IVER C. KOLSTO, who owns a two-hundred acre farm in section 23, Eldorado township, was born in Kopervik, on the Isle of Karms, on the west coast of Norway, January 9, 1864. He is a son of Lars and Martha Iverson (Skaar) Kolsto. Lars Kolsto was born in 1832, and is still living in Norway, at the age of seventy-eight years; his wife died in 1882, at the age of forty-eight. They were parents of seven children, all living, namely: Iver C., L. A., of Eldorado township; S. 0., also of Eldorado township; Ingar, wife of Jacob Jacobson, of Florence township; Knute, of Linn county, Iowa; and Gindla and Andrea, both of Norway. Mr. Lars Kolsto is a well-educated man, a graduate of an academy, and taught school nineteen years in one district; on account of poor health he had to give up this occupation, and went into the butcher business. He always keeps himself well informed on current topics, and is a well-read man.
Iver C. Kolsto was reared in his native village, where he received his education in the public schools. In 1883 with his brother L. A., he left home and came to the United States, locating in Florence township, Benton county, Iowa, where he worked on a farm. In 1883 he began farming in Fremont township, on an eighty acre farm; he rented this six years and then purchased one hundred and sixty acres in Lyon county, Iowa, at the rate of twenty-five dollars an acre; he cultivated this three years and then sold it for forty dollars an acre. He then returned to Benton county, where he purchased eighty acres of his present farm, at a price of sixty dollars an acre. The buildings were all erected by him, and he has made all modern improvements. He raises grain for his stock, which is of a good grade, and he has been very successful. Mr. Kolsto is a member of the school board and has been for fifteen years; at present he is chairman. The family are members of the Lutheran church, and Mr. Kolsto is a Republican. He is an enterprising farmer, a well-read man, and pays close attention to his business interests.
On January 3, 1889, Mr. Kolsto married Sophia Swenson, who was born in Norway, February 5, 1871. She is a daughter of Cornelius and Bertha (Sivertson) Swenson, both still living in Norway, the father, sixty-nine and the mother sixty-seven years of age. They were parents of ten children, nine of whom survive. Mrs. Kolsto came to the United States with an aunt in 1885, and located in Florence township, Benton county. Mr. Kolsto and his wife have had six children, namely: Martin, Clara, Norman, Iva, Ester (deceased), and Leroy, all .of the five surviving living at home. The oldest son, Martin, is a graduate of a mechanical engineering course at Highland Park College of Des Moines, Iowa. As a child he was greatly interested in machanics, and when still a boy spent his spare time in experimenting with tin cans, which he fixed up to hold steam and water. He is a young man of promise, and will undoubtedly succeed in his chosen field.