Cemeteries in Southern Wisconsin
JEFFERSON PRAIRIE CEMETERY
aka SOUTH BERGEN CEMETERY
|JEFFERSON PRAIRIE SETTLEMENT
Ole Knutson Nattestad, first Norwegian settler in Wisconsin, came to Clinton Township, July 1, 1838.
In his native Humedal, Nattestad had been a farmer, peddler, and blacksmith. In 1836 he and his brother Ansten visited Stavanger and there heard for the first time about America. Early the next year they secured passage to Massachusetts and a few months later had worked their way to Chicago.
In the spring of 1838, Ansten returned to Norway while Ole "explored" northward, eventually reaching Clinton Township.
Ansten organized more than a hundred emigrants and led them to Wisconsin the following year. Some joing Ole Nattestad on Jeffereson Prairie; others went west to Rock Prairie Luther Valley.
Although the groups organized different church congregations and were separated by settlers of different nationality, they are usually regarded jointly as the first Norwegian settlement in Wisconsin and fourth in America.