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History of The First Swedish Pioneers

By: C. J. Johnson, 1915


Extension of Railroad.

From the year 1877 when the railroad was built from near Carroll to Mapleton, a stage was also run daily between Onawa and Mapleton, which carried both mail and passengers between the two towns. This road was extended during the year 1882 from Mapleton to Onawa, making a railroad route from Carroll Junction on the Chicago & Northwestern road to Sioux City, and was a very good accommodation for both passengers and freight, especially the latter, as it saved the inconvenience and delay of hauling the freight by teams. The Northwestern Railroad company had built another road previous to this time from Missouri Valley into Sioux City via of Onawa in the year 1868.

About this time a number of farmers, including A. W. Anderson and wife, Charles and Joseph Hamren, P. W. Larson, J. P. Johnson and family, John and Gust Anderson, D. Anderson, Axel Johnson and family, Gust Nygren, A. G. Johnson, Berglund Brothers and Mrs. N. Swanson and son, moved to Woodbury county, which is not far from Sioux City and the following settlers moved to Oregon and Washington: J. O. Lindblom, O. Wik, August Waldemar and Gust Larson. Among those who moved to Kiron later we mention Nels Winquist and John Winquist, M. Swanson with family and John and Gust Ogren. Over thirty families moved to South Dakota, settling near Alcester and Big Springs, a few also going to Newman's Grove, Neb., and we are not able to mention all of the places to which Kiron settlers have removed.

During the year 1899 a railroad was built from Wall Lake, following the Boyer river and continuing to Kiron and on west to Mondamin. Another branch of the same road followed the Boyer valley to Deloit and Denison, where it connects with the main line. At the same time the Illinois Central Railroad company built a line from Fort Dodge through Wall Lake, Deloit and Denison to Omaha, Neb., which had been long contemplated and expected, several surveys having been already made. A town was laid out and platted, which was named Kiron, but as the new town was laid a mile west of where it had been expected, there were some objections to using this name. The dispute over the new townsite arose from the high price asked by owners of the proposed land to be used by the railroad, which they would not pay. The farmers had been very certain that the new town through which the railroad would be run would be at the location of the site first determined upon by the settlers, as it possessed the better station facilities, the land sloping gently in one direction and a good supply of water being at hand. Aside from these advantages it included the main traveled road between Odebolt and Denison. However, the company stated that they would not pay any more for the land than they had offered and the land owners refused to take of accept the company's offer, so the representatives of the company offered Mr. Nels Peter Swanson a price for one hundred acres of his quarter section one mile west of old Kiron, which offer Mr. Swanson accepted, and the sale was made, a town laid out and platted into streets, alleys and lots, and on Aug. 24, 1899, the sale of town lots was made at Kiron.

Before the matter was entirely settled a compromise was attempted with railroad company who again offered the land owners a fair price, but they were refused. This action was greatly regretted in the years following by a large majority of the people who were interested in the community, as at the time of the establishment of the railroad Kiron possessed about ten residences, two good general stores, one blacksmith shop, one wagon shop, one lumber yard, a doctor's office and post office, one church building with parsonage and one school house. This was considered a good start for a town, but there is no use in attempting to dictate to railroad companies as they generally do as they please in matters of this kind.

At the first city election in Kiron in the spring of 1900, the following men were elected to office: Mayor, F. M. Pomeroy; Councilmen, George Albert Norelius, F. A. Burrows, P. A. Peterson, Nels Peter Swanson, Albert Hanson, J. A. Lawrence, W. R. Graham; Treasurer, Edward E. Clauson; Marshal, J. G. Mengis.

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