Frederick Burstrom, BiographyPorter County biographical sketches . . . .

Transcribed biography of Frederick Burstrom


The business of the merchant is not only one that may be the road to success, but, what is better in this country, certainly, it is one of the most honorable of vocations, and those engaged in it are, as a class, composed of the very ablest and brightest of the land. In the list of worthy and honorable business men of Porter County, Ind., the name of our subject appears as one in every way worthy of the confidence and esteem of his fellow citizens. He owes his nativity to Ostergyllen, Sweden, where he was born July 17, 1826, son of Andrew and Louisa (Linburg) Burstrom and grandson of Peter Burstrom, who was employed as a ship builder by the Swedish government. The latter reared a family of six children: Peter, who became captain on an ocean vessel; Andrew; Charles, a tanner by trade; John, a trader; Louisa, who died unmarried, and a son whose name is forgotten. Andrew Burstrom became a tanner by trade and lived to the patriarchal age of ninety-eight years and three mouths, his death occurring in 1851. He was married twice, and by his first wife, who died in July 1826, had twelve children, six of whom married and reared families, namely: Elizabeth Chinblom, Johanna Grouquist, Ulerika Gundell, Charlotte Ekeblad, all of whom are dead. Nicholas and Frederick are still living. The rest not mentioned died unmarried. Nicholas has been married twice, had five children by his first wife and two by his second wife. He is seventy-nine years of age and lives in Sweden. Andrew Burstrom's second wife was Caroline Karlsburg, but this union did not result in the birth of
any children. Frederick is the only one of the Burstrom family that immigrated to the United States. Frederick Burstrom received a good education in his native land, being under the instruction of a private teacher for some time, after which he spent two years in college at Eksee. When he had attained about the age of eighteen years he was called home to take charge of his father's tannery, the latter having become too old to operate it successfully, and he continued to control this business until his removal to the United States in October, 1852. He reached this country after a voyage of fourteen weeks, landing at Fall River, Massachusetts, after which he went direct to Boston, thence to Chicago where he worked the first winter in a tannery. In the spring of 1853 he went to Porter County, Indiana, where he worked in a sawmill for one year, then purchased a 100-acre tract of land at $6 per acre which he improved and sold, with the exception of about ten acres which he still owns. In the fall of 1866 he moved to Paxton, Illinois, and there formed a partnership with Herman Wistrand in the mercantile business, but three years later on account of ill health, he determined to revisit his old home in Sweden, and during the nine months that he remained in that country, his health was completely restored. He then returned to this country and to his farm, which he successfully operated until November, 1892, when he purchased a half interest in a store at Porter in partnership with August Pillman, and has given it the most of his attention up to the present time. He has always been a man of much public spirit, is deeply interested in the welfare of his section, and has spent both time and money to aid all enterprises of a worthy nature. The principles of the Republican party have always received his heartiest approval, and he has served two terms as Trustee of his township and one term as County Commissioner, in which capacity he showed excellent judgment, and won the approval of both political friends and enemies. During the progress of the great Civil War he, in November, 1864, enlisted in Company A, Thirty-Fifth Indiana Volunteer Regiment, and until he received his discharge in the fall of 1865 his command operated in Alabama, North Carolina, Tennessee and Louisiana. His first wife was Catherine Wistrand, who died in 1890, without issue. His second wife, whom he married October 15, 1891, was Mrs. Hannah Dahlbeck of California, late widow of Gottlieb Dahlbeck, and daughter of L. M. Hall. She was born in Sweden, February 21, 1856. She came with her parents who had three other children, Anna, Joseph and Caroline, to this country in 1867, taking up their abode in Berlin, Illinois, where her parents lived until the death of her father in 1885. Mrs. Burstrom was educated in Minnesota at Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, after which she became a teacher in the public schools, an occupation which she followed in Iowa, Nebraska and Kansas. She was married to her first husband, Gottlieb Dahlbeck, in Oakland, Nebraska, March 5, 1885, and bore him two daughters, Mary L. C. M. and Edna R. A. They moved to California in 1888, where her husband died June 27, 1889. She has borne Frederick Burstrom, one son, Paul Frederick Samuel, who was born July 29, 1892. Frederick Burstrom and his wife are active members of the Sweden Evangelical Lutheran Church, the former having been a deacon and trustee for twenty-five years. He was one of the organizers of the church in 1853, and it was regularly organized and connected with the Augstanna Synod three years later. Mr. Burstrom is a member of the G. A. R.

Source: Goodspeed Brothers. 1894. Pictorial and Biographical Record of La Porte, Porter, Lake and Starke Counties, Indiana. Chicago, Illinois: Goodspeed Brothers. 569 p.
Page(s) in Source: 339-341

This biography has been transcribed exactly as it was originally published in the source. Please note that we do not provide photocopies or digital scans of biographies appearing on this website.

Biography transcribed by Steven R. Shook


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