The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 45, July 1941 - April, 1942 Page: 135
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Norwegian Settlements in Texas
west, indicated the surging adventure of his spirit even up to
death. With no turn for trades, even without desire for per-
sonal gain, he nevertheless exercised a strange influence over
the minds of men, and was ever the moving spirit in the estab-
lishment of new settlements. In appreciation for his efforts to
draw immigration to Texas, the legislature granted him one of
the choicest tracts of land in Neils Creek Valley. But Kleng
could not make use of anything. He transferred the land to
Ove Colwick, with whom he made his home during his declining
years, and there he died. A picturesque figure, a circulating
newspaper, at home and welcome everywhere whether in city
house, settler's cabin, or Indian tepee, unafraid, unconcerned,
he was called "a walking encyclopedia"; ready and willing at
all times to serve his fellows, he never thought of pay. He never
hesitated a moment to set out for Austin, always afoot, on
behalf of settlers' land matters. A pack on his back, a little bread,
a little grub stake, and not so particular about that-he fared
forth afoot three hundred miles there and back, returning with
accomplished mission, ready for the next.
If space permitted much could be added on early activities,
including church, school, and social development. In common
with Norwegian settlements everywhere the settlers at once set
to work for schools and churches. Out of their limited sub-
stance even small contributions meant real sacrifice; but it was
not long before schools and churches in the Bosque settlement
came to attain a standard distinctly in advance of the rural
average for that day and time. The first schools were mere log
shacks with split logs for seats, and an occasional hide-bottom
chair for the teacher. There were no glass windows, but an
arbor over the south door for protection from sun and weather.
Then came rock buildings with real lumber equipment. During
the pioneer period a hack or buggy was a luxury that few could
afford. The family rolled along in the ox wagon, while "Bull
and Brandy" took their own good time in the going. Actual
money was scarce, but hospitality and mutual helpfulness
marked all relations of life, for each and every one had endured
hardships; they knew the value of fellowship.
Although none of us would want to return to those primitive
conditions, it is doubtful, even with the miracles of modern
conveniences, if there is a real net gain in contentment.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 45, July 1941 - April, 1942, periodical, 1942; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth146053/m1/149/: accessed April 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.