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Sheboygan County, Wisconsin Genealogy & History

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Simon Hollensteiner

Source:"History of Manitowoc County Wisconsin" by Dr. L. Falge, 1911-1912, v.2, p.424-425.

Simon Hollensteiner, the oldest merchant now living in Kiel, is a man of more than ordinary local importance. He was born in Lippe-Detmold, Germany, March 2, 1844, a son of Frank and Margarete Hollensteiner, who were also born in Germany, where the father was a flour miller. After the death of the father the widow and her son Simon came to the United States in 1855, and located in Sheboygan county, Wisconsin, where the latter obtained work on a farm. For the first eighteen months he received one dollar a month for his services, but he was not discouraged and by the time he was sixteen years old, he was receiving thirteen dollars per month as a sawyer in a sawmill. He continued at this kind of work until he was nineteen years old, when he accepted employment in a grist mill in Sheboygan Falls for one year. He and his brother then built a grist mill at Millhome, completing it in 1863, and in 1865 built a general store about which grew up the village which Simon Hollensteiner named and of which he was the leading spirit for nine years. At the expiration of this period he and his brother Frank went to Dundee where they conducted a mill. Later they sold the mill and going to Rhine, built a general store which they conducted for twelve years. In 1888 he left there to come to Kiel where he embarked in a general mercantile business, his establishment being known all over this part of the county. The Hollensteiner store is the best business house in the city, and is constructed of brick in dimensions fifty feet by one hundred and twenty feet, two stories in height. Mr. Hollensteiner also owns an elevator with a capacity of ten thousand bushels of grain, and a warehouse of equal size.

In 1865 Mr. Hollensteiner was married to Miss Katherine Arnold, who was born in Hesse-Darmstadt, Germany, and came to the United States in 1848 at the age of two years. Three children have been born of this marriage: Edwin, clerk and cashier of a manufacturing plant at Milwaukee; Alvin, salesman of the Kiel Woodenware Company; and Laura, now Mrs. Hugo Smith, of Champaign, Illinois. The family are members of the German Reformed church.

For many years Mr. Hollensteiner has been prominent in political affairs and served as supervisor of Schleswig township one term, town clerk of Rhine, and was the second president of the village of Kiel. The present substantial city hall and fire department were built the first year after the incorporation of the city of Kiel, and Mr. Hollensteiner organized and carried through to successful completion the measure which secured their erection. The influence he has had in shaping the destinies of the several localities in which he has lived, has been strong and always wielded for ultimate good.

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