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Arend Balster
Born 9 May 1894


Grandson of Arend Balster and son of J(ohn) C(hristopher) Balster

AREND BALSTER was born at Scotch Grove, Jones County, Iowa, May 9, 1894, and is regarded as the most conspicuously successful business man in that prosperous little farming community.
Mr. Balster's father, John C. Balster, was also a native of Iowa and was of the substantial farmers of Scotch Grove Township, where he lived until his death in 1914. He married Gesine Heyen, a native of Germany, who came to Iowa when a girl. She is still on the old homestead farm. With her is her oldest daughter, Mary, who during the World war, while her brother Arend was in training camp, took charge of his business at Scotch Grove. Anna Balster married George Moenk, a farmer in Castle Grove Township, Jones County, Louise is the wife of Edward Stadtmuller, a farmer in Wayne Township. Hannah married Ernest Heiken, a farmer in Scotch Grove Township. Robert H. is in the implement business at Monticello. Louis is deceased.
Mr. Arend Balster made good use of his advantages in the country schools of Iowa. When he left school, at the age of seventeen, he farmed for two years and at the age of nineteen began his business career at Scotch Grove, handling farm implements. He started with one small building and is today owner of a complete establishment, comprising three main buildings, which house stocks of hardware and implements, groceries and dry goods, and also provide quarters for the post office. Mr. Balster has held the office of postmaster of Scotch Grove for the past ten years. He also has the wholesale agency for repairs and cutting parts for the Adriance and Moline Grain and Corn Binders and other implements, and ships these parts to all the western states except California. He is also manager of the Scotch Grove branch of the Eclipse Lumber Company.
In his first year in business Mr. Balster sold goods to the value of about $11,000. The past year his volume of business has exceeded $110,000. This is a remarkable showing for a town numbering only sixty-one population and is an evidence of Mr. Balster's enterprise and his reputation for integrity.
On May 10, 1918, during the World war, he was drafted into the Twenty-first Infantry and was sent out to San Diego, California. He was also in training at the Rockwell Flying Field at North Island near that city, and later was sent to Camp Kearney, where the Sixteenth Division was still in process of formation when the armistice was signed. He was made a corporal. He returned home January 9, 1919, and since then has given uninterrupted attention to his business. Mr. Balster is a member of the Monticello Post of the American Legion and is a Lutheran.
He married, December 12, 1917, Miss Minnie Hedden, daughter of Henry and Mary (Hausman) Hedden. Her parents are well-to-do farmers of Scotch Grove Township. Mr. and Mrs. Balster's only son, Leslie, is attending school at Monticello, Iowa.

Source: A Narrative History of The People of Iowa, Volume IV, Edgar Rubey Harlan, The American Historical Society, Inc., Chicago and New York, 1931.
Submitted by: Debbie Clough Gerischer

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