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Ole Peterson

15th Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry
The Scandinavian Regiment
Ole  Peterson Profile Image

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Name at Enlist

Ole Peterson

Birth Name

Ole Pedersen Slette

Other Names

Ole Pedersen Slette


16 Feb 1832 – 31 May 1891

Birth Place

Sigdal, Buskerud

Birth Country


Resident of Muster-In

Manchester Township, Freeborn County, MN

Company at Enlistment


Rank at Enlistment

First Lieutenant

Muster Date

30 Jan 1862

Cause of Death

Stomach cancer

Death Location

Manchester Township, Freeborn County, MN

Burial Location

West Freeborn Church cemetery


Mari Halvorsdatter


Peder Olsen Slette




Ingeborg (Eliza) Gulbrandsdatter Rugland

Spouse Lived


Married On

20 Dec 1852

Ole Peterson was born “Ole Pedersen Slette” on February 16, 1832 in Sigdal, Buskerud, Norway, the son of Peder Olsen Slette and Mari Halvorsdatter. He came to America in 1851 to IL. He was married on December 20, 1852 to Ingeborg (Eliza) Gulbrandsdatter Rugland and they had six children, including: Mary (1854), Peter (1856), Gilbert (1858), Helen/Helga (1860), Knute (1862), and Anna (1865). Peterson moved to Freeborn County, where his family was one of the first six Norwegian families to settle in Manchester Township.

Ole joined the WI 15th Infantry, Company K. The company called itself “Clausen’s Guards” in honor of the 15th’s first Chaplain, Claus L. Clausen. Most of the company was recruited from Scandinavian communities in MN and IA, with the rest from WI.

The army listed him as living in Manchester Township, Freeborn County, MN and age 29. Ole was one of the organizers of Company K. He enlisted on January 1, 1862 and mustered into service at Madison, WI. He was commissioned First Lieutenant (Løytnant) on January 30, 1862. On June 11, 1862, he was left sick, and resigned from the army on August 30, 1862 under the authority of General Halleck.

After the war, he became a prominent farmer and grain dealer in Manchester Township. He was a member of the first town board in Manchester and a Justice of the Peace. Ole was elected to the lower house of the MN State Legislature. He served for District 4 between January 2, 1883 and January 5, 1885. He served on the grain and warehouse inspection committee. He died on May 31, 1891 at his home. He was buried in West Freeborn Church cemetery.

Sources: Series 1200: Records of Civil War Regiments, 1861-1900, Wisconsin Adjutant General’s Office, box 76-12; Regimental muster and descriptive rolls, 1861-1865, Wisconsin Adjutant General’s Office, vol.20, p.140; Det Femtende Regiment, Wisconsin Frivillige [The Fifteenth Regiment, Wisconsin Volunteers], Ole A. Buslett (Decorah, Iowa, 1894), p.616; Oberst Heg og hans gutter, Waldemar Ager, 1916, Fremad Pub. Co., Eau Claire, WI, p.316; “History of the Scandinavians in the United States”, O. N. Nelson, Publ. in Minneapolis, 1893, p.553; Nordmaendene i Amerika, Martin Ulvestad, 1907, History Book Co., Minneapolis, MN, p.258; Freeborn County Historical Society, Albert Lea, MN, GAR records; Norwegian Immigrants to the United States. A Biographical Directory, 1825-1850. Volume Four 1849, Gerhard B. Naeseth and Blaine Hedberg, 2008, Anundsen Publishing Co., Decorah, IA, p. 88, ID 1101; Civil War Pension Index, Roll# T288_369; Freeborn County Standard, June 3, 1891;; 1860 Census, Roll: M653_569, Page: 415, Image: 421, Family History Library Film: 803569; 1880 Census, Roll: 620, Family History Film: 1254620, Page:130D, Enumeration District: 100; Image: 0263.