Thursday, February 23, 2017

"AK Steunenberg res(idence, Bro(ther) to the one that was blown up"

Sorry...initially had the reverse side posted below from the wrong postcard.

Here is another RPPC, circa 1906-1907, among a grouping of early photos of Caldwell, ID. This is the home of AK and Carrie Steunenberg and still stands in Caldwell. AK was one of the brothers of Gov. Frank Steuneneberg and was actually more the mover and shaker in family business dealings.The photo is almost identical, but not quite, to a larger original I have of the house. It remains a beautiful Caldwell landmark but has been split into apartments and has not received the upkeep and historical restoration it needs. The home had a large upstairs room, ballroom of sorts, and was the gathering place for Steunenberg holiday celebrations and other events.
Here is an excerpt from 'Big Trouble':
“At noon on Christmas Day, the governor and Belle attended the traditional family dinner at A. K.’s house. The hustling young entrepreneur and his family occupied an imposing Colonial Revival mansion, its great front portico supported by three Tuscan columns, approached by a new cement sidewalk on North Kimball Avenue, where the city’s 'quality' clustered in the lee of the Presbyterian Church.”
.....“None of these insecurities could be detected that Christmas afternoon as a gracious A.K. welcomed the boisterous clan beneath his portico. No fewer than thirty Steunenbergs gathered around the heavily laden table, headed by the seventy-two year old patriarch, Bernardus, a shoemaker by trade, a Mexican War veteran who’d come west from Iowa to join his children earlier that year. Seven of his ten offspring were there that afternoon: five sons—Frank; A.K.; Pete, the most raffish of the brothers, a part-time printer who sometimes dealt cards at the Saratoga; Will and John, lifelong bachelors and partners in a shoe store (“Fitters of Feet,” they called themselves) just behind the Saratoga—and two daughters—Elizabeth (“Lizzie”), married to Gerrit Van Wyngarden, a Caldwell contractor who’d built both Frank’s house and the new Caldwell Banking and Trust building, and Josephine (“Jo”), at thirty-four still unmarried, who made a home for John, Will, and Bernardus at her commodious house on Belmont Street, while finding time to repair Franks’ shirts as well. The “plump” and jolly” A.K. played Santa at his own festivities, distributing elaborately wrapped gifts to all the children.”

Above from 'Big Trouble-A Murder in a Small Western Town Sets Off a Struggle for the Soul of America' by J. Anthony Lukas

Probably the trigger for my wanting this was the note on the back (I am correcting spelling): "AK Steunenberg res(idence, Bro(ther) to the one that was blown up."
I will post a couple related blog links in comments below.

For further links, comments, etc. on the above, go to All Idaho History

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