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Bringel Knutsen Rokne


Posted By: Emmet County IAGenWeb Coordinator (email)
Date: 3/10/2011 at 20:21:42

Bringel Knutsen Rokne, residing on a farm on section 10, High lake township, has always devoted his energies to general agricultural pursuits and for forty-one years has lived at his present place of residence. He is still active although he has now passed the eighty-fourth milestone on life's journey and such a career of usefulness might well put to shame many a man of less resolute spirit, grown weary of the struggles of business life, would relegate to others the burdens that he should bear.

Mr. Rokne was born in Voss, Norway, April 15, 1833, a son of Knut Erickson and Bertha Helgeson, who were farming people of that country. The son pursued a common school education to the age of fifteen years and afterward worked out as a farm hand by the year until he reached the age of twenty. He then determined to try his fortune in the new world and came to the United States. His sister Anna came to the United States in 1850 with her husband, Lars Larson, located in Woodstock an died the same year.

Bringel K. Rokne made his way to Chicago and spent the succeeding seven years in various kinds of work and in various places. In 1854 his brother Gilbert came to the United States and located in Wisconsin, where he afterward passed away as the result of an illness contracted during the Civil war. Two sisters, Inga and Dorothy, came in 1856 and both passed away in Wisconsin. The same year Barney Rokne arrived in America and is now a resident of High Lake township. The remaining brother, Erick, never left Norway.

It was in 1860 that Bringel K. Rokne took up his abode in Columbia county, Wisconsin, and there married Inga Johnson, a daughter of Lars and Martha Anderson, who have since passed away in Wisconsin. For six years after his marriage Mr. Rokne worked on his father-in-law's farm and on the 7th of July, 1866, came to Emmet county and purchased a farm from the railway company, investing in one hundred acres, which he cultivated for ten years. He afterward traded that property to George Osher for his present home and there he has lived for more than four decades. His labors have wrought a marked transformation in the appearance of the place, for he has converted it into a very valuable and productive farm equipped with modern improvements. He is still enjoying good health and is yet active at the age of eighty-four years.

In 1916 Mr. Rokne was called upon to mourn the loss of his wife, who passed away on the 1st of October after a year's illness and was laid to rest in High Lake cemetery. They were the parents of nine children: Knut, who died unmarried; Louis, who is married and follows farming in Kanabec county, Minnesota; Martha, now the wife of K. A. Traefald, also of Kanabec county; John, who died leaving a widow; Bertha, who became the wife of S. A. Traefald and died leaving two sons, Albert and Martin, who are living with Mr. Rokne; Anna, the deceased wife of T. Dahle, whose daughter, Luella, is living with her grandfather; Erick and Andrew, at home; and Emma, the wife of Louis Isaacson, a farmer of High Lake township.

Mr. Rokne has supported the republican party since age conferred upon him the right of franchise, casting his first presidential ballot for John C. Fremont. He has always been a stalwart champion of the principles of the party and has done everything in his power to promote its growth and ensure its success. He has held various township offices and for three years he was county supervisor, while for four years he filled the office of county recorder. In 1900 he became census enumerator for Twelve Mile Lake and High Lake townships. He is today one of the oldest pioneer settlers and one of the most venerable citizens of High Lake township, having reached the age of eighty-four years, although in appearance and interests he seems much younger.

Source: History of Emmet County and Dickinson County Iowa: A Record of Settlement, Organization, Progress and Achievement, The Pioneer Publishing Company, Chicago, Illinois, 1917.


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