"History of Lincoln, Oneida, and Vilas Counties Wisconsin"

Compiled by George O.Jones, Norman S. McVean and Others. Printed in 1924 by H.C.Cooper. Jr. & Co., Minneapoli-Winona MN. ill. 787 pages. The first two hundred pages are history of the three counties, the remainder of the book is biographies.


Hanson, John E. present chairman of the town of Arbor Vitae and one of the leading farmers of Vilas County, was born on a farm on Elk Creek in Chippewa County, Wis., April 3, 1864. The parents, Brant and Laura (LARSON) HANSON, were born in Norway and came to the United States in 1854. They settled first at Eau Claire, Wis., but after a short residence there took a farm in Cook's Valley on Elk Creek, Chippewa County, where the mother died when her son, John E. was only nine years old. Her husband, Brant HANSON, survived her many years, finally passing away in 1920. John E. HANSON attended school for a short time in Eau Claire, after leaving the district school of his locality, leaving home at the age of 11 years and for two years working out for his board while he was pursuing his studies. He then found employment at lumbering, at which he worked for many years. In 1887 he came to Vilas County (then part of Oneida) and located at Minocqua, where he engaged in the timber business more on his own account, logging, jobbing and cruising, and for a quarter of a century, or until 1914, he was thus occupied. Having purchased 160 acres of cut-over land in 1901, situated in Sections 33 and 34, (T. 40, R 6), town of Arbor Vitae he now started to develop it, a strenuous undertaking, as he had to get rid of many stumps, but by dint of much hard work he has now got 110 acres under the plow and is following diversified farming. When he started this work in 1914 he also built a residence, which however, he lost from fire in 1916. In 1918 he built his present home, a fine cement-block structure. He also has a good barn, 36x80 feet in size, with full basement. His herd of cows are of the Holstein breed, with a full-blooded sire at the head and he owns ten horses, which he uses in his farm work. In the winter time he does some logging. Mr. HANSON is prominently identified with the agricultural interests of the county and is a member of the board of directors of the Vilas County Agricultural Society. He is also prominent in various ways as a citizen and public official. He served one term as clerk of court of Vilas County, was sheriff of the county for two terms for two years each, and has been chairman of the Arbor Vitae town board for six years, and thus automatically a member of the county board. He is now serving as a member of the bridge and road committee of the latter body. His fraternal society affiliations are with the Modern Woodmen of America and with the Odd Fellows. Mr. HANSON was first married in 1892 to Rosa GRATTEN, who died in 1910, leaving three children: Eleanor Estelle, who is a teacher; Mabel Marion, a student at the Eagle River High School; and John Henry Gratten, on the farm with his father. Mr. HANSON, was married secondly in 1911 to Ida May SLATTERY of Eagle River, of which union two children have been born, Robert Allen and Thomas George, both of whom are on the home farm. Mrs. HANSON is a member of the Catholic Church.

Transcribed by Susan Swanson, from pages 305-306, History of Lincoln, Oneida and Vilas Counties Wisconsin; Compiled by George O. Jones, Norman S. McVean and Others 1924, H. C. Cooper, Jr. & Co.

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