Nels Mellum

Nels G. Mellum came to Ypsilanti, North Dakota from Kensett, Iowa, on the valley train on April 1, 1904. He traveled to Stutsman County with the Berge family: John, Jim, George, Jane, Amanda, Geneva, Eva, and the mother, Mrs. Albert Berge.

Nels and Jane Berge were married on August 28, 1904, and were the first couple married in the Ypsilanti Church. At the time, services were held in the old school house.

Their first home was in the rooms above the Spaulding Store. Then, they bought farmland two miles east, adjacent to the Berge brothers' farms. They paid $15 an acre. A small house was built there and, in 1912, they enlarged it to house their expanding family, as Grandma Berge and Aunt Amanda had also come to stay with them.

Nels and Jane Mellum were active in community affairs, including the church, schools, township, and elevator boards. They were charter members of the Ypsilanti Lutheran Church, and the first Ladies Aid meeting was held in the Mellum home.

Nels Mellum passed away in 1933, twenty-nine years after he had arrived in the valley. Jane Mellum continued to live on the home farm until the late 1940s, when she moved to Jamestown. She lived with her daughter, Muriel Fields. Jane died in 1960.

Nels and Jane Mellum raised seven children.

George married Waunita Madden. Bernice married Milo Johnson. Wallace passed away in 1937, and Nordeen died in 1926. Leona married Irving Twito. Elmer married Anna Janz. Muriel married Rodney Fields. They also had twins, who died at birth in 1918.