Debbie Bland and lives in Palo, IA. They are expecting their first child.

Gavin worked for the State of Iowa Highway Commission as a bridge inspector. He and Dorothy owned and ran an antique store in Decorah for many years. Gavin was an avid collector of Indian artifacts and collected and cataloged an extensive collection that he donated to the Luther College anthropology department. He was also in the Army. Throughout his life Gavin was fascinated with the history of the Sampson family and acquired data, a lot of which has been used to prepare this report on the Sampson lineage. Gavin passed away in Oct 1994. His wife Dorothy still lives on Mechanic Street in Decorah.

Lester has also lived in Decorah all of his life. He is married to Thelma (Skaim) Sampson and they have two sons, Reginald and Bruce. Reg is married to Laurie (Utterberg) Sampson and they have three children: Jarad, Adrienne and Jameson. Reg and his family are the only members of this generation that still live in Winneshiek Co. Dr. Bruce Sampson is married to Sally (Schlutz) Sampson and has three daughters: Salena, Kirsten and Erica. He is a doctor of internal medicine and resides in Perry, GA. Bruce and Sally traveled to Norway in the spring of 1993 and visited the town of Voss and the site of the old Sampson homestead there.

Les worked as a construction technician supervisor for the State of Iowa Highway Commission until his retirement in 1986. He was in the Navy during World War II and is the only one of the Sampson boys who was in active combat, stationed in the South Pacific. Les and Thelma currently live in Glenwood Twp and enjoy fishing and collecting antiques.

Bio Photo

Sampson family

Left to right: Weston, Gavin, Lester, Durwin, Anna and F. Maurice.

Durwin is the youngest of Maurice and Anna’s children. He was married to and divorced from Verna Walters. Their daughter is Jacqueline (Sampson) Dupont who is married to Steve Dupont and has a daughter Kasey. They live in Texas. Durwin was a photoengraver for both the Decorah Journal and the Decorah Public Opinion. He was in the Navy in World War II and worked as a photoengraver at the Pentagon. He recently retired and currently resides in Indiana.

Reginald Sampson is the only member of his generation of Sampsons that still resides in Winneshiek Co. He was born to Lester and Thelma (Skaim) Sampson and baptized on centennial Sunday in Decorah. Reg was in the Army, Air Cavalry Division from 1969 to 1971. He was in Vietnam from 1970 to 1971. He has 1200 hours of combat flight time and was highly decorated. These decorations include one distinguished flying cross, one bronze medal and 23 air medals. He attained the rank of CW3 and received a letter of commendation from General Westmoreland for his duty in Vietnam.

After serving in the Army, Reg graduated with distinction from the University of Northern Iowa with a degree in teaching. He taught industrial arts in the Jesup and Oelwein school systems for four years. In 1979 he returned to the field of aviation and started flying for Petroleum Helicopters of Lafayette, LA. This job has provided Reg with the opportunity to travel extensively. When he started flying for PHI in 1979 he moved to Florida for a short time and then moved to Arlington, TN. From 1979 to 1982 he flew helicopters in the Gulf of Mexico and in 1982 he began flying in Saudi Arabia. He continued this until 1985 and then returned to work in the Gulf of Mexico. In 1990 Reg and his family moved back to Decorah to be closer to his family and just in time to start his children in the fine Decorah school systems. The summer of 1991 brought another change - he began flying in Angola, Africa. He continues to work there at the present time. At this point Reg has over 12,000 hours of flight time and is a captain for Petroleum Helicopters, Inc.

Reg is married to Laurie (Utterberg) Sampson and has three children: Jarad, Adrienne and Jameson. They live near Lester and Thelma and enjoy tending to their “zoo” consisting of registered Arabian horses, registered German Shepherd dogs, African Grey parrots and numerous cats and chickens. They are in the process of remodeling and restoring a stone house well over 125 years. Jarad graduated from Decorah High School in 1991 and presently attends college in Iowa City, IA. Adrienne and Jameson attend East Side and West Side schools in Decorah. It is interesting to note that their father Reg, grandfather Lester, and great uncles Wes, Gavin and Durwin also went to these schools as did all of Gavin’s children. As the turn of the century approaches there are still Sampsons living in Winneshiek Co. and attending Decorah schools, just as their ancestors did 145 years ago.

Sampson, Millard and Elsie (Schweinefus)

(Gladys Sampson)

Millard Sampson, the son of Lars and Dora (Johnson) Sampson, was born 7 Oct 1902 in Clayton Co, IA. Lars Sampson was born 15 Sep 1872 in Fyildberg, Sunhardland, Norway to Sam and Margaret Ellingson. Dora (Johnson) Sampson was born 11 Mar 1870 in Iowa to Andrew and Marie Johnson. Lars and Dora were the parents of the following children: Selmer, Malvina (m. Guy Williams), Daisy (m. Ed Stry), Millard, Helen (m. Olavus Berentsen), Clara (m. Donald Berget), Esther (m. Harry


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 Monday, 29 March 2021