Our history book tells us our ancestors came from one of the oldest districts in Norway, which is Hadeland. Some thought these early people were Romans, others thought they were of a Germanic race, possibly as early as 1000 BC. Some claim they are a pre-Aryan race from Siberia.
Remnants found show Hadeland was rebuilt during the Stone Age 2000 years B.C. Many bronze articles were used from Christ's birth through 400 A.D., and graves have been found with antiques from the Bronze Age in Gran and Brandbu.
My jewelry for my Norwegian Bunad came from the Toten area and is a copy of the large bronze one found on the Evang farm. In 1871 it was added to the University’s collection. It was found in a burial chamber, but believed to be of an older date. Due to the fine spiral ornamentation it is believed to have been made about 1100-1300 B.C.
First row: Amanda, David D. Hexom, Grandma and Minnie.
In 997 A.D. King Olav Trygvassen began to christianize Norway, first to be christianized was Hadeland and Toten— our two ancestral homelands. My daughter Barb and I visited and stayed at the Hexom farm in Toten when we were there with the Luren singers in 1973.
After the war of 872, King Olav became King of the entire land. He was a Christian and in 1537 Lutheranism became the established religion of Norway. Hadeland didn’t take part in the Viking’s ravages but rather concentrated on commerce and trade so they were the center of culture.
My grandfather David D. Hexom was born in Vestre, Toten 18 Nov 1847 and came to America to find a better life. He was married to Augusta Sivisind (b. 22 Oct 1857) in the chapel of Luther College by Rev. U. V. Koren. Augusta’s parents were Carl and Elina Sivisind and her brothers were Peter, Joseph and Albert. Carl died 20 Nov 1904 and Elina died 25 June 1911.
David and Augusta had a large beautiful farm in Glenwood Twp. and raised a family of 10 children. Carl married Emma Johnson; Emma married Albert Westby; Dr. J.D. married Emma Dahlen: Peter married Nettie Anderson; Helmer married Stella Arness; Dora married Harry Thompson; Amanda married George Johnson; Clara married Carl Austad; Minnie never married; and Pastor William.T
The Hexoms purchased a large house at the corner of Broadway and Mechanic when my father William graduated from country school. He took his prep schooling and the next 4 years he attended Luther College in Decorah and the seminary at St. Paul, MN. He also served in the Navy in WWI on a ship in the pharmacy . The ship was transporting soldiers back and forth to England.
William married Charlotte Larson in Decorah and they had their first parish in Virginia, MN. From there they went to Hawkins, Wl in the early 30’s and finally to Decorah in 1939 to the Big Canoe & Highland Lutheran parish and the beautiful “Borgen” parsonage.
All of the 10 children and their families were present when the David Hexom’s celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary.
(Eunice C. Stoen)
Pastor William T Hexom was born 16 May 1894 in Glenwood Twp. the 10th child of David D. Hexom born 18 Nov 1847 and Augusta Sivesind Ruen born 22 Oct 1857. Augusta’s parents were Elina Ruen who married Carl Sivesind, born 4 Sep 1829 and died 20 Nov 1912.
Augusta and David had 10 children: Carl (b. 9 Jun 1875-d. 17 Jan 1943); Emma (b. 5 Sep 1877-d. 14 Apr 1959); (Dr. J. Daniel b. 17 Jan 1879-d. 19 Mar 1957); Amanda (b. 13 Feb 1881-d. 9 Jul 1972); Peter (b. 25 Mar 1883-d. 15 Jul 1959); (Dora b. 6 Jan 1885-); Helmer (b. 13 Mar 1887-d. 12 Feb 1943); Minnie (b. 17 Nov 1889-d. 29 Aug 1948); Clara (b. 21 Dec 1892-); William (b. 16 May 1894-d. 30 May 1965). All the children were raised on their beautiful farm in Glenwood.
Hadeland is the birthplace of my ancestors on grandma Hexom’s side and Toten is the birthplace for grandpa Hexom’s side. This area is north of Oslo and a very historic area as this is the first part of Norway to be Christianized. King Olav Haraldsen fell in the battle of Stikelstad in 1030 in an attempt to Christianize his people. After his death he was given the title “Saint Olav” and his people united in making Norway a Christian country. The first churches built in Gran were the sister churches, the Maria and the Nikolai, built in the twelfth century. In 1355 the Kjos church was built in Brandbu, These churches are still standing and we were at the sister churches when in Norway in 1973.
After William graduated from the eighth grade his parents moved to Decorah and purchased a large home at the corner of Broadway and Mechanic and Carl and his family of 7 children worked the farm. William took both prep school and college years at Luther. He played cornet in the Luther band and after graduating (we found all his report cards in a trunk and all grades were near the top) served in the Navy as Pharmacists' Assistant on ship taking soldiers to England. William’s family belonged to First Lutheran and Charlotte Larson’s family belonged to Decorah Lutheran. At that time, being different synods, the young people weren’t supposed to mix. But, of course, they did. William attended Theological Seminary in St. Paul, MN and married Charlotte Larson with his first pastorate in Virginia, MN.
Pastor Hexom was christened Wilhelm, but when he enlisted in the Navy, it was changed to William and he
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this page was last updated on Sunday, 28 March 2021