May 31, 2017

Old Settlers Days Honoree Hilda Jensen: Celebrating memories of home

By Annette Tait
Hilda (Henke) Jensen has a lifetime of memories of her homes in Oliver County, first as a girl on her parents’ farm, and later farming with her husband, Forrest.
Hilda was one of eight children born to Herman W. and Rosetta (Kern) Henke. Herman W. Henke was said to have been the first white male to be born in Oliver County; Rosetta was the daughter of Valentine Kern, the pastor of the Hannover church.
HIlda remembers when the fourth baby in her family was born -- next in line after Dorothy, Hilda, and their brother, Ruben, she asked her mother where the baby had come from. She was told the baby had been found in the spring box, so Hilda and Ruben went to take a look.
“So, we went to see the new babies, and found two,” Hilda said, breaking into a wide grin. “They were our reflections!”
Hilda was born and raised on her family’s farm northeast of Hannover, where she attended the parochial school in Hannover and took two years of high school through correspondence. She left home at the tender age of 18, and worked for Nels and Sophia Jensen for a time, helping them to care for their eight children, one of whom was Forrest. Little did she know then that she’d met her future husband.


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