Peterson Family History

John and Minnie Peterson

Peterson Family History
Preface
I want to tell you what I think I know about the Peterson family history, the “Peterson family” being (mostly) the descendants of John Morris Peterson and Minnie Alace Putney. I say “think I know” because history in general and family history (practiced mostly by non-historians) in particular is far from precise. There are countless opportunities for misspelling, misinterpretation, mistakes, mis……, etc. For instance, is Minnie Putney’s middle name Alace as recorded on what may be a page from a Putney Family Bible1 or Alice as the Illinois State Marriage archive2 has it? In the pages that follow you will no doubt find what you consider to be errors. Some will have been inherited by me and others will have been created by me. When you find information you consider to be incorrect, I would be most interested in hearing the details from you. Please contact me with any comments you may have. I hope that this document will serve to inform you and perhaps motivate you to tell me what I have left out that should have been included. For now I will discuss what I think I know about Johan Magnus Persson, Minnie Alace Putney, and their parents, siblings and children.

JB Peterson 2802 Hidden Knoll Court Sugar Land, Texas 77478 March 21, 2004 rcdjbp@gmail.com Peterson - Taylor Genealogy

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Births Illinois Statewide Marriage Index, 1763–1900
Bride PUTNEY, MINNIE ALICE Date 07/04/1881 Vol./Page County 00C/0021 HENDERSON

Groom PETERSON, JOHN M

Peterson Family History
In Sweden
John Morris Peterson was born June 7, 1848, near Katteberg3 in Skärstad parish, Jönköpings county in the province of Småland. According to Swedish Church records4 he was named Johan Magnus. His father was Per Jonasson and his mother was Brita Månsdotter. In accordance with the patronymic naming system used prior to 1900 in Sweden the sons of Per Jonasson took Persson (Per’s son) as their last names and his daughters took Persdotter (Per’s daughter) as their last names. The “Americanization” of Swedish names led me down many blind alleys when I first began researching the Peterson family history. The family history data I had access to in the 1990’s listed Per and Brita by their Americanized names as Peter Johnson and Mary Munson. As you may have noticed if you looked at the partial image of the Swedish Church record in the appendix, Johan had a number of siblings in 1850. They were twins Maja (Maria) and Brita (Mary) born in 1836, Johannes born in 1839, Lars Petter born in 1842, and Anna Christina born in 1845. Johan’s arrival in 1848 was followed by the birth of Johanna in 1851, Karl August in 1852, Johanna Sofia in 1855, Per Alford in 1859 and Inga Carlotta in 1861. In various records dated through 1869, Johan’s occupation is listed as farmer (bonde). The family moved a number of times as Johan was growing up, staying in Skärstad parish. In 1869 Johan joined thousands of other Swedes who emigrated to the United States. Swedish emigration records show that Johan left Esbjörnarp on March 19, 1869, bound for America. The American West5 website has this to say about the Swedish migration to the United States: “The Swedish mass emigration would not have been possible without the Swedish railroads and the organized passenger traffic over the Atlantic. At this time no Swedish line carried passengers directly from Gothenburg [Sweden] to New York. The Swedes therefore had to use British or German ships. The emigrant route started with the train ride to the big port of Gothenburg, where the complete passage, such as Gothenburg-Chicago, of the British Wilson Line, brought the emigrants to Hull in England. A train took them across the country to Liverpool or Glasgow; from there the Inman Line or some other company's ships sailed them to New York. The whole voyage Gothenburg-New York need not take more than three weeks in 1870.”
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Map of Katteberg (now Lyckås) Swedish Church records for Katteberg 1847 – 1850 listing son Johan Magnus born 7/6 1848. 5 The American West

Peterson Family History
In America
There is some evidence that Johan came to New York from Liverpool on the ship “City of Brooklyn”6, owned in 1869 by the Inman Line. The passenger manifest for the “City of Brooklyn” shows one John Person, age 21, a male from Sweden, arriving in New York on April 12, 1869, from Liverpool. The name, age, and date of arrival are a good fit for Johan Magnus Persson who was just two months short of age 21 in April 1869 and had departed Sweden three weeks prior on March 19, 1869. I cannot say with certainty that John entered the United States at the port of New York. And if he did, I know virtually nothing about how he came to be in Sagetown (Gladstone), Illinois in 1870. My mother, Neola Peterson, remembers hearing that he was in or near Chicago for a time and there learned to speak English from the lady who employed him. It is a certainty that he was living in Sagetown when the 1870 federal census was conducted. Census records7 dated September 2, 1870 show John Peterson living in the town of Lynn, Illinois, Sagetown post office. He was apparently a boarder in the home of John Jonasquist (or Jungquist), a quarryman, along with seven other quarrymen with Scandinavian surnames. At this point there is a 12 year hole in the history of John Morris Peterson as I know it. Along this 12 year path, John made his way from Sagetown to some point further south in Henderson County, probably Olena, where Minnie Putney was living in 18808.

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“City of Brooklyn” Passenger Manifest John Peterson - 1870 Census of the United States 8 Minnie Putney – 1880 Federal Census

Peterson Family History
In Canada
Ira Putney, Jr. was the natural son of James H. Brown and Elizabeth Copp, born in Stanstead, Quebec, Canada, on June 16, 1840. Some think his name may have originally been Garrison Brown. By the time of the 1850 census he was living in the household of his uncle, Joshua Copp, a merchant in Burlington, Iowa, along with his uncle and aunt, Ira and Sarah Copp Putney, who had become his guardians. Sarah Copp Putney was the sister of his birth mother Elizabeth Copp Brown. By all accounts Ira and Sarah, having no children of their own, took their nephew to raise as their own son although he was apparently never legally adopted. When Ira Jr. finished his studies in the Burlington schools in 1853 the family moved to Olena where father and son opened a dry goods store called Putney & Son. Five years later, at the age of 18 years, Ira Jr. married Azubah Ann Haislett who was also 18 years of age. Ira Turton and Libbie Vie were born to the couple before Ira enlisted in the Grand Army of the Republic in 1861. Minnie Alace and her younger siblings were born after his return from the Civil War in 1864. Minnie Alace Putney was born June 18, 1866 in Olena, Illinois. Her father was Ira Putney, Jr. and her mother was Azubah Ann Haislett. Minnie was the third of six children. Before her came Ira Turton in 1859 and Libbie Vie in 1860. Following her were Harry in 1868, Bert Brown in 1871 and Gear Maxwell in about 1874.

Peterson Family History
Our Peterson Family
Our Peterson family began with the marriage of John Morris Peterson and Minnie Alace Putney on about the 4th of July, 1882, in Keithsburg, Illinois. I am curious as to why the marriage took place in Keithsburg, if it did. The marriage license was issued in Henderson County. The only other Keithsburg connection I know about is Tom and Gladys Hufnagel Putney living in Keithsburg at the time of the 1930 census. A marriage license9 was issued to John M Peterson and Minnie Alice Putney by the state of Illinois, Henderson County, in 1881. The marriage date recorded was July 4th of that year. My guess is that the newlyweds took up housekeeping in Olena, but that is only a guess. The information I have about the expansion of their family does contain a few know facts. I have no doubt there are errors and omissions as well. If you notice any of the latter and have the time I would be grateful to receive your corrections. The following is a chronological list of John and Minnie Peterson’s children who were: Eleanor Ann, John Major, Ira Brown, Flora Pearl, Gear E., Eva Agnes, Marie Alice, Thelma Dongola, and Lois Dorothy. 1. Eleanor Ann Peterson was born on 13 APR 1882 in Henderson County, IL and died in Oct 1962, at age 77. She was always known as Nell or Nellie, “Aunt Nell” in my memory. 2. John Major Peterson was born in Aug 1883 in Stronghurst, IL and died in Nov 1941 in Stronghurst, IL, at age 57. My grandpa Peterson (Ira) always referred to him as Joke. 3. Ira Brown Peterson was my grandfather; born on 17 Aug 1886 in Olena, IL, died on 04 Oct 1968 in Burlington, IA, at age 82, and is buried in the Olena Cemetery. Most folks called him Ike. 4. Flora Pearl Peterson was born on 02 Dec 1889 in Olena, IL, died on 17 Sep 1975 in Monmouth, IL, at age 85, and was buried in Oquawka, IL. If I have the family nicknames correct, she was known as Peck. 5. Gear E. Peterson was born on 22 Jan 1893 in Olena, IL and died on 08 Jan 1961 in Stronghurst, IL, at age 67. In line with what seems to be a family tradition, Gear was nicknamed Bink. 6. Eva Agnes Peterson was born on 06 Feb 1897 in Stronghurst, IL and died in Mar 1981 in Burlington, IA, at age 84. Her nickname was Rache.

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John Peterson and Minnie Putney Marriage Record

Peterson Family History
Our Peterson Family
7. Marie Alice Peterson was born on 01 Oct 1898 in Henderson County, IL and died on 08 Aug 1978 in Olena, IL, at age 79. She must have had a nickname, but I don’t know what it was. 8. Thelma Dongola Peterson was born on 29 Nov 1901 in Olena, IL, died on 09 Nov 1995 in Galesburg, Knox, Illinois, at age 93, and is buried in Monmouth, IL. Finally, a logical nickname, Pete! 9. Lois Dorothy Peterson was born on 13 Nov 1904 in Olena, IL and died on 21 Feb 1989 in Henderson County, IL, at age 84. Lois was Bob.

To be continued . . .

Peterson Family History
A Digression (To the Future)
In late May of 2004 I received an email from Inger Johansson who is the great granddaughter of John Morris Peterson’s sister Maria (Maja). Among other things, she mentioned that John and Maria’s sister Anna (Johanna) Sofia emigrated to the United States and was living in Rock Island, Illinois in 1887. I had previously heard that Anna Sofia left Sweden for the US in 1885, but was surprised to hear that she was living within 60 miles of her brother John. In June of 2004 I traveled to Stronghurst, Illinois, to visit my mother Neola and attend the annual Peterson family reunion. I asked Mom if she had ever heard mention of John’s sister in Rock Island and she had not. The day before the reunion Mom and I paid a visit to Mamie Peterson Philbrick and her daughter Joyce Spear in Stronghurst. We enjoyed a delightful couple of hours with them discussing family history for the most part. Imagine our surprise when Mamie mentioned her grandfather’s sister in Rock Island and proceeded with the following account (as best I recall): “John’s sister lived near Rock Island where she worked as a seamstress. John paid her a visit and while there she asked him to help her in some way by putting on a dress she was making. Of course he declined, but she insisted and talked him into putting on the dress. He was so embarrassed by the ordeal that he vowed never to visit her again.” At the reunion there was, of course, a good deal of family history being discussed. Jack Olson, Flora Peterson Olson’s grandson had heard a variation of the “dress story” from her. Inger and her husband Karl are taking care of their grandchildren during the summer. She plans to do some research when the grandchildren go back to school in hopes of uncovering further details of Anna’s life in the US. And now, back to the 19th century where information provided by Mamie and Jack will be used to fill in some of the blanks that previously existed in the John and Minnie story. Mamie has kindly recounted some of her recollections of John and Minnie and Joyce has documented them. See the appendix to this document for the full text of Mamie’s recollections.10

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Mamie Peterson Philbrick's Recollections

Peterson Family History
Appendix
Swedish Church records for Katteberg 1847 – 1850 listing son Johan Magnus born 7/6 1848.

Peterson Family History
Appendix
Map showing Katteberg (now Lyckås)

Peterson Family History
Appendix
Map of Jönköpings Län (County)

Peterson Family History
Appendix
Probably a page from a Putney Family Bible.

Peterson Family History
Appendix
“City of Brooklyn” Passenger Manifest

Name: Arrival Date: Age: 21 Gender: Port of Departure: Destination: Place of Origin: Ship Name: Port of Arrival: Line: Microfilm Roll: List Number:

John Person 12 Apr 1869 Male Liverpool, England United States of America Sweden City Of Brooklyn New York 26 308 324

The City of Brooklyn was a 2,911 gross ton ship, length 354.4ft x beam 42.5ft, clipper stem, one funnel, three masts (rigged for sail), iron hull, single screw and a speed of 13 knots. Built by Tod & McGregor, Glasgow, she was launched as the CITY OF BROOKLYN in Dec.1868 for the Inman Line.

Peterson Family History
Appendix
1870 Federal United States Census

Peterson Family History
Appendix
Minnie Putney – 1880 Federal Census

Peterson Family History
Appendix

Back to Illinois Statewide Marriage Index Search Page

Illinois Statewide Marriage Index, 1763–1900 Click here for information about how to obtain copies of original marriage records.
Groom Bride Date Vol./Page License No. County

PETERSON, JOHN M

PUTNEY, MINNIE ALICE

07/04/1881

00C/0021

HENDERSON

Peterson Family History
Appendix
Mamie Peterson Philbrick’s Recollections

Putney – Peterson Trivia
From Mamie Peterson Philbrick, 6/2004
John Morris Peterson was born in Jönköping, Sweden, the son of Peter Johnson and Mary Munson, 6-1848. Sweden was an economically depressed country, barely enough to eat. John )my Grandfather) relates when a wooden shoe split in the cold icy weather it was nailed back together because there was no money to buy shoes. As a young man he was working in a ship yard (another version, wagon factory) when he stowed away on a ship sailing for America. America represented freedom and a land of plenty. When he arrived in America he was asked his name. Reply – John. Fathers name – reply Peter, so in America he because John Peterson. In the new world employment was available for strong young men. He worked on streets, also helped build the streets of Chicago and Peoria. From there he came to Henderson County where he worked for Ira Putney Jr. who was road commissioner of that area. He also did farm work for Ira Putney Jr., and stayed in their home as hired help usually did. There he met their daughter Minnie, fell in love and asked for her hand in marriage. The parents objected because of the age difference. She was age 16, he in his 30’s. She threatened to run away from home if not allowed to marry John, so the parents relented. John M. Peterson and Minnie Putney were married in Keithsburg, Ill., July 4, 1882. They began their married life in a farm house halfway between Olena and Hopper. Here they raised their nine children, Nell, John (Joker) Flora (Peck), Gear (my Dad), Eva ( Rach ), Marie (Fan), Ira (Ike), Thelma (Pete) and Lois (Bob). John was a shrewd businessman and acquired more acreage and one other farmstead. Ike and Ida lived there after their marriage. Ira always helped with the farming, the other two boys left for Military Service at the age they could have been help to him. “Joker” had a legitimate enlistment. When he came home his stories of the world intrigued Gear (Dad) age 18 and a neighbor Charlie Hicks, age 18. They ran away from home to enlist in the Army, declared they were orphans and ask for foreign services together. They served three years in the Philippine Islands and were life long friends. When Gear and Mamie Dowell Peterson were married Jan. 26, 1916, John and Minnie gave them 12 acres, mostly timber, East of Hopper. They built a home and raised six children, Raymond, Mamie (Sissy), Martha (Jack), Harold, Bonnie and Gear (Skeeter). This house burned in 1919.

Peterson Family History
Appendix
Mamie Peterson Philbrick’s Recollections
They stayed with John and Minnie while rebuilding on the same site. Two hears later John and Minnie’s large farm house burned. They also rebuilt on the same site. This house was 5 rooms, one story, only two girls were still at home.

The summer of 1934 I stayed with John and Minnie to care for my Grandmother Minnie, who was suffering from high blood pressure and mini strokes. She would be bedfast for short periods of time. After dinner clean up was finished she would ask me to look at the thermometer. Many days it registered 110 on the North side of the house in the shade. Men returned to the field to work, many in the area died of heat stroke. The heat cycle continued through 1937, but for shorter durations. In the afternoon Minnie would read her Bible. John didn’t approve of her religious commitment, but she always took the children to Church and Sunday School at the Olena Methodist Church. John would contribute financially to the Church, but never attended services. Minnie was average height and blocky build in her younger years, overweight but not obese. She would tell me about two Sisters (no names) who weighed 300 lbs. and could float like corks. They enjoyed floating in the creek and reading. Nowhere in my information is mentioned any girls except Minnie and Libby. Maybe these were not natural Sisters – maybe cousins. Ira Putney Jr. had many sisters, two younger then he was. When I was a child of age 4 or 5 Gear and Mammies (my parents) farmed and lived in an area near Minnie’s two Brothers called Brush and Jug. Not certain who was Bert and who was Harry. I remember them as very large. Dad was a medium size, muscular build, probably explains why I noticed their size. Dad didn’t drink and My Mom wouldn’t have tolerated anyone else drinking at our home. Their nick names make me wonder, Mom disliked them for some reason. Gear Putney was more like Minnie, except heavier but not obese. He was bald on the top and both he and Minnie had white hair since I can remember them. The Putney men (Bert and Harry) were always volunteers when there was a war. They left wife and family behind and went to battle. Florence supported their families by doing laundry on a wash board. No Government considerations at that time. Minnie’s Father, Ira Putney Jr. joined the Union Army Oct 3, 1861. Owing to his great size and weight he was unfit for marching in the ranks, and was assigned to the

Peterson Family History
Appendix
Mamie Peterson Philbrick’s Recollections commissary department. In this department he preformed exceptionally effective service, and usually shared the dangers and hardships of Army life. After three years of Army life he was mustered out in 1864 at East Point, Ga.

Two years previously he had married Aruba Hazlet. Because of this article I feel the size of the Putney’s was inherited from the Browns or Ira Jr. After service Ira Jr. returned to Olena to his wife and be in business with his Father, Ira Sr. He had at various times been Postmaster. Ira Putney Sr. was Postmaster until his death April 25, 1872. You wondered about the beginning of Gear and Agnes’ communication – not a clue from here. My query is when did he become a Railroad employee? In the hotel he was said to be a presiding genius of the dining room. As a Railroad employee was he a waiter or possibly doing book work. He did not have the appearance of a laborer. They lived in Kansas City in a rail coach home, furnished by the Railroad. Minnie visited them when little Gear was quite small, and considered their home luxurious. Each summer Gear and Agnes visited in Illinois. They always brought a gift to Minnie. One year a long strand of jet beads. Another year a rope of amber beads. One time beautiful fire opal earrings. Minnie always opened the drawer and showed the jewelry to me when I cleaned the bedroom. One year they gave her a set of footed goblets that stood on the top cupboard shelf. They were on the top shelf of Thelma and Elmer Carlson’s china cabinet when they retired to Senior housing in Monmouth. Much of the life of Gear and Agnes remains a mystery. My ramblings are not meant to be a permanent part of your records. Glean any useful information and delete the rest. If Joyce and I can contribute any “missing link”, please let us know.

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