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Woldum, Martin 1870 -1955

WOLDUM, GRAM, SANDEN, NASSETT, RAMSEY

Posted By: Joy Moore (email)
Date: 5/17/2015 at 08:32:20

MARTIN WOLDUM.

The steps in the orderly progression of Martin Woldum are easily discernible. He has worked his way steadily upward, wisely using his time and opportunities, and the success which he has achieved is the direct result of earnest, persistent and indefatigable effort. Like many of the leading and valuable citizens of Winneshiek county he is a native of Norway, born July 11, 1870, his parents being Halvor and Ranvai (Gram) Woldum. It was in 1885 that the family left Norway, crossed the Atlantic and made their way direct to Glenwood township, Winneshiek county, Iowa. The parents resided upon a farm until three years ago, when in 1910 they took up their abode in Decorah, where they now reside. The father was a prominent horse buyer and shipper in the old country and was the owner of two good farms there, but lost all and sought to retrieve his fortunes in the United States. Here he engaged in farming and his earnest labor at length brought him a measure of success that now enables him to live retired. Unto him and his wife were born seven children: Mary, the wife of Fred Sanden, of Seattle, Washington; Christie, the wife of H. Nassett, of Alberta, Canada; Ole, also living in Alberta; Martin, of this review; Nels, likewise a resident of Alberta; John, of Decorah; and Halvor H., who is in partnership with his brother Martin under the name of the Woldum Produce Company, and they also own a produce business at Preston, Minnesota.

Martin Woldum's start in life was a humble one. He first worked by the month as a farm hand and then spent a year and a half in railroading. While thus engaged he carefully saved his earnings and on the expiration of that period he joined his elder brother in the establishment of a mercantile business at Donnan Junction, Fayette county, Iowa. After two years he sold out to his partner and came to Nasset, where he established a general mercantile enterprise in 1891. Later he admitted his brother-in-law, James Ramsey, to a partnership under the firm name of Woldum & Ramsey, the association being maintained for seven years, when Mr. Ramsey sold out to Halvor Woldum and the present firm of Woldum Brothers was thus formed. Six years ago the brothers embarked in the produce business and in the spring of 1913 established a branch at Preston, Minnesota. In 1912 they shipped sixty-four carloads of eggs and eight carloads of poultry from Decorah. They are also agents for the Ford automobile, and they have a forty-five horse power truck that they use to haul their goods, this taking the place of three teams. The Woldum Brothers are most enterprising, energetic and progressive business men, occupying a prominent position in commercial circles and carrying forward to successful completion whatever they undertake. In addition to his other interests Martin Woldum is treasurer for the Glenwood Telephone Company.

In 1893 Martin Woldum was united in marriage to Miss Julia Ramsey, who was born in Glenwood township in 1872, a daughter of Mons O. and Ragnilda Ramsey, the former now deceased, while the latter is a resident of Glenwood township. Mr. and Mrs. Woldum have four living children, Morris, Ruth, Milford and Myrtle, and they also lost four children in infancy, two being named Reuben, while one of the others was named Milford and the fourth Myrtle.

The Woldum family came to the United States in limited financial circumstances, in fact they had hardly a dollar to their name, but father and sons worked energetically and have made steady progress. The eldest brother now has a splendid position with the International Harvester Company and is the owner of a large tract of land in Canada. Martin Woldum and his brother Halvor have become recognized as leading business men of Winneshiek county, and their efforts are of a character that contribute to public progress as well as to individual success. Martin Woldum gives his political allegiance to the republican party. He has filled the office of township clerk and is now one of the township trustees. He is a member of the Lutheran Synod church and is well known in musical circles, being vice president of the Norwegian Singers Association of the State of Iowa and treasurer of the Winneshiek County Singers Association. He is interested in all the principal features of life in his adopted county and his influence is ever on the side of progress and improvement.

Source: History of Winneshiek County, Iowa Vol. II Chicago the S. J. Clark Publishing Company 1913

Lutheran Decorah Cemetery
 

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