John Hoffmann, who for more than twenty years has been identified with the lumber business in Manning, was born in the province of SchleswigHolstein, Germany, on the 23rd of November, 1848, and is a son of John and Frauke (Thede) Hoffmann. The parents were also natives of SchleswigHolstein, the birth of the father having occurred on the 311 of December, 1818, and that of the mother on the 23rd of March, 1818. Accompanied by his wife and family John Hoffmann emigrated to the United States in 1866, arriving here on the 3rd of July. They located in Scott county, Iowa, where the father worked as a farm hand for three years, although in the old country he had followed the carpenter's trade. In 1869 he bought forty acres of land which he cultivated for five years and then disposed of to come to Carroll county. Here he purchased eighty acres in Washington township, continuing its cultivation until his retirement about 1884, when he and his wife removed to Manning. Here he passed away on the 6th of February, 1889, while the mother survived until the 11th of December, 1896. They were both members of the German Lutheran church, and his political support Mr. Hoffmann accorded the democratic party. They were the parents of six children: Margaret, the wife of Henry Severs; Wiebke, who married Christian Grube; John, who is our subject; Carson; Frauke, the wife of Henry Herman; and Henry a retired business man. All are now residents of Manning.
The education of John Hoffmann was acquired in the schools of Germany, after the completion of which he became a sailor on the Eider river. He emigrated to the United States with his parents, being at that time eighteen years of age, working as a farm hand until the fall of 1875. Coming to Carroll county at that time he became associated with George Tank, and for six years thereafter they ran a threshing outfit. In 1881 they also engaged in the lumber business, which enterprise they conducted in partnership until 1897, when Mr. Tank withdrew from the company. Mr. Hoffmann then took his sons into the business with him, continuing under the firm name of Hoffmann & Sons.
Mr. Hoffmann was married on the 30th of August, 1871, to Miss Magdalena Tank, a daughter of Christian and Franke (Lutze) Tank, of Manning. Both Mr. and Mrs. Tank were natives of SchleswigHolstein, the father's natal day having been the 1st of December, 1826, and that of the mother the 1st of May, 1828. The father engaged in farming in the old country until 1868, when he emigrated with his wife and family to the United States, locating in Scott county, Iowa. He continued to follow agricultural pursuits there until 1875, at which time he removed to Carroll county, purchasing one hundred and sixty acres of land in Washington township. He retired to Manning about 1887, and there he passed away on the 28th of November, 1907, but his wife survived until the 28th of October, 1909 They were both members of the Lutheran church, and in politics he was a democrat. He served for three years in the German army, participating in the war of 1848. To Mr. and Mrs. Tank there were born four children: George, who is a resident of Manning; Magdalena, now, Mrs. Hoffmann who was born in SchleswilHolstein on the 4th of September, 1855; Christian, who is a resident of Washington township; and Caroline, the wife of August Schroeder, of Crawford county.
The family of Mr. and Mrs. Hoffmann numbering ten, of whom four are deceased are as follows: Herman, who is living in Manning; Henry and Amelia, both of whom are deceased; Clara, the wife of A. W. Wheeler, of Hanford, California; Henry, who is engaged in the hardware business in Harlan, Iowa; Rosa, who is at home; John and Louis, deceased; and Frank and Harry, also at home. On the 14th of October, 1878, Mr. Hoffmann's house in Washington township was destroyed by a tornado, at which time his son Henry was killed.
Mr. and Mrs. Hoffmann affiliate with the Lutheran church; fraternally he is identified with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, the Knights of Pythias, the Modern Woodmen of America and the Rebekah Lodge. Politically he is a democrat, and for fourteen years he served as a member of the town council. He was also on the school board for one term and a school director of the township for two terms. Mr. Hoffmann has always directed his life in accordance with high ideals of activity and integrity and is esteemed as one of the progressive citizens of the community.