The career of Soren Madsen, a retired farmer of Greeley township, this county, and the president of the First
National Fank of Exira, should serve as an inspiration to every young man. Mr. Madsen's youth was filled with few
of the joys which fall within the experience of most boys of today. From the time he was eight years old he was
compelled to support himself by the labor of his own hands. Coming to America when he was twenty years old, he
took up quickly with the ways of his adopted country and in a comparatively brief period became a successful farmer
and banker. He is now known throughout Audubon county as one of the most successful citizens of this part of the
state. His career only goes to show what determination, industry and personal economy will accomplish. Many of
Soren Madsen's fellow countrymen have made good in America, and they deserve unfailing credit for their achievements.
Soren Madsen was born in Denmark on February 7, 1861, son of Nels and Marie (Jacobsen) Madsen, both of whom were
native born citizens of Denmark. Nels Madsen was a farmer and worked as a farm hand until he came to America in
1885, joining his son, Soren, in Hamlin township, this county, where he purchased forty acres of land, which he
farmed for a time. His wife died in 1887, and two years afterward, in 1889, he passed away. Nels and Marie (Jacobsen)
Madsen had only two children, Soren and Marie, the latter of whom married Hans Rasmussen, who is now deceased,
his widow living in Hamlin township. From the time Soren Madsen was eight years old, and after leaving school,
he worked out as a farm hand until he came to America.
Upon arriving in this country, in 1881, at the age of twenty years, Soren Madsen located first at Avoca, Iowa.
After working there for eleven months on a railroad, he went to Utah. In the fall of 1882, one year after his arrival
in America, he began working in a smelter and mining camp, a position he held for two and one half years, at the
end of which time he came to Audubon county, where he purchased eighty acres of land in Hamlin township. By characteristic
energy and good management, Mr. Madsen was able to increase his farm holdings to one hundred and sixty acres, after
which he moved to Sharon township, where he lived for eleven years. Selling his farm property in Sharon township,
Mr. Madsen purchased two hundred and forty six acres in Greeley township, and engaged in general farming and stock
raising until he retired. During all this period Mr. Madsen raised from a hundred and twenty five to a hundred
and fifty head of hogs every year, besides a carload of cattle. In fact his experience in raising hogs and cattle
was the basis of his success as a farmer.
On May 15, 1888, Soren Madsen was married to Christina Wolf, the daughter of Peter and Margaret (Petersen) Wolf,
both natives of Schleswig, Germany. Peter Wolf was a farmer in his native land, and was also engaged in purchasing
cattle. He came to America in 1883 and located in Audubon county, purchasing land west of Exira, living there until
1903, in which year he retired and moved to Exira. He prospered and increased his original holdings of ninety one
acres to one hundred and fifty acres. Peter Wolf and wife were the parents of eight children, of whom Christina,
wife of Mr. Madsen, was the fourth born. The others were Melberg, Jens, Chris, Botilda, Margaret, Mary and Lena.
To Soren and Christina (Wolf) Madsen four children have been born, Marie, Anna, Nels and August. All of these children
are unmarried, and all the living at home with their parents.
Mr. Madsen is a member of the Ancient Free and Accepted Masons. He is county supervisor of Audubon county and a
member of the Exira town council. In politics he is an ardent and enthusiastic Democrat. For some time Mr. Madsen
has been serving as president of the First National Bank of Exira, and has proved himself to be a man capable of
performing the important and highly technical duties of a successful banker.
History of Audubon County, Iowa
Its People, Industries and Instutions
H. F. Andrews, Editor
B. F. Bowen & Company, Inc.
Indianapolis - 1915
Also see [ Railway Officials in America 1906
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