Ellef Olson Ellefson

In 1878, because of drought, Ellef Olson Ellefson left Minnesota and came to North Dakota.  He worked for a while at Larimore and then followed the Pembina Trail and Sheyenne River to Sanborn.  That fall he went back to Minnesota by train.

In the spring of 1879 he returned to build a log cabin on Section 26 of Pilot Mound Township.  There was a large Indian camp nearby - about a mile northeast of Butte Michaud.  These Indians were very friendly.

In the spring of 1880 Ellef brought his family from Minnesota by immigrant train.

Early neighbors were Nels Torgerson, who also settled in Section 26.  Their first home was a dugout in a hillside.  The following year they built a sod house.  Their next move was to Lenora Township.

A.P. Rusten also settled on Section 26.

The Hans N. Koloen family settled on Section 25.

Rolley Johnson, Ole 0.  Groff and nor Olson all settled on Section 24.

All these families lived within a radius of about a mile and a half.  It is believed the first settlers lived in a small area, as they felt more secure.  Later most moved to new locations.

The land claimed by Ellef Olson is now owned by a grandson, Gordon Ellefson and a granddaughter, Bernice (Mrs. Oriel Larson).  A great-grandson, Elwood Ellefson, also lives on Section 26.

Source: Cooperstown, North Dakota 1882-1982 Centennial page 72

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