Morrison County Influentials: 96-100

Names introduced last week:

91.  Axel Borgstrom (1888-1995) – Axel Borgstrom was a defining citizen of the community of Upsala.  He was born in Sweden and came with his family to the United States when he was five years old.  He married Carrie Johnson in 1914.  That same year, he began working as a cashier at Farmers’ Bank of Upsala.  He eventually became a director of the bank.  He owned a variety of businesses in the community, including a confectionery, a car dealership, and a funeral home.  He and his wife also had a millenery.  When the couple was in their 90s, they built a new house.  This they eventually donated to the Upsala Historical Society.  Carrie lived to be 101 and Axel lived to be 106.

92.  Johan Svante “John S.” Borgstrom (1861-1933) – Father of Axel Borgstrom.  John was born in Sweden, married Anna Martinson in 1886, and moved his family to the United States in 1893.  He bought 80 acres in Elmdale Township, portions of which he used for a bank, a confectionery, a lumber yard, a hardware store and a furniture store.  He gave land for a school.  He purchased an additional 60 acres and had it platted as the Upsala town site.  John started out as a photographer, having photo galleries in Upsala, Swanville, Burtrum, Brey Eagle and Holdingford.  H served as a director of the People’s State Bank of Swanville and was Vice President of Farmers’ State Bank of Upsala.  He was postmaster of Upsala for 9 years and served as the treasurer of Elmdale Township, and later was the Upsala village treasurer.

93.  Charles “Charley” Martin (1909-1981) – Teacher and poet.  Charley Martin was born in Parker Township in Morrison County.  He was a well-loved English and speech teacher at the Little Falls Community High School for 34 years.  His teaching career spanned almost four decades.  He was named Teacher of the Year in 1964 and 1971.  In 1974, the auditorium on the new Little Falls High School was dedicated to Charley.  That same year, Minnesota Governor Wendell Anderson declared May 6, 1974, as “Charles Martin Day.”  He received the WCCO Radio Good Neighbor Award and the Exchange Club’s Book of Golden Deeds Award.  He was a member of the Carnegie Library Board, secretary of the Little Falls Chamber of Commerce, and a charter member of the Barbershoppers.  Charley wrote a book of poetry called “Voices of Yesterday” that was published by the Morrison County Historical Society and the Morrison County Arts Association.

94.  Dr. Samuel Graham Knight (1869-1954) – Physician.  Born in Canada.  Graduated from the University of Toronto Medical School in 1907.  Came to Randall in 1912 and operated a medical practice, making house calls using his horse and buggy.  He also had a drug store with his medical practice.  Dr. Knight was president of the Randall village council, served on the Randall school board, the Boy Scout board, and the Morrison County Medical Association.  He was a president of Randall State Bank.  He retired from practicing medicine in 1949.  In 1960, the community of Randall dedicated its new school to Dr. S. G. Knight.

95.  Frank B. Logan (1871-1943) – Born in Pennsylvania.  Came to Royalton with his parents in 1879.  Learned the watch-making trade in Peoria, Illinois, and returned to Royalton to open a jewelry business.  “In 1907 he took charge of the Morrison county fair exhibit, and in 1911 was appointed assistant superintendent of the agricultural department of the [Minnesota] state fair; in 1913 he was promoted to superintendent.  He was elected to the board of managers in 1915, and served in that capacity until 1924.” (Historical Sketches of Royalton and Vicinity by Frank B. Logan – Yes, he also wrote a history of Royalton, but not that biography, which was supplied by The Royalton Banner, publisher of the Royalton history.)

Next week’s Influentials:

96.  John D. Logan

97.  Reverend Joseph Buh

98.  Philip Hartmann

99.  H. B. Morrison

100.  John Henry Rhodes

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