Christian and Caroline Fricke
The following appears in “The History of Marshall County, Iowa” published by The Western Historical Company 1878, p. 685 “Fricke, Christian, farmer Sec. 19; P.O. State Centre; was born in Brunswick, Germany, July 12, 1832; came to this country in 1853, and came to this county in 1865; he owns 220 acres of land, valued at $30.00 per acre. He is Lutheran in religion and Republican in politics. His wife, Caroline Schaper, was born in the same place in 1833; they were married in 1857 and have nine children-. “At the time of the original printing there were ten children. The name of Henry, their seventh child who died when very young, had been omitted. A daughter named Fredericka was not born yet.
Leaving behind what security and comforts they had in exchange for the unknown took great courage. Specifics about their early life in America are somewhat sparse as little time was left from daily activity for thinking about or even recording such information. It is known, however, that Christian Fricke moved his family by train from Illinois to Iowa City, Iowa. From there the family travelled by ox cart and/or wagon to their new homestead located about six and one half miles northeast of State Center, in Marietta Township, Marshall County, Iowa. A picture of the old homestead appears on following pages of this book.
Christian and Caroline Fricke were the parents of eleven children. All but one grew to adulthood, married, and reared a family. Edward, the eighth child, lived for the longest period of time attaining an age of 90 years 5 months and 7 days. One son, Henry, died when a very small child. He was accidently burned by a bucket of scalding lye water. A record of his birth and of his death was located in St. John’s Lutheran Church in August 1981. In 1964 Ernest the last living child died in Willmar, Minnesota.
A display shown at the 1981 Fricke family reunion held on August 16, 1981 featured a large picture of Christian and Caroline Fricke hanging on a wall where all could see it. Beneath the picture lying in a horizontal line on a large display board were wedding pictures of each of their children. At the bottom of each wedding picture was a list of the children of that particular family.
Christian Fricke was not only a successful farmer but an expert in slaughtering animals, helping and teaching his neighbors and friends how to “butcher” and how to care for meat. The mathematical genius of Christian Fricke was recognized and respected by all who knew him.
Christian and Caroline Fricke were members of St. John’s Lutheran Church located approximately three and one half miles north of State Center. They are buried in the St. John’s Lutheran Church Cemetery located about a quarter of a mile south and a quarter of a mile east of the church. Similar monuments mark the grave of each.
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