IAGenWeb Project - Clayton co.


Lars Wittleson. In recalling the labors which have made of Clayton County a region noted for its agricultural resources, we feel a glow of admiration for all who bore a part in the scenes of early days. One of the early settlers of Marion Township is the worthy gentleman above named, who has abundantly shown his industry and good judgment by the accumulation of a valuable estate, well supplied with improvements. He possesses the hospitable spirit and cordial manners which belong to natives of Norway, and which are also distinuishing characteristics of pioneers in any section of the country. Honorable in his dealings, well informed regarding topics of general interest and able to relate many interesting events in connection with the early settlement of the township, his reputation is excellent and his companionship desirable.

The birth of our subject occurred in Norway in 1827. He is the son of Whitley Henderson and Guniel Larson, also natives of that country, where they spent their entire lives. The father was a farmer and stock raiser and well-to-do regarding the worldly affairs of this life. Our subject was one in a family of sixteen children, and emigrated to the United States in the year 1852, landing in New York City. From the metropolis he made his way to Milwaukee, Wis. and after remaining there a short time went to Rock County, the same state, where he was employed for the two years following in working on railroads. At the expiration of that time we find our subject en route for this county and on arriving here he made a puchase of a quarter-section of good land in Marion Township. To this original tract he added until his estate amounted to three hundred and thirty-seven acres, all of which has been reclaimed by Mr. Wittleson from its primitive condition. The farm machinery in that day was of the rudest build and the first chimneys were of sod, built on the outside of the log houses; all cooking was done in an open fireplace, except in rare instances.

Lars Wittleson was married in 1854 to Miss Annie Larson, who was also born in Norway in the year 1817. She was the daughter of Lars and Guniel Larson, and by her union with our subject has become the mother of a son, Whitley L. Wittleson. In politics our subject is a decided Republican. He is very popular among his fellow-countrymen in this locality and is of a peaceable, kind and obliging disposition and has never had a lawsuit in his life.

source: Portrait and Biographical Record of Dubuque, Jones and Clayton Counties; Chicago: Chapman Pub. Co., 1894; pg 549-550
-transcribed by Sharyl Ferrall

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