Charles Abraham Steiner


Born: June 19, 1797
Died: June 9, 1879

Charles Abraham Steiner was a joiner in the town of Salem, North Carolina during the early to middle part of the nineteenth century.

He was appointed to apprentice in the joinery shop under master joiner Karsten Petersen. He soon arrived a week later to Salem from Bethabara to begin his apprenticeship. The records do not mention much in the nature of his progress or projects, however he was accepted as a full member of the community on April 3, 1816.

In August of 1817 Steiner left for Philadelphia to practice his trade. He successfully practices his joinery trade in Philadelphia for two years, returning in 1819. He wished to open a chair making shop in Salem, which was granted to him in Salem. In May of 1821 Steiner took the orphan Charles Cooper into his shop as an apprentice. He later took on the young Peter Fetter into his shop as an apprentice as well.

In May, 1822, Steiner applied for Lot 9 in Salem which was conveniently located next to the timber yard. The church allowed his request. Steiner built his house, which has since become the present Church Parsonage.

Steiner was also a house painter in his spare time. His painting seems to have been greatest from 1826 to 1830. 1826: A receipt signed Abraham Steiner Jr. for “Painting for A. Benade at School House (of Boys, then in Brothers House) Calls for: 24 and ¾ days by A. Steiner @ 24.75, 36 Days by Cooper @ 27. This receipt also shows Charles Cooper was still in Steiner’s employ.

By 1830 Steiner was running the only cabinetmaking shop in Salem. He took on a journeyman named Walker in order to help fill demand. The town was, as usual, not pleased to take on an outside worker in Salem. However, as Steiner was the only joiner and did need assistance, they consented to his requests. Also in 1830 Steiner had taken on the responsibilities of Vorsteher and manager of the Water Works.

Steiner moved out to the Danke Plantation selling his house to Dr. Schumann. In 1841 he was granted
permission to move back to Salem, and built another house next the land of Edwin Meinung on Lot [109].

Steiner died on June 9, 1879 leaving behind a legacy of fine craftsmanship in Salem.