Biography of John A. Johnson

John A. Johnson, born April 29, 1867, in Norway, is a prominent farmer in Yankton County, South Dakota. His parents, Jonas and Olena Johnson, emigrated to the U.S. in 1886, settling in Mayfield Township. John arrived in America at 19 and married Bertha Larson in 1894, with whom he had two children, Martin and Lena. Bertha passed away in 1902. Johnson’s 160-acre farm is highly cultivated, featuring modern improvements, including a new residence and barns. Specializing in Shorthorn cattle and Poland-China hogs, he is active in the Lutheran church, the Republican Party, and local cooperative ventures, serving as township treasurer and on the Republican central committee.

John A. Johnson.—The home farm of John A. Johnson is a well-developed property situated in Yankton County, not far from Irene. The owner was born in Norway on April 29, 1867, and is a son of Jonas and Olena Johnson. The father came to Yankton County in 1886, settling on section 35, Mayfield Township. He had only a few days before arrived in America, and South Dakota was his destination for he had heard of the favorable opportunities here afforded for advancement in the business world. Becoming identified with farming interests, he continued his work here until called to his final rest on the 17th of April, 1899, while his wife died on October 24, 1900. In the family were six children: Einer, John A., Nettha, Olive, Christina, and Gena.

In his father’s home, John A. Johnson was reared, and the public schools of his native county afforded him his educational privileges. He was a young man of about nineteen when he crossed the Atlantic and became identified with farming interests in Yankton County. As a companion and helpmate for the journey of life, he chose Miss Bertha Larson, and they were married in 1894. The lady is a daughter of Magnus Larson, who came to this county at an early day. Mrs. Johnson passed away on the 24th of March, 1902, leaving two children, Martin and Lena, who are still with their father.

The home farm of Mr. Johnson comprises one hundred and sixty acres of land, all under a high state of cultivation with the exception of a tract of thirty acres. He has made excellent improvements upon his place, including the erection of a fine residence in 1902. Two years before, he built large and substantial barns and other outbuildings upon his place with abundant shelter for grain and stock. He makes a specialty of the raising of Shorthorn cattle and Poland-China hogs and, in addition, he produces good crops in his well-tilled fields. His desirable property, neat and thrifty in appearance, stands as a monument to his life of industry and enterprise, and he is widely recognized as one of the more progressive and successful young farmers of Yankton County. He holds membership in the Lutheran church and, in his political views, he is a Republican. His fellow townsmen, recognizing his worth and ability, have called him to public office, and he is now serving as township treasurer and a member of the Republican central committee. He is also a shareholder and director in the Farmers’ Co-operative Stock Company of Irene, South Dakota.


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

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