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NEESSEN, Johann 1854-1917


Posted By: Tammy (email)
Date: 1/11/2011 at 13:50:30

Johann Heinrich Neessen was born at Holtland, amt Leer, Ostfriesland, Germany, on April 4, 1854, and died at Wellsburg, Grundy County, Iowa, Dec. 30, 1917. His age was 63 years, 8 months and 26 days.

The cause of death was a stroke of apoplexy.

Mr. Neessen was the son of Heiko and Alberdina Mittendorf Neessen, and was one of a family of five boys and one girl. They were Mrs. J. C. Doyen, deceased; Thomas, deceased; Chris, of Wellsburg, Iowa; Albert, deceased; and George, of Wellsburg, Iowa.

He is also survived by a widow and three girls. They are Miss Amanda Neessen, at home; Mrs. Henry A. Geerdes of Wellsburg, Iowa, and Mrs. George Doyen, of Holland, Minn.

Mr. Neessen came to America in 1878, at the age of 24. He went first to Stevenson County, Illinois, where he worked for Wessel Wessels, (who afterward visited him at Wellsburg) for a year, on a farm. Later he went to Chicago, where he engaged in an ice business with J. C. Doyen.

He was united in marriage to Augusta Louise Runge, July 27, 1882. To this union were born the children names above, and a girl, Louise, who died in infancy.

In 1883, Mr. Neessen moved to Wellsburg, where he started in the lumber and coal business, which he conducted successfully for 30 years, retiring in 1912 from active business.

Of late years he has spent his time on caring for his garden, looking after his several farms, and taking life as easy as an active man of his disposition could do.

His death was caused by a stroke of apoplexy. He had been up town after some groceries and on returning "home to mother," as he told a friend as he left, he placed his packages on the table and went out to do some little things around the barn. He returned soon and his wife noted that he looked pale. "I feel worse than I ever felt in my life," he said. She ministered to him, but suddenly he fell forward and sank to the floor. When taken up he was unconscious, and so remained until his death, several hours later.

The funeral was largely attended, and was held at the Heinrichs church northeast of Wellsburg, after services at the home west of town. Rev. C. Heinrichs and Rev. Wm. Landsiedel officiated. The pall bearers were H. B. Koolman, John Tjaden, Herman Kaster of Robertson, Chas. Schrage, Karl Kletke and D. J. Riekena.

Interment was made in the Heinrich cemetery.

The floral offerings were numerous and beautiful. The casket was covered with these tokens of esteem and affection.

Among those present from abroad were:
Mr. and Mrs. Heldebrand of Lakefield, Minn.
John Runge, and nephews August and Henry, of Gary, S. D.
W. E. Reed and wife and son of West Bend.
George Doyen of Marshalltown.
Miss Margaret Doyen, of Holland, Minn.
Mr. and Mrs. Lawrence Hummel of Waterloo.
Mrs. Otto Mahn of Chicago.
Mr. and Mrs. Joe Baars of Chicago.
Dick Steen of Buffalo Center, Iowa.
George Steen of Allendorf, Iowa.

The funeral arrangements were in charge of John Doyen and were all harmonious and pleasing.

Card of Thanks

We desire to express our grateful appreciation to the many who tendered us kindness and sympathy at the death of our husband and father and for the many floral offerings.
Mrs. Henry Neessen and Daughters.

Mr. Neessen was noted for helping those who were in distress or who were without sufficient funds to get a start. All over this part of Iowa and in Minnesota and South Dakota are scattered men who were helped to their present success by his aid, both financial and in advice. An instance is related showing this quality. A man who had scanty means lost a horse and was told to go see Henry Neessen. "I do not know Henry Neessen," said the man, a comparative stranger in this section. "Go see him. He'll help you out." And he did. That man, his wife and his children, all bless the memory of Henry Neessen.

He brought one man from Chicago, started him off and today he is a successful man. He blesses the memory of Henry Neessen. Cases of this sort crop out on every side, so many of them that it shows the kindly and generous heart of the subject of this obituary.

He helped one man and was asked what he would do if the man did not have a crop. "The One above looks after that part," said Mr. Neessen. "A man can't help it if he has no crop."

Mr. Neessen was a hard worker and when just starting it is related that he walked seven miles night and morning, from the farm of his brother east of town, where his wife and infant child were staying. He would be at work early and late, often waiting on wagons at his yard during the day, and unloading lumber at night. He pushed his business at all times, and enjoyed a large trade, accumulating the wealth which he left to his family when he passed away. He was always liberal with his support of all public things. Churches and schools found his ready to aid and support. Generous to a fault, he was not an extravagant man, and was always particular not to waste anything.

He was an exceptionally strong man physically and once on a wager carried two sacks of flour under his arms from town to his house, about a half mile, without once setting them down. He was a tireless worker and few men could do more than he did.

His neighbors always spoke of him as kindhearted and thoughtful and at all times ready to render any service in his power.


Grundy Obituaries maintained by Tammy D. Mount.
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