Biography of John Hanson

John Hanson, who loyally served this country as a member of the navy, is now successfully engaged in farming and stock raising on Camas prairie, in Idaho county, where he owns four hundred and eighty acres of land. He is a native of Denmark, his birth having occurred in that land on the 9th of June 1827. At the age of fifteen he bade adieu to home and friends and went to sea, eventually sailing to New York, in 1849. While there he joined the United States Navy and served for sixteen months, at the expiration of which period he received an honorable discharge. He then sailed on merchant vessels on the Pacific ocean and on the Mediterranean sea, and became a well informed seaman, his ability and worth winning him promotion from time to time, until he became a first mate. During his seafaring life he passed through many dangers and hardships, which if written out in full would make a most interesting volume. He was shipwrecked twice off the coast of San Francisco, where the ship was driven ashore, and was also in a fearful typhoon in South American waters, the ship being lost, but the crew escaped with their lives. When the United States became involved in the greatest civil war known to modern history, he determined to aid in the perpetuation of the Union, and enlisted in the navy, March 28. 1862. He became acting master of the Cayuga, a gunboat in the gulf squadron, under Admiral Farragut. They had several engagements up the Mississippi River and were engaged in forming the blockade off Galveston and Mobile. Mr. Hanson continued in the service until December 1865, when he received an honorable discharge, after which he located at Vineland, New Jersey.

There he turned his attention to agricultural pursuits, which he followed for nine years, but the business was entirely new to him, and after nine years of hard work, in which he gained much valuable experience, he was glad to get out of his farm what he had put into it. He then came west, locating first at San Francisco, and in 1876 took up his abode on his present farm on Camas prairie, where he secured three hundred and twenty acres of land, to which he has added another quarter section, now owning a valuable tract of four hundred and eighty acres. He has erected there a comfortable residence, good barns and outbuildings, and has all the latest improved machinery necessary in carrying on his farm after the most approved modern methods. He raises grain, hay, cattle, horses and hogs, and has had as high as two hundred head of cattle at one time. He is a successful stock-raiser, and has acquired a handsome competence through his well directed efforts.

In 1859 Mr. Hanson was married to Mrs. Anna Savage, widow of James Savage. She had no children by her first marriage, but by the second union has become the mother of the following named: Henry, a farmer and miner, residing at White Bird, Idaho; George, who carries on farming and stock-raising; Frederick, an agriculturist; William and Charles, who are at home with their parents.

Mr. Hanson is a Republican in politics and has been a member of the Masonic fraternity since 1857. Both he and his estimable wife hold membership in the Methodist Episcopal church and are people of the highest respectability, enjoying the friendship and esteem of all who know them. Mr. Hanson has ever been a loyal citizen since first entering the naval service of his adopted land, and no native-born son is truer to her interests and welfare.


Illustrated History of the State of Idaho. Chicago: The Lewis Publishing Company. 1899.

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