Ancestors of Brenda and Glen Pedersen

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Elef "Alef" Ole Arneson

(written by Charles Arneson in 1977)

Alef Arneson homesteaded on grassed prairie land 4 1/2 miles west of what is now Hayti, S. Dak. Mary Hanson came to South Dakota in 1881 with her brother Ever, and she took up a claim next to her future husband. Mary homesteaded on the north side of the road and Alef on the south of what later became known as the Arneson farm.

Alef and Mary were married Nov. 18, 1882 and first lived in a sod house. Mary said that was the warmest house she had ever lived in. They had whitewashed the inside of the sod house to brighten it. She also recalled that they never turned any travelers down for a place to sleep. If there was no other room they slept on the floor.

Alef received his citizenship papers on June 1, 1886 at Watertown, S. Dak. Alef had four years of formal schooling but educated himself by reading. Besides his farming he was a pioneer civic and political leader. He was state representative in 1890, next a county commisioner, a state senator in 1899, 1909-1911 and was associated with a bank in Hayti.

At retirement he had built the Arneson farm to a very comfortable home with well kept buildings, orchards and flowers. Due to Alef’s health they retired to Mission, Texas in 1917 where they established a small fruit farm and operated it until his death on June 27, 1938. Mary returned to Hayti where she lived with her son Arthur until her death at age 92 on Aug. 6, 1949.

Linked toElef “Alef” Ole ARNESON; Mary HANSON

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