BEGINNING WITH THE LETTER "W" (Page two)
WIGER, Chris N. , at present the cashier of the Farmers and Merchants State bank of River Falls, Wis., enjoys a reputation as an able financier and has won his way to his present honored position in the business, social and political world through his pre-eminent perseverance, foresight and integrity. He was born at River Falls, Wis., September 8, 1872, and was educated at the public schools. He was employed in the freight department of the Omaha Railroad at River Falls for three and a half years, and then he went to Minneapolis, where he took employment in the Farmers State bank. In about a year he returned to his native place and was engaged to keep books for the Bank of River Falls for a number of years. Then he went to work for the Bank of Ellsworth for a year. He returned to River Falls in January 1897, and was elected cashier of the Farmers and Merchants bank, which position he has held ever since. He is a member of the Masonic order and Modern Woodmen of America. The subject of this sketch married Inga Olson, daughter of B. and Margarite Olson. They are both still living and reside at River Falls, Wis. Mr. and Mrs. Wiger had one child, Nicholas born March 7, 1906. Mr. Wiger is a son of Nils H. and Elaine (Lobben) Wiger, natives of Norway, who immigrated to the United States after their marriage, in 1871, settling at River Falls, where the father engaged in the boot and shoe business. He died August 11, 1902. Personally, Mr. Wiger is a man of pleasing manners. All who have occasion to approach him in regard to social or business matters are certain of receiving courteous attention. Reference: Taken from "History of the St. Croix Valley", published in 1909
WIGER, Hans N. now engaged in the boot and shoe business at River Falls, Wis., located on Main street, was born in Norway, January 6, 1869, and came to the United States with his parents when about eighteen months old. His father, Nils H. and his mother, Elena (Lobben) Wiger, were natives of Norway. The father was a shoemaker by trade, and followed it until coming to America, in 1869. He came at once to River Falls, coming up the Mississippi River by boat, landing at Prescott. He went on to River Falls, and there worked for Samuel Nelson, in his boot and shoe store. He continued here for some years and then he and J. S. Wadsworth bought out the business and the name of the firm became Wadsworth & Wiger, and so continued until July, 1896, when our subject purchased an interest, and the firm name changed to N. H. Wiger & Son, and thus continued for about two years, when the father was taken sick, and the entire business was conducted by the subject of this sketch. The name of this firm was then changed to Hans N. Wiger. His father died at the age of sixty-three, at his home in River Falls, Wis., August 11, 1902. He was a member of the Norwegian Lutheran church. The mother died in 1897 at the age of fifty-nine. She was the mother of five children, four of whom are still living: Hans N., Chris, Inga and Doctor N. N. Our subject's grandmother, on the maternal side, Ingeborg Lobben, is still living, and resides at River Falls, at the age of eighty-six years. Hans was educated in the High school of River Falls, and after leaving school he learned the trade of a miller, with J. D. Putman Milling Company, and continued with them for seven years. Then he was baggage master at River Falls for the Omaha Railroad Company, and also at West Superior. He then went to St. Paul, Minn., and engaged in the shoe business as a stockman for C. Gotzian & Co. He was with this firm a year and a half. He then engaged with Sharrood & Co. in the factory. Here he worked for two and a half years, and then entered his present store, with his father, where he has been ever since. He is a member of the Norwegian Lutheran church, and a Republican in politics. Mr. Wiger was married to Rachal Nelson, July 8, 1897. She died April 29, 1904, leaving two children, Florence H. and Gladys M. He married September 19, 1905, for his second wife Anna Thompson, who was born in Norway, and has one child, Raymond. Mr. and Mrs. Wiger reside at their pleasant home, corner of Second and Division streets. Reference: Taken from "History of the St. Croix Valley", published in 1909
WILLIAMS, I.A. (Civil War) was born in New York state, a son of Ira and Esther (Cardall), both natives of that state. I. A. soon after his birth was taken to Pennsylvanian and later attended schools in Illinois, graduating from the High school at Princeton in that state. He also attended the academy at River Falls for two years and subsequently took up teaching for several years. In 1861 he enlisted in Company A, Twelfth Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry, serving three years. He accompanied Sherman on the march to the sea, but at Atlanta received wounds which necessitated his being given an honorable discharge. Upon his return he taught school in the winter time and farmed in the summer. In 1866 he served with much credit on the town board. His land consisted of eighty acres on section 34 in Kinnickinnic township, Pierce County, and fifteen acres adjoining, which are located across the line in St. Croix county. Mr. Williams was a Republican in politics and a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. He died in 1875, sincerely mourned by all who knew him. I. A. Williams was married in 1865 to Hanna B. Lovell, born in England July 2, 1844, daughter of Richard and Sarah A. (Pickering) Lovell, who came to America in 1853, and settled at Beloit, Wis., where their daughter was living at the time of her marriage to Mr. Williams. Mrs. Williams has a sister, Mrs. Rachael Cuss, and a brother, William Lovell, both of whom reside in River Falls Township. Mr. and Mrs. Williams were blessed with two children: Fred V. was born in 1866, attended the common schools and then the River Falls Normal school, taught school a number of terms, served as city councilman for two years, now lives at River Falls city; married to Laura Wolf in 1892, by whom he has four children: Leona E., Avers V., Margaret J. and Lila R., all of whom attend the River Falls common schools. Elmer, the other son, was born in 1868, and passed away in 1873, at the age of five years. Reference: Taken from "History of the St. Croix Valley", published in 1909
WILLSON, REV. DANIEL, retired minister, Rock Elm, Pierce county, was born at Oxford, Chenango county, N. Y., June 14, 1814. His great-grandfather, a native of England, came to America about 1760, and settled in New York, near the Connecticut line. Benjamin Willson, his grandfather, had three sons, the youngest of whom was named Kniffen. The latter married Ruth Morey, whose family was also of English descent. Their children were named: Nemler, Daniel, Nelson P., Caroline (Mrs. W. Atherton), Narcissa (Mrs. H. Gilmore), Miranda (Mrs. T. B. Tripp), and Mary (Mrs. C. Graves). Daniel attended the Buffalo high school and the Western New York Medical College, from which he graduated in 1834. In 1836 he came west. The steamer "Moselle," on which he had intended to take passage, blew up near Cincinnati. Having taken an earlier boat, he arrived safely at Davenport, Iowa, which then contained but six buildings. There he began the practice of medicine, and later he practiced that profession at Comanche, Iowa, and at Looneyville, Minn., and was a member, from Houston county, of the state legislature in 1858. In June, 1859, he was ordained in the Free Baptist church at Money Creek, and has preached much of the time since that date. He has been pastor at Money Creek, Minn., and Centerville, Wis., also supplied the pulpit at Diamond Bluff, Cady Creek, Eau Galle and Rock Elm, Wis. His services are often required still to attend funerals. Mr. Willson came to Pierce county in 1865, and to Rock Elm in 1871, and has since resided there. August 28, 1835, he married Miss Mary Atherton, and they were the parents of the following children: Sarah C. (Mrs. J. Dobbs), William N., Charlotte (Mrs. C. K. Gile), Geo. W., Theresa I. (Mrs. E. C. Gile), James N., Jane (Mrs. E. Blaisdell), Ruth (Mrs. Wight), and Mary (Mrs. D. L. Hoyt). His wife died October 13, 1882, and Mr. Willson married, November 28, 1885, Mrs. Julia Peck. In politics, Mr. Willson has always been an ardent republican. He was an anti-slavery advocate long before the movement became popular. In local politics he supports the prohibition party. He has held the office of justice of the peace almost continuously since living in Rock Elm. He cordially supports all temperance work. He is a member of the I. O. G. T., and an honorary member of the W. C. T. U. --Taken from the "Historical and Biographical Album of the Chippewa Valley Wisconsin.
WINGER, Swend T.. resides on section 24, Martell Township, where he owns 520 acres of timber and prairie land, and is engaged in general farming, stock raising, and dairying. He was born in Norway February 2, 1840 and in 1845 his parents, Torger and Ranog Winger immigrated to America, settling in Jefferson county, Wisconsin, where the father purchased a farm, which he worked until his death at the age of eighty years. His mother died there at the age of eighty-four. The subject of this biography received his education in Jefferson county schools, and remained there until he was twenty-six year old. In 1866 he moved to Pierce County and settled in the township of Martell, on the place where he still lives. His father had purchased the entire section 24, while he was residing in Jefferson County and our subject moved on a part of this property. He had made all of the improvements on the place, putting up a good substantial house, barns and other buildings for the shelter of his stock and grain. He bought 520 acres from his father. He erected a saw mill, also a grist mill at an early day, and with his two brothers, Amund and Hans, ran the mills for a good many years. Rush River runs through the farm and furnishes an abundance of water power. Mr. Winger and his wife are members of the United Norwegian church. He married, in 1868, Agnes Amundsen. She was born in Norway in 1841 and came to America with her parents in 1862. Her father settled in Minnesota and died there, and his wife also died in Minnesota. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Winger five children have been born, all born on the home place. Three are now living. Annie died at the age of nine and a half years. Teressa died at the age of three. Clara is the wife of Charles Sather, a farmer, residing on section 25, Martell Township. They have two children, Selma and Clarence. Emma married Ingval Reiten, a farmer of St. Croix County. Albert is the youngest son. All the children were educated at the common schools of Martell Township. (taken from "History of the St. Croix Valley", published in 1909)
WINN, John W. (Civil War) now living a retired life at River Falls, Wis., was born at Charlestown, Mass., July 1, 1835, and was educated in the town of his birth. His father died when our subject was two years old, and his mother when he was six years of age. He went to live with his aunt in 1854, at the age of nineteen, came to Wisconsin in company with Beldon Eaton, and settled in Clifton township, Pierce county, on 160 acres of government land on section 14, which he partially improved. He lived on this farm some time and then sold it. He then rented a farm for three years, and when the Civil War broke out, he enlisted in Company B, Sixth Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry, and was wounded at the battle of South Mountain, September 14, 1862. He lost his left leg in this fight by a bullet wound and was then discharged from further service at Boston, Mass., December 15, 1862. He was in three important engagements, Gainsville, Second Bull Run and at South Mountain. After he recovered he returned to Wisconsin and took up his residence at Prescott, Pierce County. Here he began to learn the shoemakers trade. He was elected county clerk of Pierce County and served a period of five years. During that time he was appointed postmaster of Ellsworth, Wis., which office he held until 1869. He then built a hotel, which was called the Winn, which he ran, until 1881. He then gave up this business and moved his family to River Falls, Wis., and has since resided here. He purchased a piece of property and erected a large and comfortable home. He was elected city marshal of River Falls for one year; was elected alderman for the Fourth ward for two years, and in 1907 he was again elected to the same office. He is a Republican and a strong advocate of the cause of temperance. He is a member of the G. A. R., I. N. Nichols Post of River Falls and has held all of the offices of the post. He is also a member of the I. O. O. F. Mr. Winn married Adelia M. Eatoj, December 3, 1856. She was born in Orleans County, New York, July 22, 1839, daughter of Sidney S. and Harriet (Holcomb) Eaton and a sister of Belden R. Eaton, of River Falls. Mrs. Winn has had four children: Mary, wife of James Stirratt, of Oak Grove, Wis., has three children, Frank, Ralph and Pearl; Eliza, the second child, was educated in the High school and the State Normal at River Falls, and for thirteen years was a teacher in the schools of Pierce county, being now at home: Jay married Jennie Teare and has four children, Charles, Carriebell, Harry and Esther. D. I. resides at Graysville, Tenn., married Harry Miller and has three children living, Clyde, Clinton and Eldon. Reference: Taken from "History of the St. Croix Valley", published in 1909
WOOD, Henry G. (Civil War) is a native of New York state. He was born in the town of Tyrone, Steuben county, May 10, 1841. He came west to Winnebago county, Illinois, with his parents when nine years old, and worked on his father's farm summers and attended school winters. He was twenty-one years old when he enlisted for four months in the Civil War, in Company A, Sixty-seventh Illinois Volunteer Infantry, June 2, 1862. He re-enlisted in the Twelfth Illinois Cavalry and served until December 23, 1865. He took part in eleven engagements of the war. He was made sergeant and was discharged at Springfield, Ill. He then went to Rockford, Ill., and after a short time moved to Avon, Rock County, where his parents had located during his service in the war. He remained with them for two years and then married and moved to Beloit, Wis., where he lived two years, working at his trade, which was that of a carpenter. In 1868 he came to Ellsworth, and resided for a few years. In 1887 he moved to Superior, Wis., and worked at his trade for twelve years. February 1899, he returned to Ellsworth, where he has since resided. He belongs to the I. O. O. F. of Superior, Wis., and the G. A. R. In politics he is a Republican. Mr. Wood married Emily L. Kinne, who was born at Harrison, Ill., daughter of Nelson and Sophrona Kinne. Her father was an early settler of Rock county, Wis. In 1866 he moved to Ellsworth, Wis., where he led a retired life until his death. Mr. and Mrs. Wood have had born to them two children, to wit: Bert H., born at Beloit, Wis., in 1867, and died in 1903. Blanche, born in Ellsworth, Wis., is a graduate of the Normal school at Superior, Wis. She has been a teacher in the public schools of Superior for a number of years. The parents of our subject were David J. and Rachel (Davison) Wood. The father was a farmer, and was born in Kings County, New York, and the mother was born in Pennsylvania. The father died at the age of sixty-two on his farm in the town of Avon, and his wife passed away in 1859 in Winnebago county, Illinois. (taken from "History of the St. Croix Valley", published in 1909).
WOOD, HIRAM N., farmer, P. O. Ono, Pierce county, is a son of Gardner and Fanny (Cook) Wood. His father was born in New York in 1800, and married Fanny, daughter of R. and N. Cook, who bore him ten children: Betsy, Mrs. Hubbard; Eleanor, Mrs. Gray; Hiram N.; Josiah; Casper; Nancy, deceased; Sally, deceased; Permelia, Mrs. Holt; Harriet, Mrs. Steel, and Mary, deceased. Hiram N. was born February 27, 1826, in Fulton county, N. Y., and lived there the first seventeen years of his life. In 1843 he moved with his parents to Dodge county, Wis., and lived there until 1856, when he married Ellen, daughter of C. and M. Marsh, and then moved to Pierce county, Wis., and settled on his present farm in what is now Union township. It was then in the woods nine miles from the nearest neighbors, and he was the first settler in the township. His wife did not see the face of a white woman the first six months she was there, and their first house was twelve by fourteen feet, with a few loose boards for a roof, and blankets for doors. Eight children were born to them, as follows: Mary (Mrs. Ogilvie), Charles, John, Wilber, Millie (Mrs. Thompson), Lucy (Mrs. Young), Amy and Herbert, the two last named are living at home. In 1880 he bought a portable saw-mill and ran that one year. Then he put up a regular saw-mill which he has operated since, and which has been of great help to the other settlers coming in. He built the first school-house in the township and it is still standing, but has been superseded by a modern brick building. He has held all of the town and school offices. Mr. Wood has never drank a glass of liquor, and until injured a few years ago, was a very rugged man. Politically he is a prohibitionist. --Taken from the "Historical and Biographical Album of the Chippewa Valley Wisconsin.