Hans Cäsar (John) Stirnimann
- Born: 20 Nov 1889, Daro, Tessin (Ticino), Switzerland 2
- Marriage: Adèle Loew on 15 Feb 1912 in Basel-Stadt, Switzerland 1
- Died: 14 Dec 1949, Evansville, IN at age 60 3,4
- Buried: St. Joseph Cemetery, Evansville, In.
LETTER FROM DELLA (STERNEMAN) SIRCLE (1984):
We were in Springfield (MO) in May, 1914 when I was born and he (her father) worked for the Forest Rangers. (I believe) it has to do with horses because I was told that at the age of two, I drank a bottle of horse medicine and they rushed me to a doctor in a horse and buggy. Joe was also born there and the age difference between Walter and Eddy was due to a miscarriage Mom had in that four years. She also had one between Eddy and Betty which makes 10 children instead of eight.
Your father (Walter) must have been five or six years old when we moved from St. Louis, because I remember when we first moved we lived on 4th St. (Evansville) and we went to Wheeler school. Walter was in kindergarten and it took John, Margaret, and I to get him up the steps, he was kicking and fighting all the way. (In MO.) we lived in Webster Grove on Famous Ave., and in St. Louis on Manchester Ave.
NOTES FROM ADELE (STERNEMAN) MOORE:
Hans Caesar Stirnimann was born in Daro, Canton Tincino, a mountain area of southern Switzerland bordering Italy. His father, Jakob, owned a European wine franchise and spoke 11 languages. Until age 12 or 13 Hans traveled extensively with his father and spoke 5 languages. Jakob died in 1902. Hans disliked being overseen by his brother (Oscar), older by three years. His mother sent him to be tutored by uncles at a Catholic Benedictan monastery in Einseidetn, Zurich, Switzerland. Claiming the uncles hammered on him, he left the monastery after a few years to attend the University of Zurich - dates unknown - and apprenticed in landscaping with another uncle in or near Zurich.
After a falling out he became a government postmaster in the Basel area where he met Adele Loew. Their son Hans Edward, was born shortly after their marriage (in Basel Feb 15, 1912), in Bolligen a few kilometers from Bern, March 6, 1912. The couple resided briefly in Ostermundigen, also in Canton Bern. Apparently because of religious differences between the families, they decided to emigrate to the U. S. They (Adele and Hans E.) left from Antwerp Belgium aboard the SS Lapland arriving in New York (Elis Is.) on July 8 1912. Hans' mother had given him a list of American relatives his father had previously financed, the purpose to collect these debts and establish a residence.
The couple's residence is uncertain for the next two years. Hearsay places them in south Wisconsin, or the Chicago area. The second child, Margaret born April 28, 1913, has never located her birth certificate. By May 1914 the family had moved to Springfield, MO. where Hans worked for the Missouri Rangers.
With 6 children, the family moved to Evansville, IN in 1924. John (Hans C.), worked in Evansville for Thornborgh Nursery. During the depression he worked for the WPA, landscaping Mesker's Park and Zoo and Burdette Park in Evansville.
Later John worked for Crescent Nursery, buying interest in it and eventually owning his own business, Sterneman's Nursery, which opened on Weinbach Ave. and was later moved to Greenriver Rd. in Evansville. The family resided at 4400 Covert Ave.
John's hobby was card playing and beer drinking and he died in 1949 at age 59 when he overturned his car.
FROM THE EVANSVILLE NEWSPAPER 1949
"Accident Kills Landscaping Firm Official"
John C. Sterneman, 60, of RR 11 Outer Colvert avenue, was killed about noon yesterday when his auto turned over between Boonville and Lynnville on Highway 61.
Charles M. Hoagland of 1028 Colvert avenue, a passenger in the auto, escaped with minor cuts and bruises.
Mr. Sterneman was head of the John Sterneman Landscaping and Contracting company. Mr. Hoagland is vice president of the D. and H. Construction company asphalt paving firm.
The accident happened three and one-half miles north of Fuller seminary school when the auto apparently failed to make a curve, Mr. Sterneman was thrown from the auto.
"Mr. Sterneman was driving" Mr. Hoagland, a passenger in the car said. "He turned a right curve and came off the left hand shoulder of the road.
"The wheels hit some slick mud, Mr. Sterneman got the car back on the road. It was almost crosswise on the slab.
"He cut it back quick and it went into a ditch about two and a half to three feet deep," Mr. Hoagland continued.
"The car went up the left bank of the ditch and fell back, turning over, according to the passenger.
"I looked up and saw there was no one in the car, " Mr. Hoagland said. "I kicked out a glass and crawled out.
Caught Under Car
"I looked back and saw Mr. Sterneman lying with his knees and feet pinned under the car. I couldn't get the car off him.
"I felt his pulse. A bystander checked his pulse. We saw Mr. Sterneman was dead," he said.
A physician, called to the scene said Mr. Sterneman's death was caused by a broken neck, Mr. Hoagland said.
The men had gone to Lynville to obtain information concerning a job on which they wished to bid, Mr. Hoagland said.
Among Mr. Sterneman's better known landscaping projects were Burdette park, Washington grade school, Reitz and Mater Dei high schools, East Side park and Christ the King church.
Born in Switzerland
A native of Switzerland, Mr. Sterneman came to this country in 1911, settling in St. Loius, Mo. In 1924 he moved to Evansville.
He was manager of Thornburgh nurseries and later was associated with Crescent Nurseries before organizing his company in 1929.
Mr. Sterneman was a member of Christ the King Catholic church and Knights of Columbus.
Surviving are his wife Della; three daughters, Mrs Roy Marx, Mrs. W. C. Sircle, and Mrs. Robert Kennedy, of Evansville; five sons, John, president of the Evansville Industrial Union council; Joseph, Walter, and Robert of Evansville, and Edward of Anderson; 10 grandchildren and one brother, Oscar of Switzerland.
The body is at Ziemer funeral home where members of Christ the King Parish will say the rosary at the funeral home at 7:30 p.m. Friday.
Noted events in his life were:
• Immigration, 19 Feb 1912, New York. 5 He arrived aboard the SS Lapland from Antwerp. His destination is listed as "going to see Uncle Johann Fridley in Symerton, Ill."
• Naturalization, 13 Jun 1941, Evansville, IN. 6
Hans married Adèle Loew, daughter of Emil Friedrich Loew and Bertha Glarner, on 15 Feb 1912 in Basel-Stadt, Switzerland.1 (Adèle Loew was born on 31 Dec 1886 in Binningen, Basel-Land, Switzerland,7 died on 10 Mar 1963 in Evansville, IN and was buried in St. Joseph Cemetery, Evansville, In..)