Anton A. Fossum


Anton A. Fossum is numbered among the prosperous farmers and stock-raiders of Allamakee county, making his home on section 36, Makee township. He was born in lands Prestegjeld, Norway, May 17, 1854, a son of Arne and Mary (Odde) Fossum, who were likewise natives of that country. In 1837 the parents came to America, and the father purchased a tract of one hundred and thirty acres in Makee and Center townships. He cleared this land and erected a log cabin, beginning life in the new world in true pioneer fashion. As time passed he prospered in his business and in due time the pioneer home was replaced by a brick dwelling, which, however, was not completed at the time of his demise in 1902. The wife and mother survived for only a few years, passing away in 1907.

Anton A. Fossum is the only survivor of a family of three children, and was but three years of age at the time the family emigrated to the new world, so that he has practically spent his entire life in Allamakee county. He was reared on the home farm, assisting in the work of the fields from an early age. He received his primary education in the country schools near his home, and later spent three years in the Lutheran College at Decorah, and three months at high school in Waukon. He subsequently engaged in teaching for a few terms, but eventually returned to the farm, caring for his parents until they departed from this life. Mr. Fossum then came into possession of the home farm, since which time he has remodeled and completed the house, built a good barn and other outbuildings, and now has a good tract of land comprising one hundred acres. Here in addition to raising grain, he is engaged in raising shorthorn cattle and shire horses, and is meeting with well deserved success in both branches of his business. Mr. Fossum took an active part in the promotion of the Farmers Cooperative Creamery Company of Waterville and is one of its stockholders. He also engages to some extent in dairy farming.

It was on the 9th of June, 180, that Mr. Fossum was married in Makee township to Miss Anna Olswold, who was born in Loiten, Hedemarken, Norway, and there made her home until she had reached the age of eighteen, when she came to America. Ten children have been born of this marriage, but four are deceased. Those who survive are: Albert, who is engaged in farming in Peirce county, near York, North Dakota; Elmer B., who assists his father on the home farm; Caspar, who is in North Dakota with his brother Albert; Clara, who has received a good education and is now engaged in teaching at Lamberton, Minnesota; Annetta, who is a nurse in a Chicago hospital; and Nina, who, since completing her education in the college at Madison, Wisconsin, is engaged in teaching in Dresser Junction, Wisconsin. The deceased members of the family are: Oscar, who died in 1902, at the age of seventeen; Mary, who died in 1900, when nineteen years of age; Bertha, who died at the age of two years, in 1886, and Ethel who died in 1904, at the age of four years.

Politically Mr. Fossum is a republican, while in religious faith he is a Lutheran. He has been school officer in the church and has held other official positions therewith. Knowing the value of a good education, he has always been deeply interested in the schools and for many years served as president of the school board. He is a public-spirited man, possessing many noble traits of character, and is held in the highest esteem by his neighbors and friend.

-source: Past & Present of Allamakee County; by Ellery M. Hancock; S. J. Clarke Pub. Co.; 1913
-transcribed by Diana Diedrich

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