Bent Olson

In the spring of 1880, Ole Olson Bjornstad and sons Bent, Gilbert, Martin, Theodore, and daughter Hanna and several others came from Decorah, Iowa, with their covered wagons.  Some were driving oxen and some were driving horses.  They drove the stock along and headed for Dakota Territory.  The oxen had been broke that spring in preparation for the journey.

Bent, Mary and their two sons, Anve, 2, and Ole, 3, made the trip.  They homesteaded on the NW of Section 25, Romness Township, near the Sheyenne River.  Their first home was a dugout built in the hillside, with walls and roof of logs, and a dirt floor.  Later on he acquired the NW of Section 24 in Romness Township by planting trees on the land.

Anve and Ole died in a diphtheria epidemic in 1882.  Their third son Anton, was born January 31, 1881 and was the first child born in Romness Township, and the first white boy born in Griggs County. 

They had eight more children:

  1. Anna (Brueske)
  2. Julia (Lind)
  3. Tilda (Olson)
  4. Bella (Stromme)
  5. Olaf
  6. Mathilda (Sundeen)
  7. Elvina (Anderson)

Elvina is the only living child of Bent and Mary Olson.  She resides in Cooperstown.

In 1946, Anna Olson Brueske and August Brueske purchased the homestead from the Olson Estate.  They had one son, Ronald Brueske, now of Minneapolis.   In 1954, Elvina Olson Anderson and Ole Anderson purchased the land from Anna.  They have two daughters, Evelyn Young, Wood River, Illinois and Joyce Anderson, Cooperstown.

In 1970, Joyce Anderson Anderson and Oliver Anderson purchased the original homestead from her parents, Elvina and Ole Anderson.  They have two children, Julie Johnson, Donnybrook, N.D., Registered Nurse at Kenmare, N.D. and Richard, a student at the University of North Dakota at Grand Forks.

The Tree Claim, NW of Section 24 was taken over by Carl A. Flissarm (sometimes spelled Flisaram).  In 1944, Elvina Olson Anderson and Ole Anderson purchased the land from the heirs of Carl Flissarm.

In 1970, Joyce Anderson Anderson and Oliver Anderson purchased the Tree Claim from her parents, Elvina and Ole Anderson.  Joyce is the granddaughter of the original owner, Bent Olson.

Source: Cooperstown, North Dakota 1882-1982 Centennial page 90

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