Obit: Mitby, Peter E. (1858 - 1950)


Contact: Stan



Surnames: Mitby, Fremster, Wangen


----Source: Loyal Tribune (Loyal, Clark Co., Wis.)   01/25/1951


Mitby, Peter E. (20 MAR 1858 - 30 DEC 1950)


Peter E. Mitby, 92, oldest male resident in Cashton (Wis.), died Saturday evening, Dec. 30th, 1950, at his home there.  He had been confined to bed most of the time since Thanksgiving.  He would have been 93 in March.


Funeral services were held Wednesday afternoon, Jan. 3rd at the Mitby home and at North Coon Prairie Lutheran Church at Newry, the Rev. N.R. Hjermstad officiating.  Burial was in the adjoining cemetery.


Mitby was a stockholder and director of the Bank of Cashton since its organization.  He was one of the oldest bank directors in the state.  In village affairs he served as a village board member for many eyars and also represented Cashton as a supervisor of the county board.


He was an active member of the North Coon Prairie Church at Newry and served the congregation as trustee for many years.


Mitby was born in Norway March 20, 1858.  On Sept. 2, 1880, more than 70 years ago, he arrived in La Crosse from Toten, Norway.  He was the oldest of a family of 14 children, seven boys and seven girls, and was the first of the group to come to America.


When he reached La Crosse he was penniless.  He heard that Cashton was a place where cash was plentiful, so borrow $2.00 from a friend and came to Cashton.


At that time there were only three stores in the village, three homes and six married couples.  After making a short visit with an aunt living near town, he at once set to work.


His first job was hauling water on a small flat car from the railroad company’s tank located on the hill, to the depot where residents of Cashton would come and get their water supply.  For this task he received $5 a month.  Besides hauling water he worked by the day cutting wood and at such other employment as he could find.


After being in Cashton one season, he spent three years in the Dakotas, Iowa and Canada, working with railroad construction crews.  He also spent two winters in the northern woods.


He saved his earnings and returned to Cashton, embarking in the grain and livestock business in 1886.


In 1887 he rented from W.H.H. Cash, part of the 80 acres where the village of Cashton is now located.  He plowed some of it and cut hay on the rest.


In 1888 Mitby built a warehouse and in 1897 erected a large grain elevator which for many years was a landmark in the village.  As the thriving dairy industry diminished grain receipts, his stock business was increased in proportion until he became the largest in this section of the state.


Mitby was always a lover of fine horses.  He prided himself during the horse and buggy days in owing one of the fastest trotting teams in the county.  Several times he drove to la Crosse with a team of horses, returning to Cashton the same day.


He was one of the first car owners in the village and had one until recent years, although he never drove one himself.


During the later years of his active business career, Mitby’s son Chester was associated with him.


Mitby was married to Petrina Fremster of Westby, Dec. 4, 1886.  They celebrated their golden wedding anniversary in 1936 and Mrs. Mitby died three years later at the age of 81.


Mr. Mitby owned the Loyal Dairy Farm, located 1 ½ miles southeast of Loyal (Clark Co., Wis.), for 26 years.  He sold the farm to his son Chester, and James Wangen in 1946.  Mr. and Mrs. Wangen have been residing there since that time.  Mrs. Wangen is a granddaughter of the late Mr. Mitby.



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