married Siri “Sarah" Arnesdtr in Fosse he moved to her family farm and changed the Thordahl to Fosse which was the custom in Norway. John (25 Jul 1823) was the son of Flaaver Thordahl and Anna Favske. The parents of Haaver Thordahl were Knut Tollefson and Seborg. Their children were: John, Lars Vigen (married and had 3 children: Anna Rice, Bertha Olson, Martha Hunsness), Ole (m. Synneva and had 2 sons: Knute and Haaver), Siri Lithe, Christie (m. Hans Lovestuen; his children by a previous marriage were Nils, Hans, Andrew, Martin and Martha; their children were: Olena Fayen, Anna Renaas, and Louis, Martha (married and had children), Annie Hakass (mother of Martha and Nellie) and Knute Uvik (lived east of Cresco).

Bio Photo

The “Valkurien”

Siri Arnesdtr was born in 1836. Her parents were Kari and Arne Hanson Fosse. She had one brother, Hans, who drowned in the North Sea. John and Siri never had their pictures taken. They did not believe in it. They dropped the “e" in Fosse in America.

Before leaving Norway, John and Siri received a document dated 10 Apr 1873 signed by Rev. C. Lampe, minister of the church in Strandebaum, Hardenger, Fosse, Norway. This document, which they brought with them, states that John Haaverson Fosse was about 50 years old and Siri Arnesdtr was about 37 years old. They were both born, baptized and confirmed in Strandebarm. The children born in Norway were also included: Kari (b.14 Feb 1857-bapt. 8 Mar 1857), Anna (b. 22 Jan 1859-bapt. 20 Feb 1859), Arne (b.23 Feb 1861-bapt. 31 Mar 1861), Birtha (b.14 Aug 1863-bapt. 27 Sep 1863), Haaver (b. 2 Jan 1866-bapt. 18 Feb 1866), Siri (b. 27 Jan 1868-bapt. 18 Mar 1868), Hans (b. 14 Jun 1870-bapt. 4 Jul 1870) and Ingeborg Christine (b. 14 Dec 1872-bapt. 26 Jan 1873).

John and Siri boarded the sailboat Valkurien with their 8 children in Apr 1873. The trip took about 10 weeks. They entered the United States via Quebec. They came directly to their homestead in Glenwood Twp., Winneshiek Co. Three more children were born here: Mina (13 Mar 1875), John Timan (Tenth man) (9 Mar 1878) and Millie who died in infancy.

The Foss family belonged to Glenwood Lutheran Church. However, Anna’s confirmation classes were held at Washington Prairie Lutheran Church while the Glenwood Church was being built. The Rev. U.V. Koren served both congregations. On a bitterly cold day 9 Dec 1875 the confirmands from Washington Prairie walked or drove to the Glenwood Church to rehearse for the actual day of confirmation. The class of 75 young men and women was the first to be confirmed in the new Glenwood Lutheran Church.

In the 1880 Census for Iowa, Winneshiek Co., Glenwood, on p. 462 Is listed: Fosse, John, M, age 57; Norway; Siri, FI, age 47; Anna, F, age 21, domestic; Arne, M, age 19, laborer; Bertha, F, age 16, domestic; Haver, M, age 13; Sarah, F, age 12; Hans, M, age 8; Christie, F, age 7; Minnie, F, age 5; Johan, M, age 2. In the Decorah section, p. 452, is listed, Foss, Carrie, F, age 22, dressmaker.

While on a trip to Lansing for lumber, John Haaver Foss fell and injured himself. He no longer was able to care for the farm. Arne, his son, was called home to take over. John died 12 Mar 1897 and Sarah died 5 Mar 1887. They are buried in the Glenwood Lutheran Church Cemetery, along with their child, Millie.

Foss, Lester Roy and Glora (Kjarland)

(Charlotte Wilkins Lee)

Lester Roy Foss (8 May 1910-21 Sep 1970) married Glora Kjarland (14 Feb. 1914) Lester worked in an electric shop in Decorah and Glora was a homemaker. Their children are Galen, Donna, Naomi, and Roy. Lester is buried in Phelps Cemetery, Decorah, IA. Glora married Emmett Earl and lives in Austin, MN.

Galen Lvle married Betty Marie Osborne. Galen is the Supervisor of Electric and Refrigeration Repair for Hollandia Dairy in San Marcos, CA. Betty is a beautician and has her own shop in their home. They have 2 children: David and Gale. David Lyle , Decorah) is an electrical engineer and refrigeration technician. He is second-in-command to his father at the Hollandia Dairy. David married Cheryl Lee Sewell. Cheryl has a daughter, Tammy whom David adopted. Tammy has cystic fibro-

Partial OCR transcription, some sensitive personal information such as birth dates of people that maybe living is not included. 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