John B. Lundberg, BiographyPorter County biographical sketches . . . .

Transcribed biography of John B. Lundberg


John B. Lundberg was born Jan. 31, 1840 in Sweden and was one of seven children born to Charles and Eva C. Lundberg. When John Lundberg was twelve years old his father and step mother brought him to Chicago. They settled on the south side in an area called Cheltenham. He related having to carry water from Lake Michigan to his home every day, a distance of about eight city blocks. The hand wrought copper bucket used is still owned by his descendants.

In 1866 Mr. Lundberg came to Chesterton, formerly called Calumet. At that time the population was just over 300. Most of the citizens were Irish. There were nineteen places where liquor was sold. The Central House was the only hotel, having moved to Chesterton from City West.

John Lundberg had learned cabinet making in Chicago and began a furniture business. Along with this business he erected a turning factory and expected to furnish turned work for the Chicago market. However after four years the buildings burned. He rebuilt them and in addition went into the broom handle business. He also bought land, cutting and shipping the timber.

In 1875 he sold these interests and confined himself to "Furniture and Undertaking". In 1882 he built a brick front building just north of the Old Town Hall building. This structure with stood the fire that razed more of the east side of Calumet Road from the Livery Stable (now the Standard Oil Station) to the south wall of the Lundberg building.

Being a cabinet maker, Mr. Lundberg designed and made to order the coffins used in the business. He owned three hearses, black, grey and white, all horsedrawn. Several of his horses were stabled at his home at 4th and Indiana and others were rented from the local livery stable. At funerals Mr. Lundberg wore a top hat and formal mourning attire.

In some of the advertisements for the furniture business in 1898 he listed "Large stocks of carpets, window shades, sewing machines and supplies and urged the ladies to "remember his carpets and straw matting".

At holiday time he carried a stock of toys and delivered to homes in the area on Christmas eve. Mrs. Harrington, his granddaughter remembers being allowed to ride in the sleigh or wagon on those deliveries. Many families in the Chesterton area still own furniture purchased from him, some of it made by him. Rose Bailey Howe was one of his customers.

Mr. Lundberg belonged to the Chicago Swedish Society for the promotion of education, charity etc. He was a Mason having taken all of the Blue Lodge Degrees. He was Township Trustee for six years and Township Assessor for four years. He was a Republican and later became a member of the National Party.

The Swedish Methodist Church of Chesterton was organized January 26, 1879. Their building was built in 1880 at a cost of $600. At first there were twelve members, later growing to forty five. All of the members were Swedish with the exception of Mrs. John B. Lundberg. The first trustees of the Church were August Melin, August Peterson and John B. Lundberg.

In the spring of 1871 Mr. Lundberg married Phoebe A. Hammond, a native of New York. To this union two children were born, one dying in infancy, the other Eva Christine. Miss Lundberg was active in the affairs of the community. She attended Northwestern School of Music and was an accomplished musician. In 1902 Eva C. Lundberg married Hallard A. Flynn, a native of Rensselear, Indiana. Mr. Flynn became active in the business and after Mr. Lundberg's death operated the firm "Flynn Lundberg Co."

The Flynns were active in the Order of the Eastern Star, Mr. Flynn having served as Worthy Grand Patron of the State of Indiana. He was also active in the affairs of the Indiana "Funeral Director's Association, serving as president of that organization for one term. He was an ardent, active Republican although he did support Teddy Roosevelt and the Bull Moose Party.

Mr. and Mrs. Flynn had two children, Ione and John Emerson. John E. formerly of San Francisco is deceased. Ione, now Mrs. Edwin D. Harrington, resides in Chesterton. Two great grandchildren of John B. Lundberg also survive, children of John E. Flynn, Mrs. Robert Bibler (Jaclyn) of Daytona Beach, Florida and John Foster Flynn of Phoenix, Arizona.

Some of the historical data regarding John B. Lundberg was taken from "Counties Porter and Lake" published in 1882. A copy of this book with John B. Lundbergs signature on the fly leaf is now owned by Ione Harrington.

Source: American Revolution Bicentennial Committee of Porter County. 1976. A Biographical History of Porter County, Indiana. Valparaiso, Indiana: American Revolution Bicentennial Committee of Porter County, Inc. 180 p.
Page(s) in Source: 134

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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