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Stickley, Gustav (1858-1942), cabinetmaker, house designer, and editor  

Clifton C. Ellis

Stickley, Gustav (09 March 1858–21 April 1942), cabinetmaker, house designer, and editor, was born in Osceola, Wisconsin, the son of Leopold Stoeckel and Barbara Schlaegel, farmers. Leopold, whose German parents immigrated to Wisconsin early in the nineteenth century, changed the family’s name to Stickley. Young Stickley spent most of his childhood on the family farm near Osceola. He did not like the life of a farmer at the time, but he later advocated agrarian ideals, which he felt should be the basis of American family life. In 1870 Stickley’s father moved the family to Stillwater, Minnesota, where he took up the trade of stonemason. He apprenticed Gustav to a stonemason, but at age twelve the young boy found the work even more distasteful than farming. Shaping stone, however, did lead Stickley to an appreciation of wood and the ease with which it could be shaped....