Decorah; Harold Norris of Stewartville, MN; Viola Marie Linderbaum of Ossian, IA; and Helen Norraine Thune of Davenport, IA. Harold and Helen are twins.

Harold and Celia were married 13 Sep 1958 at Spring-field Lutheran Church. They have three children: Elayne Joyce, Edward Alan and Laurel Lynne.

Elayne was born at Decorah. She attended school in Hesper, IA and Spring Grove Public School and graduated in 1977 from Decorah High School. She married David Allen Werges on 20 Aug 1977 at Big Canoe Lutheran Church. They farmed in the Garnavillo, IA area for several years. In the fall of 1987, they attended Waldorf College at Forest City, IA. The next year they transferred to Luther College and graduated in 1990, Elayne with a B.A. in Social Work and Dave with a B.A. in accounting. They both worked in their fields for four years. Dave worked for Dee Implement in Waukon and New Albin, IA and Elayne as a Social Worker at Spectrum Industries, Alternatives Services, and Family Support Network. They are now living in Columbia, SC where Dave is attending Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary. Elayne works as a Parent Training Service Coordinator. They are the parents of three children, all born in Prairie du Chien, Wl: Kristopher David, Kevin David and Marcus David.

Edward was born in Decorah. He attended grade school in Hesper, IA and Spring Grove, MN and graduated from Decorah High School in 1979. He attended Iowa State University and graduated in 1983 with a B.S. degree in Dairy Science. After graduation, Ed farmed with his parents on share basis until 1995 when he purchased the 80 acre farmstead and rents the remaining 280 acres. Ed enjoys his dairy cows and operating machinery on this diversified farming operation, raising corn, barley and alfalfa.

Laurel was born in Decorah. She attended grade school at Spring Grove and Decorah Community School and graduated in 1981. She attended the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls, IA, graduating with a B.A. degree in Business with a major in marketing in 1985. After graduation, she moved to Rochester, MN and was employed at Woolworths and later at Wal-Mart as Department Manager. In the fall of 1995 she enrolled at Riverland Technical College in Rochester, majoring in horticulture and floral design. Laurel enjoys gardening, making crafts to sell and antique furniture.

Harold graduated in 1952 from Decorah High School. In 1954, he volunteered for the draft. After basic training, he was stationed in Germany for 9 months. The following years he worked on road construction. In 1959 he and Celia rented the Forde farm east of Big Canoe. They farmed there until 1963 when they purchased the Chris Walhus farm on the lowa-Minnesota border which their son Ed now owns. In 1971, they purchased an additional 240 acres in Houston Co., MN which joins the original farm.

Celia graduated from Calmar High School in 1952. She was employed at Interstate Power Company in Decorah until her marriage. She is a homemaker and helped with the farm work until her son took over.

In 1994, Harold and Celia bought a four acre plot of land on his grandmother’s home place near Highlandville, IA. At this writing, they are in the process of building a retirement home. Much of the interior woodwork and doors, Harold milled himself out of home sawed lumber. Harold enjoys working with his hands and is very mechanical. Over the years, he has done much of his own machinery repair. In his spare time, he can be found in his woodworking shop.

Harold, Celia and family are members of Highland Lutheran Church.

Stoen, Knut and Mildred (Leikvold)

(Wilbur Stoen)

Bio Photo

Mildred and Knut Stoen Golden Wedding Anniversary

My great-grandma on my maternal side was Marget Roe, born 13 Apr 1835 in Hallingdal, Norway. She married Ole Syverson Leikvold who was born in 1825. They came over together from Drammen, Norway on the 17 May 1845. They were part of a large group leaving for the new country, and a special song was written for this sad occasion. They first settled in Rock Prairie, Wl. In 1850 they moved again to Waterville, IA where they bought a farm with land selling for about $1.25 an acre. There were still Indians hunting on the land, but no harm came to anyone. Their son Nils Carl Leikvold was born 5 Jan 1863. He married Bertha Thompson. Their six children were: Carl, Claus, Ted, Ruth (m. Pastor Sig Topness), Mildred (my mother) and Mabel (never married).

My father, Knut Stoen, drove with horses all the way to Waterville to see her, although she did teach school closer and later went to LaCrosse Lutheran for nurses’ training and worked in the hospital there. Knut and Mildred were married 1 Feb 1923. This was the same year her father sold his farm and bought land in Vermillion, SD and the rest of the family moved out there. He was sort of a speculator and thought he was getting better land because it was so level out there. Knut bought a farm near the Big Canoe Lutheran Church and they settled there.

A cousin and her two sisters were left orphans after an accident and 12-year-old Thea Sando was taken in as one of Carl and Bertha’s own along with their six children. The other two relatives were taken by other relatives. My mother Mildred and Thea told us many times how their farm home and their big lawn was the gathering place for neighborhood children on Sunday afternoons and in the summer to play games and visit. When Thea made one of her many trips to Norway, she told of a val


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