John Gust Martenson
Posted By: County Coordinator
Date: 3/10/2009 at 13:11:03
John Gust Martenson, in the history of Boone county it will be found that many of its citizens are of Swedish birth or descent and that the Swedish American element has been an important one in the development of this portion of the state. The sons and daughters of Sweden are characterized by thrift, energy and strong determination, and these qualities prove important elements in winning success. They are also honest and reliable and in the life record of Mr Martenson we note many of the sterling characteristics of his people. He is now one of the thrifty and prominent farmers of Douglas township, owning and cultivating a farm of 100 acres which is not far from Madrid, so that the accessories of city life are easily obtainable.
Coming to Boone county on may 24, 1869, he has since made it his home. He was then a young man of thirty years, his birth having occurred in Sweden on September 15, 1839. He was reared to manhood upon the farm there and had good school privileges in his native town, but his knowledge of English has been acquired entirely through his own efforts since his emigration to the new world. He worked upon his fatherís farm for a number of years and then with the family crossed the broad Atlantic to the United states in 1869. They sailed from Gottenborg on a steamship bound for New York and thence made their way to Boone county, Iowa, where Mr Martenson lived with his father, mother and brothers. Two brothers had located here four years previous, and one had returned to the old country and again came to America with the father and his family. John Gust Martenson and once of his brothers purchased a farm in Dallas county, Iowa and locating thereon continued its cultivation for about three years when they sold out. Mr Martenson of this review then came to Madrid and purchased the farm upon which he now lives, in the spring of 1873. It was a place with fair improvements and he at once undertook the further development of the farm. He has built two barns and granary cribs and all other necessary outbuildings and has planted a large number of fruit trees. In his yard are evergreen trees and other shade tress and altogether his place is an attractive one, presenting a pleasing appearance to the traveler who passes his way.
Mr Martenson was married in Boone county, January 10, 1873, to Miss Matilda Carlson, a native of Sweden who came to the United States when a maiden of ten summers, the year of her arrival being 1853. She is the daughter of Andrew Carlson who settled upon the place now owned and occupied by Mr Martenson. The latter is a stanch Republican, having never wavered in his allegiance to the party since he gained the right of franchise, yet he has never desired office and has continually refused t become a candidate. Both he and his wife were reared in the Lutheran faith and are now members of the Swedish Lutheran church of Madrid. He has been a resident of Iowa for thirty-three years, and she was reared upon the farm which is now her home. They are well known people of the community for during the period of their long residence here they have gained a large circle of friends, many of whom entertain for them warm regard and cherish for them war friendship.
1902 Boone County History Book
Boone Biographies maintained by Jan Bony.
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