The fist town meeting for Drammen township was held at the home of Jens Thompson, January 29, 1880. The meeting was called to order by Ole Myran. Jens Thompson was chosen moderator and Ole Myran, clerk. The following officers were then elected by ballot to fill the respective township offices.

S. O. Norvold, chairman; Christ Holt and Barney Anding, supervisors; O. H. Myran, clerk; Ed. Buck, treasurer; S.O. Nordvold and John Swanse, justices; H. I. Pierce and Simon Olson, constables; Ole Johnson, road master. On motion it was ordered that the township be divided into two road districts, the line running east and west through the center. The meeting was then adjourned without day. Minutes were signed by O. H. Myarn, clerk.

The first annual township meeting was held at the home of Jens Thompson on March 9th, 1880. The meeting was called to order by Ole Myran, clerk. M. A. Carver was chosen moderator. The following officers were then elected by ballot: S. O. Nordvold, N. B. Clark and Jens Thompson, supervisors; M. A. Carver, clerk; Ed. Buck, treasurer; S. O. Nordvold and Charles Vinley, justices; H. I. Pierce and A. Sindaas, constables; N. B. Clark and Simon Olson, road masters; Ole Johnson, pound master. The minutes were signed by M. A. Carver, chairman, and O. H. Myran, as clerk.

The following history and reminiscences of Drammen township was written by Martin West, one of the early pioneers, in the Norwegian language. We are indebted to Rev. O. J. Nesheim, pastor of the English Lutheran churches at Lake Benton and Tyler at the present time and for several years past, for the English version:

Town of Drammen, in the Year of Our Lord, December 9, 1905

By Martinus West

Mr. G. I. Larson:

Your letter dated July 20, which should have been answered the first part of October, I received months ago. But writing is negative with me, and as excuses may be preferred: busy, impaired sight, carelessness. I shall, however, try to give a bit of information I can, trusting it is "better late than never".

Ole Thompson and his brother, Jens, were the two first homesteaders in the town of Drammen in the spring of 1877. Our daughter, Clara born May 13, 1879, was the first white child born here in the town of Drammen, and our so, Alfred, was the first Scandinavian child in Diamond Lake, born February 11, 1878. The first Scandinavian, Hans Gran, settled the town of Lake Benton in the year 1867. His brother, Ole Gran, was the first Scandinavian who died and was buried in the town of Lake Benton, about the year 1870. An old wagon box was used for his coffin. He was buried under a large oak on what is now the Nordmeyer farm. Old man Taylor, who froze to death in the winter of 1874-75 and Bennett, who went to Oregon in 1874, possibly were the first settlers near Lake Benton, but J. Gilronan came about that time also. I came out here to the town of Drammen in the summer of 1878.

In the fall when the prairie fires had burned over sections 17 and 18, there were many circles of wood (stakes) but cut and brought there. The circles were 18 to 20 feet in diameter. I once asked Samuel McPhail what they were and he said they were tent stakes remaining since he, with his soldiers, camped on sections 17 and 18 against the Indians, in the summer of 1863, the year following the New Ulm outbreak. They had a battle in the ravines five or six miles northwest from here where Indian graves may be seen till this day. In the summer of 1878 as I was walking across from section 18 to Lake Benton - roads were not known to be mentioned in those days - I found many round stone settings in section 25, some as large as a man could carry, but imbedded in the ground, the very top only being visible. It is told that the Indians used the stones to hold their tents to the ground.

Of Indian relics I have only a few, yet I might mention for example arrow heads, a broken stone knife and a stone about 4 inches long by 3 1/2 inches in diameter to which the Indians tied a handle to knock each other in the skull, of course, not in a friendly way. I also have a stone about 8 or 9 inches long by 5 or 6 inches in diameter. This is a millstone and likely one of the oldest in the Union. They used it to peel corn with, tying a rawhide strap around the stone with the other end tied to the branch of a tree they bounced it up and down like a mortar. The third stone, of which a part has been broken off, is smaller, about 3 inches long by 2 1/2 inches thick. This is supposed to be an old spinning wheel and very likely one of the oldest in the Union. The Indian women would hang them to a tree by a fine rawhide string, then twirl them till the string was round and sleek. This was the thread to sew dresses for the children and many other things.

My first and nearest neighbor was Ole H. Myran in the town of Drammen. He was born in Nummedal, Norway. In the fall of 1880 he went to Ada, Minn. And was state senator from that district for several years. He suffered greatly from asthma the later years and at the age of 52 he died in Los Angeles, California last October. He was our first town clerk and our first school clerk in the town of Drammen, then district No. 17 - now we are in district No. 62. Ole H. Myran was a brave young man and well educated.

Drammen Township

Anding, Barney


Buck, Ed.

Carver, M. A.

Clark, N. B.

Gilronan, J.

Gran, Hans

Gran, Ole

Holt, Christ

Johnson, Ole

Larson, G. I.

McPhail, Samuel

Myran, O. H.

Myran, Ole

Myran, Ole H.

Nesheim, Rev. O. J.


Nordvold, S. O.

Norvold, S. O.

Olson, Simon

Pierce, H. I.

Sindaas, A.

Swanse, John


Thompson, Alfred

Thompson, Clara

Thompson, Jens

Thompson, Ole

Vinley, Charles

West, Martin

West, Martinus