Patti Simpson's
GROSSMANN Genealogy Page



My great-great-great-grandparents:

Rev. George Martin GROSSMANN
Nannie STEPPES

George Martin GROSSMANN was born 18 OCT 1823 in Grossbieberau, Hessen-Darmstadt, Germany. He was the only son born to Ludwig GROSSMANN and Maria Margarethe ROTHENHAUSER.

Nannie STEPPES was born 23 FEB 1825 in Friedberg, Germany. The names of her parents and siblings is unknown at this time.

Rev. George Martin GROSSMANN and Nannie STEPPES were married in 19 JUN 1846 in Germany. They had twelve children - the oldest one born in Germany:

(1) Emilie GROSSMANN, b. 21 MAY 1847 (48?) in Erlangen, Hessen, Germany, m. Rev. Paul BREDOW on 18 MAY, 1864, d. 26 OCT 1918 and is buried in Harlington Cemetery, Waverly, Iowa (Please write for more information);

(2) Elizabeth Carolina GROSSMANN, b. 14 AUG 1849, Hessen-Darmstadt, Germany, m. 10 APR 1866 to Karl Gottlob AMMAN, d. 04 OCT 1916 at Republican City, Nebraska and is buried at Moline Prairie Church Cemetery, near Wilcox, Nebraska;

(3) Anna Maria Wilhelmina GROSSMANN, b.05 APR 1855 at ?, m. 26 AUG 1875 to Rev. Frederick KUETHE, d. 21 OCT 1907 and is buried in Waverly, Iowa;

(4) Marie GROSSMANN, b. (?), m. date unknown to Rev. Henry HOERIG, d. unknown;

(5) Gottfried Georg Sigmund GROSSMANN, b. 05 MAR 1860, m. Anna (last name unknown) date unknown, d. 1926;

(6) Gottlob A. GROSSMANN, b.25 MAY 1862, m. to Anna (last name unknown), d. 1933;

(7) Emma GROSSMANN, b. 07 SEP 1864 at St. Sebald, Iowa, m. 05 AUG 1885 to Paulus LIST, d. 1915 and is buried at Waverly, Iowa;

(8) Nannie GROSSMANN, b. 24 APR 1868, d. 28 JAN 1947, never married, she was a salesperson;

and four more that died in infancy.

George Martin GROSSMANN was born 18 OCT 1823 in Grossbieberau, Hessen-Darmstadt, Germany, the oldest of two children, a sister being younger. He graduated from the Teachers Seminary at Friedberg at the age of 19 and served that institution as assistant teacher. He was instructor in a private school at Rottheim and Lollar. Here he was converted through the influence of Paster Diffenbach and placed himself at the disposal of Loehe for the American service. He immigrated to the US to conduct school for teachers in Saginaw, Michigan.

After studying theology at the Universary of Erlangen under Friedrich BAUER at Nuremberg, Germany, he was sent to a Missouri Synod at Saginaw, Michigan in 1852 as founder and inspector at the Teachers Seminary. He was ordained on 13 APR 1852 and sailed to the U.S.A. from Hamburg on 15 APR 1852.

Because of a difference in opinion, Wyneken and Walter of the Missouri Synod went to Germany to confer with Loehe. Loehe considered Walter's theory of the ministerial office too democratic and the visit did not adjust the differences. In 1853 the actual break occurred because Wyneken, president of the Missouri Synod, asked Loehe to transfer the control of the school to the Synod which he refused to do. Then Wyneken suggested that either the school be closed or that it be removed to some state where the Missouri Synod had no connections, the state of Iowa being suggested. In this trouble there remained loyal to Loehe but two men, Grossmann and Deindoerfer. Since harmony with Missouri was impossible, it was resolved to move to Iowa. A part of 22 Loehe's adherents migrated in September 1853. Grossmann opened a Seminary in Debuque, Iowa with seven students. The first classes at the Seminary were begun 10 NOV 1853, the anniversary of Martin Luther's birthday. In 1854 pastors Sigmund Fritschel and Michael Schueler arrived from Germany to assist with the work.

On 24 AUG 1854, Grossmann, Fritschel, Schueler, and Deindoefer met at St. Sebald and organized the German Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Iowa. Grossmann also founded the St. John's Lutheran Church in Debuque in 1854. This was the second Lutheran Church in Iowa. After 4 years, or in 1857, the seminary was moved to St. Sebald and Grossmann taught there.

The Seminary remained in St. Sebald for 17 years. In 1874 it was moved to Mendota, Ill. After a year of teaching in Mendota because of illness he moved to Bremer County, Iowa to recuperate. After two years he was so well that he started the Teachers Seminary at Waverly in 1885 to form Wartburg College. From 1855 to 1895 he was president of Wartburg College. He retired in 1894 but stayed on until the end of the year or until 1895 and then actually gave up the work.

Grossmann Hall, the boys dormitory at Wartburg College in Waverly is named in honor of him. Grossmann Hall was retired in the summer of 1995.

They celebrated their golden wedding anniversary 24 AUG 1896. He made a home for a man by the name of Louis BUDER who came to America unmarried and penniless. Louis was stable man and cared for the horse (Old Bill) and buggy and did the garden and yard work for his board and room.

Rev. George Martin GROSSMANN remained in his home until he died 27 JAN 1907 at the age of 88 years. He is buried in Waverly, Iowa in the ?? Cemetery.

Nannie STEPPES was born at Friedberg, Germany, She was an only child. After her father died when she was one year old, Nannie and her mother went back to her grandmother. The mother remarried after ten years but Nannie stayed with her grandmother and had an easy life. In 1846 she was married to George Martin GROSSMANN and came to America in 1852 to Saginaw, Michigan and later to Debuque, Iowa. In 1874 they moved to Mendota, Illinois. In 1876 they moved to Waverly, Iowa. She and her daughter Nannie remained in their home after her husband's death until 1912 when she fractured her hip. Nannie, her daughter, bought the house next to St. Paul's Church and she was moved in a wheel chair to her new home where she lived until she died on 25 MAY 1913.


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