Biography of Helge Klemmetson of Ulen Minnesota

Helge Klemmetson, born February 24, 1854, in Lunner Ringereg, Norway, owns one of the most well-developed farms in Clay County, Minnesota. Located in section 22 of Ulen Township, the 200-acre farm features effective drainage, a protective grove, and high-quality livestock. Klemmetson immigrated to the U.S. in 1875, initially settling in Spring Grove Township, Minnesota, before moving to Clay County in 1880. He and his wife, Gor Olson, worked tirelessly to transform their land into a prosperous farm. Klemmetson, serving as the treasurer of Ulen Township since 1901, is also the secretary of the Synod Lutheran Church. They raised six children: Christina, Helmer, Olaf, Sarah, Bella, and Gyda.

Helge Klemmetson – One of the most well-developed farms in Clay County is owned by Mr. Helge Klemmetson. Located in section 22 of Ulen Township, two miles northeast of the village, the farm has been transformed from a wilderness into a beautiful country home. It is equipped with effective drainage systems and is protected by a magnificent grove that provides shelter in winter and serves as a delightful park in the summer. The farm spans 200 acres of highly cultivated land and is home to top-quality livestock, including cattle, horses, and hogs. Its value is estimated at $100 per acre. To truly appreciate this farm, with its fifty acres of meadow and pasture, one must see it firsthand. Its current state reflects the dedicated and tireless efforts of both Mr. and Mrs. Klemmetson, who worked together for many years with the hope of achieving their present comfortable circumstances.

In addition to his farming endeavors, Mr. Klemmetson currently serves as the treasurer of Ulen Township, a position he has held since 1901. He was born on February 24, 1854, in Lunner Ringereg, Norway. His parents were Klemmet and Christi (Halverson) Helgeson. After Mr. Klemmetson’s father passed away, leaving his mother widowed with seven young children and in dire circumstances, Mrs. Helgeson, a thrifty and ambitious woman, decided that her best chance of providing for her family was to bring them to America. In 1875, she embarked on a steamship journey to Houston County, Minnesota, which took four weeks, including boat and rail travel. The family settled in Spring Grove Township, where Mrs. Helgeson struggled for five years to provide for herself and her children while enduring the hardships of pioneer life. During this time, her children attended the local district schools, and as they grew older, they began assisting her in her labors, lightening her load. In 1880, the family moved to Clay County and settled in Ulen Township. Meanwhile, Helge Klemmetson had ventured to Winneshieck County, Iowa, in 1878, where he rented a farm for approximately one year. Intrigued by favorable reports about Clay County, he decided to make it his next venture in 1879. In 1875, he married Miss Gor Olson, who was born in Nas Halling-dal, Norway, on June 25, 1848. Mr. and Mrs. Klemmetson were blessed with nine children, although three have since passed away. The surviving children are Christina, Helmer, Olaf, Sarah, Bella, and Gyda. In 1879, the family arrived in the new country with an ox team and settled at the Gilbertson place. Mr. Klemmetson promptly claimed his homestead in section 22 and began constructing a log house and improving his farm. This 12×13 log cabin served as their residence for several years. Outside of his farm, Mr. Klemmetson’s main assets were a cow and a team of oxen. Together, he and his devoted wife toiled diligently to achieve the comforts they enjoy today. Their children were born and raised in the log cabin, attending the local district schools. In 1895, Mr. Klemmetson erected his current modern residence, measuring 16×26, with a later addition of a 14×14 room. In 1900, he built a large and impressive barn, accompanied by a corresponding granary and other outbuildings. His home is considered one of the finest in this part of the Red River Valley. Mr. Klemmetson was the second settler to establish himself in his area of the township, with his brother Elling following suit in section 2 one year later. Mr. Klemmetson has surviving siblings named Elling, Andrew, Mrs. John Groten, Mrs. Lars O. Hitterdal, Mrs. Ole Erickson, and Mrs. Lars Moebeck.

Mr. and Mrs. Klemmetson, along with their family, are devoted members of the Synod Lutheran Church, where Mr. Klemmetson serves as the efficient secretary. He assumed this position on November 9, 1887, was re-elected in November 1892, and continues to hold the office.


C.F. Cooper & Company, History of the Red River Valley, Past And Present: Including an Account of the Counties, Cities, Towns And Villages of the Valley From the Time of Their First Settlement And Formation, volumes 1-2; Grand Forks: Herald printing company, 1909.

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