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Bigler, Brian J.; Mudrey, Lynn Martinson / The Norway Building of the 1893 Chicago World's Fair : a building's journey from Norway to America : an architectural legacy
(1992)

A new owner: developing a new setting,   pp. 36-49 PDF (3.5 MB)


Page 37

A NEW OWNER
Developing a New Setting
sak James Dahle's life began much the same as others in rural Wis-
consin in the 1880's. He was born February 1, 1883, the grandson of
Norwegian immigrant, Onun Bjornson Dahle. Isak's father, Herman,
and mother, Anne Marie, were operators of a mercantile business in the
small, rural farming community of Mount Vernon, Wisconsin.
When Isak was four years old, he moved with his parents, brother and
sisters to Mount Horeb, just a few miles from their former home. Here
the family established a prime main street mercantile business. Isak was
surrounded with the family's astute business ethics and strong Norwegian
traditions. Grandfather Onun wove into the young boy's mind many
colorful tales of adventure encountered during his 1849 trip to the Cali-
fornia Gold Fields.
From an early age, Isak collected all manner of objects-rocks, stamps,
pennants, butterflies, etc. He kept these in cases and organized them sys-
tematically, making each collection a research project in itself. His boy-
hood collecting efforts eventually would take on a much grander scale.
Isak attended the Mount Horeb Lutheran Academy, the Wisconsin
Academy of Madison, and graduated from the University of Wisconsin in
1904. During Isak's college years, his father was a representative in the
United States Congress, directly exposing Isak to the political climate of
the time.
Following his college graduation, Isak was associated briefly with a
Minneapolis flour company, but he spent the greater part of his life
devoted to the life insurance business, first in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and
then in Chicago.
A NEW OWNER    37


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