Rev. Adolph Amstein
Twenty-one years ago Rev. Adolph Amstein accepted a call to fill the pulpit of the German Lutheran church at Charter Oak, of which he has ever since been pastor, discharging his duties with an earnestness and fidelity that have met with the hearty approval of the entire community.
He was born in Germany, February 26, 1869, a son of Sebastian and Fredericka (Bartholmaes) Amstein, both of whom were natives of Germany. The father was by trade a blacksmith, but later became a hotel and store keeper and so continued until his retirement. He died at the age of seventy-three years, but the mother is still living in Germany and has arrived at the venerable age of eighty-five years. There were ten children in their family, namely: Aurelia, deceased; Mathilde, Pauline, Florine, Heinrich, Christiana, Johann and Rosine, all of whom are living in Germany; Reinhold, now living in Ida county, Iowa; and Adolph, of this review.
Adolph Amstein was given excellent advantages of education in his native land, attending the common schools until he reached the age of fourteen years. He received private lessons for two years in Latin and German and at the same time studied music, history, geography, algebra and essays at an academy. In 1885, being then sixteen years of age, he came to America and, as he had decided to enter the Christian ministry, took a course of instruction in theology at Springfield, Illinois. Being too young to qualify as a regular minister of the church, he was sent out as a vicar or assistant, spending one year in Dakota, six months at Davenport, Iowa, and an equal length of time in Hanover township, Crawford county.
He then returned to Springfield and completed his course. In 1890 he received a call from the German Lutheran church at Charter Oak, which he has accepted and he has ever since most acceptably occupied that position.
On the 15th of April, 1891, Mr. Amstein was united in marriage to Miss Sophie Grunke, who was born at Waterloo, Wisconsin, August 27, 1867, a daughter of Friederich and Augusta (Bagganz) Grunke, both natives of Germany.
The parents came to America and spent three years at Watertown, Wisconsin, then locating at Waterloo, this state. The father died in 1885, but the mother is still living at Waterloo, at the age of eighty-five years. In their family were seven children, namely: Alvina, of Wisconsin; Emma, of Minnesota; Sophie, now Mrs. Adolph Amstein; and Huldah, Elizabeth, Helen and Ida, all of whom are deceased.
The home of Rev. and Mrs. Amstein has been blessed by the birth of eight children: Elsie, who was born in May, 1892, and has received a common school and musical education; Erwin E., who was born April 14, 1894, and is now living at home; Herbert C., born December 25, 1897; Helen M., born June 16, 1898; Adele M., who was born September 30, 1900, and died January 6, 1901; Edgar T., born March 27, 1902; Lorena E., born September 12, 1904; and Ruth M., born November 9, 1906.
Mr. Amstein is a constant student of all subjects pertaining to his chosen calling, a clear and logical speaker, and possesses a knowledge of human nature that has greatly assisted him in his arduous work. He is deeply versed in the Bible and especially in the life and teachings of the Great Master, in whose footsteps he has ever humbly walked. By his patience, earnestness, sincerity and unselfish labors in behalf of others he has gained the unqualified confidence and respect of his fellowmen.
Source: History of Crawford County, Iowa. Vol. II. Chicago: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1911.