"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.


Olson, John proprietor of Amador Farm in Section 16, town of Conover, Vilas County, was born in Sweden, Aug. 16, 1863. He attended school in his native land, where he followed farming until 1883. In the spring of that year he emigrated to America, landing at Halifax, Canada, where he remained for a year, at the end of that time coming west to Chicago and thence going to Salina, Kans., where he was farming until 1886. He then went to Denver, Colo., where for awhile he was in the employ of the city and afterwards in that of the Church Bros., manufacturers of brick, sewer-pipes and other clay products, remaining with this firm for three years. In August, 1893, Mr. OLSON made another trip westward, which brought him to Ione in Amador County, Calif., which was a gold mining country. There, in association with others, he leased land and dug for gold until 1906, meeting with a very satisfactory degree of success. The lure of the yellow metal then drew him to Goldfield, Nev., and from there to far-off Alaska, he walking the distance from Whitehead to Dawson City. After two years there he returned to California, where he had left his family, and for the next 12 years worked in the mines there. He had two brothers who, like himself had come to America, and were now farmers in the town of Covover, Vilas County, Wis. Not having seen him for 31 years, they now made a trip to California to visit him. The meeting was a happy one for all. While stopping at his home for the period of their visit, they discussed the subject of farming, and his brothers told him of some good land adjoining their farm in Vilas County, which with the necessary development might be made into a good farm. Figuring that he could lose nothing in buying it as a speculation, and with the idea of settling there later, he told them to purchase it for him, which they did on their return, our subject furnishing the whole amount in cash. In 1913 Mr. OLSON came to Vilas County and took up his residence on it. He found that the land had been partly cut over and that there were many stumps and a good deal of brush on it, together with a considerable amount of hardwood timber. Making a clearing, he built a house and began the work of development. The work is still in process and up to date Mr. OLSON has cleared 29 acres, besides erecting out-buildings, including a garage. He has also bought 40 acres more of adjoining land. In 1920 he set out an apple and plum orchard, the trees in which are already beginning to bear fruit. Mr. OLSON has interests in gold mines in Goldfield, Nevada, and has in his possession several gold nuggets that he brought with him from California and Alaska. He was first married in July, 1890, to Ida CARLSON, who died in 1897, leaving three children: Ernest, now of Stockton, Calif.; Oscar, of Los Angles, that state; and Axel, a resident of Iron County, Wisconsin. In 1900 Mr. OLSON married secondly Ann CARLSON, a sister of his first wife, and of this union four children have been born: Ellen, born in Summit County, Calif., in 1901 and now the wife of Elvin WRIGHT of Stockton, Calif.; Ollie E., born Aug. 19, 1904, residing at home; Clarence, born Nov. 22, 1906; and Evylin, born Jan. 12, 1915, in both at home with their parents. Mr. OLSON and his family are members of the Lutheran Church. They are doing good work in developing the agricultural resources of the community in which they have made their home and have found Vilas County a good part of the country in which to live.

Transcribed by Susan Swanson, from pages 485-486, 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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