Biography of Johannes O. Feragen of Hitterdal, Minnesota

Johannes O. Feragen, born in 1863 on the Feragen farm in Reros, Norway, was the cashier of the Security State Bank in Hitterdal, Minnesota. He emigrated to the U.S. in 1882, initially working on a farm in Clay County before purchasing his own farm in Goose Prairie Township in 1884. Feragen served in various local offices and was a candidate for county auditor. He helped organize the Hitterdal State Bank in 1904, now known as the Security State Bank. Married to Ellen Hitterdal, Feragen had two daughters, Olga and Mabel. He was active in the United Lutheran Church and the Modern Woodmen of America.

Johannes O. Feragen, cashier of the Security State Bank of Hitterdal, Minnesota, is one of the most prominent business men of this place. Mrs. Feragen was Miss Ellen Hitterdal before her marriage, the daughter of Mr. Ole Hitterdal, whose sketch may be found elsewhere in this work.

Mr. Feragen was born on the Feragen farm in Reros, Norway, in 1863; he was educated in the public schools. His mother died some years ago, while his father is still living in his old home in Norway. They had a family of three children, Johannes O. being the only one who ventured to this country. He landed in 1882, in Hawley. and located in Hitterdal, Clay county, Minnesota, and was then about nineteen years of age. For five years previous to this he had been engaged in the lumber and mining business in Norway. He secured employment on a farm, where he worked by the month, in Clay county, until 1884, when he purchased a farm on his own account in Goose Prairie township, where he farmed with general success until 1898, when he entered into politics and served in various local offices, such as town clerk, assessor, justice of the peace, etc., for about ten years, and was a candidate for the office of county auditor of Clay county on the Populist ticket. In 1898 he began buying grain at Hitterdal for the Great Western Elevator Company and helped to organize the Hitterdal State Bank in 1904, and is now known as the Security State Bank, with a capital and surplus in 1909 of $12,000, and with M. J. Solum, president; Nels Heig, vice president, and J. O. Feragen, cashier. This institution has been a great benefit to the farmers of the surrounding country, and is recognized as a safe and substantial enterprise.

Mr. Feragen still owns and controls his well improved farm near the village of Hitterdal, located in Sections 34 and 35, in Goose Prairie township. Mr. and Mrs. Feragen are cousins of Mr. and Mrs. Lars Hitterdal, whose sketch may also be found in the article containing the Hitterdal family, in another part of this work. Mr. and Mrs. Feragen are the parents of two daughters, viz. : Olga is now the wife of Mr. Oscar Melbye, of Ulen, manager of the telephone company and the son of O. C. Melbye; Miss Mabel Feragen is now nine years of age and attends the public school.

Mr. Feragen is treasurer of the United Lutheran church of Hitterdal and a member of the Modern Woodmen of America.


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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