Charles August Heckenberg, who was born in Burlington, is a son of Herman Henry and Mary (Schumell) Heckenberg, his birth occurring March 19, 1856. He is indebted to the grammar schools of the city of his birth for his education. His school days over, he went at once to work on a farm, and in 1872, when only seventeen years old, he bought one hundred and nineteen acres of land on Section 22, in Flint River township. This was quite an undertaking for one so young, as all this land except eighteen acres was in a wild and rough condition. There were no buildings on the place except the old-fashioned house, and only a very little fence. Mr. Heckenberg has fenced all of the farm, built all the necessary buildings used on a farm, besides a large and commodious modern barn, which he erected in 1895. The barn is thirty by forty feet, and enhances much the value as well as the beauty of the place. At the present writing he carries on farming quite extensively, having about sixty acres under cultivation. He raises from fifteen to twenty hogs and four or five head of cattle annually, and has invested largely in modern farm implements and machinery. He is a subscriber of the Flint River Valley Telephone Company, and finds the connection with the city a great convenience. On Feb. 13, 1885, Mr. Heckenberg was married to Miss Mary Berning, daughter of Herman and Mary Berning. This marriage has been graced by five children, two sons and three daughters: George, Laura, Oscar, Selma, and Lena, all living and all at home with their parents. Mr. and Mrs. Heckenberg are members of the German Evangelical church, where they are actively engaged in all that pertains to the advancement of the church and the promoting of Christianity. Politically, he is a stanch Democrat, but has never aspired to any public office, though he has always been loyal to his party. Even though Mr. Heckenberg is still in the prime of life, yet he has witnessed many changes during his residence of fifty years in Des Moines county, and his home place is a good example of the ability of a thrifty farmer. His progress has been slow but sure, and his untiring energy and progressive spirit have always inspired him to look ahead to a day of rest, which he has partially obtained. His upright and straightforward dealings in business have won for him the confidence and respect of all the valley.