Manfred History & Preservation, Inc.
Knute and Josephine Melby
Husband's Full Name: Knute Knutson Melby
Husband's Place of Birth: Øystre Slidre, Valdres, Norway
Husband's Father's Name: Knud Olsen Rudi
Husband's Mother's Name: Guri Kristensdotter Melby
Husband's Siblings' Names: Guri, Ole, Christen, Ragnhild, Gulbrand, Marit, Caroline, Martin and Oscar
Wife's Full Name: Josephine Jurgenson
Wife's Place of Birth: Clinton County, Iowa
Wife's Father's Name: John E Jurgenson
Wife's Mother's Name: Hannah B Jorgenson
Wife's Siblings' Names: unknown
Children's Names: Beatrice Miller, June Woods
Knute, also known as K. K. Melby, was the fourth child born to Knut and Guri Melby on November 10, 1870. During his childhood, he lived on the Melby farm in Rogne, Øystre Slidre, Valdres, Norway and attended the Rogne school and church. In 1881 when he was 10½ years old, his parents sold the Melby farm and the whole family emigrated from Norway to Goodhue County, Minnesota. In 1884, his parents moved to Griggs County North Dakota where they filed on a homestead, and in 1887 they moved to Foster County.
By this time Knute was a young man, ready to go on his own. He went north to Ramsey County ND where he was in the grain business at Souris and Edmore. Later he became a representative for Hixson and Grannon Grain Co. His job took him to Nebraska, and it is here that he met and married Josephine Jurgensen in 1896 at Omaha. Two children were born to them there: Beatrice Melby 1897 and June 1900. Later, Knute and his family moved to North Dakota first living in Manfred for awhile, before settling at Grand Forks. It was at Grand Forks that Knute worked for the Tenney company, auditing the books for elevators in the region which included the elevators at Manfred ND. One of the elevator managers in Manfred at that time was Paulson. These frequent job-related visits to Manfred gave Knute the opportunity to visit his parents and others at Manfred. It is remembered that he would have coffee with folks during his stops.
During the years living at Grand Forks, Knute was an active member of the Presbyterian Church in Grand Forks, and also the Masonic Lodge, Sons of Norway, and the Union of Commercial Travelers. It was here that both of their daughters graduated from the University of ND, June graduating in 1923. Josephine died April 1936 in Grand Forks. Knute later moved to Minot living there for 16 years, first with his daughter Beatrice and husband Paul Miller, and then at the Lutheran Home for the Aged during his final years. Knute died in 1959 at Minot ND. Knute and Josephine are both buried at Grand Forks ND.