This biography was transcribed from a copy made from presumably the 1926 edition of "The History of Snohomish County", vol. II. (Published by the Pioneer Historical Publishing Co.)


Many of the best citizens of Snohomish county have come from Norway and have taken an active and effective part in transforming this region from a comparative wilderness into prosperous farmsteads and thriving towns. Ole Andrew Eliason, who has been a resident of this county continuously since 1888, has borne his full share of the hard and continuous labor incident to the creation of improved farms and the building of comfortable and attractive homes throughout this locality. Born in Norway, on the 6th of February, 1863, he is a son of Elias and Olava (Olsen) Holmstad, who in 1883 brought their family to the United States, locating in Jackson county, Minnesota, where the father engaged in farming for about five years. In the spring of 1888 they came to Stanwood, Snohomish county, whence, about three weeks later, the father and three sons went up the Stillaguamish river as far as Jordan, near which place all of them took up homesteads. They had an unpleasant experience in ascending the river, as they lost a large part of their supplies, their boat upsetting near the mouth of Jim creek. To add to their. discomfort, the weather was wet and their only protection at first was a rude shelter of boughs which they constructed. However, they soon built a small split-cedar house, which was destroyed by fire two months later, and then they built a good sized log house. They began clearing the land and lived there until 1906, by which time a large part of the land had been cleared. They then sold their holdings there and bought ten acres near Arlington, the most of which was cleared, but sold this three years later. They also cleared ten acres of a twenty acre tract which the father owned near-by. In 1910 they went back to Jordan and farmed for about a year, and then came to Arlington and bought a home for the parents, in which they lived about six years. They then bought nine acres of land adjoining the city limits of Arlington, which is the present family home. The father died there January 22, 1922, at the age of eighty-five years, and the mother is still at that place and though eighty-seven years of age retains to a remarkable degree her strength, being able to attend to household duties. To Elias and Olava Holmstad were born thirteen children, namely: Mrs. Nellie Wick, who lives at Jordan; Petre deceased; Ole, who lives at Jordan; Edward E., who lives on Jim creek; Oluf'with his mother; Josephine, Ida, Elizabeth and Mrs. Nettie Furland, who are deceased; Mrs. Matilda Funk, who lives in Arlington; Fred, in California; Anton, in Everett ; and one who died in infancy. They also adopted two children, Mrs. Clara Fay, now of Carnation, Washington, and Charles Guyett, residing in Stanwood, this county.

Ole A. Eliason was educated in the public schools of his native country and accompanied his parents on their emigration to America. In 1888 he came from Minnesota to Snohomish county and soon afterwards took up a homestead of one hundred and sixty acres of land, between Arlington and Granite Falls, which was heavily covered with cedar and fir. He at once began to clear this but some time later sold one hundred acres of the tract. Here he has given his attention to dairy farming, in which he has been successful, and raises good crops of hay, oats and potatoes. In 1913 he bought from the other heirs the estate of his father, comprising eighty-five acres across the river, thirty acres of which are cleared, and he has now leased that place. By persistent labor, intelligently directed, lie has attained a due measure of success and is now numbered among the substantial and prosperous farmers of this section of the county. He has made many permanent and substantial improvements on the property, the farm buildings being maintained in good condition, the general appearance of the ranch indicating him to be a man of good judgment and excellent taste.

On September 7, 1887, Mr. Eliason was married to Miss Josephine Peterson, who is a native of Sweden and a daughter of Peter and Magdalena Peterson, both of whom died in their native land, the father in 1872 and the mother in 1904. They were the parents of five children, namely: Anna, Emma, Josephine, Jacob and Minnie. Mr. and Mrs. Eliason have seven children as follows: Albert, born July 28, 1898; Hildor and Theodore, twins, born August 20, 1899; Elmer, born September 27, 1900; Emma, born July 26, 1903; Alfred, born January 5, 1905; and Mrs. Ruth Lundberg, born July 13; 1907. Hildor and Elmer, in partnership with Rufus Wilder, are the owners of a sawmill on the home farm, having a capacity of ten thousand feet daily. The mother of these children came to the United States in 1889, locating in Nebraska, where she lived five years, and then resided in California four years, when she came to Arlington, where she was living at the time of her marriage to Mr. Eliason. He is a member of the Snohomish County Dairymen's Association. He has been greatly interested in educational affairs in his community and served for twenty years as a member of the Jordan school board, having been one of the organizers of that school. Candid and straight forward in all of his relations with his fellowmen, he has won their respect and good will, and has cooperated in the advancement of all measures for the betterment of the public welfare

Submitted by: Michael Woody

Transcriber's notes: "I believe Ole might have come from Norway at a diffent time than the rest of the family and took the name Eliason as they often did in Norway, Eliason the son of Elia."

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