Upcoming Projects

Belmont Massacre 1862: Television Documentary

Download PDF of BelmontSettlement

The pdf contains the Norwegian settlement list during 1859-1862 from Belmont, Christiania, and Des Moines townships in Jackson County, Minnesota, extending along the Des Moines River wooded area to Estherville, Emmet County, Iowa. Thirteen of these settlers were killed in the 24 August 1862 Belmont Massacre. Both Norwegian and Americanized spellings used by these individuals have been included along with birthdates, immigration data, and settlements in America. [The brackets contain the arrival years and land descriptions for Jackson, Minnesota, and Estherville, Iowa.]

Please contact Deb Nelson Gourley if you have any further information about these individuals for an upcoming Television Documentary . . . connecting the dots . . . from their homes in Norway . . . to their wagon train journey to Jackson, Minnesota . . . and the 24 August 1862 Belmont Massacre.


Ashley Park Monument located in Jackson, Minnesota

“Erected by the State of Minnesota in the year 1909, to the memory of the pioneer settlers of Jackson County, whose names are inscribed below, massacred by the Sioux Indians in 1857 and 1862”

28 March 1857 massacre:
  • William Wood
  • Joshua Stewart
  • George Wood
  • Willie Thomas
  • Two children of Joshua Stewart
24 August 1862 massacre:
  • Ole Olson Fohre/Fyre/Førde (father)
  • Mikkel Olson Slaabakken
  • Johannes Knutson Axe/Ekse
  • Knut Haldorson Ro Mestad and wife
  • Brita Andersdatter Røte Mestad
  • Anna Knutsdatter Bjørgo Langeland (mother)
  • Aagaata Knutsdatter Langeland (child)
  • Anna Knutsdatter Langeland (child)
  • Nicolai Johan Knutson Langeland (child)
  • Knut Knutson Langeland (child)
  • Lars Larson Rasdal Hjørnevik and wife Guri Larsdatter Seim [wrongly listed on the monument, they both lived]
  • Lars Larson Furnes/Furness/Furrenæs and wife Anna Knudsdatter Langeland [Deb Nelson Gourley's great-great-great-grandparents, their 2-year-old orphan son Johannes Larson lived]
24 August 1862 wounded children who survived:
  • Ole Olson Fyre (Ole F. Forde), the older Olson brother—age 11
  • Anders Engebretson Slaabakken Olson—age 11
  • Julia Knutsdatter Langeland—age 3