Bio: Nason, Solomon L. & William G.
Contact: Lani Bartlett

----Sources: Dictionary of Wisconsin History, P. 276 of Jones, George O., History of Wood County

Nasons and Nasonville, Wisconsin

Solomon L. and William G. Nason were the founders of the community known as Nasonville and the earliest settlers in the northwest portion of Wood County.

They were born on a farm in the town of Standish, Cumberland Maine, about fourteen miles from Portland. They were the sons of Solomon and Lydia (Gilman) Nason and were from a family of six children: Harriet, Solomon, Hannah, Caroline, Edward, and William.

Solomon L. Nason was born Dec. 16,1825 and William was born Jan. 24,1834 and both grew up on the home farm in Maine, attending the country schools there.

In 1849, Solomon joined in the rush of gold seekers to California, making the trip by water around Cape Horn, and after being away from home for five years, returned by the Isthmus route. His trip, on the whole was successful and he returned better off than when he started.

In the spring of 1855 Solomon L. and his brother William G. came to Wisconsin, stopping first at Richland, Wisconsin. Here they became members of a "lumbering company" made up of Richland men and spent the following winter in this county (Wood Co.) carrying on logging operations for their company. They returned to New Richland in the spring of 1856 but again came to Wood county in September of the same year and on this occasion settled in Section 5 of Town 24 Range 2 now Rock Township, having homesteaded a tract of land covering three or four sections adjoining paying only the government fee of #1.25 per acre. The entire county was then a wilderness, inhabited chiefly by Chippewa Indians, and there were no settlers nearer than Neillsville and Black River Falls, Wisconsin. Clearing a portion of this land the brothers carried on agriculture on a small scale, but their chief operations during the first ten years of their residence here were in logging along the Yellow River, their logs being chiefly sold to the Necedah Lumber Company and placed in the latter's banking grounds along the Yellow River, or they rafted down the Mississippi River to market in Galena, Dubuque, or St Louis.

In 1865, the two remaining brothers bought wild land in Rock and Lincoln townships, Wood County which they proceeded to improve. The task was a difficult one as the land was covered with timber. William G erected a set of log buildings which he later replaced by a good modern house and outhouses. He brought the land under cultivation and developed an excellent farm, which he personally supervised until his retirement in about 1900,whe he turned over its operation to his son, Warren H.

In earlier days before the coming of the railroad William carried provisions on his back from Merrillan and Black River Falls. He helped early settlers to build their shacks and did all he could to get them started. He also took an active part in town and county affairs holding office for many years on the township, county or school board.

They established a store, furnishing a nucleus for the community later knows as Nasonville, and secured a post office to serve the district.

The nearest railroad was at Sparta, Wi, about 75 miles away so mail for Nasonville were brought from Neillsville and was received only once a week at first but the deliveries were later increased to two and finally three times a week.

Nasonville was at the head of the route: an attempt was made to carry mail from Nasonville to Stevens Point, the carrier packing it through the woods and spending a night camped therein on the trip each way, but this effort was soon abandoned.

Both brothers married after coming to Wood County. Solomon married Melissa Renne and William married Harriet Renne, sisters who were both born in Potsdam, New York and whose parents came to Wisconsin about 1864 and settled at Wind Falls, now Granton village, in Clark County.

Solomon was married in the spring of 1864; his wife born April 16, 1837, died June 7, 1876. Solomon Nason by his marriage to Melissa Renne, had five children; Vernon, Stella, Addie, Grace and Vinton.

Solomon was married a second time to Celia Rustad and by this marriage two children were born: Gale and Echo.

Solomon Nason died on the home farm on April 1,1899. His second wife and two children moved to Oregon.

William was married March 15, 1865 in Sparta to his wife Harriet who was born April 7, 1848, died Oct 4,1921.

William by his marriage to Harriet Renne, had five children: Caroline(Callie), Herbert F., Rolla G., Edward P. and Warren.

Caroline and Herbert lived in Wis Rapids, Rolla G. was a contractor and builder at Lewiston, Idaho; Edward P. was in the lumbering business at Kirkland, Washington, and Warren H., who lived on the home farm in Rock Township. The William Nasons were Presbyterian and attended church regularly.

Caroline (Callie) Nelson was educated in the district school and in the high school at Marshfield, being graduated from the latter in 1884. She then taught school for several years. In 1888 she entered as bookkeeper the employ of the Centralia Pulp & Water Power Company, whose mill was the first paper mill erected on the Wisconsin River.

Originally the mill was a saw mill and was operated in 1849 by Lyon * Sampson.

The next owners were Hurley & Burns, who in turn sold the property to John Rablin.

The latter suspended operations in 1874 and the property came into the possession of George Whiting, of Neenah and GF Steel. Up to this time paper experts had expressed the opinion that print paper could not be made from Wisconsin River water.

Whiting & Steel erected the pulp mill in 1887. Under the new company Fran Garrison was appointed manager and served until his death in 1905,when Miss Nason succeeded him, being made secretary and general manager. She was at that time the only women in the United States holding a position of that kind. She had about 100 men under her charge and produced about 35 tons of the product per day.

Miss Nason resigned this position in 1919 on account of ill health. She built a fine residence at Lyon Park on the banks of the Wisconsin River.

William Nason made his home on the 50 acre farm he first settled on, in Section 6 Rock Township, having cleared the land from its' original forested condition and developed it into a good farm.

Solomon's farm consisted of 120 acres in what is now Rock Township and 120 acres in what is now Lincoln Township.

Both brothers were active in promoting the welfare and building up of the future of their community and both, being strong figures their arrival in those early days which were so critical in the development of this section of the country was indeed fortunate.

Republicans in politics, both served their township in nearly all of its' various public offices and Solomon served one term as a member of the Wisconsin Assembly.

Their names are closely interwoven with the history of the northwest section of Wood Co., Wisconsin.

Another brother, Edward Nason also came with his brothers to Wisconsin but in 1858 he went on a quest for gold to Idaho and California and his life was spent in the far west where he died.

Vinton G. Nason, son of Solomon L. and Melissa Nason, was born March 24,1875 in Lincoln Township, Wood County. He attended school until about age 17 and remained at home helping to carry on and improve his father's farm, of which he now owns 100 acres in Section 5, Rock Township, having 75 acres under cultivation and operating the property as a modern, well kept farm, well stocked with grade Holstein cattle. He married Anna Erickson, daughter of Mr. & Mrs. Rasmus Erickson of Rock Township, on April 7,1908.Anna Erickson was born Jan 12,1877 in the Isle of Lolland, Denmark and she came to America with her parents when she was four years old, the family settling in Rock Township, on an uncleared farm which they had since developed.

Six children have been born to Vinton and Anna Erickson: Reuel S., born Nov. 1, 1901 graduated with the 1918 class of the Marshfield High School and became a traveling salesman, making his home with his parents; Merlin V., born April 26, 1901,who graduated from the Marshfield High School with the 1920 class and then was a student in the dental department of Marquette Medical College at Milwaukee; Adeline G., born Jan. 29, 1903 graduated from the Marshfield High School in 1920 and taught school in Milwaukee; Alene J., born April 5, 1904, who also taught school, being a graduate of the Teachers' Training department of the Neillsville High School; Raymona M., born April 11,1907,was a student in the Teachers Training department of the Neillsville School; and Norma E., born May 14, 1908 was also a student at Neillsville High School.

The William Nasons were also active members of the Nasonville Presbyterian Church; Mr. Nason was a member of Lindsey Camp No. 2543 of the Modern Woodmen of America, and his political beliefs were of the Republican party.

Herbert F. Nason, son of William G and Harriett Nason, born March 16, 1868 in Nasonville, Wood Co., Wisconsin, was educated at the district schools of that county and he began industrial life as the assistant of his father, under whom he learned the carpenter's trade. At the age of 19 he entered into business as a contractor and subsequently erected many sets of farm buildings in Wood Co., Wisconsin.

In 1898 he went to Port Edwards, where he helped to build the paper mills, after which he spent some years in travel. In 1905 he rented the Sol Preston building on the west bank of the Wisconsin River and started in the business of cabinet-making and sash and door manufacture. Five years later, in 1910, he erected a factory at No 233 Third Avenue, a building 40 by 70 feet in ground dimensions and two stories in height. He built an extensive trade, having a practical monopoly of the cabinet work in the city.

For 17 years he was a member of the volunteer fire dept, having joined at it's origin, and for one year he was supervisor on the county board from the Seventh Ward.

On April 22,1902 he married Belle Dickson, daughter of Mrs. Nellie Dickson, a teacher in the public schools.

Six children were born from this marriage; Maxine and Maurine (twins) b Jan 22,1903; Bertram b. July 29, 1904; Renne, b. July 24, 1907; Kathleen, b. Oct. 29,1910; and Nellie b March 30,1913. Maxine was a teacher of first grade in the public schools of Ladysmith, Wi and Maurine was a second grade teacher in Hanna, Wyoming.

----Sources: History of Wood County Wisconsin, compiled by George O. Jones, Norman S. McVean and Others, published by HC Cooper Jr. & Co., Minneapolis-Winona, Minn. from the property of Orval F. Reed,114 W Arnold St, Marshfield, Wisconsin of which there is a copy at the Marshfield Public Library.

Nasonville, Definition: In 1867 there was a small settlement southwest of Marshfield...which included under the same name of Nasonville, on account of the early settlement by the brothers Solomon L and William G. Nason, who first came to this locality in the spring of 1855.



Re: Bio: Nason, Solomon L. & William G.
Contact: JAck Burk Nason

Wow! I'm researching the Nasons and this helps a lot. Is there more? Any photos oof Nasonville then and now?

Thank you for making this available.

Jack B. Nason Green Valley, AZ



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