Lind: Rolling back to the pioneer days

In today's "Neighbors" column, we hear about a reader's great-grandfather who came from Sweden in 1870.

Bob Lind
Bob Lind, Neighbors columnist. The Forum

Today let’s roll back to the pioneer days, thanks to Stanley Hoglund, Fargo, who writes “Neighbors” about his great-grandfather Hans Hoglund.

“He, along with his friends, the two Landblom brothers, came from Sweden in 1870,” Stanley says.

“They took a train as far as it went, which was Alexandria, Minn.

“It was in the middle of January. They had cross-country skis which they used to go north to Georgetown and on through to Hudson Bay to get supplies.

“They had to cross the Red River to go west, and when they did, one of the Landblom brothers fell through the ice, never to be seen again.


“Well, grief-stricken, the rest of the group headed west to the Sheyenne River. They didn’t want to cross it, so they pickaxed a hole in the side of the bank and lived there, living by hunting and ice fishing.

“In the spring they built sod houses side by side and homesteaded the land. It is still the same two farms today.

“The second year,” Stanley goes on, “they built log cabins, and great-grandpa built a two-story house, and in later years stockhouse buildings, etc.

“The Hoglund farm had ice year-round which they got from the Sheyenne, and on July Fourth, some people would come because they wanted ice for ice cream. They would always ask ‘how much?’ and my great-grandpa would say, ‘We never paid for it, so it’s free.'

“They kept that ice by packing it in sawdust from downing trees.

“During the Depression, they would load up wagons and go to Fargo and give food to the poor.

“They had everything imaginable from animals to all crops back then, and they never experienced any hardship.

“But,” Stanley says, “it all came from hard work and love!”


Interesting product

Recently "Neighbors" ran a submitted picture of a grain elevator at Pettibone, N.D., which had its name painted on its side; only it was a rather strange name.

Bud Kipp took this picture while out driving one day. Special to The Forum

Unfortunately, though, the picture was dark and didn’t reproduce well here. So "Neighbors" has had questions about what it says.

Well, the name on the elevator reads “Pettibone Brain Co.”

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If you have an item of interest for this column, mail it to Neighbors, The Forum, Box 2020, Fargo, ND 58107, fax it to 701-241-5487 or email

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