Naley, Alfred and Anna (Forde)

(Marcella Naley Amundson)

Bio Photo

Alfred and Anna Naley 1964

Alfred Carl Naley was born 2 Feb 1895 in Lincoln Twp., Winneshiek Co. He was the son of Lars and Martha (Vikre) Naley. Alfred served in the Army during World War I (Feb 1918-Mar 1919).

Alfred married Anna Olena Forde Nelson 25 Jun 1919 in Decorah. Anna was born 29 Nov 1898 at Sattre, IA. Her parents were Erick H. and Stena (Thorson) Forde. After Erick died Stena married Olaus Nelson. The Forde children then took the Nelson name.

Alfred and Anna lived in Decorah until the fall of 1919. When they left Decorah, they went to Vienna, SD to visit the Nelson home where Anna had grown up. At 6:00 a.m. on 29 Nov 1919 Alfred and Anna left Vienna for Edgerton, MN where Alfred’s brother, Magnus, was to meet them and take them to his farm near Kenneth, Nobles Co., MN. By the time they reached Edgerton at noon a blizzard had developed. They received a phone call from Magnus that he could not make it to Edgerton with the team and sled. It was then decided Alfred and Anna would stay over in Edgerton and take the train the next day to Pipestone and then to Kenneth. In the meantime, Alfred found someone to take them to Kenneth in their Ford. They arrived in Kenneth the same afternoon. Magnus was still in town, so they made it to his place for supper that night after all.

Alfred and Anna lived with Magnus for about 2 weeks before renting a farm north of Kenneth. After a year this farm was sold and they moved. In the spring of 1921 Alfred and Anna moved to a farm east of Lismore. They stayed there 2 years. In the spring of 1923 they moved to a farm south of Kenneth. Alfred and Anna lived on that farm until the spring of 1927. They then moved to the Hanson farm south of Adrian, MN. Alfred and Anna lived on the Hanson place for 16 years.

The work was hard during those years. All the work was done “the old fashion way,” but they were a happy family and always had everything they needed. They always had a lot of good meat. Each summer they had a big garden and Anna did a lot of canning. They had their own potatoes, eggs and all the milk and cream they could use. In the fall there were watermelon and muskmelon to eat plus some left over for the neighbors. The family grew their own popcorn. Anna made all kinds of pickles. There were dill pickles and sauerkraut by the gallons.

It was lonesome at times because they did not have any close neighbors and their only relative in the area, Magnus and his family, lived too far away to visit often. Once in a while they would go to Kenneth to visit Magnus. Anna and Alfred lived in Minnesota for 23 years. In 1942 Alfred and Anna received a letter from Anna’s Aunt Lizzie Hover. The letter said the family wanted to settle the estate of Anna's Grandmother Anna Thorson and asked if Alfred and Anna wanted to buy her farm east of Big Canoe. Anna had spent a lot of time with her Grandmother and had many fond memories of the farm. She dreamed of some day owning the farm, but never thought they would have the opportunity to buy it.

Alfred, Anna and their 2 youngest children came to Decorah to look at the farm. The farm had been allowed to run down and needed a lot of work to get it into shape again, but they decided to buy it. So on 2 Feb 1943 the family moved from Adrian to Decorah. Alfred and Anna put a lot of work into their farm and made it into a comfortable home. It was their home for 25 years.

As Alfred got older he could no longer run the farm alone and their sons were not interested in farming. Alfred and Anna then sold the farm and built a home in Freeport, IA. It was a lovely home with a nice lawn. They planted trees and flowers and had a large garden. It was very hard for Alfred and Anna to say “goodbye" to the farm and the beautiful woods, creek, rocks, birds, etc.

In 1969 Alfred and Anna celebrated their Golden Wedding Anniversary at the Big Canoe Lutheran Church surrounded by their children, relatives and friends from near and far.

Bio Photo

Alfred Naley family

Left to right, front row: Jeanette, Alfred, Ellen, Anna and Marcella. Back row: Merlin, Leland and Elwood.

Alfred and Anna had 6 children: Merlin, Leland, Ellen, Marcella, Jeanette and Elwood.

Merlin Oleron was born 12 Dec 1920 at Kenneth. He graduated from Adrian High School in 1940. In the fall of 1942 he entered the Army and served in the South Pa


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this page was last updated on Monday, 29 March 2021