[ Return to Index ] [ Read Prev Msg ] [ Read Next Msg ]

Klein, August 1841-1895 and Lucretia Birum Family


Posted By: Wilma J. Vande Berg - volunteer (email)
Date: 9/6/2021 at 11:37:10

Klein, August 1841-1895 and Lucretia Birum Family

This story was taken from the ‘Rock Valley Records & Recollections’ book written abt 1976 in honor of the two hundredth birthday of our nation. It was a revision of the history written by Lottie Thomas in 1955. It was transcribed for this BIOS by Wilma J. Vande Berg of the Greater Sioux County Genealogical Society and some research notes were added.

August Klein was born in Germany and came to this country when he was fourteen years old. His wife, Lucretia Birum Klein, was born in Baraboo, Wisconsin soon after her people came to the United States from Norway. They were married in Baraboo in 1865.

In the early spring of 1868, August Klein and his brother decided to go to Montana expecting to mine gold. In September, the Kleins decided to return to Wisconsin, each having $600. For their summers work. On the way back they decided to cast their lot in Iowa. At Sioux City they met Col A. J. Warren and a friendship developed which lasted throughout their lives. The two Klein men and Mr. Warren hired a team and surveyor and started north. They took claims in Lyon County.

After digging a cellar, they went back to Sioux City and bought two windows, a door, and flooring, came back and built the house a one room cabin with a sod roof. They chopped down the logs from the Rock River trees. At that time it was the only floor in Lyon County. They returned to Wisconsin to spend the winter and prepare for the trip to Iowa in the spring, which they made with two covered wagons drawn by ox teams. They brought three cows, four pigs, and about forty hens. Which supplied them with eggs, butter and milk. They bought two barrels of salt pork which was the only meat they had besides the chickens.

During the first year, Mr. Klein drove to Sioux City five times with an ox team, a distance of seventy five miles for the mail. In the second year. Le Mars was started so they could market there.

The second summer they added a second room to the log cabin and the fourth year they took off the sod roof and added an upstairs with a shingled roof, and the eighth year they built a new house. Pete Jacobsma Jr. lives in this house today four miles north of Rock Valley and six miles west. In 1889 the Klein family moved to Rock Valley. Mr. Klein bought an interest in the Rock Valley Flour mill and was president of same until his death.

August Klein was a civil War veteran and received a commission as lieutenant. He was wounded in the Battle of Gettysburg and never fully recovered from the effects of the wound. He passed away in 1895. Mrs. Klein then moved from Rock Valley. The Kleins had nine children; A daughter, Lottie Mrs. James Thomas, continued to live in Rock Valley until her death in 1961. She is buried in the Rock Valley Cemetery

When Rock Valley celebrated it’s Diamond Jubilee Anniversary, she reigned as the Dowager Queen. Mrs. W. C. Anderson is a grand- niece of Lottie’s husband.

Story was condensed from the Rock Valley history book, written by Lottie Thomas in 1955.

RESEARCH NOTES added by Wilma J. Vande Berg

CEMETERY Index lists August Klein born 10 Apr 1841 died 24 Jan 1895 with wife Lucretia Valley View Cemetery Rock Valley IA. Lucretia J. Klein born 23 Nov 1844 died 12 Jan 1918 wife of August Valley View Cemetery Rock Valley IA.

ANCESTRY.com has a family report that has been done by others (not verified by me)
‘Gus’ Johann Augustus Klein was born 9 Apr 1841 Boeckingen, Wurtembrug, Germany died 24 Jan 1895 Sioux Falls SD. He was the son of Johann Philipp Klein 1812-1854 and Sibella Moessner 1813-1863. He was married to Lucretia Jan Tollefdatter Birum 23 Nov 1844 Baraboo, Sauk, WI died 12 Jun 1918 Grants Pass OR. Her parents were not listed. Nine children were listed in this report. Sarah Bell Klein 1866 -1942, Cora Ida Klein Drew 1868-1949, Lottie Augusta Klein 1870-1961, William Thomas Klein 1874-1895, Hattie May Klein 1877-1879, Ella Eliza Klein 1880-1891, Clara May Klein 1883-1891, Amy Leona Klein 1886-1962 and Carl Augustus Klein 1888-1924.

In the 1870 census of Baraboo Sauk County Wisconsin there was a Tolof Biram age 57 born about 1813 in Norway His wife was Caroline Biram age 55, and children Eliuza 22, Albert, Charlotte 17, Josephine 14, and Sara 12 Lucretia would have been married by that date.

However, in the 1860 census T. Byram age 46 born abt 1814 Norway living in Baraboo, Sauk, Wisconsin with wife Caroline 45, Amer 20 Andrew 18, Chas 18, Loretta 14 (Lucretia) , Eliza 12, Albert 10,Charlotte 7, Josephine 4 4, and Sarah 2.
SAME FAMILY. In the above family report Lucretia was Tollof’e datter….

Family report found on ancestry.com listed Tollef Andreassen Birum born 9 Apr 1813 Kongsberg, Buskerud, Norway died 17 Jan 1889 at Baraboo, Sauk, Wisconsin. His wife was Karen Kristine Enersdatter (Caroline C. Sobcent Lande) 1815-1902. Lucretia was named in the children list as born 1884 and died 1918

OBITUARY of August Klein 1841-1895

August Klein Dies Suddenly at Sioux Falls of Heart Trouble
Last Wednesday all of Rock Valley were shocked and saddened by the announcement of the death of August Klein, one of our oldest and most respectable citizens. That silent messenger death came while he was visiting with his brother-in-law, C. A. Birum of Sioux Falls at an early hour Wednesday morning from heart trouble, from which he has been a sufferer for years. He was ill only about an hour before his death.
August Klein was born in Hamburg, Germany, April 10, 1841 and came to America at an early age and settled in Wisconsin. On March 21, 1865, he was married to Miss Lucretia Birum at Baraboo, Wis., and to them were born nine children, five of whom survive him, who were a comfort and joy to their father in his declining years. They are: Misses Belle, Lottie, Amy, and Willie and Carl Klein and Mrs. Geo. Drew.
He leaves three brothers and one sister, Chris. and Charley Klein of Rock Valley, and Adolph Klein of Lester, and Mrs. J. Hirschinger of this place.
Mr. Klein was an old soldier and enlisted in Co. A, 6th Wisconsin infantry on August 28, 1861, and was immediately sent to the front where he had seen some hard fighting. He took part in the engagements at South Mountain, Antietam, Fredericksburg, Gettysburg, The Wilderness and Petersburg. In the last named battle he received a terrible wound after 3 years and 10 months service in the defense of his country. He went in as first sergeant and at the close of the war the governor of Wisconsin breveted him first lieutenant for his conspicuous bravery on the field of battle. At the time of his death he was commander of the G.A.R. organization of this place.
In June 1869 August Klein took up a homestead in Lyon county and the year following moved with his family onto the same. Seven years ago Mr. Klein entered into partnership with M. B. Smith in the hardware business but sold out after a short time. Three years ago together with Robt. Roantree he purchased the Rock Valley Mills and a year later incorporated under the name of the Rock Valley Mill Company of which he is president and the heaviest stockholder. He was a holder of stock in The Register until quite recently.
The body will arrive on the 2:20 p.m. train from Sioux Fall today, and will be met by members of the I.O.O.F. [International Order of Foresters] and G.A.R. [Grand Army of the Republic] societies.
The funeral services will take place Saturday at 2:30 p.m. at the Presbyterian church, Rev. Mr. Oats of Inwood will deliver the oration. The I.O.O.F. Encampment of which he was a member will have charge of the remains, and at the grave the last sad rites will be pronounced according to their solemn and impressive ritual. Members of the G.A.R. post will act as pall bearers and as an escort of honor.
Source: Rock Valley Register, January 25, 1895.
* * * * * * * * * *
An editorial in the same issue of the Register:
In the death of August Klein Rock Valley and her people lose more than a man. While his character and example remain to serve as a genuine inspiration, his tireless enterprise which always furnished fresh instances for emulation is removed forever. To every old citizen of Sioux and Lyon counties his life was an open book, which supplied so many lessons on manliness, and all that is good, that our people honor his memory. He was uniformly even-tempered and had no bad habits, and faithfulness and reliability were his chief characteristics. "The grass may hide and the rain may efface" the grave of August Klein but his memory will remain fresh in the hearts of all who knew him well.
* * * * * * * * * *
The Rock Valley Register of February 1, 1895, reported extensively on his funeral:
A Departing Tribute to a Noble Man--Resolutions.
Last Friday the mortal remains of August Klein was buried in the Rock Valley Cemetery, the I.O.O.F. society of which he was a member having charge of the remains. His old comrades of the Jerry Rusk G.A.R. post acted as pall bearers and as a guard of honor. The pall bearers were: N. A. Fink, S. Bellesfield, Jacob Moss, Ira S. Wilson, G. M. Mitchell, James Lundie. The funeral service were held at the I.O.O.F. and Parden's halls, which were thrown together in order to accommodate the very large number of friends. Rev. Mr. Oats of Inwood delivered the address. The casket was covered with flowers, the loving tribute of friends who offered messages of sympathy and love. Delegates from the I.O.O.F. and G.A.R. societies were present from Inwood, Hull, Doon, Hudson and Canton. Relatives from a distance were: C. C. Birum, of Utley, Wis.; Mr. and Mrs. A. G. Birum, of Sioux Falls; Mr. and Mrs. Adolph Klein, of Lester; and C. Birum, of Austin, Minn.
Resolutions were published by Rock Valley Lodge No. 496, I.O.O.F.; the Young People's Literary Society of Rock Valley (of sympathy to Willie Klein); Jerry Rusk Post No. 387, Dept. of Iowa G.A.R.; Jerry Rusk Woman's Relief Corps No. 282;
Rock Valley mayor Henry Schemmer and recorder H. E. Rounds, stating that "in life and conversation he always evinced by his sterling integrity, honestness of purpose and zeal for the welfare of mankind and our town, and that his wise and conservative judgment in municipal affairs was always sought by members of the council"; Gem Rebekah Lodge No. 247, I.O.O.F., Rock Valley.
It also reprints a news note from the Sioux Falls Press: August Klein of the firm of the Rock Valley Mill Company, died very suddenly at the Phillips house yesterday morning where he was he guest of his brother-in-law, Landlord Birum. Klein was an old veteran, and had been wounded while in service. At periods he had sinking spells and severe pains in the vicinity of the wound, which was above his heart. The hotel was crowded and Mr. Klein was occupying a cot in the bedroom of Mr. Birum and wife. About 4 o'clock a.m. they heard him groaning. This was the first intimation any one had that he was ill. He complained of very severe pain in the old wound. His host immediately placed him in the other bed and braced him up with a chair. This eased him for a few minutes. Then he sank over in a paroxysm of agony and in a second was dead.

OBITUARY of Lucretia Mrs. August Klein 1844-1918
From the Rock Valley Bee, January 18, 1918:
Former Resident Dies Suddenly
Lucretia Jane Birum was born on the 23rd of November, 1844, near Baraboo, Wis. On March 24th, 1865, she was married to August Klein. Nine children were born to them, seven girls and two boys, five of whom are still living. They are Mrs. Belle Wright of Corning, Calif., Mrs. Cora Drew of Olds, Canada, Mrs. Lottie Thomas of Rock Valley, Iowa, Mrs. Amy Grisdale of Vermillion, Canada, and Carl Klein of Fresno, California.
The first four years of her married life were spent in Wisconsin. In 1869, she with her husband and two children came to Iowa, settling on a farm in Lyon County where they made their home until the spring of 1889, when they came to Rock Valley. Mr. Klein died January 24th, 1895. After his death, Mrs. Klein with her two youngest children moved to Grinnell, Iowa, that they might attend college there. After Carl's graduation, they went to Olds, Canada.
For the last three years, she has made her home with her children. After spending the winter with her daughter Amy, she was on her way to visit her children in California, stopping enroute to visit her brother in Grants Pass, Oregon. She had not been well for a long time and, suddenly becoming worse, died after only a few days illness, January 13th. She was a member of the Congregational Church. She also belonged to the Eastern Star Chapter and the Rebekah Lodge.
The Kleins were prominent pioneers in Lyon County, and experienced the hardships incident to early days in northwest Iowa. Great sorrow came to them in the deaths of their children, but Mrs. Klein never lost her kindly cheerful spirit, though through what tears! what nights of watching! what solicitude! what joy! what self denial! what pure affection! was manifested by this mother.
The children who remain to mourn may have friends, fond dear friends, but never again, except in sweet remembrance, will they have the inexpressible love and gentleness lavished upon them as such a mother bestows. They will miss the sweet rallying point, around which affection and obedience, and a thousand tender endeavors to please concentrate.
As a neighbor and friend, Mrs. Klein was always ready to help wherever and whenever help was needed. Broad minded, charitable and sincere with clear judgment and the kindest heart, she was a blessing to the community. Sweet, indeed is the remembrance of such a friend, wife, and mother.
The remains left California Tuesday in charge of the son Carl Klein, and should reach Rock Valley Friday noon. Services will be held at the Methodist Church Saturday at 2 o'clock, p.m., a further account of which will be given next week.
* * * * * * * * * *
From the Rock Valley Bee, January 25, 1918:
The remains of Mrs. Klein, an account of whose death was given in last week's Bee, arrived Friday evening on passenger train No. 1, which was several hours late. The remains were accompanied by Mrs. Klein's son, Carl of Fresno, California. Funeral services were held from the Methodist church in this city at 2 o'clock p.m. Saturday, conducted by the pastor, Rev. Douma, and interment was made in the Valley View Cemetery. Many beautiful floral offerings were in evidence. Among those from a distance who were present at the funeral was Mrs. Geo. Halah of Baraboo, Wis., a sister of the deceased. Her other sister in St. Louis, and brother at Redwood Falls, Minn., were unable to come.


Sioux Biographies maintained by Linda Ziemann.
WebBBS 4.33 Genealogy Modification Package by WebJourneymen

[ Return to Index ] [ Read Prev Msg ] [ Read Next Msg ]