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Nicholas L. Nelson, one of the most extensive farmers and stock raisers of Wolf River township, attained his majority in Doniphan county and is widely known as a leading representative of its agricultural interests. He was born in Buchanan county, Missouri, November 13, 1851, and is a son of Lewis Nelson, whose birth occurred at Lillesand, Norway, in 1822. When about twenty years of age the father left "the land of the midnight sun" to seek a home across the broad Atlantic, and almost immediately after landing in America he enlisted for service in the Mexican war, becoming a member of an Oregon battalion. He was stationed on the frontier to aid in defense against the Indians and when hostilities had ceased he went to Missouri, locating in Buchanan county, near St. Joseph, where he was engaged in farming until the year 1857. He then cast in his lot with the pioneer settlers of Doniphan county and aided in reclaiming the wild land. He and his family experienced all the hardships and difficulties incident to a life on the frontier, but he prosecuted his labors with great energy and soon became the owner of a valuable farm. He died in 1866 and his remains were laid to rest in the Steanson cemetery. He was married, in St. Joseph, Missouri, to Gurine Nelson, who still survives him and makes her home in Troy, Kansas. In order of birth their children are as follows: Amelia, the wife of Guttorm Steanson, a worthy pioneer citizen of Mercy, Kansas; Nicholas L.; Julia, the wife of E. N. Erickson; Oscar; Maggie, the wife of B. O. Running, the proprietor of the A. B. C. Laundry in Atchison; and Mary, the wife of Milton Zimmerman, of Doniphan county.

Nicholas L. Nelson was reared on his father's farm -- the northwest quarter of section 28, Wolf River township -- and acquired his education in the district schools of the neighborhood. He left the paternal roof at the age of twenty-two years and began farming a tract of land near Leona, where he resided for six years. About 1879 he purchased his present home and has transformed the land into rich and highly cultivated fields, which yield to him a golden tribute in return for the care and labor he bestows upon them. He successfully carries on general farming and is also prospering in his extensive stock-dealing interests, making a specialty of cattle and hogs.

Mr. Nelson was married, in Doniphan county, in November, 1872, Miss Lena Running becoming his wife. Her father was one of the early settlers of Running Valley, Wisconsin, and a representative of an old Norwegian family. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Nelson have been born the following children: Grace, who died in February, 1898, at the age of twenty-one years; Jessie, who died in September, 1899, at the age of twenty years; Ella, Ray, Norma, Cyril and Bernice.

Mr. Nelson has served as township committeeman for the Republican party a number of years and is a most active advocate of all measures that promote the growth and insure the success of that political organization. He has served as township treasurer, discharging the duties with marked prominence and fidelity.