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Below is a family biography included in the book,  Biographical Souvenir of the Counties of Buffalo, Kearney, Phelps, Harlan and Franklin, Nebraska published in 1890 by F. A. Battey & Company.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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ALFRED JOHNSON, a large and influential farmer of Phelps county, is a native of Sweden and was born June 15, 1844. He was reared in his native country and lived there till the age of twenty-five, coming to the United States in 1869. He settled in Minnesota and began life in the new world with $3 in his pocket. He found his first employment as a common laborer. He applied himself industriously to whatever he could find to do and saved his wages as they were earned. Coming to Nebraska in 1878, he settled in Phelps county where he took a homestead, the northeast quarter, section 22, township 6, range 18, and began farming. The first few years of his residence in the county were not noted for any astonishing amount of progress. He began in an humble way, but his progress was steady and his success assured from the beginning. He bought other land as he accumulated the means, all of which he improved, giving to the details of the business his undivided attention, to which fact much of his success is due. Mr. Johnson is justly regarded as one of the most intelligent and successful farmers of his community. What he has is the result of his own industry and perseverance, he being in the truest and best sense a self-made man. He owns a half section of as fine land as there is in Phelps county, lying four miles northeast of the county seat, Holdrege, nearly all of which he has under cultivation, in some shape. Mr. Johnson is a wide-awake man, an enterprising, public-spirited citizen. He is a member of the Farmers’ Alliance of Phelps county and identified with the best interest of the farming community. He is an active member of the Lutheran church and a man of benevolent impulses. His home gives evidence of the system and good management that prevail on his place, and at it all are alike welcome. Mr. Johnson, careful and deliberate in all things, was unusually so in the selection of a life companion. He did not marry until July 25, 1889, taking to share his life’s fortunes with him at that date Miss Josephine Larson, who is also a native of the Fatherland — the snowy kingdom amid the icy seas.

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This family biography is one of the numerous biographies included in the book, Biographical Souvenir of the Counties of Buffalo, Kearney, Phelps, Harlan and Franklin, Nebraska published in 1890 by F. A. Battey & Company. 

View additional Phelps County, Nebraska family biographies here: Phelps County, Nebraska Biographies

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