Collection 1267 - Life of Rudy Christianson, 1978
Creator: Koenker, Hazel N.
Provenance Note: Photocopy of an original typescript created by Hazel Koenker of Hawthorne, California, was donated to Montana State University by her on Jaunary 14, 1979.
Historical Note: Rudolf "Rudy" Christianson was born in Norway in 1886, the son of a store keeper. He joined an uncle in North Dakota when he was 20. In 1906 he took up a homestead on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation near Wolf Point, Montana. In 1914 he proved up on the homestead and got his citizenship papers. Rudy managed a lumber business in Oswego, Montana, before joining the army in World War I and from 1920 to 1951 he worked for the Great Northern Railroad. He retired in Wenatchee, Washington where he married Carolyn Friauf, the widow of a friend. Rudy died on August 15, 1978.
Content Description Note: The Life of Rudy Christianson is a 53 page photocopy of an original typescript. The narration, which is based on a series of unrecorded personal interviews with Christianson by Koenker, is in the third person with many literary embellishments. The narrative describes Rudy's childhood in Norway, his years homesteading and working in Wolf Point, his brief army service, and his work for the Great Northern. In a separate section of the manuscript is a biography of his wife, Carolyn. She homesteaded as a girl near Perma, Montana, attended high school in Missoula, and attended university studies in Wisconsin where she performed on the violin. After the death of her first husband, she married Christianson in Wenatchee, Washington in 1954.