Larry A. married Mary Jean Mahoney 26 May 1973. They own and operate a dairy farm. They have 2 sons: Russell A. and Mark J.

Norma Jean  married Duane L. Koenig 6 Jul 1974. Duane is a milk hauler. Norma is a cook and waitress in a restaurant. They have 2 sons: Cory J. and Clay W.

David D. married Victoria Szabo 11 Sep 1976. They live on the Svendsen home farm and are dairy farmers. Vicky works in Ossian as a clerk in the grocery store. They have 2 children: John S. and Jessica A.

Arthur J. Svendsen died 16 Sep 1987 at Castalia. He is buried at the Pleasant View Cemetery.

Svendsen, Johannes and Anna (Mikkelsen)

(Ellen Svendsen)

Johannes and Anna (Mikkelsen) Svendsen were immigrants from Stavanger, Norway. John was born 24 Dec 1877 in Sands, Norway, the son of Eleas and Martha (Johnson) Svendsen. Anna was born 1 Jan 1891 in Sand, Norway, the daughter of Rasmus and Elen (Ericksen) Mikkelsen. John came to America in 1892 by himself at the age of 15. He came first to Chicago where he attended the World’s Fair. Then he traveled westward through Canada, pursuing various occupations along the way. He was a fisherman in Alaska. He became a foreman of a logging crew in the state of Washington. He then homesteaded in North Dakota.

In 1912 he returned to Norway, spending two years there and returning to the United States in 1914. He came to Iowa and worked for a time for the Sand family. On the 27 Feb 1915 he married Anna Mikkelsen who was from his hometown in Norway. They were married at the 0. Riveland farmhouse near Ossian. John was 37 and Anna was 24 when they were married. The young couple worked for Jacob Sand, and later rented the Leif Land farm near Ossian where their first child, Mildred, was born in 1916. They were the parents of 10 children.

In the year 1921 they bought their farm in Bloomfield Twp. During the “Great Depression" they lost their farm because they were unable to pay the mortgage. However, they were allowed to continue living on the farm. As the economy improved they were able to repurchase their farm. On 10 Nov 1938 the Svendsen farm home burned to the ground leaving the family homeless. John then purchased a vacant four room house from Charles Mundt and moved it to the present farm site. The other buildings, being far from the main road, were also moved to the present site. Anna died on 28 Sep 1939, leaving John with several children to raise. His children remember his soup kettle always being on the stove while he did his daily farm chores. The REC (Rural Electrification Cooperative) line came through the area in the early 1940’s and the farm receive electricity.

All of the sons in the family worked on the home farm at some time. When John retired, he moved to Castalia where he lived until his death on 19 Jan 1972. Both John and Anna are buried at Stavanger Cemetery near Ossian.

Their children were: Mildred (b. 30 Jan 1916) married Lyle Breitsprecher (see Breitsprecher story). Reuben (b. 21 Apr 1918) married Vernice Engle (see Reuben Svendsen story). Esther (b. 1919) entered the Mentally Handicapped Institution at Woodward, IA at the age of 12. She remained there until her death in 1950. She is buried at Stavanger Cemetery. Arthur (b. 18 Aug 1921) married Mary Brown (see Arthur Svendsen story). Lillie married Theodore Zweibohmer (see Zweibohmer story). Norman married Ramona Preuss (see Norman Svendsen story). John E. (b. 12 Aug 1926) died of pneumonia as an infant on 27 Oct 1926. He is buried at Stavanger Cemetery. Ellen married Harley Thompson (see Thompson story). Arlette married Harry Bachelder (see Bachelder story). John E.  graduated from Postville High School. He farmed with his father. He served in the U.S. Navy from March 1956 to Oct 1957. He was stationed at San Francisco Submarine Base. He was on a ship at Pearl Harbor named DDE 447 Jenkins. John has been employed by Anundsen’s Publishing Co. in Decorah since 1958.

Svendsen, Norman and Ramona (Preuss)

(Ellen Thompson)

Norman Svendsen, son of John and Anna (Mikkelsen) Svendsen, was born on the home farm in Bloomfield Twp. He attended rural school and became a farmer. He married Ramona Pruess on 19 May 1945) Ramona was the daughter of Edward and Florence (Schroeder) Preuss.

They farmed near Ossian. Norman worked at the Carnation plant and he was a milk hauler for many years. Norman lived on his farm until his death in 1982. He is buried at Pleasant View Cemetery, Castalia.

Norman and Ramona were the parents of five children: Dirinda married Wayne Benzing, Ossian. Norman E. (1948-1952). Ann married David Dowell, Florida. Janelle married Marc Davis, Plymouth, IA. Connie married David Rosendahl, Ventura, IA. Judith married Allan Kuboushek, Ridgeway, IA.

Svendsen, Reuben and Vernice (Engle)

(Ellen Thompson)

Reuben Svendsen, son of John and Anna (Mikkelsen) Svendsen, was born in 1918 in Bloomfield Twp. He attended rural school, and learned to be a farmer as he worked on the home farm. He married Vernice Engle who was a school teacher in the Clermont area. They first farmed in the Gunder area of Clayton Co. Later they moved to Lawler, IA where they operated an egg business. After this Reuben drove a cement truck in New Hampton. Vernice worked at Sara Lee Co. in New Hampton. During his retirement, Reuben spent many hours


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