Oregon Pioneer Biographies - Svante F. Ahlstrom

Oregon Pioneer Biographies


From "History of Central Oregon" published 1906
Biographical Sketches of Lake County, pgs. 897-898

Transcribed by: Sherrain Glenn


Svante F. Ahlstrom is a native of Christianstadt, Sweden, and was born May 12, 1850. His father was John F. Ahlstrom and died at the age of seventy-seven. His grandfather, of the same name, was a soldier of Sweden, and lived to the age of ninety-nine years and nine months when he died from the effects of an accident. Mr. Ahlstrom's mother Johannah (Warling) Ahlstrom died in 1861.

In 1869 Mr. Ahlstrom went to Denmark, Germany, France and England, afterward coming to New York. From the latter state he came by the first overland train ever run over the Union and Central Pacific railroad from Omaha to San Franscio. He removed from San Francisco to Red Bluff, California, where he learned the saddler's trade, which he has followed as means of livelihood ever since. In 1873 he went to Marysville where he worked with H. M. Harris as a saddle and harness maker until 1886, when formed a partnership with his employer and came to Lakeview. Here they engaged in business under the firm name of Harris & Ahlstrom, and continued in partnership until 1889, when Mr. Ahlstrom purchased the interests of Mr. Harris, since which time he has conducted the business independently. Fire destroyed his shop and the greater part of his stock in 1900, since which time Mr. Ahlstrom has erected a modern brick building on the site of the old. In addition to his building he own a first class two-story residence in Lakeview.

Mr. Ahlstrom was married in 1876 to Mary Gunther, who was born in San Francisco and reared in Marysville, California. Her parents, were Jacob J. and Sarah C. Gunther, natives of Germany and early pioneers of California.

To Mr. & Mrs. Ahlstrom have been born three children; Elmer C., a Lakeview merchant: Fred O., also a merchant and treasurer of Lake County; and Lottie Ahlstrom, bookkeeper for Ahlstrom Brothers.

Our subject was elected county treasurer on the Republican ticket in 1898; he has been school director for six years and has been a councilman and mayor of this home city. He has been a member of the Odd Fellows lodge for a period of thirty years, is now a member and past grand of Lakeview lodge, No. 63, is a past chief patriach of Lakeview encampment, and has on different occasions represented his lodge in the conventions of the grand lodge. Both he and Mrs. Ahlstrom are members of the Rebekah degree, and he is also a charter member of the Foresters, of which order he has been chief ranger and is now district deputy.

Mr. Ahlstrom may feel justly proud of the business he has built up in his line since location in Lakeview. He manufactures a special grade of saddle know as the "Lakeview saddle." The popularity of which has become so great during recent years that he ships great quantities of them to the states of Idaho, California, Nevada and the eastern states, besides the great number which find ready sale in his home state. Some have found a market in even as remote a locality as the Hawaiian islands. He also makes a specialty of manufacturing saddles and harness to order. From a beginning the most meager his establishment has grown through the popularity of his goods into the most extensive plant of its nature in the state, outside the city of Portland.

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