Finstad, Olea (Lillie) Sogaarden

Born:     22 Feb 1868, Trysil, Norway

Married: 4 Jun 1924

Died:     23 Aug 1938, Minneapolis, MN

Buried:  Trysil-Bethesda cemetery, Holmes City, Douglas Co, MN

Spouse:  Ole Olsen Finstad
Newspaper obituary: Park Region Echo, Sept 15, 1938, page 7, col 5


Mrs Ole Finstad, nee Lillie Sogaarden, daughter of Mr and Mrs Ole
Sogaarden, pioneer settlers of Douglas county, passed away at the
Fairview hospital in Minneapolis August 23, 1938 after a brief illness
lasting only ten days.
Mrs Finstad grew to womanhood on her parents’ farm near Holmes City
but lived the greater part of her life in Minneapolis. She was a quiet
unassuming character, faithful and diligent to the utmost in all her
duties. Being of an unusual charitable and sympathetic nature, she had
a large circle of intimate and admirable friends. She chose her closest
companions among Christian people and strove herself to live an
exemplary Christian life. One of her last statements was that she was
going home to Jesus and she urged those about her to meet her in heaven where there are no more partings and no sorrows. She will be keenly missed and long remembered with gratitude by her relatives and friends.
Funeral services were conducted in Minneapolis August 26 by the
Pastors O Weltzin and Arnold Helseth, the latter a nephew of the
deceased. Her favorite hymn, “Jesus Savior, Pilot Me” was sung by Mrs
Weltzin and “Teenk Naar Engang Hver Taage Er Forsvunden” was sung by Mrs K G Nilsen.
The remains were brought to Holmes City where services were conducted
at the Trysil Lutheran church August 27 by Pastors O Weltzin, A Helseth,
A J Sheldahl, A A Reece and E S Solheim, the two latter being her
brothers-in-law. “Safe in the Arms of Jesus” was sung by Mrs Floyd
Anderson, “Rock of Ages” by Rev Arnold Helseth and “Taenk Naar Engang” by Mr Weltzin.
The many gifts to missions as well as the numerous and beautiful
floral offerings bespoke the high esteem in which she was held.

There remains to mourn her departure in particular, her devoted
husband, Ole Finstad of Minneapolis; two brothers, Martin and Peter
Sogaarden of Lowry; six sisters: Mrs C S Jacobson of Minneapolis, Mrs H
O Helseth of Fergus Falls, Mrs H L Femrite of Lowry, Mrs A A Rrece of
Minneapolis, Mrs E S Solheim of Eagle Bend and Mrs Johnnie Johnson of

Six nephews acted as pallbearers, namely: Oliver and Marcus Reece,
Stanley and Murville Femrite, Arthur Solheim and Arnold Helseth.

Olea, later known as Lillie was born February 22, 1968 at Søgarn in
Skjærberget, Trysil, Norway to Ole Mattisen Skjærberget and Oline
Pedersdatter Grambo. She was baptized in the Trysil Church, Trysil,
Norway in April of 1868 by the parish minister A W Støren. She
emigrated together with her parents and her brother to America the year
after. In America Olea was popularly called “Lillie”, a name she
herself had chosen. Lillie helped at home with the chores during her
entire adolescence. As the eldest of 7 sisters Lillie learned as a
young girl to sew clothes for her sisters and herself. One day she went
to Fargo and found work. She lived with her aunt, Gjertrud Søgård, who
had emigrated in 1882. Lillie was an accomplished seamstress, and a
well sought after one. Lillie moved to Minneapolis, and worked for a
firm that specialized in making mens’ shirts with monograms. Lillie
remained there until she retired. She was always a big-sister for the
rest of the family, and always had a bed ready when they came to visit,
and was a good support for her younger sisters who came there to get an
education and work. Lillie lived close to Augsburg College for many

Lillie married Ole Olsen Finstad on June 4, 1924. He was born at Sveva,
Sætre East in Trysil, but grew up in Gjedsjøberget in Trysil. He was
the son of Kersti Jonsdatter Sveva, Engemoen, and Ole Larsen Storsveen,
Høljegnollen, Storsveen. His mother became a widow in 1890 and later
married Johannes Olsson from Transtrand in Sweden. They settled at
Finstad in Gjedsjøberget, and then took the surname “Finstad”. Ole grew
up there during the years after Marthe and Paul P Grambo, who for a
time had lived on the neighboring farm Gjedsjøberget, had left for
America. Ole attended school at Østby together with several of the
children from Grambo. He went to school together with, among others,
several of the children from the first marriage to Johan Øvre, who was
later married to Oline Olsdatter Bernts. When all of the Øvre brothers
went to America, Ole lost his childhood comrades. He followed in 1911
and hunted up his old acquaintances from the Øvre family in Binford,
North Dakota. After a time he also met Grambo descendants and the
Sogaarden family in America. Ole settled at Binford for a while, and
found work there. But later he moved to Black Duck in Minnesota where
he ran a hotel and was engaged in working as a lumberjack.

Lillie and Ole shared the same interests, but unfortunately they never
had any children. They often went on fishing trips, and on longer
vacation sojourns they went to visit Lillie’s family on the Sogaarden
Farm in Holmes City twp and went fishing in the lakes around the farm, –
Lake Rachel and Pocket Lake. When Lillie retired they bought a large
stylish villa close to Powderhorn Park in Minneapolis. Lillie was able
to enjoy life there for only a few months before she became ill and

Lillie died in 1938. She was buried at the Trysil Lutheran Cemetery,
Holmes City twp. Ole later married Lillie’s sister Marie Beatte, and
the rest of the reference to him is stated in the paragraph regarding

(from Olea Jensdatter Østby and Peder Paulsen Grambo History pages 374 and 375)

Posted on: November 3rd, 2010 by admin No Comments

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