W, Morris. Lawyer. Born May 10, 1875 in Mapleton Minn, son of August and Sophia (Lauder) Beise. Graduated from Mankato High School 1896; special course in history and political economy Cornell N Y Univ; studied law with Pfau & Pfau Mankato. Admitted to bar 1899; practiced in Wells until 1900; practicing in Morris 1900 to date. County atty Stevens county 1906 to date. Sec Morris Library Board.


William Clarence Bicknell
Source: Progressive Men of Minnesota, (Shutter, Marion Daniel, 1853-ed.) Minneapolis. The Minneapolis Journal (1897) transcribed by Vicki Bryan

William Clarence Bicknell is a lawyer practicing his profession at Morris, Minnesota. He was born June 28, 1855, at Parishville, St. Lawrence County, New York. His parents were Carlos B. Bicknell and Louisa A. Carpenter (Bicknell.) They were farmers in comfortable circumstances. Zachary Bicknell and Agnes, his wife, the first of the name in this country, sailed from England in the spring of 1635, and landed that summer at Wessaguscus, now Weymouth, Massachusetts. They came with Rev. Joseph Hull and one hundred and one others from the counties of Somerset and Dorsett in southwest England. From these two have sprung a numerous progeny scattered over all parts of the country, but particularly in the New England states, New York and Pennsylvania. The Carpenters were also from New England, and originally supposed to have been of English birth. William Clarence lived on a farm and attended the country district school in the winter months, working on the farm during the summer, until sixteen years of age, when he entered the state normal school at Potsdam, New York, and in one year prepared himself for teaching. After that he worked his own way by teaching in winter and working on the farm in the summer until he graduated from the normal school in 1880. Three years later he began the study of law in the law department of the University of Michigan, where he was graduated in 1885 with a degree of LL. B. Having completed his legal studies, Mr. Bicknell came to Minnesota and located at Morris, and commenced the practice of his profession. He started out in very straightened financial circumstances, but he has adhered faithfully to his work and has succeeded in building up a satisfactory practice. In 1886 he was elected county superintendent of schools for Stevens County. He is a thirty-second degree Scottish Rite Mason, a member of Golden Sheaf Lodge, of Morris and one of its Past blasters; a member of Mt. Lebanon Royal Arch Chapter and its present high priest; a member of Bethel Commandery, and its present captain general. He received his Masonic degrees at Minneapolis, and is a member of the order at that city; also a member of the Shrine at St. Paul. In politics he has always been a Republican, and is now county attorney of Stevens County, and serving his first term as such. He is an attendant, although not a member, of the Congregational church. He was married June 27, 1888, to Miss Nellie M. Finney, of Goodhue County. They have three children now living, Clarence W., Agnes L. and Ezra F. One child, Ira F. died December 30, 1893.


Calvin L. Brown
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota. (Publ. 1907) Transcribed by Renae Donaldson

BROWN Calvin L, Morris. Office State Capitol St Paul. Judge Supreme Court Minn. Born April 26, 1854 in Goshen N H, son of John H and Orrisa (Maxfield) Brown. Married Sept 1, 1879 to Annette Marlow. Educated in the schools of Minn. Admitted to the bar 1876; county atty Stevens county 1882-87; judge 16thjudicial dist 1887-98; Judge of supreme court 1898 to date. Member American and State Bar assns.; 32d deg Mason and Grand Master of Masons of Minn 1895-96.


Carroll Emerson
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota (Publ. 1907) Transcribed by Anna Parks

EMERSON Carroll Colby, St Paul. Res Cherokee av, office 85 E 3d st. Merchant. Born Feb 4, 1850 at Hanover N H, son of Moses C and Sarah T (Freeman) Emerson. Married March 30, 1871 to Mary A Ingalls. Attended public schools in New Hampshire until 1869. In fruit and grocery trade at Lebanon N H 5 years; gen merchandising in Stevens county Minn 1878-88; whol fruit and produce trade in St Paul 1888 to date. Member St Paul Commercial Club.


Ezra Farnsworth
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota (Publ. 1907) Transcribed by Anna Parks

FARNSWORTH Ezra, Minneapolis. Res 1414 Mt Curve av, office 436 Boston blk. Real estate. Born Jan 3, 1843 in Boston Mass, son of Ezra and Sarah M (Parker) Farnsworth. Married in 1870 to Leila F Newcomb. Educated in common and high schools. Employed in dry goods business until 1861; served in Civil War in 26th Mass Infantry 1861-65. Moved to New York and employed in dry goods business 1866-79; Stevens county Minn, on farm 1879-82; moved to Minneapolis and has been engaged in real estate business to date. Member G A R and Loyal Legion.


John Grove
Source: Little Sketches of Big Folks in Minnesota (Publ. 1907) Transcribed by Richard Ramos

GROVE John, St Paul. Res 779 Dayton av, office 515 Pioneer Press bldg. Real estate. Born April 30, 1855 in Rockford Ill, son of Isaac and Elizabeth (Zabach) Grove. Married Aug 4, 1886 to Vine E Armitage. Educated in the public schools of Rockford and Charles City Ia. IN mercantile business at Algona Ia several years; real estate at Algona and other Iowa localities several years; real estate at Morris Minn 1896-97; membe John Grovo Land Co St Paul handling Minn lands 1898 to date. Member St Paul Commercial Club.


Knute C. Helgeson
Source: An Illustrated Album of Biography of Pope and Stevens Counties, Minnesota, 1888
KNUTE C. HELGESON, the present county treasurer of Stevens county, is one of the most prominent and influential citizens of the county. He is the senior member of the firm of Helgeson & Wilcox, the heaviest merchants at Hancock, where he lives, and he has for a number of years been among the most prominent characters in the business and official history of the county. A man of the strictest integrity, and a careful business man, his word is recognized as being as good as a bond.

Mr. Helgeson was born in Fond du Lac county, Wisconsin, on the 2nd of November, 1849, and is a son of Kilbourn and Mary (Knutson) Helgeson. His parents were natives of Norway, but came to the United States about 1838, and settled in Wisconsin. They still live near Waupun, in that State. The parents had a family of seven children, five boys and two girls, all of whom are still living, as follows - Harry, Henry, Knute, Andrew, Mary, Charles and Tilla. The last named was educated at the normal schools of Wisconsin and Minnesota, and for the past two years has been a teacher in the High School at Hancock.

Knute C. Helgeson, our present subject, spent his boyhood days and received his earlier education in Fond du Lac county, Wisconsin. He received an excellent education, taking a thorough course at the Wisconsin State University, and supplementing this by a course at the Lutheran College, at Decorah, Iowa. After finishing his education he taught school for four months, and then came to Benson, Minnesota, and remained there for two years, engaged as a clerk in a general merchandise store. He then went to Alexandria, where he was employed as clerk for one year, and at the expiration of that time went to Montevideo, Chippewa county, where he was engaged at clerking for another year. In 1875 he came to Hancock, Stevens county, and in company with Wolff & Wells, engaged in the hardware, lumber and general merchandise trade at Hancock, under the firm name of Wells, Helgeson & Company. In 1876, our subject, in company with Frank Wilcox, bought out the old firm, and the business has since been carried on under the name and style of Helgeson & Wilcox. They carry a large stock of everything pertaining to their line, and are the heaviest merchants in the village. In other directions Mr. Helgeson has extensive property interests in the village and vicinity, and owns over 500 acres of land in adjoining townships.

In political matters he is a staunch republican, and takes an active interest in all matters of a public nature. In the spring of 1887, he was appointed county treasurer of Stevens county, and still holds that office. He has held various local offices, having at various times been a member of the school board, the village council, president of the council, etc.

Mr. Helgeson was married on the 16th of September, 1879, to Miss Letta Sylvester, and they are the parents of four children - Mabel L., Clifford W., Edith M. and David. Mrs. Helgeson is also a native of Wisconsin, having been born in Dane county. She is a daughter of Lars Sylvester.


Edwin J. Jones
Source: Progressive men of Minnesota. Published by The Minneapolis Journal, 1897 - transcribed by AJ

Among the substantial business men of Morris is Edwin J. Jones, dealer in lumber, hardware, paints and other building materials. Mr. Jones was born August 22, 1858, at Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, the son of Evan J. and Julia Ackerman Jones. His father was engaged in the lumber business, and Edwin was afforded such educational advantages as were provided by the common schools. After being employed by his father for a time as a bookkeeper in his wholesale lumber business in Winneconne, Wisconsin, Edwin came to Minnesota and located at Morris, in August, 1878, where he took charge of a lumber yard which his father had established there. In 1884 he bought out the business, and in 1895 added a complete hardware stock, which he handles in connection with his lumber trade. Mr. Jones has always been a Republican, and was elected by the Republicans state senator for the Forty-ninth Legislative District in 1894. He has also been drafted into the public service by his fellow townsmen, having served as village recorder in 1881 and 1882, and having been elected member of the city council in 1883. In 1884 he was president of the village. Mr. Jones' election to the legislature was a triumph. He received 700 majority over the fusion candidate, carrying every precinct in his own county. Mr. Jones is a Mason and belongs to the Blue Lodge, Chapter, Commandery, Minneapolis Consistory No. 2, and Zurah Temple, of Minneapolis. He has also held several important offices in these bodies. He is a member of the Knights of Pythias and the A. O. U. W. He is an attendant of the Congregational church, although not a member. May 29th, 1883, he was married to Nellie A. Butterfield, of Waupun, Wisconsin. They have one son, ten years old, Henry Butterfield Jones.


Charles Patrick Maginnis
Source: An Illustrated Album of Biography of Pope and Stevens Counties, Minnesota, 1888
CHARLES PATRICK MAGINNIS, was born in Wayne county, New York, in 1849, and is the oldest son of Patrick and Winefred Maginnis. When he was six years old his father moved westward and settled on a farm near Red Wing, Goodhue county, Minnesota, before the North Star State had yet been admitted to statehood. On the last day of the year 1869 he married Miss Bridget Gaffney. He lived on the old homestead with his parents until 1871. In that year he purchased a farm adjoining his father's, which he resided upon and cultivated until the year 1877, when he sold out and came farther west. In company with his brother John, he purchased and opened a farm of 1,200 acres in the town of Morris, Stevens county, which they cultivated together for a time, when a division was made. He followed the occupation of farming until 1880, in the fall of which year he was elected sheriff of Stevens county, on the democratic ticket over two competitors. That as a public officer he gave entire satisfaction was shown by his re-election to the same position in 1882, by a very large majority. As an officer he never shirked a duty, and as a man of indomitable courage, cool judgment and good sense he has by his daring acts on several occasions during his career made himself widely known. It was during his second term, that, by his timely interference at the memorable convention during the campaign that gave to this great congressional district the name of the "Bloody Fifth," that what threatened to be a bloody riot between the warring Kindred and Nelson factions was happily averted, and for this act he was afterward sincerely thanked by the principals on both sides. Defeated for sheriff by a small majority in the presidential year of 1884, he engaged in the business of selling farm machinery. He built and, in connection with the machinery business, operated the Farmers' Elevator in Morris for two years, or until the time of his appointment by President Cleveland as receiver of public moneys at Duluth.

While a resident of Stevens county, he was always actively interested in all public measures,and was a leading factor in the county's progress. He favored the building of the Little Falls & Dakota Railway, and afterward advocated settling the bonds with the Northern Pacific Railway Company in a fair and honorable way. The building of the fine public buildings - court and school houses - was due in a great measure to his influence.

As noted, to his popularity may be attributed his several political victories, for this has always been a strong republican county. In 1887, although again leading the side of the minority, he was elected mayor of Morris, in which position he was serving when appointed to the Duluth land office. He is a man of strictly temperate habits, a Friend of Temperance, and has done much for total abstinence among the Irish people. During the month of October, 1886, he made himself famous by his conduct at the terrible wreck on the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad at Rio, Wisconsin. He was a passenger on that ill-fated train, and it was he who, in response to the cry of the imprisoned mother, "Take my children, I am hurt and cannot get out," rescued from the flames the two Scherer children of Winona; whose mother and grandmother were victims to this terrible railroad holocaust. For his bravery and valiant services he was complimented by his fellow passengers, and by the press of the State, and he takes great pride in a gold watch, now worn by him, presented by the railroad company as a testimonial of his work at the wreck.

Mr. Maginnis is at present a resident of Duluth. He is an earnest advocate of tariff reform.


William James Munro
Source: Progressive men of Minnesota. (Shutter, Marion Daniel, 1853-ed.) Minneapolis, The Minneapolis Journal (1897) transcribed by Vicki Bryan

William James Munro is a prominent business man of Morris, Minnesota. Like many successful Minnesota men he is a native of Canada. His father, Hugh Munro, was born in Rosshire, Scotland, but he left the land of his birth when a young man and went to Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. He was superintendent of schools of that province for some years; later he was in the mercantile business at Sydney; while there was elected member of the House of Assembly of the Provincial Parliament. In this honorable position he served twelve years. His wife was Miss Hannah Croll, a native of Halifax, Nova Scotia. In 1860 Mr. Munro was made chairman of the Board of Public Works of Nova Scotia, and removed to Halifax, the capital. He held the position until the change of government in 1864. Two years later he removed to Boston, Massachusetts, and in 1873 came to Minnesota, locating first in St. Paul and afterwards, in 1876, at the town of Morris, where he resided until his death in 1886. Mrs. Munro died in 1878. W. J. Munro was born at Sydney, on June 1, 1850. He was educated at private schools at Sydney and Halifax, and graduated from the St. Johns Academy in the latter city. He came to Minnesota in 1872, and was first employed by the St. Paul & Pacific Railroad Company, in St. Paul. After a time he took charge of a grain elevator owned by the company and remained in that position until the fall of 1875, when he removed to Morris. At Morris he engaged in the grain business and has almost continuously been interested in that line ever since. He has, however, had many other important interests. During 1876 and 1877 he was in the hardware business with A. A. Stone, and in the latter year he purchased the Stevens County Tribune. He changed the name of the paper to the Morris Tribune and kept the editorial chair until 1882, when he sold out. Then, in company with H. H. Wells and others, he organized the Stevens County Bank, and was its cashier for twelve years. In 1894 he disposed of his interest in the bank and purchased the Morris Sun, which he now controls. Since 1890 he has been a member of the firm of House & Munro, dealers in agricultural implements. Since 1886 he has been a member of the firm of Wells, Pearce & Co., grain dealers. Mr. Munro is a member of the Republican party, and has taken an active interest in the local affairs. He has been called upon to serve his city as treasurer for four years, and he has held the office of mayor for four terms, the last three being in succession. Like most progressive business men he has become identified with various social and secret organizations, and he is past master and charter member of Golden Sheaf Lodge, No. 133, A. F. & A. M., a member of Mount Lebanon Chapter, No. 47, Royal Arch Masons, Past Eminent Commander Bethel Commandery, No. 19, Knights Templar. In 1875 Mr. Munro was married to Miss Mary A. Golcher, daughter of Wm. Golcher, of St. Paul. She died the following year. In April 1878, he was married to Miss Ida A. Stone, daughter of the Hon. H. W. Stone, of Stevens County. They have five children, Beatrice C, Hugh S., Ida Blanche, William J. and Katherine C. During his early life Mr. Munro had considerable experience at sea. He was for two summers on board of the Dominion revenue cutter "Daring." In 1866 he went to Harbor Grace. Newfoundland, and was for four years in the mercantile and shipping trade, during that time making several trips as supercargo.


Archie Young
Source: An Illustrated Album of Biography of Pope and Stevens Counties, Minnesota, 1888
ARCHIE YOUNG, a highly respected and well-to-do farmer of section 22, Rendsville township, is the son of James D. and Jane (Reid) Young, both natives of Scotland. Their son Archie, however, was born at Enniskillen, Canada West, April 1, 1843. He is one of the leading and representative men of his township. He was among the pioneer band which first settled and organized Rendsville township, the same being accomplished, March 23, 1878, naming it in honor of his wife, Lorenda, but who always went by the name of "Rend" - hence the township was called Rendsville. He was reared on his father's farm until twenty-two years of age. He then moved to Michigan, and there followed lumbering for one year. He then came to the wild pineries of Wisconsin and remained one year, working at lumbering. In the month of July, 1866, he came to Rochester, Minnesota, where he worked at harvesting, following up the grain as it ripened, going northward. He then went on the line of the St. Paul & Pacific Railroad, clearing out the line and chopping cord wood.

In the following March he and two young ladies (one now his wife) accompanied the farmer and his man with whom they boarded onto a marsh for hay. He accidentally fell upon a hay-knife, cutting a fearful gash, severing the artery of his left wrist. Miss Moses took off her apron and with his future wife corded his arm - one taking hold of each end. At the stoppage of the blood, he fainted, and again he fell upon the hayknife, this time cutting a severe wound in his hip, which disabled him until July, 1867. During this time he explored Meeker and Kandiyohi counties, in search of land, but the whole country seemed so extensive and open that he could not well select a place. At that time, he stopped with old Joe Kelly, on Diamond Lake. July 1, of the same year, he went to Minneapolis, and from there he went to Illinois, harvesting on his way back. He was married, November 25, 1867, to Lorenda Elvira Shaw, of Independence, Hennepin county, Minnesota. She is the daughter of Timothy D. and Ruth (Reid) Shaw, who were old settlers of Hennepin county, Minnesota. Both families are now living in Delano, Wright county. The wife was a native of Canada, and taught school before marriage. She was born November 1, 1838, coming to the United States with her parents at the age of nineteen. They came to this county in 1857. The subject and his wife were married at Minneapolis and went to Missouri, where they both got sick and returned by the first boat to Minnesota, settling at Independence, where they farmed for two years. May 3, 1870, they removed from Hennepin county to Stevens county, arriving May 9. They made a preemption on the southwest quarter of section 22, township 126, range 42, Rendsville township, which claim was changed to a homestead, and here they have lived ever since. Our subject also took a tree claim on the southeast quarter of the same section, which he still retains. Their family consists of four children, all now at home - Lorenda Jane, born September 9, 1868, in Hennepin county, who is now teaching in her father's district; Ellen Ruth was born in Rendsville township, September 15, 1871; she was the first child born in the township; Archie Henry was born October 5, 1873, and is now a great help to his parents; James Francis was born February 3, 1877; he is now at school. The farm house and home of our subject is situated on the bank of Young's Lake, in a natural grove, enlarged and made more beautiful by the many trees of artificial planting.

Mrs. Young remained on this homestead for eleven months without seeing a woman. Mr. Young has been town clerk since the organization of the township and school clerk since the district was organized in September, 1876. He is a member of the Congregational Church, and in his political opinions is a democrat and a firm believer in prohibition. In June, 1877, a frontier union Sunday school was organized in school district No. 7, and our worthy subject has been its efficient superintendent a great part of the time since.

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