Buena Vista County, IA
USGenWeb Project

Extracted from:  Wegerslev, C. H. and Thomas Walpole. 
 Past and Present of Buena Vista County, Iowa
Chicago:  S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1909, p. 471-72.

Transcribed by Mary Alice Schwanke and Cyndi Vertrees

Biography of  Knud C. Bodholt

Knud C. Bodholt is an energetic and progressive farmer of Newell township, deriving a good annual income from a farm of one hundred and sixty-four acres situated on section 7. The place is neat and attractive in its appearance and the improvements on the property are in keeping with the ideas of a model farm of the twentieth century.

Mr. Bodholt was born in North Schleswig, Germany, June 24, 1857, a son of Claus and Karen (Johansen) Bodholt, who were likewise of the same country. The father was a blacksmith and farmer and lived a useful and industrious life, remaining a resident of his native land until called to the home beyond. He was one of a family of three sons, the others being Nels and Chris Bodholt, and their parents, spending their entire lives in Schleswig, died there when well advanced in years. The death of Claus Bodholt occurred in 1906, when he was about eighty years of age. He had for several years survived his wife, who died at the age of seventy. She was a daughter of Peter and Maria Johansen, the former a tailor by trade. He died in Schleswig when more than eighty years of age, while his wife was more than seventy years at the time of her death. Their family numbered five children, including Mrs. Bodholt, who by her marriage became the mother of three sons and three daughters: Metta; Peter; Maria, the wife of the editor of the Danish newspaper, at Cedar Falls, Iowa; Knud C.; Annie, the wife of Hannah Grau, and Hans, who died at the age of eighteen years.

Knud C. Bodholt was reared in Schleswig, which was then a part of Denmark but is now a province of Germany. He acquired his education in the public schools there and also attended an agricultural college near Copenhagen, where he studied agriculture, becoming familiar not only with the practical side of the question but also with the business in its scientific phase. According to the laws of his native land, he also joined the regular army and passed through the military school. In 1879 he came to America, for the reports which he heard concerning the business conditions in the new world led him to believe that he might more rapidly acquire a competence on this side of the Atlantic. Accordingly he located near Cedar Falls, Iowa, where he lived for twelve or thirteen years, being there engaged in the occupation of farming. In 1892 he arrived in Buena Vista county, having the previous year purchased one hundred and sixty-four acres of good land, which he has since cultivated. The farm is now well improved, being equipped with all the conveniences and accessories of model farm property. The buildings are kept in good repair and the place is divided into fields of convenient size, by fences that never show an indication of dilapidation. The spirit of industry, which has always characterized Mr. Bodholt, is manifest in every department of the farm.

On the 10th of October, 1884, Mr. Bodholt was married to Hannah Nelson, a daughter of Christopher and Mathina (Nelson) Hanson. Mrs. Bodholt was born in Moen, Denmark. Her parents came to this country and settled in Indianapolis, where her father died in 1891, at the age of seventy-five years, while his wife passed away in 1906, at the age of eighty-four years. They were the parents of five children, Karen, Kersten, Austine, Bolstine and Hannah. The last named becoming Mrs. Bodholt and unto her marriage were born seven children: Mathina, the wife of George Nicholaisen, of Cedar Falls, Iowa, and they have two children, Ernest and Victor; Clarence, who is an auctioneer; Carrie, Amanda, Hans, Adelia and Albert are all yet at home. The parents hold membership in the Lutheran church and are well known in the community as people of genuine worth, their many good qualities gaining from them the esteem, confidence and good will of all who know them. Mr. Bodholt may justly be called a self-made man for he well deserves all the praise the term implies. He had few advantages in his youth, but he possessed what is worth more than capital - energy and a resolute will. With these qualities he came to the new world, resolved to win success and as the years have passed he has worked on with the result that he has prospered, owing all to his good management and unfaltering diligence. In all his business affairs he has been strictly reliable and his example as a trustworthy energetic business man is one which may well be followed.