Among the citizens of German birth now residing in Jackson township, Crawford county, is Dirk Groen, whose home is located on section 4, where he has eighty acres of highly improved land besides owning a twenty acre tract in Levi township, Sac county, Iowa.
He was born in Germany, January 9, 1859, and is a son of Wilke and Tena (Dunker) Groen, in whose family were ten children, two of whom died in infancy. The others are: Tessie, who became the wife of Christ Koek; Dirk; Jennie, deceased; Dena, the wife of L. Luitjens; Wilhelmina; Henry; Jessie; and Tena, deceased. Those still living are all residents of Germany with the exception of our subject and the parents both died in that country.
Believing that better opportunities were furnished ambitious young men in the new world, Dirk Groen came to the United States on the 31st of March, 1884, and made his way to Iowa. For twelve years he was engaged in farming on rented land in Carroll county and at the end of that time purchased an eighty acre tract in Jackson township, Crawford county, where he now resides. His place is pleasantly located on section 4 and is under a high state of cultivation. As previously stated, he also owns twenty acres in Levi township, Sac county, and has made all of the improvements upon his land. In connection with general farming he also devotes considerable attention to stock-raising and is meeting with most excellent success in his undertakings.
On the 3d of May, 1884, was celebrated the marriage of Mr. Groen and Miss Gertrude Beekman, a daughter of John and Grace (Vogt) Beekman. She is the eldest of their five children, the others being: Henry, now a resident of this county; while Wilbur, Webke and John still live in Germany.
To Mr. and Mrs. Groen have been born eight children, as follows: William, deceased; Grace, now the wife of Wert Meyer, of Crawford county; Tena, Jennie, Wilhelmina, Henrietta and Dick, all at home; and George, deceased.
Since becoming a naturalized citizen Mr. Groen has supported the men and measures of the republican party and in religion is a consistent member of the Presbyterian church. He has made the most of his advantages since coming to the new world and by industry, perseverance and good management has become the owner of a valuable farm which he has placed under a high state of cultivation and improved with good and substantial buildings. Before leaving his native land he served for two years in the German army as a private soldier and is today a member of an organization of German soldiers at Denison.
Source: History of Crawford County, Iowa. Vol. II. Chicago: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co., 1911.