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Township Histories
History of Minden Township
 Townships  Formed
  Belknap 1872
Boomer 1860
Carson 1882
Center 1860
Crescent 1857
Garner 1877
Grove 1858
Hardin 1870
Hazel Dell 1872
James 1860
Kane 1853
Keg Creek 1874
Knox 1857
Layton 1873
Lewis 1878
Lincoln 1875
Macedonia 1855
Minden 1877
Neola 1872
Norwalk 1872
Pleasant 1873
Rockford 1855
Silver Creek 1860
Valley 1879
Washington 1873
Waveland 1873
Wright 1872
York 1861

Minden is the central township in the northern tier of the county. It is a full congressional township, was formerly a part of that of Neola, until 1877, when in answer to a petition of Mr. James Crow and the requisite number of signers, their petition was granted. The first election took place in Oct 1877 in the schoolhouse at Minden. The judges were Wm. Spears, August Kaven, and James Crow. The clerks were J.R. Crow and J. Lake, and about 100 votes were cast. There are no large natural groves of timber, but the next generation will have plenty, for being largely settled by Germans, they will have trees and flowers, and are rapidly planting groves. Mr. Casper Foster, of Davenport, Iowa, purchased 10,000 acres of the Rock Island road and a condition was that the company should establish and maintain a station on this property. This was complied with, hence the town of Minden, named in memory of Minden back in the fatherland of most of these industrious settlers.

The first house built in the town was by Hugo Prester, Mr. Foster built the second, and Peter Ehlers the third. G. Diederich built the first store in 1875 and moved in a general stock of goods from Avoca. J.O. Jeffries built the next business house and engaged in the grocery trade with a restaurant attached. Messrs. Bartel & Co. became successors to Mr. Diederich by purchase, and Mr. Diederich then erected another building, which he subsequently sold to Stuhr Brothers. The first carpenters of the town were Henry Urbahan, August Kaven, and Fred Kruganbery. The first blacksmith was a Mr. Rodecker. The first lumber business was by Messrs. Pria & Hornley, a Davenport firm. Peter Ehlers was the first to begin the grain trade. Dr. McLeod was the first physician to hang out his shingle in the little town, and James Crow the first land agent. Under the jurisdiction of Mr. James Crow a schoolhouse was built. Previous to this time, a school had been taught by a Mr. Kelsey in one room of Mr. Foster's residence. The first board of trustees of Minden township met and organized January 26, 1877. No township takes more active interest in their public schools than Minden. Minden had a German day school, the only one in the county at that date. In 1878 a German Lutheran church was organized, with Rev. Julius Oehlert as pastor. The original members were August Kaven, Adam Turk, John Stuhr Jr., Jacob Wasser, Deidrich Rohlfs, Peter Alleman, August Bock, Wilhelm Bolte, Wilhelm Giese, John Stuhr Sr., August Giese and Carl Leitzke. A small church was completed and furnished; the lot on which it was built was presented by Mr. Casper Foster. At last report, Conrad Neil was superintendent; John Crow, secretary; J.A. Yoder, treasurer, and E.O. Morgan, librarian, with an attendance of 40 pupils.

The following are names of the principal businessmen up to the year 1880: J.B. Norton, druggist; John Hammer and J.C. Garmong, hardware; Peter Stuhr and J.C. Garmong, agricultural implement dealers; Stuhr Brothers, J.W. Crow and J.H. Yoder, dry goods and grocery merchants; Seiffert and Weis, lumber dealers; L. Harm, physician and surgeon; J.C. Garmong, harness dealer; Henry Rolfs and H. Peterson, blacksmiths, and Adolph Winder, hotel proprietor. Although quite a town had started soon after the advent of the Rock Island road, it was not incorporated until 1890. At this time, 1907, it has two banks, the German-American, and Farmers Savings; general stores, Peiper & Mischler, George Groneweg & Co., and W.L. Richardson; hardware, Stuhr-Ehlers-Hood Company; drug store, Max Lehman; elevators, P. Ehlers & Stuhr; Reesy Grain Company, Green Bay Lumber Company; livery barn, Louis Ehlers; saloons, H.J. Hesly, August Kaven, Peter Schwensohn and Fred Priest; blacksmiths, E.G. Krundel, Fred Schultz and G.H. Muhlstein; physician, Grant Augustine; three hotels, Mrs. Dorscher, Mrs. Schmidt and T.J. Groepper; building contractors, August Bostedt, Henry Schilling and Herman Veith; Independent Fire Company and brass band of 20 pieces, Julius Stuhr, leader. The town population is 400; mayor, John Geiger.