A Narrative History of The People of Iowa


G. A. GROSSMANN, banker at Waverly, widely known throughout the Iowa Lutheran Synod, is a son of George Martin  Grossmann, a beloved pioneer of Iowa Lutherisum, a brief sketch of whose life and work is published preceding this.  G. A. Grossmann was born May 25, 1862, in a cabin which represented a parsonage of the Iowa Synod.  Mr. Grossmann was one of eight children of his parents and the only other one now living is Miss Nannie, the youngest child, who remained with her parents until their death.  She lives at Waverly.  The deceased children were:  Emelia, wife of Rev. P. Bridow, of Maxfiled, Iowa; Eliese, wife of G. Amman, whose father was the first lay minister of the Iowa Lutheran Synod; Minna wife of Rev. F. Kuethe, of Waverly; Marie, wife of Rev. Henry Hoerig, of Watertown and Menominee, Wisconsin; G. S. who was in the United States mail service at Waverly and Waterloo; and Emma, wife of Paulus List, for twenty years manager of the Wartburg publishing house in Chicago, and now manager of the branch publishing house of the United Lutheran Church.

G. A. Grossmann was educated at home, partly under the direction of his father, and he completed his college course and theological training in Wartburg Seminary at Mendota, Illinois.  After being ordained he was for four years pastor at Jubilee in Blackhawk County, Iowa.  On account of a throat affliction he gave up the active ministry, and, returning to Waverly, did work for the Wartburg Publishing Company.  In 1893 he bought the Waverly Phoenix, a German language newspaper, which had been established by a Mr. Krech, who sold it to Henry Schulz, from whom Mr. Grossmann purchased it in 1893.  At the beginning of the World war the Phoenix was merged into the Weekly Democrat.  The Democrat is now edited by Mr. Grossmann's son Arthur.  Mr. Grossmann is an able business man and for several years has been president and director of the State Bank of Waverly.

His interests and activities have been unfailing in behalf of his church.  Since 1899 he has been secretary of the Lutheran Mutual Aid Society and has managed its affairs with vigor and efficiency, maintaining them on a sound financial basis.  Mr. Grossmann has always been known as a hard worker.  His vigorous constitution today is probably due to his habits of industry and physical labor when a boy.  At the age of fourteen he was binding wheat in the harvest fields, plowing corn, and doing other heavy manual toil.  He is a member of the publishing committee of the Iowa Synod and of its finance committee, is a member of the board of directors of Wartburg College at Clinton, Iowa, and president of the Iowa Orphans Home Society.  He is a member of the Community Club at Waverly, and for ten years was on the board of directors of the Iowa National Insurance Company of Des Moines.  His father was a Republican, but Mr. Grossmann has been a consistent Democrat in principle, though in the Bryan campaign of 1896 he supported the gold standard ticket of Palmer and Buckner.  Mr. Grossmann in 1923 took his first important vacation, when he spent three months in Europe.  While overseas he placed wreaths on the graves of his ancestors.

He married Miss Anna Kaufmann, daughter of G. Kaufmann, of Waverly.  The following children were born to their union:  Cordelia, wife of A. R. Boer of Wisconsin; Arthur C., editor of the Waverly Democrat; Rosa, wife of Rev Eugene Poppen, of Detroit, Michigan; Helen, wife of E. L. Hahn, who is connected with the wholesale department of Marshall Field & Company in Chicago; W. P., owner of a moving picture house at Nevada, Iowa; W. P., who for two years was at Camp Dodge with the recruiting branch and at the close of the war with the discharging department, and prior to the war had worked in the bank at Waverly; Hilda, who completed her musical education in the Chicago College of Music, is voice teacher in the Kansas State Agricultural College at Manhattan; Emma is an employee of the Peninsular State Bank at Detroit, Michigan; Helmuth W., owner of a Funeral Home at Charles City, Iowa, was in the hospital department of the United States navy, assigned to the U. S. S. Montana in 1917-21.


~ source: A Narrative History of The People of Iowa with SPECIAL TREATMENT OF THEIR CHIEF ENTERPRISES IN EDUCATION, RELIGION, VALOR, INDUSTRY, BUSINESS, ETC., by EDGAR RUBEY HARLAN, LL. B., A. M. Curator of the Historical, Memorial and Art Department of Iowa Volume IV THE AMERICAN HISTORICAL SOCIETY, Inc. Chicago and New York. 1931
~ transcribe by Debbie Clough Gerischer for the Great War