This photograph c1880 is fifteen years after the end of the Civil War, but reflects what many country stores looked like at the time. This is the store that was at Wastedo in Leon.
Just a Little History through the Civil War Era
It was siad that Haldro Johnson was the honors of being the first to settle here. The old story is that he went back to Wicosin after ha had filled his claim, He then married and came back where he and his family lived out their days. He was believed to be from Dane County Wis.
The population grew in the spring. Some of these early settlers were A.J. Melander, Andrew Larsen, Guttorm Pederson, Ole Pederson, John Vanberg and others such as John Bottlefson, M.Edstrom C.A. Haggstrom, Wm. Olsen and still others.
It was siad that Charles & J.A. Edstrom became prominent members of the community.
It was said that Frank Johnson was the first birth and was noted that he was white. Many Indians were in this whole area in this era of time.
Frank Johnson was also the first death in town.
In a log school house is where the first school was and Daniel Van Amberg conducted the teachings.
It was siad the first religous service was held in Carl Haggstrom's cabin.
It was said his cabin had cost him two dallors and 5o cents not counting labor.
There has been no date mentioned or found as to when this was held.
William Olson was known to have had the first blacksmith in town.
It was about this time that land was being laid out for Wastedo but, it never came to be. H. Farrell had lais the claim for that.
A store was built by E.A. Sargent
The first town elections were held. This and other early meetings were held at the homes of citizens.
Minnesota becomes the 32nd State in May of 1858
Spring Garden Swedish Evangelical Lutheran Church was said to have been the first church organization . It was believed started in July.
Rev. Mr. Barns was said to have organized the Presbyterian Church
The Civil War Years
A Call To Arms is sent through out Goodhue County to raise a company of men. The Boys from Leon answered the call. Some make there way to Red Wing and joined in with the 1st company being formed as well as other future companies. The Goodhue Volunteers soon to become Co. F of the First Minnesota Regiment Volunteer Infantry. Once at Fort Snelling, the call is changed from 90 days to 3 years. Some men come back home not being able to leave their homes for so long a time, but would join in other future regiments that are called to be made.
In 1862 a small church was built under the charge of Rev. P. Beckman.
During the Dakota Conflict, after the Indian attack on New Ulm in August, Companies of Civilian Soldiers were formed to protect the towns across the lands of Minnesota. On August 24,1862 a company of this type was organized in Goodhue County. The Goodhue County Rangers There were 36 men in this company. It was to act as a Home Guard for the area and served until September 22, 1862. It served as the southern defense of the frontier. Some of these companies saw action in the Indain War of 1862 and did have casualties. One other company in Red Wing was The Red Wing Cavalry.
This page was last updated on: March 17, 2012
The following is a time line that starts with the first settlement and runs through the Civil War years. Certainly there is more than is mentioned here. The purpose of this is to give a person a view of what life was like in the years preceding and during the Civil War and to learn a bit about the people in the area.
All of this information is from documented accounts. Sources and credits are found on my Source page.
E-Mail me, if you have documented history of Leon, or of a person in this time period from Pine Island of the Civil War Era, that you would like to share. I am always adding to this site.
Thanks for the visit Date of page Jan. 31, 2008
Please Sign my Guest Book, I like to see who stopped in for a visit.
For more Leon Civil War History, to see Rosters,
Goodhue County in the Civil War
What could you get for your money in Leon in those days?
One Dozen Eggs- 7 Cents, One Dozen Candles- 15 cents, Edds Shirt- 75 cents, Towels- 10 cents, Drawers- 75 cents, Slippers- 50 cents, Dressing Gowns- $1.47, Pillow Cases 12 1/2 cents, Shoes $2.50, Socks- 20 cents and Postage was 10 cents a letter.
Courtesy of the Goodhue Historical Society All Rights Reserved
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Minnesota's First County Historical Society est. 1869
Leon was represented in both the eastern & western theaters of the Civil Wa. In the eastern with The Goodhue Volunteers, Co. F of the 1st Regiment. The 1st Regiment was the only Minnesota regiment to fight in the eastern theater of the war in the Army of the Potomac, In the western theater where most of Minnesota's men were, There were men in the Indian uprising with such regiments as the Third Minnesota as well as others.