The symphony of his life has been to live contentedly with his means, to seek elegance rather than luxury, refinement rather than fashion, to be worthy to study hard, think quickly, talk gently and act frankly. All this he has carried through his life as a design of living while he was engaged as an agriculturist, his service to his country and now the retirement years of his life.
Albin Malmquist, the son of John Malmquist and Mary (Lundberg) Malmquist was born 29 October 1889 on a farm, two and one half miles north east of Kiron in Stockholm township. His father was born in Malmö, Sweden, he spent his early life in his homeland coming to America in 1872, at the age of 19 years. When he first came to Crawford county he worked as a farm hand for Morton McKim in Deloit before going to work on the Wheeler ranch which later became the Adams ranch. Here with other laborers he drove to the Missouri bottom to get seedlings of cottonwoods which were planted around the ranch. One time enroute home, one of the horses died, so he rode the other horse home and got another horse to help haul the load home. Vail was their closest trading point, one day returning home he got stuck in a slough and had to leave the wagon and go home. During the night it rained and the lumpline, one of the provisions caught fire and burned up the wagon.
Mary (Lundberg) Malmquist, his mother was born in North Manitou, Michigan. She came to Crawford County in 1874 with her family and located on a farm north of Kiron. She helped with the work at home until her marriage in 1877. They began farming, two and one half miles northeast of Kiron, on a farm purchased from the railroad company, paying $6 per acre for same. They improved the land by erecting a house and farm buildings, this was their home for the remainder of their lives.
Two rural schools, No. 2 and 3 in Stockholm township, each situated 1 1/2 miles from his home was where he secured his early education. His early school days was quite an experience, he could talk only Swedish, other pupils could talk only German, so besides learning to speak English he learned to speak some German.
At No. 3 school at one time they had an enrollment of 42. His first teacher was Mrs. C. S. Johnson, Clara Johnson was one of his later teachers. After his early education, he attended the Denison Normal and Business college during the winters of 1911-12, taking a commercial course.
He remained at home, assisting his father with the farm work and the feeding of cattle until 1917 when he was drafted. He was permitted to stay home until the corn was picked then he went to Camp Dodge where he was picked as a machine gunner. From Camp Dodge he went to Camp Mills, Long Island, in May, 1918 he embarked for Liverpool, England in a convoy of 14 ships. The crossing took two weeks because of dodging the submarines, they went to Camp Manchester, outside of London next to Queen’s Park, they stayed here three weeks. He was a member of the Machine Gun Company 351, Infantry. The next move was to Southampton and on to Cherbourg, France before training at Houdelanin Court, here he was attached to machine gun company 312, field artillery. After that he entered the sector of Haute Alsaca Lorraine with his company. They were preparing to make a drive on Metz and was advancing toward Metz when the Armistice was signed. He was discharged on 7 June 1919.
Because he had no leave or passes while overseas on duty, he was granted a two week leave which he spent in the Alps mountains. One thing he noted on this leave was the using of a horse and cow hitched together to do farm work.
Coming back to Kiron after his discharge he assisted his father with the farming, his mother had died while he was overseas. On 21 Feb. 1920 he was married to Sadie Johnson at the home of her parents, Mr. and Mrs. M. P. Johnson, with Rev. Iver Peterson officiating. They began their married life on the home place and stayed there. On 27 Nov. 1944, Mrs. Malmquist died. Mr. Malmquist remained on the farm having the land in the soil bank for five years. In August, he had a closing out sale and came to Eventide, Aug 3.
There were two daughters, Mrs. Wallace (Marilyn) Clauson of San Jose, California and Mrs. William (Marjorie) Brooks of Phoenix, Arizona, and one son, Leonard, deceased. Four grandchildren are his pride and joy for they are all musicians, one played a violin, one the piano, one the trumpet and the other one the accordion.
Two car loads of cattle were finished off for the market each year, he often accompanied the cattle to the Chicago market, in 1932 he attended the World’s Fair while in Chicago. He purchased cattle from the sand hills of Nebraska for his feed lot and when sold brought prices from 5 cents to 16 cents per pound. About 150 hogs were raised and fattened for market, for hogs he has received from 3 to 28 cents per pound.
The year of 1928, he was completely hailed out, he had no insurance. In 1936, the crop was dried out, the corn was cut with a grain binder and shocked, salvaging as much as they could for feed. A tornado struck the farm in 1944, hitting the garage, the walls were torn apart, the doors slammed against the house, pushing the windows in. Both his car and that of the hired man had the tops of the cars bulged in.
For five years he was school director and a deacon of the Kiron Baptist church for two terms. He has an interest in the Kiron State Bank and a stockholder of the Kiron Telephone Company and Kiron Co-operative. He is a member of the R. E. C.
While camping at Camp Manchester, the members of his company received a letter from King George from Windsor Castle which he still has in his possession. It reads, Windsor Castle. Soldiers of the United States, the people of the British Isles welcome you on your way to take your stand beside the armies of many Nations now fighting in the World War, the great battle for human freedom. The allies will gain new heart and spirit in your company. I wish that I could shake the hand of each one of you and bid you God speed on your mission. April 18 -- King George.
After the Armistice they lived at the Bawque de France, they had rooms in the upstairs, while cows occupied the first floor. The French, at that time had no newspaper, each morning the town crier would appear on the street, pound a drum and read the news and the orders from the government, "stated Mr. Malmquist.
At home his father’s hobby was bees. This proved humorous at times for once a neighbor sent his two sons over to buy 10 bees and a queen. Knowing this to be a joke he told the boys to go home and tell their father he could have them for nothing if he came and picked them out.
His father owned the first seven foot disc in the community, neighbors told him if he used the disc on the land for a few years, he would ruin the soil.
Travel as a hobby occupies a great deal of his time, he has spent six winters in the west, at Phoenix, Mesa, Long Beach and San Jose and two trips to Mexico. Most of his travel is by plane.
"One day while I was riding a bus along the Rio Grande, a patrolman
came into the bus looking for "wet-backs." He didn’t find any but centered
his attention on me, for I had been in Arizona and was quite tan. I had
to answer a lot of ques-