BIOGRAPHY - Frederick E. Steinmann

FREDERICK E. STEINMANN, who is engaged in general farming and stock-raising on section 6, Wall Township, is a native of Prussia. He was born in the town of Blossheira, on the 26th of August, 1832, and is a son of Gerhardt and Mary (Becker) Steinmann, both of whom were born and reared in the same locality, and the father served in the German army. Seven children were born of their union in Germany, the eldest of whom is Frederick; Louisa is the wife of Henry Spellmeyer; William and Ernest died in Germany; Henry, whose sketch appears elsewhere in this work, is a farmer of Wall Township; Katherina is the widow of Joe Feldhus, and resides in St. Louis; and Charlotte is the wife of George Spellmeyer.

Our subject spent his childhood days in his native land, crossing the Atlantic to America when twenty-five years of age. This was in 1857, and in 1866 the other members of the family emigrated to America. The father, who was born in September, 1802, died at the home of Henry Spellmeyer, in Ford County, in 1875. His wife died in her native land in 1858, at the age of fifty-five years. Frederick acquired his education in the schools of Germany, which he attended for eight years, and later worked in the coal mines for four years. He also served for two years in the German army as a member of the Fifteenth Infantry, and in 1857 he sailed from Bremen, landing at New Orleans after a voyage of nine weeks. He then made his way up the river to St. Louis, Mo., where he lived seven and one-half years, and for two years and a half was employed in a foundry, and three years in a shot tower and brickyard. Subsequently, he joined Company A, of the Second Missouri Regiment, and for two years did service with that command, being principally engaged in border warfare.

On the expiration of that time, Mr. Steinmann was advised by his physician to leave the city on account of poor health, and he determined to come to Illinois, and after four years spent in La Salle County, where he followed farming, came to Ford County in 1870. He here purchased eighty acres of wild prairie land, upon which he yet makes his home, but now owns six hundred and forty-seven acres. Besides the home farm of one hundred and sixty acres on section 6, Wall Township, he has two eighty-acre tracts of land on section 16, Lyman Township; two on section 2, and one eighty-acre tract on section 23, Lyman Township, and one eighty-seven acre tract of land on section 12, Peach Orchard Township. The home farm is under a high state of cultivation, and buildings and other improvements indicate the progressive spirit of the owner, who is now doing a successful business as a general farmer and stock-raiser. His life has been a busy one, yet he has found time to aid in the advancement of those enterprises calculated to promote the best interests of the community. In politics, Mr. Steinmann is a Republican. He has served as School Director for fifteen years and the cause of education has found in him a warm friend. He and his wife and children are members of the German Methodist Church, of Melvin.

Mr. Steinmann was married in Germany, on the 25th of May, 1857, just prior to emigrating to America, his union being with Miss Louisa Spellmeyer. Her father, Gotlieb Spellmeyer, who was born in Germany, April 9, 1806, and died in April, 1888, at the home of his daughter, when about eighty-one years of age, had seven children, of whom five are living. Mr. Spellmeyer came to America in the year 1857. He was a member of the Lutheran Church, and, in politics, was a Democrat. His wife, who bore the maiden name of Carolina Kuster, was born in Germany, January 1, 1807, and died in 1880. She also was a member of the Lutheran Church. Mrs. Steinmann was educated in the German schools. She was a kind and loving wife and mother, and has been a valuable helpmate to her husband, with whom she has traveled life's journey for thirty-five years.

Unto this worthy couple have been born ten children, seven of whom are yet living, as follows: Carrie was married, May 28, 1884, to Adam Schafer, a merchant of Melvin; Henry, who was educated in Naperville College, of Naperville, Ill., and is Mr. Schafer's partner in business, married Susanna Schafer October 6, 1886, and their home is in Melvin; Louisa J., Frederick W.; Mary W., Emma M. and Johnnie L. are still at home. The four eldest children were born in St. Louis, the others are natives of Illinois. The family is widely and favorably known in this community and ranks high in social circles. Mr. Steinmann is one of the most prominent farmers of Wall Township, and is an influential and valued citizen.

Extracted 31 Jul 2020 by Norma Hass from Portrait and Biographical Record of Ford County, Illinois, published in 1892, pages 285-286.

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