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 Nelson Hanson

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Nelson Hanson

  • Birth 18 Jan 1836 Ala, Laholms kommun, Hallands län, Sweden
  • Death 15 Nov 1924 Mason City, Cerro Gordo County, Iowa, USA
  • Burial Clear Lake, Cerro Gordo County, Iowa, USA
  • Memorial ID 87516396

"If most of us are ashamed of shabby clothes and shoddy furniture, Let us be more ashamed of shabby ideas and shoddy philosophies. It would be a sad situation if the wrapper were better than the meat wrapped inside it." Albert Einstein

Nelson Hanson was born on 18 January 1836 in Ala Gotland, Sweden. He was one of seven children. Nelson immigrated to the United States in 1854 when he was 18 years old. One other brother came to the States but after a few years went back to Sweden. He was the son of Hans Petter Palsson and wife Petronella Persdotter (Bertha (nee) Petervuella Alhberg) who lived and died in Sweden.

Nelson Hanson Siblings In Sweden:

Pal Hans Pettersson 3 October 1828
Ellna Hans Petterdotter 16 May 1830
Bengta Hans Petterdotter 9 May 1832
Nils Hans Pettersson 18 January 1836-15 November 1924 (Nelson Hanson)
Borta Hans Petterdotter 8 November 1839
Christina Hans Petterdotter 18 August 1842-28 September 1881
Sven Hans Pettersson 9 March 1845

Christina also has a husband named Brodd Pehr Jonsson
They have at least one son named August born 26 January 1880

His father was a land owner and a shoemaker by trade. In 1911, Nelson was the only one still living. Nelson came to America after borrowing the money for his passage and having a limited education. His first job was as a farm hand in Lafayette, Wisconsin. He moved on to the Stone Mason trade for a few years while studying his English and preparing to go to College. He entered Beloit College in Wisconsin in 1861. After 2 years he became very ill with a lung problem and was told to leave school and prepare to die.

Nelson, who had already sailed across an ocean that was quite stormy and was made more difficult by a serious out break of small pox among the passengers, was having none of that. He went into the forests of Wisconsin and recovered his health. Upon his recovery he met and courted a refined, educated, young lady from a fine family line, extending to the founding of America. Ada Jane Moody was from Pennsylvania and visiting a cousin in Wisconsin when she met the dashing Swedish boy.

On 30 June 1864, Nelson and Ada Jane married in Fort Howard, Wisconsin. Nelson served in the Civil War for the Union and he and Ada Jane would have 8 children.

Benjamin Moody Hanson (1865-1891)
Bertha Hanson (1867-1948)
Joseph Miles Hanson (1868-1921)
Harriet Eleanor Hanson (1869-1939)
Jesse Spaulding Hanson (1871-1921)
Irene Hanson (1874-1894)
Perry Oliver Hanson (1875-1967)
Ira Bray Hanson (1879-1880)

After he married Ada Jane, he was employed in the lumber industry in Chicago and Milwaukee for several years and then set his attention to farming. In 1880, Nelson brought his family to Clear Lake in Cerro County, Iowa and bought a farm. It was located in Section 27 and was 120 acres. After 3 years he traded in the farm for a Nursery. He owned the Nursery for 10 years before selling and moving to St. Paul. In St. Paul with His wife Ada Jane and their daughter Eleanor, they ran the" St. Paul Commons" on the corner of Jackson and 8th Street, this being a home for clerks and labors, where good, comfortable rooms were furnished for a nominal cost. After several years they relocated back to Clear Lake. Nelson and Ada Jane spent the year 1910, traveling the East and the South visiting relatives.

It was written in the local Clear Lake Paper, in 1911, that "Politically Nelson Hanson has in the main supported the Republican ticket, voting first for John C. Fremont, but he has always maintained a certain independence in the matter of his franchise. He voted for St. John the prohibitionist. He has membership in The People's Church of St. Paul."

Biographies of Cerro County, Iowa in 1883 reported "Mr. Hanson is a man of education, an extensive reader and well versed in all general subjects".

Nelson Hanson died on the 15 November 1924 and is buried in Clear Lake with most of the rest of the family. He lived to the ripe old age of 89.

His wonderful ambition, boundless energy, and hard work, resulted in a lasting legacy through the generations.

*Note: Much of the information in this memorial is from the writings of his son, Perry Oliver Hanson, who wrote the family history. All of the pictures courtesy of Chuck Hanson and Larry Pizorno


Family Members


  • Maintained by: Dawn Elise Hansen
  • Originally Created by: J and K
  • Added: 29 Mar 2012
  • Find A Grave Memorial 87516396
  • Dawn Elise Hansen
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Nelson Hanson (18 Jan 1836–15 Nov 1924), Find A Grave Memorial no. 87516396, citing Clear Lake Cemetery, Clear Lake, Cerro Gordo County, Iowa, USA ; Maintained by Dawn Elise Hansen (contributor 48954093) .