Fred Michaelson is one of the many reliable and enterprising citizens that Germany has furnished the United States. He was born in Holstein, Germany, August 23, 1830, the son of German parents. His father, John Henry Michaelson, was a saddler and leather tanner. The family were Lutherans. The subject of this sketch received his education in his native land, and there learned the trades of miller and carpenter. He was a soldier in the Schleswig-Holstein army, and served in the war against Denmark in 1849. In the battle of Idstad he received a wound in his thigh, which made him a partial cripple for life. He came to America and to Illinois in 1856, and, notwithstanding his lameness, he worked on farms and in loading cars until the spring of 1859. At that time he came to California. In Shasta County he worked both at mining and at the dairy business. At first he was employed by James Wolf. Later, he purchased an interest in a fruit and vegetable store, and kept it two years. Then he formed a partnership with Frank Litsch and engaged in the general merchandise business, continuing it until the fall of 1869. In that year Mr. Michaelson purchased a store in Lewiston, Trinity County. Three years later he sold out, and engaged with Mr. Reid in 1872, in the production of Angora goats. That business they followed twelve years, having as many as 1,500 goats at one time, and receiving as high as eighty-seven and a half cents per pound for the mohair. The price went down, however, until it reached thirty-four cents per pound, when they sold out, getting $2,200 for 1,100 goats. Mr. Michaelson has 200 acres of land, on which he is raising hay and vegetables. He has dealt considerably in city real estate in Redding, has loaned money and built a number of houses. He is president of the building association that erected the fine I.O.O.F. block, and he is a stockholder in the building.
Mr. Michaelson has been a member of the I.O.O.F. for twenty-four years, has passed all the chairs of the order and has taken much interest in the society. He is an intelligent Republican, a kind-hearted man, and is ever ready to do all in his power for the advancement of the best interests of the county.
Source: Memorial & Biographical History of Northern
California, The Lewis Publishing Co., 1891
Transcribed by Kathy Sedler