Dahly, B.O.

(Elizabeth (Downie) Dahly)

B.O. Dahly was born 25 Dec 1826 in Christiansand, Norway. He emigrated from Norway to Chicago in 1844 where he worked for the McCormick Machinery Company in Chicago.

In Chicago he met and married Margaret Knutsen of Whitewater, Wl. They had one son, Frank W.

B.O. and Margaret lived in Whitewater for a while and then came to Freeport, IA in 1854. He built a hotel (The Young American Hotel), general store, livery barn and millinery store in Freeport. He operated the general store and his wife ran the millinery store. After Decorah was named the county seat, Freeport began to decline. B.O Dahly then sold his interests in Freeport and moved to Decorah.

In Nov 1865 B.O. Dahly opened a large millinery and fancy dress goods business in Decorah which he operated until his death 18 Mar 1895. It was known as “Dahly’s Emporium" and was advertised as the “finest establishment west of the lakes”. His wife, Margaret, assisted him in the business. She was stricken with paralysis while on a buying trip to Chicago in 1867 and died 25 Dec 1867.

In 1877 B.O. Dahly married Caroline Shuttleworth, daughter of Henry and Caroline (Nutt) Shuttleworth, natives of London, England. They became the parents of 4 children: Charlotta (died at the age of 16), Amelia (died when 6 months old), Henrietta (died at the age of 18) and Charles.

As a pioneer merchant, B.O. Dahly played an important role in the history of Decorah.

Bio Photo

B.O. Dahly

Dahly, Charles and Josie (Fuller)

(Elizabeth (Downie) Dahly)

Charles Lewis Dahly was born and lived in Decorah. He was the son of B.O. and Caroline (Shuttleworth) Dahly. Charles was a farmer in addition to selling millinery throughout the Mid-West.

Charles married Josie Fuller. They had 4 sons and 4 daughters: Henrietta, Joseph (deceased), Dorothy, Kathryn (deceased), Gerald F. (deceased 1990), Donald (deceased 1990), Robert (deceased) and Virginia. Henrietta married V.T Moe and lives in Decorah. She is now 90 years old. Dorothy married 0. Skarshaug. She lives in California. Virginia married 0. Eiden and lives in Brainard, MN.

Dahly, Gerald and Elizabeth (Downie)

(Elizabeth (Downie) Dahly)

Gerald F. Dahly was born in Decorah, the son of Charles and Josie (Fuller) Dahly. He attended the Decorah Public Schools and graduated from Decorah High School in 1932. Gerald was a captain in the U.S. Army Air Corp during World War II.

In 1938 Gerald married Elizabeth Downie. They became the parents of 3 children: Charles “Mike’’, Susan and Victoria.

Gerald sold automobiles for Gust Haugen and Nels Hattlestad prior to purchasing the Dodge-Plymouth dealership in Cresco in 1950. In 1952 he purchased the Chevrolet dealership in Decorah from W.A. Wagner. Then in 1958 he purchased the Oldsmobile-Cadillac dealership from Glen Herron. Gerald operated these combined dealerships until he was succeeded by his son, Charles “Mike” Dahly, in 1987.

Gerald F. Dahly died Nov 1990. Elizabeth “Betty” now divides her time between homes in Decorah and California.

(Addendum: Elizabeth (Downie) Dahly died 15 Dec 1995 about 2 months after submitting this story.)

Dahms, Wayne and Colette (Kipp)

(Colette Dahms)

Wayne Dahms was born near Castalia, IA. His parents were Fred and Elisa (Kluss) Dahms. They farmed about two miles west of Castalia until they moved to the town of Castalia in 1928. His father worked on the farm and was a road maintenance supervisor in Bloomfield Twp. until his retirement.

Fred Dahms died at his home in Castalia, IA on 3 Jun 1949. Elisa Dahms died on 2 Sep 1949. They both are buried in the Postville, IA Cemetery.

Wayne's brothers and sisters were: Harvey (b. 2 Dec 1900) married Marie Meyer. His death was 17 Jan 1961 at Monona, IA. He was buried in Bloomfield Cemetery, Castalia. Ethel (b. 9 Feb 1902) married Cevert Meyer. She is a resident of the Good Samaritan Home in Postville at this time (1995). Gilbert (b. 30 Aug 1903) married Bernice McClintock. He died 8 Apr 1973 in Chula Vista, CA where his family lived and where he was buried. Mabel (b. 13 Jan 1905) married Elbe Christofferson. Her death was 11 Aug 1986 in Waukon, IA. She was buried in the Postville Cemetery. Lloyd (b. 10 Oct 1905) left home as a young man and his death date or where he is buried is not known. Clarence (b. 12 Apr 1908) never married and died in Mason City, IA 1 Jun 1984. He was buried in the Postville Cemetery. Earl (b. 2 Feb 1909) married Catherine Tehel.

Partial OCR transcription, some sensitive personal information such as the birth dates of people that maybe still living was not transcribed. See the associated scan to compare with the published information.

Please, contact the County Coordinator to submit additions or corrections.

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this page was last updated on Sunday, 28 March 2021