Claus Gottburg, who for more than twenty-five years has been a resident of Crawford county and now owns and conducts the largest furniture store in this locality, is one of the progressive and substantial business men of Schleswig.
Like many of the citizens of his community, Mr. Gottburg is a native of Germany, his birth having occurred on the 25th of June, 1864. His parents, John and Margaret (Bothmann) Gottburg, had eight children and three of those still surviving are residents of the United States. The order of their birth is as follows: Lorenz, who lives in Germany; Elsie B., the widow of John Holst, of Germany; John, also a resident of Germany; Margaret, who is deceased; Franz, who lives in Germany; Claus, the subject of this sketch; Annie, the wife of Martin Fredrickson, of Otter Creek township; and Katie, who became the wife of Chris Kruse, of Minnesota.
The boyhood and youth of Claus Gottburg were spent in the fatherland, where he acquired his education, but early recognizing the limitations which the caste lines make almost insurmountable in the older and more conservative country he determined to become a citizen of the United States and in 1883 took passage for America. Upon his arrival here he almost immediately made his way westward and located in Crawford county, where for sixteen years he worked at the carpenter's trade. He was a competent workman, ever discharging his tasks with that faithful and conscientious regard for details which is the prime requirement in the upbuilding of any business, and the result was constant employment at a fair and reasonable remuneration.
In 1899 he came to Schleswig and established a furniture store and during the eleven years he has been engaged in business has met with most gratifying success. Today he carries the largest line of household furnishings of any store in the county. He has a large and well selected stock in addition, to which he owns the building and the substantial and pleasant residence where he lives. He possesses not only the ability to establish and manage a business but that still rarer gift-the faculty of winning and retaining patrons.
On the 9th of September, 1903, was solemnized the marriage of Mr. Gottburg and Miss Catharina Klaus, a daughter of Fred Klaus. She is the sixth in the order of birth of the nine children born unto Mr. and Mrs. Klaus, only seven of whom are living, however, the two youngest dying in infancy. Those surviving beside Mrs. Gottburg are: Johanna, who lives in Schleswig; Paul, a resident of Charter Oak; Christ, who lives in the same place; Louisa, the wife of Hans Riessen, also of Charter Oak; Andrew, of Ida Grove; and Daniel, of Charter Oak.
Four children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Gottburg: John, Freda, Elsie and Arthur. Mr. and Mrs. Gottburg are of the Evangelical faith, being members of the Lutheran denomination, while fraternally he is identified with the Modern Woodmen and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. Ever since acquiring the right of suffrage Mr. Gottburg has given his political support to the democratic party. He has never sought public honors nor the emoluments of office' but casts his vote on election day for the candidates of his party. Although his energies have been concentrated along the line of his personal interests, they, in themselves, are of a nature to make him a strong factor in the commercial development of the town, in addition to which he is a man who stands for progress and the adoption of such measures as will advance the general interests of the community.
Source: History of Crawford County, Iowa. Vol. II. Chicago: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1911.