Wednesday, July 30, 2014

52 Ancestors: #30 ~ Great-Grandpa Christopher

This is part of the "52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks" Challenge begun by Amy Johnson Crow, author of the blog No Story Too Small.

Christopher Iverson

I don't know a whole lot about my paternal great-grandfather, Christopher Iverson. Yes, I know the basics, like birth and death dates and places. And I know the name of his wife and the names of his children, one of whom was my grandfather, Arthur Harry Iverson. I shared this information in July of 2013, so I won't repeat those details in this post. If you'd like to read that post, please click HERE.

I'm thankful to have the information that I do have about great-grandpa Christopher. But, what was he like? What did he like to do? Did he play any musical instruments? Did he like to sing? What was his favorite food? What did he do in his spare time?

Christopher was the son of a Civil War veteran. His father,
Iver Iverson, emigrated from Norway in April of 1858. Iver had a brother named Christopher. Was my great-grandfather named after his father's brother?

Christopher lived his whole life in Minnesota. The image below shows the places Christopher lived during his life. I was able to track him through federal and state census records beginning with the 1870 census and ending with the 1920 census. Christopher was born in 1868 and died in 1925. The numbers on the map show the order in which Christopher moved to and lived in these various locations in Minnesota during his life.

Google Map Showing Where Christopher Iverson Lived During His Life

Census records are valuable resources for many reasons, one of which is that they can tell us what our ancestors' occupations were. It turns out that Christopher was listed as a carpenter in the 1900, 1910, and 1920 census records. And the 1910 and 1920 census records specified what kind of carpenter he was. He was listed in those censuses as a house carpenter.

What was it like being a carpenter in Minnesota in the early 1900s? Did Christopher like his job? Or was it something he just did to provide for his family? Why did he decide to be a carpenter? His father was a farmer. Why didn't Christopher become a farmer too?

Interestingly, Christopher's older brother, Edward, followed in their father's footsteps and became a farmer. But, Christopher's younger brother, Oscar, became a carpenter.

I'll be introducing you to Christopher's brothers, Edward and Oscar, in future posts.

I may not know everything I'd like to know about my great-grandpa Christopher at this time, but I'm grateful for what I do know about him.

Thanks for reading!


© 2014 Copyright by Jana Last, All Rights Reserved


"United States Census, 1900," index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 25 Jul 2014), Cristoffer Iverson, Benson village, Swift, Minnesota, United States; citing sheet 7B, family 124, NARA microfilm publication T623, FHL microfilm 1240793.

Year: 1910; Census Place: Torning, Swift, Minnesota; Roll: T624_716; Page: 4A; Enumeration District: 0169; FHL microfilm: 1374729.

"United States Census, 1920," index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 25 Jul 2014), Christ Iverson, Mound, Hennepin, Minnesota, United States; citing sheet 4B, family 90, NARA microfilm publication T625, FHL microfilm 1820839.


  1. I see a lot of him in you Jana! Great picture.

    1. Thanks Andrea! I'm probably a good example of a "combo kid" when it comes to which side of the family I look like. =)

  2. Those are significant moves. If I were to create a map for some of my ancestors, I'd get a big fat 1 and that would be it.

    1. Oh. His moves are nothing compared with my 2nd great-grandaunt, Sarah Amanda (Waterman) Engle and her family. I'd need the map of the United States to chart the moves she and her family made. Or at least from Ohio west because she made her way to California after living in Ohio, Iowa, and the "new" state of South Dakota. And then there's my "Traveling Dentist" great-grandpa. Ya. He traveled a lot too. =)

  3. I wonder about what my grand fathers and great grand parents were like when researching them. I never got a chance to meet any of them. It's nice to get to know them a little with the research like you are too with your ancestors. Really enjoying your "52" series. Fran

    1. Thank you Fran! It would be so wonderful if Christopher had left a journal and it's tucked away in someone's attic or basement. What a find that would be! I'd love it! Thanks for stopping by!




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