Martha Ostenso, a renowned writer, lived at 4300 Brook Lane, in a house built in 1916. It had previously been owned by Noah Jarvis.  An item in the Hennepin County Review (August 19) tells us that she bought the house in 1926.  Records show that Barney and Kathryn Ostenso, perhaps her parents, resided there from 1939 to 1942. Barney was listed as a rancher. In 1942, the listing was for Martha, identified as a writer. In 1947, the listing was Douglas L. and Martha Durkin. Durkin was a novelist and teacher, and the two lived together for many years before getting married in 1945.


Ostenso was born in Bergen, Norway in 1900, and died in Seattle in 1963. She wrote 25 novels, many short stories, and serials for magazines and newspapers. One such story, “Changeling Bride,” was published in the Minneapolis Tribune in 1933. Ostenso also helped Sister Elizabeth Kenny write her autobiography in 1943.


One helpful site for more information on Martha Ostenso is