Historical Albion Michigan
By Frank Passic

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Any photos not otherwise credited are from the personal collection of Frank Passic, Albion Historian.

FERDINAND J. STEINKRAUSS

Morning Star, May 23, 2010, pg. 8

I see that One Hour Martinizing at 205 W. Cass St. closed here in Albion a few months ago. It was inevitable, as in recent months the actual cleaning was done in Jackson. That leaves Albion without any dry cleaning establishment.

Each year at this time we like to feature one of Albion’s Civil War veterans as we approach Memorial (Decoration) Day. Ferdinand J. Steinkraus (1844-1918) was part of a group of Germans who came to Albion from their native Schwemmin, in Pomerania, Germany (now part of Poland). Ferdinand arrived here in 1861 with his parents and family at the age of 17. The family settled on a farm north of Albion in Sheridan Township on the northeast corner of 28 Mile Road and J Drive North. The 1894 Plat Map shows Ferdinand owning 160 acres of land along both sides of J Drive North.

Ferdinand and his brother Carl (1842-1911) enlisted in Company C of the 28th Michigan Infantry in 1865. That outfit served in Tennessee, Kentucky, and North Carolina.

Ferdinand married Bertha Reichow (1843-1904) in 1865, and returned to Albion following the War. The couple had seven children. Ferdinand passed away on the family farm north of Albion on December 12, 1918. He was interred in Riverside Cemetery, Block 37, Lot 27, Grave 2. A Civil War veteran’s flag marker was placed at the gravesite, and a replacement sits there today. Both Ferdinand and his brother Carl were active members of the local E.W. Hollingsworth Post No. 210 of the Grand Army of the Republic, the Civil War Veteran’s organization. Ferdinand was especially proud that he served in the Civil War, and that fact was mentioned in his obituary.

In an unusual sidelight, Ferdinand apparently “bolted” from his native (St. Paul’s) Lutheran Church in Albion at some point. He subsequently became a member of the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Battle Creek for the last twenty years of his life. A minister from the latter, Rev. Gaylord, conducted his funeral service.

From our Historical Notebook this week we present a photograph of Ferdinand J. Steinkraus, who is shown wearing his Civil War veteran’s badge. How many of our readers had ancestors who served in the Civil War?


Ferdinand J. Steinkraus (1844-1918)

Next: Albion 100 Years Ago - JUNE 1910

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