moved to the Hamre farm at Vestre Slidre overlooking the beautiful Slidrefjord in Valdres. They built their log home adding on to it twice in which their 9 other children were born. The grooved roof is to allow rain and snow to slide off easily. In the following years they also built a barn, hay barn, wood shed and granary.

Bio Photo

Lars and Berit J. Hamre

Besides farming Lars rode around selling merchandise. Life was hard work. They had 10-15 sheep over the winter. Berit carded, spun and wove the wool into cloth. Berit’s first cousin Gilbert N. Steine of Decorah (1861-1958-m. Anna 1863-1923) owned a sewing machine. Each fall he came and sewed clothes for the whole family.

They had 5 cows. In the summer the girls took all the cows to the high mountain pasture called “saeter”. They stayed all summer making butter and cheese (gammelost and primost) from the milk for the winter. The family also had one pig that was butchered in the fall for winter meat.

At age 7 children went to school, sometimes skiing across the snow. Besides regular subjects they also studied catechism. At age 14 they were confirmed, out-of-school and adults on their own. Wages were low. Farm workers received $20.00 a year cash, room & board, and one suit of clothes. They worked, saved money and all came to the U.S. one by one—all to Decorah except Hans, who came in 1904 and served as minister in Montana, MN and Fargo, ND.

In Norway Ivar took tours into the mountains and farmed. Jake, Lars, Knut and Olav learned how to make leather shoes. (They wore wooden shoes on the farm.) Ole and Eivind painted houses. The U.S. sent recruiters.

Lars’s brother, big Knut Haugland (b. 16 Jun 1857) came to Rock Rapids, IA and became Knute Hanson, a tailor. He married Julia Gilbertson 27 Jul 1862. They had 13 children.

Brother Ole Haugland (b. 11 Jun 1863-d. 1927) went to WA.

Sister Berit (b. 2 Nov 1865) married Nils Rud and lived near Seattle.

Cousin Marit Olsdtr. Hamre (b. 25 Jan 1874) married Nils Qualley (b. 17 Mar 1867- d. 13 Nov 1946) and came to Decorah.

Her brother, John Olsen Hamre (1858-1939) was a druggist in Park River, ND and had 4 children. Other relatives followed. Berit’s sister, Dorothy, went to Kimball, SD. Her brother Gullik went to the Rosebud Valley of Montana. Her half-brother Jakob went to Seattle.

Mother Berit and daughter Berit were the last left. May

1914    their small group settled at Meota, Saskatchewan, Canada northwest of Saskatoon. Things didn't work out. In Oct. of 1914 Berit L. left for Decorah and in the spring of

1915    Berit J. also joined the family. Berit J. lived the last years of her life with her daughter Berit L. at 507 Winneshiek Ave.

The oldest was Rev. Hans E. Haugland (b. 20 Sep 1878 - d. 13 Dec 1974) who married Sina Kvisgaard from Snertingdal. They had Arne, born 2 Apr 1916 and twins, Bernt and Leander, born 22 Apr 1923. Leander has 3 children: Mark, an MD in Albuquerque; David an MD in Seattle and Steve an electrical engineer in St. Paul.

Lars and Berit had 10 children: Hans, Ole. Jakob. Marit. Lars. Ivar, Knut. Eivind. Berit L., and Olav - these 9 lived in Decorah when they came from Norway. (See separate articles on each.)

Hamre, Lars L. and Martha (Kraby)

(Alice Hamre Arneson)

Lars L. Hamre was born 20 Oct 1887 in Valdres, Norway. He was the 5th child of Lars H. and Berit J. Hamre. He came to Decorah in 1904. He worked in his brother Jake’s shoe store and later opened his own shop across from Washington St.

Bio Photo

Martha, Laura and Lars Hamre.

He married Martha Kraby. They had one daughter Laura who was born in 1909 and died in 1938.

Lars died of influenza in 1918. Later Martha moved to LaCrosse and married a Shegerud.

My eighth grade teacher, Bertha Moen, was quite old and had taught the parents of many students in my class. Miss Moen called me “Laura" all year. I remember Laura and felt a kinship for her.

Laura married Floyd May of Allamakee Co. They had 4 daughters and a baby son when Laura died. The last ad

Complete OCR transcription. See the associated scan to compare with the published information.

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

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