NELS JOHNSON, fourth in the line of children of Swan and Kjerstin Johnson, was born October 24, 1863, at Wiby, Christanstad, Sweden. At the age of five years (in 1868) he and the family immigrated to America, locating in Chicago, Illinois, for two years, then living in Bement, Piatt County, Illinois for eight years, and finally moving out west. They settled at Keatskotoos, in Platte County, Nebraska, for one and one-half years. On March 1, 1880, the family moved to settle permanently on their four hundred acre farm near Genoa, Nebraska. This was farmed by the boys and help, as their father, Swan, did carpenter work.
Here Nels grew to manhood and assisted in the work of the farm. On September 26, 1888, he united in marriage with Alice M. Gregg, of Alliance, Nebraska. He bought a farm a mile west of his father’s place, farming there some years. He sold it and moved to Ord, Nebraska, in December, 1901, where he bought a farm of five hundred ten acres four miles north of Ord, in Valley County.
Three children were born to them: Bethene, Helen and a son, Wallace.
Mrs. Nels Johnson passed away March 29, 1919, during the flu epidemic, as did their daughter Bethene, who died April 1, 1919, and a double funeral was conducted for them. The baby son was adopted by a sister of Nels Johnson, Mrs. Ellen Young.
Nels was always an active, successful man. He retired from active farm work in 1919 and moved to Ord in October of that year where he now lives, together with his daughter Helen, and granddaughter Alice May.
After Nels retired he went out to the ranch to mow hay for Will Gregg, his brother-in-law. The team got scared and Nels was badly cut up in the mowing machine. It was a long time before he was out of danger, but he was determined to get well and he did, although he was left somewhat crippled.
Nels died in the Mary Lanning Hospital in Hastings Nebraska, on June 9, 1946, following a long illness. He attained the age of 82 years, 5 months and 16 days. He was buried June 13, 1946, in the Ord, Nebraska Cemetery beside his wife.