Herman Lesley Petterson, the well known and popular county clerk of Mitchell county, is a native son of Kansas. He was born on a farm sixteen miles southeast of Beloit, on March 7, 1875, a son of Carl and Charlotte (Johnson) Petterson, both natives of Yonkoping, Sweden. Carl Petterson is an example of what thrift and industry will accomplish for a poor emigrant boy who begins the battle of life in a land of opportunities with a will and determination to win. He remained in his native land until after he was married, in 1871, and the following year borrowed money with which to pay the passage for himself and wife to America. They came directly to Mitchell county, Kansas, and located on Government land in Logan township. He still owns his original homestead and has added to it until he now owns several hundred acres of well improved and valuable land in Mitchell county. He is a Republican and has held various local offices. The wife and mother died February 21, 1911, aged sixty-two years, and he resides on his old homestead in Mitchell county. They had a large family of children: Charles J., born August 3, 1872, and died November 8, 1908, married Josie Kilpatrick and they had six children; Earl J., Ethel, Frank L., Violet V., DeEtta and Edna; Hannah C., born December 15, 1873, married Harrison McKim in 1895. They have ten children, all living in Mitchell county. Herman Lesley, the subject; Alfred, died in infancy; David, born November 30, 1870, married Edna Ramsey in 1904, is chief clerk to trainmaster for Santa Fe railroad at Chanute, Kan.; Peter, died in infancy; William Arthur, born March 2, 1887, resides on the old homestead in Mitchell county; Andrew O., born December 17, 1887, also resides on old homestead; Francis L., born August 12, 1890, farmer, Mitchell county; Leoti B., born December 31, 1892, graduate of the State Normal School at Emporia, and now a teacher in Mitchell county, and Edward C. and Ester E., twins, born November 8, 1895.
Herman Lesley Petterson was educated in the public schools of Mitchell county and after attending the State Normal School at Emporia two years he matriculated at Bethany College, Lindsborg, Kan., and after two years was compelled to give up his course on account of failing health. While he was at college he was a close student and also took an active part in college athletics. He was the captain of the college football team, which was known as the "Terrible Swedes," and were the champions of the State that year. After leaving college, Mr. Petterson returned to the farm, where he remained three years. In 1906 and 1907 he served as a clerk in the office of the Secretary of State at Topeka. He then returned to Mitchell county and was engaged in farming until 1908, when he received the nomination for county clerk on the Republican ticket, and was elected without opposition. He has made an efficient officer and is giving entire satisfaction in the administration of his office. He was married August 4, 1903, to Miss Hollis L., daughter of James Monroe and Emma C. (Hayes) Edmundson, both natives of Ohio, and now residents of Edna, Kan. The mother is a distant relative of ex-President Hayes. Mrs. Petterson was born September 12, 1878, in Labette county, Kansas. She is a graduate of the Labette County High School, class of 1900, and later attended the State Normal School at Emporia, Kan. She taught several terms of school prior to her marriage. To Mr. and Mrs. Petterson have been born four children: Emmy Lou, born June 13, 1904; Edmund Lesley, born September 20, 1905; Ethel Helen, born October 16, 1908, and Carl James, born December 12, 1910. Mr. Petterson is one of the progressive young men of Mitchell county and his straightforward methods and genial manner have made many friends for him. He and his wife are members of the Christian church.Pages 338-340 from a supplemental volume 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 October 2002 by Carolyn Ward. This volume is identified at the Kansas State Historical Society as microfilm LM196. It is a single volume 3.
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