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Benjamin and Maggie Sorenson

Husband's Full Name:  Benjamin Sorenson

Husband's Place of Birth:  Telemark, Norway

Husband's Father's Name:  Lars Sorenson

Husband's Mother's Name: unknown

Husband's Siblings' Names: Sofie, Bergette, Alette, Knudt

Wife's Full Name:  Maggie Kison

Wife's Place of Birth:  Yankton, South Dakota

Wife's Father's Name:  Enoch Kison

Wife's Mother's Name:  Karoline Kroll

Wife's Siblings' Names:  Ida, Mathilda

Children's Names: Edwin (Stella); Beatrice, Peter

Ben and Maggie Sorenson were a young, energetic couple who came to Manfred about 1905 while Manfred was just beginning to flurish.


Ben came to America when he was 18 years old. He attended Luther College at Decorah, IA soon after he came to this country. He later came to Wells County settling near Viking starting work at anything he could find. He dug wells, did carpenter work, and for a time erected houses for Native Americans at the Fort Totten Reservation. He came to Fessenden in 1896 clerking at the Viking Store for about three years. At that time he bought a store in Manfred, he continued working with this business and continued to conduct with success until his death. He married Margaret Kison at the time of going into business for himself.


In September 1905 Maggie opened a millinery shop next to her husband’s business in a building formerly occupied as a hotel. It was said that Mrs. Sorenson was just the person to conduct this business successfully, as she had considerable experience in that line and her aptitude for such work was well known.” She died in the fall of 1907 of tuberculosis. 


The following year Ben made a trip to Norway and while there he was taken sick.  After returning he was confined to the hospital and just months later he died of tuberculosis. 


They had three children, a son Edwin, who was five years old when his mother died, and seven years old when his father died. The other children died as infants. Ben died in 1908, he was 37 years old. His wife died in 1907, she was 26 years old.


Steiner Aasand, Ben’s good friend and business associate was named guardian for young Edwin.  Bergette Sorenson, Ben’s sister came from Norway. The two were married at Vang Lutheran Church and raised Edwin as their son.

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