Muscatine County, Iowa



September 2014, Patricia Gent sent to the Muscatine Genealogical Society some pictures and family information on the Steen family that were owned by Signe Skott Cooper who died at the age of 92 years on July 16, 2013 in Madison, WI. Her mother was Clara Steen Skott, daughter of Mary McCune and Frederick D. Steen.

Submitted by Lynn McCleary August 9, 2015

Mary Perlina McCune Steen obituary
Frederick Detlef Steen obituary
Mark Frederick Steen, father of Frederick D. Steen
b. Oct. 12, 1821 - d. Dec. 8, 1906
Emigrated to America in 1873
Children of Frederick & Mary Steen
Charlie, Blaine, George
Clara, Herman, Dora
Helen Steen, daughter of Frederick D. & Mary McCune Steen
photo taken about 1917
Clara Steen, daughter of Frederick D. & Mary McCune Steen
b. Oct. 11, 1888 Menlo, IA; graduated from Iowa State; married Hans Skott Jr. in Jackson Co., IA; d. Apr 3, 1994 Mdison, WI

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Part of a letter written by Frederick “Fred” Steen to his niece Anna Dorothea Steen Pratt on February 3, 1930. At that time he lived at Davenport, Iowa.

“In your letter you inquire about Anna Dorothea Rehpening, who was your grandmother, and about her family. She was born Dec. 24, 1818 at Klein-Flintbeck near Kiel, in Holstein. She was the oldest of five having 2 brothers, ad 2 sisters, named in order of age as follows: Claus, Diederich, Lena and Anna.

Claus was stone deaf and incapacitated. Deiderich died when of age, Lena married a man fr. Kiel named Sieck, who bought a farm and lived on it in Kl.F. He was an educated man and became Secretary of a large farmer’s mutual insurance Co. He had a family of 6 or 7 children boys and girls.

Anna Rehpening was the youngest sister of your grandmother. She got the family homestead, a farm big enough to keep 2 horses. She married Joachim Voss. They had 3 or 4 children, but she died before the children were grown. The Rehpening family, as indicated above, lost the name identity. I do not know anything about prior generations, except in above village and were very religious people. I do not know of any picture taken of my mother.

Now the Steens, Mark Frederick Steen was my father and your grandfather. He was born Oct. 12, 1821 I the village of Rohwinkel near Neumunster in Holstein. The land of this village belonged to the large estate of Schobocken and the people naturally worked on the estate. They received pitiful small wages and slavery would be the rule not very far back. Mark was apprenticed to cooper and he learned the trade well. Then he became a journey man cooper, as was the rule. He had to get away from home and learn how other people run the trade. This was true in all trades and never was practiced in the U.S. (I am sure it was in early days of our country)

Quotes by D.S. L.: The cooper on large dairy farms had charge of cows, and the milking and milkers. He made the wooden utensils.

When he had been married about the year 1847 he settled in the village of Schstedt near Neumunster, where he worked at what came to hand.

Here all his children were born, except Otto, who was born near Loeptien, near Freetz in Holstein. The following are the dates of birth: John F. born Sept. 15, 1848; Claus D. born April 24, 1851; C. Henry, born July 11, 1853; Fred D. born, June 17 1856; Emma S. born January 10, 1859; and Otto F. born April 22, 1861.

In the year 1850 he removed from Bohstedt to near Freetz, where rented a brickyard. This made him more than a laborer, he was his own boss, made and sold brick, and tile, handled lots of money and hired men to work for him. This he did for 13 years, when he moved to Iowa in April 1873. He bought 40 acres of land near Menlo (Guthrie Co.), another 40 acres and at the age of 85 years, died on Dec 6, 1906. Mother had died in July 1882. They are both buried at Menlo.

My father had four brothers and two sisters, namely Hans, Joachm, Christian (father), Henry. The sisters’ names I am not e sure about. My father’s father was Frederick Steen, who became vogt, or overseer, or boss over the workers on the big estate. He was a big, powerful man, as were his four brothers. He died before he was very old but his wife, my grandmother, lived to be 73 years. I know nothing about my father’s antecedents, except that they were strong men, that they came from Holland when the King of Spain sent the Duke of Albs into the low countries to exterminate the protestants, and they then settled in Holstein about 300 years ago. One of father’s brothers, Henry, came to U.S. about 1851 but no others. Uncle Henry lived at Davenport and Muscatine, and is buried at latter place.

(I do not know what the work father inserted above that refers to D.S.L.)

Above copies from father’s letter to my cousin Anna D. S. Pratt by Dorothea Steen Leffler, February 1963).”

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Part of another letter.

“John Steen married to Emma Fintel Feb. 24, 1886 at Grove Center, Iowa.Emma Fintel died at Menlo, Iowa, Thanksgiving Day 1890. John Sten married to Minnie Herlein Dec. 16th 1891.

Minnie Herlien born at Muscatine County Aug. 5th, 1861 died Oct. 24, 1939 at Muscatine, Iowa.

John Steen went to Menlo, IA from Scott Co. about 1881, drove by team and wagon, bought 80 acres of land from te R.R. Co. and 40 aces from Mr. Hamilton. He worked for Mr. Skyles in Scott Co. for five years. Mr. Skyles loaned him the money to buy the land. He worked hard breaking prairie land, husking con days and plowing by moon light. He and Uncle Fred co-operated in machinery and work and in caring for Grandpa Steen and making his declining years easier. I never knew my father and Uncle Fred to have a disagreement.

We moved to West Liberty in 1910 in January. My folks moved to Muscatine in 1919 (? maybe 1920).

Harris Morton Steen, son of Henry Steen born in Menlo, Iowa, March 23, 1889. Died Sept 28, 1959 Visalia, Calif.

Lucy Steen born in Menlo, Iowa, Jan. 24, 1888.

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Page created August 9, 2015 by Lynn McCleary