Biography of Hans C. Olson

Hans C. Olson, a farmer in Yankton County, South Dakota, has played a significant role in the region’s growth and development. Born in Norway in 1854, he immigrated to the United States as a teenager with his parents. Settling in South Dakota, Hans worked diligently on the family farm and eventually became a successful farmer himself, owning 320 acres of land, primarily dedicated to raising Hereford cattle. He was actively involved in his community, serving as a deputy assessor and advocating for education. With a strong sense of integrity and deep religious faith, Hans earned the respect of all who knew him.

Hans C. Olson.— Since attaining to man’s estate, Hans C. Olson has been identified with the growth and development of South Dakota, and as a farmer, he is still carrying on the work of improvement in Yankton County, where he now makes his home. His early home was on the other side of the Atlantic, for he was born in Norway on October 29, 1854, and was about fifteen years of age when he came to the United States with his parents, Ole and Mary Olson. Upon landing in this country, they proceeded at once to South Dakota and settled in Clay County. However, after residing there for thirteen years, they came to Yankton County. The father became the owner of one hundred and sixty acres of land, which he subsequently sold, buying the property in Gayville where his widow now resides. While engaged in farming, he met with good success, although his crops at times were greatly damaged by floods and were almost completely destroyed by grasshoppers when those pests invaded the land. He improved the farm before selling it and later was engaged in wagon making at Gayville for about fifteen years. By his ballot, he supported the men and measures of the Republican party, and he held membership in the Lutheran church, to which his widow also belongs. She has now reached the age of seventy-six years. After a useful and well-spent life, he died in August 1901. His children were Johanna, Hans C, John, Peter, Herman, Oliana, Otena, Martin, and Regina.

As soon as he was old enough to be of any assistance, Hans C. Olson began to aid his father in the operation of the home farm and has since devoted his attention to agricultural pursuits. He now owns three hundred and twenty acres of land, two hundred and thirty of which are under cultivation. He is quite extensively engaged in the raising of stock, making a specialty of Hereford cattle, and usually ships from one to two carloads of cattle annually and also sells from fifty to one hundred hogs.

Mr. Olson was married in August 1879, the lady of his choice being Miss Becka Erickson, also a native of Norway. After her death, he wedded Dora Simmion, who was born in the same country, her parents making that their home throughout life. Mr. Olson has six children from his first marriage and four from the second, namely: Ole, Nels, Martin, Fred, Herbert, Eddie, William, John, Edna, and Carl, all living at the present writing in 1903. He is providing his children with good school privileges, and as a school official, he takes an active interest in educational affairs. For seven years, he served as deputy assessor of his township, and the Republican party has always found in him an ardent supporter. His religious faith is indicated by his membership in the Lutheran church, and being a man of strict integrity and sterling worth, he has the confidence and respect of all who know him.


Robinson, Doane, History of South Dakota: together with mention of Citizens of South Dakota, [Logansport? IN] : B. F. Bowen, 1904.

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