Charles William Nordeen, the leading lumber merchant of Dwight and one of its progressive business men, was born on Dec. 25, 1878, on his father's farm, three miles south of the present town of Dwight, in Morris county. He was the first son of Andrew and Bettie (Svede) Nordeen. Andrew Nordeen was born in Sweden in 1840. His parents were farmers and he followed that vocation in the Old Country until he was twenty years old, when he came to the United States. For two years he lived at Duluth, Minn., where he worked as a stone mason. He came to Kansas in 1862 and homesteaded land near Parkerville. That was the nearest railroad point and Mr. Nordeen carried the materials for his house from Parkerville to his homestead on his back, a distance of over four miles. While proving up his claim he worked during his spare time at laying stone, building stone fences and plastering, often walking as far as Council Grove, fifteen miles, to his work. After making final proof on his homestead he sold the quarter section and bought land near the present town of Dwight. The two sections purchased there he has divided into three farms, all highly improved. He lived there until his death, on Dec. 19, 1907. Before coming to America Mr. Nordeen served in the Swedish army. When he arrived in Kansas he had but little money, so he was a self-made man and won his position by hard work and determination. He was laid to rest at Dwight, Kan., the town he had seen grow from its infancy to a thriving little city. In the early days the family had to travel six miles to church and as there were but few horses and carriages in Kansas at that time, they drove an ox team. In 1865 Mr. Nordeen married Bettie, daughter of Andrew Andersonor Svedeas that is the Swedish spelling. He was born in the Old Country, but came to America and lived at Lawrence, Kan. The Andersons came to Dwight to live with Mrs. Nordeen and died there. When Mr. Nordeen went to be married he drove a team of oxen and the honeymoon trip was made behind those slow but faithful animals. Four children were welcome in the Nordeen home: Annie Christine, wife of O. J. Flack, a farmer near Dwight; Charles W.; Albert A., a farmer near Dwight, who married Etta Linn in 1907, and Johnnie A., a hardware merchant in Dwight, who married Bertha C. Curtis on Dec. 5, 1908.
Charles W. Nordeen was educated in the district schools, took a course in the Leavenworth Business College, and then studied in the law department of the University of Kansas for a year, not with a view to entering that profession, but for his own benefit in commercial life. After leaving the university he returned to Dwight and at once bought an interest in a lumber yard and hardware business. He has become interested in live stock and carries on a considerable business in that line. Mr. Nordeen has bought several farms in Morris county and is one of its most prosperous citizens. He has been a member of the town council of Dwight ever since its incorporation, in 1903; is a Thirty-second degree Scottish Rite Mason, a member of the Modern Woodmen of America, the American Order of United Workmen, the Knights of Pythias and the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. On Dec. 17, 1902, Mr. Nordeen married Addie Viola, a daughter of William Johnson, a retired farmer of Parkerville. To this union have been born two boysLoren Carlston, born April 9, 1905, and Dorman Andrew, born Jan. 12, 1908.Pages 1225-1226 from volume III, part 2 of Kansas: a cyclopedia of state history, embracing events, institutions, industries, counties, cities, towns, prominent persons, etc. ... / with a supplementary volume devoted to selected personal history and reminiscence. Standard Pub. Co. Chicago : 1912. 3 v. in 4. : front., ill., ports.; 28 cm. Vols. I-II edited by Frank W. Blackmar. Transcribed December 2002 by Carolyn Ward. This volume is identified at the Kansas State Historical Society as microfilm LM195. It is a two-part volume 3.
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