Village Coordinator Reports 2005

Villages A-F

| A | B | D | E | F |

Villages G-L

| G | H | J | K | L |

Villages M-R

| M | N | O | P | R |

Villages S-Z

| S | T | U | V | W | Y | Z |

VC Newsletter Editor Michael Frank

Alexanderfeld, North Caucasus

Arthur Flegel

Combined report for Alexanderfeld, Eigenfeld, Friedrichsfeld, Kronental, Kulm, Leipzig, Lillienfeld, Marienbrunn, Markosowka, Rosenfeld, and Tarutino.

My comprehensive resource book of 864 pages entitled "Extended Relationships of the Communities Kulm, Leipzig, Tarutino in Bessarabia, Russia", comprising some 28,500 names and some 6,000 families, has been published and is being distributed by the NDSU Libraries under Michael Miller.

Responding to questions relating to its individual content has kept me quite busy since the book's completion.

My research in association with Bonnie Anderson regarding the German population of the Caucasus, Russia, is ongoing. Unfortunately, the most important ingredient of the desired documentation continues to elude us. However, the interest exhibited by people whose family lines have connections with the Caucasus, especially the northern region, is increasing consistently, and we make every attempt possible to respond to their questions in a helpful manner.

Alexandertal (Neu-Schilling), Saratov, Volga

Alexandertal Web Site

Richard A. Kraus K056

This has been a very light year for Alexandertal. There were only two inquiries. I was able to establish through DNA testing that the Kraus family of Unterdorf was of the same line as the Kraus family of Alexandertal having come there from Schilling, having previously been in Dönhof, having first settled in Stahl-am-Karaman. I still hope that one-day, civil, parish and census records will turn up, but hope recedes as the years go by. There is considerable information on the website listed above.

I am spending most of my time working on the AHSGR German Origins project that can be seen at .

Alt-Elft, Bessarabia

Ralph Ruff R012 / L

In answer to the query about Village Coordinator work, SOAR has copied all of my work on Alt Elft, Katzbach, Neu Elft, Paris, Dennewitz and Plotgk.

I have had very few inquiries. Usually there are questions about the history of the village. I refer them to Headquarters and the histories that have been translated, plus other material that I had worked on years ago.


Alt-Schilling Web Site

Gary Martens M405

See Schilling for combined report.

Alt-Schwedendorf, Swedish Colonies, Nikolaev, Kherson

Karen Wright

Although I have been village coordinator for just a few weeks, I have worked extensively on this village over the past three years. This is a predominantly Swedish village and the first of the Swedish villages to have been formed along the Dnjepr River in the Ukraine. The value of this village information to German-Russian researchers is to track the German-Russians who married into the Swedish families.

Materials that I have gathered to aid in my research are:

1. Karl Stumpp's book The Emigration from Germany to Russia in the Years 1763 to 1862

2. 1942 Village Report 

3. Svenskbysläkter by Jörgen Hedman which traces the Swedish families from Estonia in 1500 through their 150 years of life in Alt-Schwedendorf to their rescue to Sweden in 1929. This book includes church records listing births, deaths and marriages. Extra data on baptisms and confirmation is available by special research. This book covers about 30 family names. Some surnames of interest include Barbas, Busch, Dickhaut, Europaeus, Grassman (Krassman?), Glubrecht, Herman, Hörnberg (Hernberg), Krakovskij, Maskewitz, Portje, Rath, Rjabov, Schilling, Sergis, Stuhlberg and Surov.

A website of great use in understanding the history of this village is found at . Click on Canadian site and one can find useful information in English. There is a historical accounting of the life of this village, plus passport photos of those who left for Sweden in 1929 and photographs of the farms in Alt-Schwedendorf in 1929 before they left. The Swedish name for the village is Gammalsvenskby (Old Swedish Village).

Over the next year, I plan to create a Society to reconnect descendants of this village in Canada and the U.S. with their roots and to organize a trip to the Ukraine to visit this village.

Balzer, Saratov, Volga

Balzer Web Site

Wayne Bonner B269

Dr. Darrell Weber W218
Data Manager

Combined report for Balzer and Moor.

Darrell Weber:

Darrell Weber, co-coordinator for Balzer, reports 12 to 15 information requests concerning families who lived in Balzer were received. Information was provided. There were two requests for information concerning surname charts. Information on Grasmick lines was provided.

A computer database in PAF format was developed. The database includes all original settlers families and data from the 1798 census. Also included is some data from the 1857 census and from individual family histories. Some family lines have been connected to the village of Rohrbach in Germany.

He attended a family history conference and learned about use of the Social Security Index and the American census including 1930 census.

Wayne Bonner:

 On my behalf, it was a mixed year for Balzer/Moor research.

No new information has been received from Russia, but research of German church records has found the baptisms of nearly 100 Balzer and Moor first settlers. The biggest "find" was the church records of Huttengesas and Langenselbold that were part of Isenburg in the late 18th Century. An individual copied these records in Germany. The LDS Family History Library does not have a copy. At least 20 Balzer settlers have been found in these records. This has permitted us to trace some of these families back several centuries.

Three Balzer researchers, Bruce Benne, and Diane Bonner, and I enjoyed a joint trip to Salt Lake City in June. We all spent a hectic, but very rewarding seven days stay at the library.

Only one newsletter was issued this year. We hope to publish more next year.

In April, two families now living in Germany who had recently emigrated from Kazakhstan contacted me. They are Balzer descendants. They say that many more are still living in the same town in Kazakhstan. We hope to continue our contact with these people.

We look forward to 2006 with eagerness.

Bangert, Samara, Volga

Paul E. Koehler K287 / L

I had three inquiries this past year for information about some of our ancestors and the village. There are over 5400 entries in the Bangert database.

The most interesting inquiry came from Nikolay Huber of Novosibirsk, Siberia (Novosibirsk is the capital of Siberia and is the 3rd largest city in Russia). Nikolay is a 27-year-old studying for his PhD in mathematics and he is also working as a programmer.

We have put most of his Huber family tree together and I have entered this information into the Bangert database.

Bergdorf, Glückstal, Odessa, Kherson

See Glückstal Colonies Research Association for combined report.

Borodino, Bessarabia

Borodino Web Sites:



Judy Remmick-Hubert H048

As always, it's been a busy and productive year.

It appears that more and more descendants of the Borodinians who presently live in Germany are discovering my web site on Borodino / Bess. This is very good news for my web site.

The genealogy just grows every week and I cannot even begin to tell everyone who has been so generous how much others and I appreciate everyone's efforts.

For those who have not visited the site I have different methods of dealing with the family charts. I went into the records and placed them onto the site as-is. There are no corrections, deletions, or speculations. They are what they are. Then I took these names and tried to match children with their parents, and I have clearly marked these as speculations. The next part contains the family charts of people who have sent me their information which may be the same or slightly different from the records. I've then placed all my e-mails and letters under each section. There are names from A to Zzzzz. There are individual family pages with stories, letters, and photographs.

Connected to all of this are my own personal ties to Borodino through both my maternal grandparents Ludwig Michaelovich Hein and Christina Schweikert (Schweigert/Schweickert). Both were born in 1885 in Borodino. I knew them both and heard many stories about Borodino and nearby villages. To add to this, my paternal side was also German-Russian who settled in and around Worms/Odessa, South Russia. By the time I found most of my ancestors, I discovered their lives and migrations cover the area from Bessarabia to Tifilis in the Caucasus Mountains. It has been a great adventure and I have shared much of it with you.

The Remmick home page is located at: .

My husband's families, the HUBERTs, were also German but ended up in and around Temesvar and Arad in Romania. Because of this, I've learned about an area where some of our German-Russians may have stopped for a time before continuing to Russia. My one family, the Pfaffs did just this, before heading to the Odessa area.

I have all kinds of maps. I've lost count. I must have hundreds of photographs.

When you have time, please stop by and take a look. Who knows, you might find ancestors or information of interest.

Brienne, Bessarabia

Victor Knell K082

Combined report for Brienne and Friedensfeld:

I really have nothing to report. I have had no requests for help for the two villages for which I am coordinator. I have been putting my efforts into working on the Society level, am on the board at GRHS, and have several committee positions.

Brunnental, Samara, Volga

Brunnental Web Site

Sherrie Gettman Stahl S621 / L


This year was a busy year again for the village of Brunnental/Brunnenthal. I continue to find new families through my ongoing research using "". I've renewed my subscription for another year, as I've taken on the task of going through each family and adding the Federal Census records for 1900, 1910, 1920 and 1930, the WWI Draft Registration records for Aliens (great place to get birthdates), death index information, newspaper articles, Passenger Lists, obituaries, and SSDI records.

I keep thinking that I have found all of the families that emigrated from Brunnental, but continue to find more and more each week. With each family I find, I write letters to living members, asking for additional info and early photos of the families. I currently have 30,000+ names in my Brunnental Database with extensive documentation on each family.

I've put together a comprehensive list of all passenger lists of those from Brunnental. As I find each of these families, I'm paying close attention to the notes regarding "nearest relative in county of origin", and "who they were going to see in US". These have helped me pinpoint where they settled, and often provided clues to relationships to other relatives. This comprehensive passenger listing can be found online at our Brunnental Website. We also have an ongoing "listserv" through Rootsweb, where those who are interested in sharing information about Brunnental can "join", and then receive emails from anyone else who has also joined the list. This is where I post such things as obituaries, passenger lists as I find them or other interesting information about our village. It's a great way to keep in touch with everyone, and only send ONE EMAIL to reach everyone. You can join our listserv on our webpage.

This year David Karber visited Brunnental June 7 - 13, 2005 and sent back some wonderful new photos of the village and surrounding areas. You can read about his trip and see his photos at: .

This year we were also able to get some confirmation records for the village of Brunnental. We are currently trying to obtain more records. These records have been translated, and we will be offering them in the future.

We were able to help Waldemar Krist in Germany to locate his SEIBEL relatives in Oregon & Washington this year -- I believe he has scheduled a trip to the US to get together with them.

AND NOW, FOR THE MANY THANK-YOUs --- --Many thanks to Arlene (Lebsack) Rolfs for all her help this year in translation work, and for her help with contacts in Germany. --And a special THANKS to Irma (Greenwald) Waggoner who always sets me straight and has worked endless hours over the past years helping me make sense out of some of these families -- when I get stuck, she is always a help, and I consider her 1/2 of the research team. --Also many thanks to Doris (Eckhardt) Evans, the VC for Frank, who has shared much of her information on "overlapping families" that started out in Frank and moved to Brunnental. She has helped me with many missing details, and shared Surname Chart info with me -- thanks Doris! --And finally, thanks to Steven Schreiber from Portland OR who has shared much valuable information and contacts this past year -- such a talent he is! --And of course, I could not do any of this research without the help of all of the descendants from the village of are such an enthusiastic group of people, and you keep me motivated to continue to gather the history and genealogy of our village.

Dermanke, Volynsk, Volhynia U

Submitted by Ruth Freehling

Combined report for Dermanke, Kruglik, Marianin, Michalochka.

I am the Village Coordinator for the following villages in Volhynia, now in Ukraine: 

Dermanke, aka Marianovka, Zaslaw District, Volhynia

Kruglik, aka Antonov aka, Zaslaw District, Volhynia

Marianin, Jarun District, Volhynia 

Michalochka, aka Michalutschka, Schepetovka District, Volhynia

Back in 1909 these villages were members of the Novograd Wolynsk Parish of the Lutheran Church.

Since my last report to AHSGR headquarters on August 7, 2004, there was only one activity for me as Village Coordinator. On August 5, 2005, I received a phone call from a man in Quebec, Canada who had received my name from AHSGR headquarters. His ancestral village is Dermanke, so I sent him all the information I had about Dermanke, for which he was very thankful.

In addition, several people wanted to read my family history, "Our Kith & Kin". They appeared to be interested in genealogy, so I told them about AHSGR.

Maybe you already know that a new "American Immigrant Wall of Honor" is being erected in 2006 at Ellis Island. I received the information from: The Statue of Liberty - Ellis Island Foundation, Inc., 292 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10017-7769, so I registered the names of my father and mother, which will appear on the new wall.

Dinkel, Saratov, Volga

Leroy Nikolaisen N017

It has been a slow year, as usual. I had five to six requests for information about Dinkel ancestry. I was able to help four. I received my Nicholausen family chart and some church records. Sharon White has helped me considerably as we exchanged information concerning dates when one of her Warenburg people mixed with my Dinkel people. Irene Bopp has also helped me in finding and forwarding Dinkel birth and death information.

At the convention, we had one person who sought information at our Dinkel / Warenburg table. I have a request from a Viktor Damsen from Germany. Naturally, it is in German and I have had trouble translating. I think I have it translated properly now. All he has to do is understand my very poor English reply. I would appreciate any Dinkel information that anyone might have in his or her records.

Dobrinka, Saratov, Volga

Dobrinka Web Site

Gary Martens M405

I received seven inquires for Dobrinka during the past year. I have been able to provide information to five of these inquires.

The Dobrinka database continues to grow slowly, currently with 1600 people. No new family charts for Dobrinka where received during the year.

Dönhof, Saratov, Volga

Karen Kaiser K247

Richard & Judy Leffler

Report by Dick & Judy Leffler:

The year 2005 was typical as far as requests for genealogy went. We had exactly 10 requests (none from abroad) and answered all of them from the information we have in our database. We had two requests from California, three from Colorado, two from Michigan, and the rest were from Pennsylvania, Texas, and Utah. They were researching the surnames of GOMER, REINHARDT, JACOBY, AAB, KAISER, STROMBERGER, KRAUSE, STOLL, STEINBRECHER, SCHWAB, ERBES, DEINES, and SCHELLER. One researcher from Michigan joined AHSGR, and since they do not have a chapter nearby, they chose to join our Northern Colorado chapter.

The best news is that the village census for the years 1834 and 1857 have become available, are in the hands of the translator, and have been ordered by 45 researchers. When they are delivered, the database should grow considerably. It currently has more than 6,800 names in it, and it is growing slowly.

The convention in Oklahoma City was good from the standpoint of speakers. Village night for Dönhof was poorly attended with only one new researcher in attendance. We had approximately ten people stop at the table.

There have been no new surname charts received this year. To my knowledge, there are four charts on order for the surnames WOLF, LIND, ERBES, AND STOLL. Hopefully, these charts will be delivered by the end of this year.

Report by Karen Kaiser:

The year 2005 has been fairly quiet with a few requests about Dönhof and a couple of requests for the Kaiser surname, not necessarily Kaisers from Dönhof. I have also had some requests for surname data from the northern Colorado area.

My husband and I are continuing to work on the German-Russian church that we moved two years ago. We are compiling pictures and family data on immigrants to the Sterling area from Russia. Though most of the families in this area are not from Donhöf, the histories that we can collect will be important for the German-Russian descendants as a whole.

We are also trying to collect German hymnals, bibles, baptism certificates, etc. to place in the church. The church was the first German speaking church in the Sterling area. We have given programs on the history of the church, with our local historical society being the last one given. One of the visitors to the church was a daughter of one of the builders of the church in 1906. The year 2006 will mark the 100th anniversary of the church being built and the beginning of Peace Lutheran. We would invite anyone traveling through our area to visit the church and always welcome any information or items to add to the historical collection we are compiling.

Dreispitz, Saratov, Volga

Dreispitz Web Site

Rachel Smith

I was recently appointed Village Coordinator for Dreispitz. Prior to that, I had been working with several people to help get their family histories started.

My family interest is focused on the surnames of Heinze and Steinle. In the past year, three or four people contacted me and expressed an interest in the Steinle history. I am hopeful that with the start that I have given them, they will proceed with their research and preparation of family history, and forward their findings to me. I am also interested in the surnames Schneider and Meier.

I have completed the following Family Histories: 

1. David G. Heinze and descendants, beginning with my great-grandfather Reinhardt Heinze. 

2. Gottfried and Katherina Elizabeth Diede Steinle and descendants. 

3. Peter Schneider and descendants - family united with Barbara Entz and Katherine Elizabeth Heinze. 

4. The Heinze Roots - starting with my great-great-great-great-great-grandfather, born 1717 in Germany. The information regarding these families is updated each year.

Currently I am preparing The Steinle Roots, beginning with my great-great-great-great-great-grandfather born 1730 in Germany. I have my own ancestry for this line completed, and I am corresponding with several others preparing their family history that stems off the Steinle born in 1730.

The Heinzes and Steinles all came to the U.S. from Dreispitz, Russia. I am eager for the Dreispitz Census to become available because I anticipate that will provide many new opportunities for combining my work with the information from others interested in the same family line.

I am still maintaining the Lower Volga Obituaries Project. The work is performed daily by checking newspapers on the Internet, and adding obituaries sent to me by individuals. The obituary information is also being furnished to the SOAR project. I use information from the obituaries to develop new contacts for family history research. I used's SSDI records to document the Heinzes and Steinles living in Kansas, and a few in Oklahoma and Texas. I have completed the list showing full death dates where available, the names of their spouse/spouses, and their parents. This should be a quick research help.

I also work in our local AHSGR Golden Wheat Chapter library where books may be checked out and research help is provided if needed. We have changed from an "open once a month" to an "open by appointment only" policy hoping this will be more convenient to the researchers. I have a number of research books in my personal library and have prepared a personal index to locate information quickly when using the 1798 Census Books for research. I am also the Registrar for the Golden Wheat Chapter.

Village Night at the AHSGR Oklahoma City convention was a success for the Lower Volga Region villages in the Galka and Stephen parishes. Everyone participated in the combined meeting, learned something new and exchanged addresses with persons doing similar research. I spent time with several who were doing research on their families in Dreispitz. Many compliments were received from those attending.

I have been a member of the National AHSGR since 1997 and am the Chairman of the Lower Volga Obituary Project. In addition to attending the National Convention in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, I have attended the conventions in Wichita, Lincoln, and Denver.

Eckheim, Samara, Volga

Suzanne Heinitz-Dodge

Although I have just been appointed the Village Coordinator for Eckheim, I would like to share with everyone what my plans are for the future. I have begun to compile a surname list, and hope to build an exit list as well. In a few weeks, I plan to have a new web site online, with links to other sites of interest to other Eckheim researchers.

My own interest in Eckheim comes from the fact that my father, Johann Friedrick Heinitz III, his siblings, my grandparents and their siblings, along with numerous great-aunts, great-uncles, and second and third cousins were all born in Eckheim. Until now I've been able to obtain most of my Heinitz genealogy, including the church records from Eckheim. I hope to purchase the Keil and Muhlberger family registers in the coming year. I hope to eventually purchase the entire 1857 census, to be made available to everyone with Eckheim ties. If anyone would like to contribute to that cause, please let me know!

Today in my email, I received a reply to an inquiry I sent to a Russian researcher several weeks ago, which I share with you:

Dear Suzanne,

On colony Eckheim it is possible to perform full and large genealogical research. We shall receive the new orders after January 15, 2006. Once again remind of the order after January 15.

Eigenfeld, North Caucasus

Arthur Flegel

See Alexanderfeld, North Caucasus for combined report.

Enders, Samara, Volga

Randi D. Bolyard

This year was a quiet one for Enders. However, I did get one interesting inquiry from Germany. It was from Elvira Tierbach and came to me via an e-mail to Michael Miller. She was looking for a Christian Ehlert, who had served in the military. He left for the U.S. in 1904 or 1905 and had two sisters, Maria Katharina (March 18, 1884 - 1975) and Maria Lisabeth and a brother, Gottlieb who resettled in Kazakhstan in 1924. The last they had heard from Friedrich was in 1924. The writer is a granddaughter of Maria Katharina and was wondering where Christian went.

I found evidence of a Christian Ehlert from Rosenheim, but not one from Enders. I have written her with this information and posed some further questions. As of this writing, I have not heard any further from her.

For others who have written me, I have given the census data I have on their families. I have all years of census data and I enjoy assisting people in that way.

Erlenbach, Saratov, Volga

Hilda Weber W401 / L

I was very excited to receive the 1857 census of Erlenbach from Ted Gerk this summer. This report is a bit late because I was awaiting the translation from Brent Mai. I realized it was in Russian and was disappointed that my relatives in Germany could not help me with the translation. I met with Brent at the convention in Oklahoma City and he was very encouraging and helpful. I also submitted a copy to Yulia, but have not received any news from her regarding her translation.

I had several inquiries about purchase of the translation and have discussed a charge for the translation with Brent, but have not made a definite decision. I have also received a list of church records for surname Gillig from Teri Helzer and will follow up on this information.

The 1857 Census lists the previous colonies for Erlenbach households. These include Galka, Holstein, Dobrinka, Schwab, Shcherbakovka, Stephan, Grimm, Franzosen, amd Donhof. I also purchased the 1834 Census and 1857 Census of Grimm from Brent. This is the first documentation I have been able to find as to the colony of my great-grandfather. Now I have information I can share with other Erlenbachers. And this new information has renewed my interest in researching the village.

Fischer, Saratov, Volga

Fischer Web Site

Roger A. Toepfer T095

Combined report for Fisher and Herzog by Roger A. Toepfer.

The interchange and exchange of data and general assistance for Fischer / Herzog continues to be handled through the Fischer website. The number of visits to the site that I reported last year was 10,637. At present, the visitor count is over 13,731. From those visits, I received over 38 requests for help or research. These queries were received either from the 'sign in' page, or by e-mail. I then posted the applicable data on the Query Page of my website. Many queries relate to other villages and we attempt to assist by posting those queries to the 'query page' on our site. In some cases, the applicable Village Coordinators were notified when I had the addresses.

It is evident that this has been a suitable method of assisting researchers and our fellow members. Over 20 queries were related to Fischer Colony.

Other requests were connected to villages as follows:


One request from Brazil, no village named, contains a surname. Village Coordinators of the villages noted can review the queries by logging on to my site and clicking on the 'Query Page' link.

VC Information Exchange Surname Searches 

The following web sites have a very comprehensive listing of surnames and the name of the person who purchased these searches:

Mariental: Tony Leiker
OberMonjou: Kevin Rupp
Fischer/Katharinenstadt: Roger Toepfer

Herzog Village NOTE: The Herzog Web Site is under re-construction and will be taken over by Roger Toepfer. Jerry Braun is "swamped with work" at present.

If anyone else has surname listings, and wishes to publish them, I would be glad to oblige. All are invited to log on and review the listings. It could save you a good deal of time and money if you find a list you are about to order has already been researched. We are willing to help you in the searches of our ancestry, history, and notable heritage. The web site addresses can be found on the AHSGR "Villages" pages on this site.

Friedensdorf, Molochna Colonies

John S. Niessen

I wish to thank all those who are willing to share their work with us on the Internet. A wealth of genealogical information is coming available to us every day that doesn't require great effort or travel to access. I want to share several very interesting new sources I located during the past year which illustrate the diversity of Friedensdorf information now available to the German Russian researcher on the web. As a bonus, all of these sites contain information for researchers interested in villages other than just Friedensdorf, as well.

1. One source of village information that was particularly new to me has come to my attention this past year. Tim Janzen of the Manitoba Mennonite Historical Society has compiled a translated copy of the Molotschna School Registers, which are available on the Internet at: . There are online school registries now available for the following years: 1853-55, 1857-58, 1861-61, 1862-63, 1872-73, 1873-74, 1875-76, 1876-77 and 1883-84. Just for an example, among the Friedensdorf surnames included in the 1883-1884 version are the following: Baergen, Braun, Eggert, Ekkert, Enns, Funk, Harder, Janzen, Klaassen, Lohrenz, Martens, Neufeld, Niessen, Poettker, Reimer, Sawatzky, Schulz, Thielmann, Unger, and Wiens.

2. The Mennonite Historical Society of BC and Richard D. Thiessen have made available a translation of Fond 6 Opis 2 Delo 12750 from the State Archive of the Odessa Region, Odessa, Ukraine that contains census information about Mennonite foreigners who arrived in the Molochansk District, Berdyansk Uyezd, Tavrichesk Gubernia. The data lists those newly arrived Mennonites who had come from Prussia in 1849 and were officially added to the Molotschna colony after the 1850 census. The Friedensdorf listing contains the names of Jakob Johann Neustaedter and Johann Peter Wiens, wife Katharina Peter along with daughters Justina and Helena. The information is available at the Mennonite Historical Society of BC website found at: 

3. Eugene Jenkins has performed an extraction from the 1920 U.S. census, pulling either those individuals or those who had one of their parents as a German who came from Russia residing in Cottonwood County Minnesota. Included in the list is one individual specifically citing the village of Friedensdorf as her birthplace - Marie Ratzloff (sic) or Ratzlaff. Jenkin's entire census extraction is available at: 

4. One final note. An exciting first - at least that I've ever seen - is this vintage photo from Friedensdorf provided by the Mennonite Library and Archives in North Newton, KS available for viewing online at: 

Friedensfeld, Akkerman, Bessarabia

Victor Knell K082

See Brienne for combined report.

Friedrichsfeld, North Caucasus

Arthur Flegel

See Alexanderfeld, North Caucasus for combined report.

Galka, Saratov, Volga

Galka Web Site

Submitted by Merrill & Dorothy Kerbs Younkin.

There have been few requests this year for information for Galka and the surrounding area. I have had an interesting request for Galka censuses for the years of 1834, 1850, and 1857. I have tried to make some connection for obtaining this data without any success. I may be asking the wrong people.

My main interest has been doing some research of Germans from Galka who ended up in Argentina around the year 1900. There were some families who were denied entry at the Port of Galveston about that time. They ended up in communities around Entre Rios, Argentina. Some years later, these same people were permitted entry through the Port of New York, and they settled in Marion County, Kansas. I believe that some of those families still reside in Argentina but have not been able to gather more on the subject.

I have been the Village Coordinator for Galka and have acquired some good records on Galka and the surrounding communities of that area. A good portion of that information has been due to the exchange of information between other village coordinators of AHSGR.

Glückstal Colonies Research Association

Includes colonies: Bergdorf, Glückstal, Kassel, Neudorf, Grigoriopol, and Hoffnungstal

Glueckstal Web Site

Margaret Freeman F052 / L

The Glueckstal Colonies Research Association has had a good year.

GCRA has continued to sell their 800-page book published to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the founding of our group of colonies, "The Glueckstalers of New Russia and North America, A Collection of History, Genealogy and Folklore." Recipients are also pleased with the 2000 additional pages included in the two CDs included in the book. We have been pleased by the airing of our hour-long documentary, "Heaven is our Homeland: The Glueckstalers of New Russia and North America," on Public Television in the upper Midwest, the West Coast, Northern California, and in Tennessee, all of which generated more interest in the Germans from Russia and our ancestry.

We continue to purchase files from Odessa as they are offered to us. Translation is ongoing, a good part of which appears in our twice-yearly "GCRA Newsletter," currently 64 pages of news and research each year, now prepared by Dr. Velma Jesser.

The extension and refinement of the GCRA database continues with the work of Herb Tabert and it now numbers about 278,000 individuals. Gwen Pritzkau and Tom Stangl and others continue with authenticating origins in Germany for our Glueckstal inhabitants. Many of our members participate in the newly formed Prussian-Poland Regional Interest Group in the hope for information leading those ancestors who sojourned in Poland before arriving in the Glueckstal colonies. Homer Rudolf continues with plans and preparations for a book on the village of Neudorf, scheduled for publication in 2008.

Our web site, shown above, generates further interest. It is maintained and sponsored by Penny Raile. The GCRA listserve, under the auspices of the Germans from Russia Heritage Society, and under the watchful eye of Michael M. Miller, is an opportunity for sharing among members and others who are interested in news of our villages. Our email communications and web site have brought forth requests and communications from Germany, which has been a sharing situation for giving and gaining information, as with the website and listserve.

We have found one descendant from our colonies whose family came to the USA through Harbin, China with the Mennonites. To date, there are no known Glückstal descendants who first migrated to South America before coming to North America. However, there are descendants now living in Australia and the Orient, along with those now living in Germany and the various states of the former Soviet Union.

There are daily email contacts among members leading to more research and ideas for the future.

Glückstal, Glückstal, Odessa, Kherson

Glueckstal Web site

Margaret Freeman F052 / L

Glueckstal Colonies Database

See Glückstal Colonies Research Association for combined report.

Glückstal Daughter Colonies

See also Glückstal Colonies Research Association

Gnadenfeld, (Neu-Moor / Moor), Samara, Volga

Gnadenfeld Web Site

Irma A. Waggoner W098

I do not receive many requests for information from Gnadenfeld due to the small population of the colony. Information has been requested this past year on the following surnames: Yekel, Korell, Michel, Rose, and two for Wunder. I am presently working on a request by a 14-year-old boy from Buenos Aires, Argentina, wanting information on his Korell family.

I continue to collect surnames from Gnadenfeld and Moor, including ship records, declarations of intent, naturalization records, census records and obituaries.

No new surname charts have been reported as being received for Gnadenfeld/Moor. The Braun chart has been commissioned.

Graf, Samara, Volga

Kevin Rupp R311 / L

I finally took the time to compile the 1895 family list. I have not received much e-mail on this colony

Grimm, Saratov, Volga

Grimm Web Site

Ken Leffler L259

Grimm Mail List

The year 2005 has been a very good year for the Grimm village research group. I received 12 requests for surname data from first-time requesters. This is a fairly high number. I answered all requests that I had data for at the time.

We still have 14 surname charts on order with no firm delivery date given. I believe that date depends when the Engels archives reopens, so it could be a long way off. These charts have been on order for four years or more. Surnames on order are:


We were able to procure the 1816/1834 and 1850/1857 census revision lists for Grimm this year. They came from the archive in Volgograd and were translated for us by Brent Mai. We thank Brent for that effort. The 1816/1834 census contains 89 pages, 334 households, and 3433 individual names. The 1850/1857 census contains 113 pages, 323 households, and 4895 individual names. I have extracted the data from the 1816/1834 census and hope to complete the 1850/1857 extractions by the end of the year. I will then be able to better answer new requests and update old ones.

Harold Raehal donated two passports for the Reichel surname. I met Harold and his family at the Northern Colorado Chapter dinner meeting last month.

The Grimm village table at village night at the convention in Oklahoma City was the usual gathering of loyal researchers, including the Grohs, the Schmicks, the Marquardts, and the Wittmans. Henry Schmick distributed copies of his Grimm village CD to anyone who wanted one. Thanks Henry! Please forgive me if I forgot to mention anyone in attendance. I had a busy day on the SOAR project demonstrations in the computer room and was a little frazzled that evening.

Look for the launch of the AHSGR SOAR (Saving Our Ancestral Resources) online database late this year. It will contain data extracted from over 500,000 GR obituaries and should help all researchers find ancestral data.

Thanks for everyone's help this year and I am looking forward to 2006.

Herzog, Saratov, Volga

Roger A. Toepfer T095

Jerry Braun B489 / L

See Fischer for combined report.

Hoffnungstal, Glückstal, Odessa, Kherson

Harold Ehrman E126
Data Assistant

See Glückstal Colonies Research Association for combined report.

Holstein, Saratov, Volga

Holstein Web Site

Edith Bottsford

I am VC, again, for Holstein beginning July 2005. My database contains approximately 20,000 names. I've had several requests for information since July.

The 1834, 1850, and 1858 Holstein censuses are now being translated. My goal for the coming year is to enter the census information into my database. I am not aware of any new surname charts for Holstein.

Huck, Saratov, Volga

Huck Web Site

Dennis Zitterkopf Z005

Only limited activity and little new research related to village Huck has occurred since October 2004. The usual occurrence of inquiries from persons (usually non-members) asking about information related to their surname was received. One inquiry was received from a person in France. I usually refer such inquiries to Huck researchers with an interest in that surname after determining if I have any information in my own files. There has been a noticeable decrease in inquiries from Argentina, which is a disappointment. Prior messages were looking for information from the 1858 to 1888 period for which we have no village data. I fear that has been a contributor to the lack of new inquiries.

The Huck village database is in need of a redesign. I initially entered copies of GEDCOM data received as separate data files so I could identify who the originator was (not every submitter used a SEN identifier). As a result, I cannot merge data when I find a common name among the database, which means I'm unable to link the "tree" of families who are interconnected. Rework of the database is a goal for 2006.

No new surname charts have been reported as being received for Huck. Existing known surname charts are included as a page within the Huck web site. Translations for the existing "Letters from Hell" project continue to slowly complete but additional translation help is still needed. A new project to exhibit copies of Huck Parochial Records in the web site has been initiated.

Village Night at the Oklahoma City convention was well attended. Two new persons came to the table in addition to what has become the "regular" crowd.

My personal coup for the year occurred during a visit to Germany in May. I met an 88 year-old distant cousin who was born in Huck and suffered through the 1941 evacuation and hardships that followed. The meeting included spending the day with her family who have returned to Germany with her from Russia. Mere words cannot describe the joy of that event. I also received from her a lengthy letter detailing her experiences after the 1941 evacuation. If you have read Gulag, a History by Anne Appelbaum, you would readily see how her letter parallels the events in the book. Since that time I've received additional correspondence from her describing Huck prior to 1941. I plan to add the Huck description material to our web page but it has been suggested I submit the post 1941 letter as a candidate article for the Journal.

Hussenbach, Gashon, Samara, Volga

Hussenbach Web Site

Paul Lais

I have no new information about Hussenbach (Gaschonn) that has not already been written and reported in the discontinued Hussenbach (Review), or in surname charts, which I have been privileged to keep in my personal inventory.

This year I have had an inquiry from a lady, 36 years of age, who was born in Kazakhstan and whose parents were from Hussenbach (Gaschon). She has been seeking information about the colony, and I have been sharing what information I have with her.

Hussenbach, Linevo Ozero, Saratov, Volga

Hussenbach Web Site

Louise Potter P051 / L

Linevo is located on the Bergseite of the Volga in the Province of Saratov.

I am attempting to help several people with their genealogy, some of them non-members. One of the most interesting inquiries Paul Lais and I have received this year is from Natalia Behrend from Germany. She hopes to learn more about her SCHETZEL ancestors. Natalia says her mother was born in Hussenbach, Gaschon. Her parents were exiled in 1941. Natalia was born in Kazakhstan in 1969. I have a copy of the Schetzel chart but I can't connect her to the chart due to the more recent dates.

I have had two inquiries regarding the Schneidmiller name. One is the family of Johannes Jacob Schneidmiller, born March 12, 1857 at Yerlon, Russia. That village name is not familiar to me however someone in that family said it was the original name for Hussenbach, which I cannot verify. Perhaps someone knows where it is located. Any help will be appreciated.

Two Hussenbach charts have been received this year. Delbert and Gloria Schmidt ordered BENZEL. The other is STEIGLITZ. I have ordered two Hussenbach censuses from Brent Mai that he is in the process of translating.

I average about one inquiry per month. The database is growing bit by bit. Some of the surnames I have been helping research are Propp, Benzel, Schwartz, Yost, Frees/Fries, and Adolph.

Johannesdorf, Karlsruhe, North Caucasus

Bonnie J. Anderson

Combined Report for Villages: Johannesdorf and Karlsruhe / Dowsunskoje - North Caucasus; Katharinefeld - S. Caucasus.

Research and information collection on these villages occurs in conjunction with the Caucasus Germans project for AHSGR/GRHS, which includes approximately 125 villages throughout the North/South Caucasus. Arthur Flegel is my research colleague/co-coordinator on this project.

Milo Bauder, a major contributor whose primary Caucasus interest is Elizabethtal (southwest of Tbilisi, Georgia), presented a documentary, "The Germans of Georgia", for first-time U.S. viewing at the GRHS convention in Pierre, SD. Produced by a filmmaker in Tbilisi, Georgia, Milo obtained the film there during his family history research trip in 2003. He obtained the film rights, had the film converted, audio translated and subtitled in English. It is a wonderful film that showcases a beautiful country, the German architecture in Tbilisi, history of the German colonies, and interviews of deportation survivors who returned to Georgia.

The translation of a book on the Germans in Georgia, another project of Milo's, was made available this past year through the AHSGR and GRHS bookstores. This book has now been translated from Georgian to German and to English. It also contains some archive information.

Three weeks ago I received my first document page from the Stavropol archives. This has taken me four years of research and nurturing to arrive at this point. It is from an 1882 list of school students in Johannesdorf, North Caucasus. A double bonus: among all the familiar names, my Schilling great-grandfather was listed…the first documentation in any form from Russia that has come to light on any member of my family!

A monograph I obtained from Russia specifically about the German villages in the North Caucasus is currently being translated to English. My second translation project this year is a series of letters written from Karlsruhe (North Caucasus) in the early 1900's that I found in issues of the German-American newspaper "Der Staats-Anzeiger".

The small stream of contacts continued this past year, with three unusual ones coming to me recently:

1. A French woman living in Guyana, concerning Katharinenfeld, South Caucasus. This woman's family has a fascinating history, also tied into church mission work in the Black Sea area and the Caucasus, and she's writing a book on her family history in French.

2. A researcher from East Sussex, England, concerning Karlsruhe, North Caucasus. (Karlsruhe, a large village, or Dowsunskoje/Dowsun, was east of Stavropol; also part of a four-village cluster.)

3. The third was Dr. Yilmaz Kuskay, the newly appointed Honorary Consul of the German Fed. Rep. in Erzurum, Turkey. He is very interested in the German villages that were located near Kars (eastern Turkey). He interviewed the Germans living there now and sent me photos identifying them, as well as photos of the painted German inscriptions and decoration inside what was the old church. He plans to write an article on these villages and families, and we may do that jointly. He had found little documentation; I gave him what I had and also steered him to the director of the Georgian archives in Tbilisi, where I knew the Kars colonies were mentioned in their holdings list. Dr. Kuskay is making arrangements to obtain that information through a friend in Tbilisi. Another channel is opening in discovering the Caucasus Germans' history.

Johannestal, Berezan, Odessa, Kherson

Johannestal Web Site

Ray Heinle H446

I have not had as many queries for help this past year, perhaps averaging one every other month. Fortunately, many of the queries were on well-known families for whom I have good data.

This summer I had a wonderful visit with my distant cousin, Carolyn Diede, who was born in Johannestal. She showed me her extensive picture collection and loaned me a number of them to take home to scan. I have posted some of those pictures on the Johannestal Webpage linked above which I updated a number of times.

I have been doing level 2 translations on some of the marriage data for Worms-Johannestal parish which has been coming in from the Nikolaev, Ukraine archives. Oh, how I wish we had image data coming in from the Volga archives of the quality of the data we are getting from Ukraine, instead of the tiny window of data not sourced that we get! We now have so much data that we (the BDO Regional Interest Group) have adjusted course from translating all of the data, to indexing it.

Josefstal / Schwabe Khutor, Saratov, Volga

Josefstal Web Site

Edward R. Gerk G054

There have not been many requests for information in 2005. My cousin in Germany has slowly been contacting new arrivals from Russia with ties to Josefstal/Volga. We then try to get background on the family and copies of any old photos they might have.

I slowly continue to receive files from the Josefstal village fond out of Russia. I now have all the birth, death and marriage info for 1907 to 1916. Also, I have found most of the draft records for the village. These are great because they link to the 1858 village census through the family number. The name of the male is listed with the number of the family from 1858. In many of the years, the name of the father is provided (and age if still alive), along with the ages and names of the males in the household. In many cases, the files also list the males who have left the village and where they went, in these cases either America or Argentina.

I'm also collecting the various decision books of the village, which are great because many of the males had to sign their names to the various documents.

The database is slowly coming together based on the families we can link from the 1858 census and the early 1900's, through the draft records.

Other than that, the village was very small, so we don't get a lot of requests for information.

All copies of documents are sent to AHSGR.

Kamenka, Saratov, Volga

Kamenka Web Site

Rosemary Larson L033 / L

This has been a busy year. I have translated four censuses beginning early this year and have compiled and published three censuses. Translating from the Russian Cyrillic is a challenge and I like challenges. All in all, I translated 7, 295 names. These censuses are available.

The Kamenka census for the year 1834 contains 1,308 souls and the 1850 census numbers 2,219. It was somewhat difficult to read since the copies were quite light.

The 1850 census has the surnames of the spouses as well. Both censuses are indexed by the revision [census] number, and the 1850 Kamenka census has a separate index for the spouses.

Many inquiries have been received, especially from Argentina. All have been answered and I am becoming more knowledgeable about our South American cousins. Members of the Northeast Kansas Chapter have been helpful in responding to requests about residents of Topeka, Kansas.

According to a report, Arthur Flegel challenged members to write the history of their town where they grew up. I did this in 1985 when St. Mary's Catholic Church in Ellis, Kansas celebrated the Centennial of the parish in 1986. Being distant from the parish at this time, I made many trips to Ellis, collecting pictures of early parishioners, getting microfilm copies of the local paper for the history of the early years, checking church records, and having the photos copied in Wichita, Kansas. Copies of the St. Mary's Centennial publication are available.

Since 1985, I have compiled and published the "St. Mary's Parish Family Register".

The City of Ellis began to exist when the Kansas Pacific Railroad, now Union Pacific, began to extend west from Kansas City, laying track towards Colorado in 1870. The Irish were the first to arrive followed by the Germans who began to arrive from Russia in 1876. In 1887, the Bukowina Germans began to settle in and around Ellis. This publication is available.

Karlsruhe, Burlatzki, Caucasus

Bonnie J. Anderson

See Johannesdorf for combined report.

Kassel, Glückstal, Odessa, Kherson

Randal Boschee B395

See Glückstal Colonies Research Association for combined report.

Katharinenfeld, Luxemburg, South Caucasus

Bonnie J. Anderson

See Johannesdorf for combined report.

Katharinenstadt, Samara, Volga

Katharinenstadt Web Site

Raynona Bohrer B444 L

We made it to the Oklahoma City convention and village night. We met many friends and had a good time. During village night, no one showed up for our town. This past year we received from Kevin Rupp the census of 1873 for Katharinenstadt. We have not had any inquires. I was not able to get to the Kansas roundup this year due to the high price of gas.

Kautz, Saratov, Volga

Kautz Web Site

D. Michael Frank F244

In 2005, I had about fifty requests for information. Seven were interested in the Kautz village surnames but were found to be unrelated to Kautz. The remainder included requests for Kautz information, requests for copies of surname charts, or requests for the "Unsere Leute von Kautz" Compact Disk. All were acknowledged. Most obtained the information they were seeking. Some requests were for information I didn't yet have. More research will be needed on those.

For each requestor, whether or not the CD or chart information is purchased, I find their position in the database and send back relevant genealogy reports in PDF format, if possible. Many are surprised about how much information has been accumulated. Virtually all requests come in the form of e-mail.

Obituary information has been into the Kautz database with information gathered from the GV listserv and private correspondence. The current number of individuals in the Kautz database is 22,476. This includes 7614 marriages and 141,753 text records. I use Family Treemaker 2005.

I attended the AHSGR convention in Oklahoma City. Village night was fairly quiet at our table, with two individuals requesting information. I volunteered to assume the role of AHSGR Newsletter Editor, requesting annual reports of Village Coordinators, receiving them, editing for content, clarity and punctuation, and forwarding to Teri Helzer for publication online at

I donated funds to Brent Mai to acquire and translate the 1857 Kautz village census. I also donated money for the 1834 and 1857 census for Dietel, to be applied to that village or another of his choosing. The 1834 Kautz census has not yet been found, but we are hopeful it will turn up within several years. I have been checking the Kautz census against the Kautz database and updating my information. It is a family-by-family process, detailed and tedious, but fruitful.

My full-time job has kept me from accomplishing more. I still wish to get the 19 Kautz surname charts into separate GEDCOM files and complete the next volume of Unsere Leute von Kautz on CD this next year. Despite additional projects at work, I should have more time in the next year to devote to completing some of the tasks that are important.

Köhler, Saratov, Volga

Joe Gareis G265

Nicholas & Barbara Bretz B296

We obtained census listings for Koehler with counts as of 1834, 1850, and 1857. Thanks to Ted Gerk for translating these from Russian and compiling the lists. Copies of the census were sold and funds accumulated for future purchases, such as Church records.

We received a surname chart on the Gareis family. Others available are Bauer, Bretz, Klein, Klug, Leinecker, Reichenborn/Reigenborn, and Ruhl.

Konstantinovka, Samara, Volga

Konstantinovka Web Site

Gary Martens M405

See Schilling for combined report.

Krasnoyar, Samara, Volga

Susie Weber Hess H339

Combined report for Krasnoyar and Reinwald.

With the villages of Krasnojar and Reinwald there are few inquiries, where other villages have a large group of people to draw from. I work full time and do not have the luxury of attending conventions and meetings like many others who are retired. I maintain my membership with AHSGR, the Northern Illinois chapter, (my family is from the Jefferson Park area of Chicago) and the Southeastern Wisconsin Chapter.  (Many of my relatives have connections to the Sheboygan Wisconsin area as well as Saginaw Michigan.)

Accomplishments in the last year are: 

1. I have received the Weber Chart for the village of Krasnojar. (Note it only took four years) 

2. I have worked extensively with Jon Hardt on a Hardt family history that he is trying to produce. His family is not from Krasnojar or Reinwald but somehow I have connections with some of his relatives. 

3. I have worked with Jerry Zitzman and gave him ideas about becoming a VC. I suggested a genealogy program, shared some files and now he is the VC for Reinhardt. 

4. I have the Mueller chart from Krasnojar and in one day received two requests for information. One was a member and one was not. By looking at the information from both, I managed to make connections and now these two people who are 4th cousins have been reunited. 

5. My cousin George Valko has made contact with some of my grandfather Weber's relatives from Krasnojar who are now living in Germany. We are waiting for responses from them to tell us about their side of the family and their stories on how they went from Krasnojar, to Siberia, then to Germany. 

6. I have received numerous obituaries from an unnamed source in Sheboygan and have been adding that information into my database of over 60,000 people.

7. I received an email from a man whose last name was Reinwald. He has no German-Russian ties that can be determined, but he was curious about the history of the village of Reinwald. General information about the history of the village was sent to him. He was delighted to know that there was actually a town that had the same name as he. 

8. The most important project I have finally completed is cleaning out paper work and scanning all my paper files to CD's, except for large charts that are too large to scan, and indexing all the information. Everything that is scanned is saved to a second set of CD's that are stored in my safety deposit box as well as a CD of my index with a paper copy and the programs that are used. I cannot stress how important it is that people do this. Backups must be done often, at least once a week if you are active in adding information. 

a. If your computer dies for any reason, there will be backups of all your data. Programs can be re-installed but data cannot be re-installed without backups. 

b. A second set of backups should be stored in some place other than on your property. If there is a fire in your home all those papers and data disks would be destroyed in a flash. 

c. If the information is stored on CD, it is easy to send via email or print hard copies if needed or restored to a new computer.

Kratzke, Saratov, Volga

Kratzke Web Site

Ethel Lock L026 / L

Brent Mai M160 / L

Report from Ethel Lock:

This has been a good year for receiving requests for information about Kratzke village.

The first was from a Dietz in London, England, requesting data on his line. The family came to England from Germany and stayed in London instead of moving on. He thought the wife might be expecting a child.

The second wanted to know the name of the ship his ancestors used to come to America but didn't have the right dates, judging by age given.

I had about a dozen requests asking if their ancestors' names were on the Dietz chart from Kratzke. Most of them did give names and dates and others could not go back that far in age on their people. The last one was the ancestor of her great-great-grandmother Dietz who was born in Pennsylvania in 1827 and married there and had three children, oldest one born there, second child born in Iowa and last child born in Ohio. She didn't give death date but the ancestor lives in Maryland. I am still working on this one. The surname charts have been a big help to researchers including all the census records now arriving in America.

AHSGR should have a small booklet on life in Kratzke, which I wrote quite a few years ago. I should add to it in this next year with census, surnames, and individual family charts.

Kronental, North Caucasus

Arthur E. Flegel F010 / L

See Alexanderfeld, North Caucasus for combined report.

Kruglik, Zaslav, Volhynia U

See Dermanke for combined report.

Betty Muradian M005 / L

Eleanor Sissell S329 / L

Report submitted by Eleanor Sissell.

The Kukkus Village database has 10,206 individuals listed. The most common surnames included are:


Some other villages listed in the database are:


 I have received at least one request for information per month. Most of the names requested were Krum(m), Weigandt, Johannes, Reitz, and Sinner. I traveled to Fresno a couple of times to help people at the Library/Museum there.

I have surname charts for Krumm, Baum, Heinrich, Lehman, and Weigandt. I have some maps also.

Last year I traveled to Germany and found the village of Lengfeld from which the Maser family originated. I have information on this family back into Switzerland in the 1600s. I also visited the village of Wenings where the Krum(m) families originated. I have not extended this family back. Both these villages have church records on microfilm at the LDS family history library in Salt Lake City, Utah. These films may be ordered at your local LDS family history center. They are written in German, so you will have to personally decipher or have someone go with you who can read German script. At the Bundestreffen gathering, I met a lady from Kukkus looking for her Hermann family, a Mr. Bohn looking for family from Dehler, and a lady looking for relatives in Argentina by the name of Kern.

I have done some research on census records in Lincoln, Nebraska, Au Gres, Michigan, and Fresno, California. I have the Rocky Ford, Colorado Church books, the German newspaper books from the Central Washington chapter, and the Sedwick County, Colorado history, Volume 2. My favorite web sites are, and

Kulm, Bessarabia

Arthur E. Flegel F010 / L

See Alexanderfeld, North Caucasus for combined report.

Laub, Samara, Volga

Donita ('Dodie') Reich Rotherham

There has not been a lot of activity this past year. I have mainly been trying to collect information on Laub and Laub families as I have very little information in the Laub database. I have also published several 'Laub Links' newsletters.

Currently there are only 14 people signed up for the newsletter and only one contributes information on a regular basis. I am considering publishing only once a year, rather than three times per year unless more information becomes available.

Working closely with my friend in Russia I have been able to obtain several family charts and have one in research at this time. These charts have not been entered into the database.

I have obtained some birth and baptism records from the research center in Engels. The records are for Laub and Jost and have not been translated.

About a year ago I responded to a gentleman in Germany who was seeking information about Laub. He had advertised in the Landsmannschaft Magazine and was trying to prove his family had migrated from Germany to Russia in order to get his children out of Russia. He later wrote to tell me his children were unable to pass the most basic of German language skills test and therefore were not able to leave Russia. I did have his family in the original settler's list and sent him the information. I also contacted a family in my database with the same name and encouraged them to write. I have not heard if they made contact. The surname is Vorath / Forath.

During the past year there have been only two or three inquiries about Laub. Guess it would help to have a web site but don't see that for a few years.

I attended my first AHSGR convention this year in Oklahoma City and found it to be a great experience. The sessions I attended were excellent and I had a great time putting names and faces together. The research room and the bookstore were my favorite places to hang out. I could have spent the entire week in those two rooms. I hope everyone takes the opportunity to attend a national convention.

Lauwe / Laube, Samara, Volga

Helen Bernice Madden M363 / L

My activity as the Village Coordinator for the Volga village of Lauwe has been minimal this past year. I am experiencing health problems, which have slowed my involvement with AHSGR-related work.

Since there has been very limited interest shown by individuals connected to Lauwe, I stopped publishing my village newsletter in 2001. This past year produced approximately 10 inquiries that relate to the surnames of BITTER, GOERINGER, GRASMICK, KECK, PRINZ, RUBE and STIGLITZ. Three others proved not to be connected to Lauwe.

Most of 7,000-plus names in my database are derived from the surname chart for Goeringer and collateral data collected from charts relating to Lauwe from other villages. Colorado church books and immigration records as well as petitions for naturalization have been a great help. I look forward to any other charts that may come to us from other Lauwe researchers. I appreciate any help that is offered.

Leichtling, Saratov, Volga

Leichtling Web Site

Darryl W. Boyd B238

Work on behalf of Leichtling village seemed to have slowed this last year. There were only six inquiries. I was able to link two researchers together. Both are working on the same lineage.

The Leichtling database was updated only twice. However, the first settlers of Leichtling were added to this database, which added many new names and families. They are in the form of Family Group Sheets and Pedigree Charts. This database contains names of people who were born in, or lived in Leichtling, and is accessible on the web site.

The number of people in the "Ships Passengers List" of people leaving Leichtling was also expanded.

Leipzig, Bessarabia

Arthur E. Flegel F010 / L

See Alexanderfeld, North Caucasus for combined report.

Lillienfeld, North Caucasus

Arthur E. Flegel F010 / L

See Alexanderfeld, North Caucasus for combined report.

Louis, Samara, Volga

Louis Web Site

Thelma Mills M357

Combined report for Louis and Mariental.

I love reading the Village Coordinator Reports from the other Village Coordinators. There are great things going on. I, however, have had a bad health year and my activities were somewhat limited for much of it. I am doing much better now. I did get to go to the AHSGR Convention in Oklahoma City this year. It was one of the most fun conventions for me because my daughter joined me, and she was my assistant while doing my presentation of "Grandmother's Aprons" during the Folklore session. I am a great apron collector, and enjoy this Volga-German Folklore hobby. You have to have some fun along with all the work. By the way, my daughter, Theresa Sheaffer joined AHSGR. She has been to several conventions with me and finally decided to join all the great people in this Association. I've been working on my brothers and sisters but they aren't too interested yet.

During village night, I was the only VC to show up at the table assigned to several villages in my Volga area. I did have a couple of visitors from another village, but no one from mine. I finally went back to my room, as I wasn't feeling the best. Therefore, if there were visitors later, I apologize for leaving early.

I have had tons of inquiries concerning some of the Mariental, Louis, and Chasselois surnames. I have a relative in Hawaii who is heavily into research and we correspond almost daily about some of the names.

Since we spent so many months away from home this summer, I didn't have too many of my reference materials with me, but I kept in touch with all the other inquiries and have answered most of them since I returned home. The people were quite patient with me. We hadn't planned on spending the whole summer on the road. All of our five children have computers, so I could check my mail daily. I kept all inquiries in a folder in my e-mailbox entitled "keep till I get home".

I did publish two newsletters the month of October, one for July, and the other for September. Last May I had started the story I received from Allan Salzmann on his trip to Russia and it continued through these latest two newsletters. I found it most interesting, and I do thank Allan for this story and photos. I still would like to visit Mariental, Russia, one of these days.

I also would like to add the Village of Chasselois to my list of villages, even though it was destroyed, with most all of the immigrants moving to Mariental, and Louis. I will try to gather more material concerning this village and attempt to add it to my web page.

I should be able to accomplish much more in the year ahead. I have several projects I am working on. Most are for Mariental & Louis, but one is a book on my lineage. I especially want to get it finished next year. I also want to get everything organized a little better so that my children know where everything should go and who to contact, in case I leave this earth. Once you get so close to "leaving", it makes you stop and consider all of these things. Just a word about that subject is important, as I feel the work must go on no matter what. I saw this gravestone one day while we were "Jeeping" up on a mountaintop in Colorado. It said, "As you are now, so once was I, as I am now, you soon shall be, so prepare yourself to follow me". I think it was the grave of a seventeen-year-old girl. It was raining very hard that day and we still had to come off the mountaintop! I thought of that little journey last February and March. It's quite interesting when you find these sorts of things while rumbling around in the mountains. We used to live at Loveland, Colorado, and spent many hours up in the mountains.

Welcome and good luck to Michael Frank as he takes over the position of the "VC Reports Editor" for the Yearly Village Coordinator newsletters.

Marianin, Volynsk, Volhynia U

See Dermanke for combined report.

Marienberg, Odessa, Kherson

See Glückstal Colonies Research Association

Marienbrunn, North Caucasus

Arthur E. Flegel F010 / L

See Alexanderfeld, North Caucasus for combined report.

Mariental, Samara, Volga

Mariental Web Site

Thelma Mills M357

See Louis for combined report.

Markosowka, North Caucasus

Arthur E. Flegel F010 / L

See Alexanderfeld, North Caucasus for combined report.

Merkel, Saratov, Volga

Darrell Kautz K338

I am continuing compilation of a third volume of Merkel-related material. The first volume, In the Shadow of a Bell Tower, is permanently out of print. New contacts have provided more family information. I have not encountered any new research material this past year, though Brent Mai has apparently acquired and translated some Merkel census records.

Printing issues of the Alexander Bauer articles (Die Welt Post 1924-1929) remain unresolved, with my intent to pursue new options regarding this priceless material in the coming year. There were 20 years (1904-1924) of similar articles by Mr. Bauer in the Dakota Freie Presse that would make excellent research material, if translated.

I hope, someday, to access more of the American Volga Relief Society papers in the possession of the Nebraska State Historical Society.

Michalochka, Shepetovka, Volhynia U

See Dermanke for combined report.

Moor, Saratov, Volga

Moor Web Site

Irma Waggoner

Wayne Bonner B269
Data entry

See Balzer for combined report.


See Shcherbakovka

Mühlhausendorf, Swedish Colonies, Nikolaev, Kherson

Karen Wright

Although I have been village coordinator for just a few weeks, I have gathered information on this village over the past three years. This is a predominantly German Lutheran Village and many of the villagers married into the Swedish families in the neighboring Swedish village of Alt-Schwedendorf.

Materials that I have gathered to aid in my research are:

Karl Stumpp's books on the Emigration From Germany to Russia in the Years 1763 to 1862

1942 Village Report

The family names I have traced from this village are: Glubrecht, Geissler, and Stuhlberg.

Over the next year, I plan to organize a trip to the Ukraine to visit the Swedish villages.

Neudorf, Glückstal, Odessa, South Russia

Gregory Dockter D112

See Glückstal Colonies Research Association for combined report.

Neu-Glückstal, Glückstal, Odessa, Kherson

See Glückstal Colonies Research Association

Neu-OberMonjou, Samara, Volga, Russia

Neu-OberMonjou Web Site

Kevin Rupp R311 / L

There was no news this year.

Neu-Schilling I, Samara, Volga
Neu-Schilling II, Samara, Volga

Schilling Web Site

Gary Martens M405

See Schilling for report.

Neu-Straub, Saratov, Volga

Neu-Straub Web Site

Lillian Larwig L188

I have had very little activity during this past year. One big moment is that I have had the opportunity to be in contact with Alwina Maiber who now lives in Germany. One of her family names is Straub. She remembers being in Neu-Straub as a child and thinks her Straub family founded Neu-Straub. According to all I've researched, Neu-Straub is not a daughter colony of Straub. Alwina's description of Neu-Straub, as she remembers it from childhood, fits the village description as I saw it when I visited there. Alwina writes in German. She has written one book, and she is on her second book about her early life in Russia. If anyone is interested in contacting her, I can give you her mailing address and her phone number in Germany.

I have the 1857 Neu-Straub census for family names Keil and Heintz. Russian researchers have said there was no complete census.

Neu-Yagodnaya, Samara, Volga

Neu-Yagodnaya Web Site

Laurin Wilhelm W022 / L

Combined report for Neu-Yagodnaya, Schoendorf, Schoental.

Schonedorf, Schoentlal, and Neu Jagodnaya were daughter colonies, primarily of Jagodnaya Polyana. About two-thirds of the settlers came from Jagodnaya Polyana. The other third of the settlers came mainly from Pobochnoye. The mother colonies lay across the Volga west and about 100 miles to the northwest. These daughter colonies were founded in 1855 and 1856.

I have received a few inquiries this past year, but it has been slow. The villages existed only about 85 years, before all the German farmers and families were forcibly deported in the fall of 1941 to Kazakhstan and Siberia. The farm animals were abandoned in the barnyards to fend for themselves. The wood from the houses and barns was burned for firewood, unless new refugees, often Ukrainians, Poles, or Russians, occupied the houses.

There are not a large number of descendents from these villages, and those folks seem little interested in researching their families. Until more records are forthcoming or available to researchers, especially Village Coordinators, not much more research will be done on my villages.

Nieder-Monjou, Samara, Volga

Nieder-Monjou Web Site

Michael Grau

Steven Grau

Throughout the past year, we received seven queries or correspondence concerning the following Nieder-Monjou surnames: BISTERFELT, BISTERFELDT, FUNK, HERBER, HICKS, MEIER, MÜLLER/MILLER, NIEDECKER, SCHMIDT, and ULRICH.

We have determined that the RIEFFER / RÜFFER's of Nieder-Monjou and Beauregard were originally from Wallroth, Kreis Schlüchtern, Hessen-Nassau, Preußen.

An ANSCHÜTZ surname chart has been on order since 1999 and a BETZ surname chart has been on order since 2003. There has been no word on their estimated completion dates.

We anticipate that the original settlers list for Nieder-Monjou will be published in volume three of "Einwanderung in das Wolgagebiet, 1764-1767". We anxiously await its publication.

We continued to research families from Nieder-Monjou, primarily those who immigrated to central Kansas.

You may visit the Nieder-Monjou web site listed above.

Oberdorf, Saratov, Volga

Oberdorf Web Site

Teri Helzer H491

The village of Oberdorf researchers have had an exciting 2005. Early in the year, I received the 1858 Oberdorf Revision List and translated it. The Revision List helped many researchers link their ancestors back to the Oberdorf mother colonies (Dobrinka, Galka, Grimm, Holstein, Kutter, Norka, Schwab, Shcherbakovka, and Stephan).

Surnames found on the 1858 Oberdorf Revision List are:

Felker (Völker)
Maier (Meier)
Völker (Felker)

For further information regarding the 1858 Oberdorf Revision List, please contact the village coordinator at the link above.

A small quantity of Church Records also became available in 2005. The Church Records were scattered across a few years from late nineteenth century and early twentieth century, and subsequently did little to enable most researchers to link back to the 1858 Revision List. Most researchers are still missing a generation between the 1858 Revision List and the above-mentioned Church Records.

Due to the movement of the colonists, several researchers have ordered and received Church Records for not only Oberdorf, but also Erlenbach and Unterdorf. Many of these records have been forwarded to me, and I have indexed in excess of 800 names found on church records (marriage, birth, and death books) from Oberdorf, Erlenbach, and Unterdorf. Full extracts are available to anyone with a connection to these families in those colonies free of charge. The extracts include variable details such as relationships, dates of birth, dates of death, and places of birth as applicable to the record. I have continued to solicit the donation of additional records to add to the index of Rosenberg Parish Church Records. Carol Evans, Betty Guenther, Heide Langenbeck, Willard Keller, and I donated the records that have been indexed thus far. All inquiries regarding these records associated with villages other than Oberdorf are shared with the other Rosenberg Parish Village Coordinators as applicable, in addition to other researchers seeking same.

A complete list of indexed records can be found on the Oberdorf web site. There are many names indexed besides the surnames listed below.

Complete packages of Rosenberg Parish church records per village for surnames ordered and received to-date:


Usinger (No records found)


Usinger (No records found)




I have scanned all of the hard copy pages of the Revision List and Church Records and placed them on a CD for safekeeping.

Betty Guenther, an Oberdorf researcher has compiled and published Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Church - A Brief History and Records from 1924-1958.

This attractive book is a must-have for anyone researching the Volga Germans who settled in the Saginaw, Michigan area. The book includes many photos and a brief history of the church by Jacob Eichhorn. Oberdorf researcher, Elaine Schneider copied the original records and assisted in the typing.

The indexes include Baptism, Confirmation, Marriage, and Death Records for the years 1924-1958.

Order Information:

Send check ($23.00, which includes shipping and handling) payable to:

Betty Guenther
95 Anton Street
Sebewaing, MI 48759

I have continued to expand the Oberdorf web site, which has resulted in attracting new researchers. A popular addition is the Rosenberg Parish Brick Walls page created to assist those that are at a dead end in their research due to lack of records and contacts with researchers seeking the same ancestral lineage. I chose to include all Rosenberg Parish villages due to the movement between those colonies. All emails associated with the Brick Wall entries are forwarded to the author of the entry, in addition to the applicable Village Coordinator.

I have continued to extract Oberdorf people from ship manifests at the Ancestry web site and added those names to the Oberdorf spreadsheet.

The number of emails processed during the past year regarding Oberdorf is in excess of 230. Copies of all email are kept on a separate and private web site and are available to Oberdorf researchers.

Ober-Monjou, Samara, Volga

Obermonjou Web Site

Kevin Rupp

Ober-Monjou Mailing List

I have had only a few inquiries on this colony. This fall we obtained the 1857 census list that Russian researchers had said was not available. I also have the 1875, 1889, and 1893 marriage lists.

Orlovskoye, Samara, Volga

Carol Nesewich N087

HISTORY OF THE COLONY: Irma Eichhorn published a history in the Journal of AHSGR, Vol. 3, No. 1, (Spring 1980), pp. 23-38.

MAPS OF THE COLONY: The Journal article listed above included a map drawn by Dr. Johannes Rothermel, who lived in Orlovskoe from 1898-1918 and then from 1923-1930. Two additional maps are the work of Woldemar Lehmann, a former Soviet army officer who came to Germany. One map shows the village presumably during the 1920s and 1930s. The second map shows the kolkhoz land arrangements during the 1930s. The Lehmann maps are available to AHSGR members through Carol Nesewich.

SURNAME CHARTS are available for ERFURTH and BONACKER and may be purchased through AHSGR. No new family charts were received.

INQUIRIES FOR INFORMATION: There are not a large number of descendants from this village who seem interested in researching their families. There were only two inquiries this year.

The first was from a woman whose family settled in the same community in Illinois as mine and also attended the same church and schools. She is researching the surnames GERLINGER and ERFURTH. These families are found in the booklet "Unser Leute, Settlers in Northern Illinois" compiled by the Northern Illinois Chapter of AHSGR. I have sent her copies of the village maps and my ERFURTH surname chart and we are attempting to determine if there is a family connection.

The second request came from a woman seeking information on her DIEDE and BECKER ancestors. I was not able to be of much help but did suggest that the requester try to obtain information through AHSGR headquarters particularly from the 1834 Village Census.

Paulskoye, Samara, Volga

Paulskoye Web Site

Timothy C. Weeder W372

This year I received four requests for assistance, one being from GR's now in Germany. The resulting work broadened out to include an additional five individuals who were previously unaware of AHSGR's existence. The surnames involved were: Hoffman(n), Dortman(n), Rohrig (including a branch now known as Rarick), Wede, and Damm.

The only Paulskoye surname chart or family tree still to be completed remains the one ordered by an individual in February 2001. Recent e-mails suggest it is still in progress, but is delayed by the Engel's archive restoration.

Virginia (Ginny) Wede Hamblett of Oceanside, California generously donated two priceless artifacts this year. One is a 1968 list made by her father Henry Wede. It is a list of all Paulskoyer families in America that he knew about, and it indicates whether they were deceased or still living. Although Wede had lived in Bellwood, Illinois, the list of 54 individuals includes Paulskoyers residing in other locales/states also. The second item Ginny donated was a photograph of the church in Paulskoye. The date the photograph was taken is unknown. Thank you so much Ginny!

My efforts at locating passenger ship lists have been very fruitful this past year. This year I learned that many Paulskoyers chose to enter the United States through Portland, Maine. On a personal note, I have finally, after almost 10 years of searching, found my great-grandfather David Wede's passenger ship entry! For the record, he arrived 9 January 1912 in Philadelphia on the S.S. Haverford from Liverpool.

Finally, I want to report my success using the WWI Draft Registration Cards available at These documents have been an invaluable tool because in many cases it may be the only record indicating village birthplace if a passenger ship record cannot be located. There is much more information on those cards too such as date of birth, place of employment, home address, marital status, etc. These records may provide the first glimpse of an individual between the 1910 census or their passenger ship arrival, and the 1920 census.

Pfeifer, Saratov, Volga

Pfeifer Web Site

Rosemary Larson L033 / L

This has been a busy year. The first census I translated for Pfeifer was the 1834 census for Kevin Rupp. The 1834 census has 799 males and 719 females. Kevin has the 1834 census available.

Recently I completed the translation of the 1850 PFEIFER census. It is now published, available, and contains 2,250 souls…1,134 males and 1,116 females. This census contains the surnames of the spouses, making it a more comprehensive census. The index for the spouses is two pages whereas the male index is just one page. The script by the German enumerators writing in Russian Cyrillic was quite good and easy to read.

Argentina tops the list for inquiries about Pfeifer. Many queries also came from Pfeifer descendants in the U.S.

Some years ago, I published "Holy Cross Family Register, Pfeifer, Ellis County, Kansas". This publication lists the families of the parish from the inception of the parish until regular church services were no longer held some years ago. The church in Pfeifer is still used for special occasions.

The Pfeifer book is available.

Pobochnoye, Saratov, Volga

Pobochnoye Web Site

Laurin Wilhelm W022 / L

Combined report for Pobochnoye, Schoenfeld, Strassendorf.

Pobochnoye was founded rather late for a mother colony (1772), and is located approximately 40 miles northwest of Saratov. Pobochnoye means illegitimate, of lesser status, stepchild, etc. The German name for the colony was Nebendorf or "beside the village". Jagodnaya Polyana, a stepmother colony about 12 miles north, was founded in 1767. Schoenfeld was a daughter-colony founded in 1857 and was located about 100 miles southeast, or 65 miles east-southeast of Saratov on the Jeruslan River. Strassendorf, located about 15 miles south of Schoenfeld, was founded about 1860, or very late.

We have not had much research activity in these villages this year. However, a new trend seems to be developing. I have had two requests by people to research families from my villages on behalf of other older persons. The younger ladies seemed to have good research skills and were seeking information for older friends who apparently do not have good research skills. However, they were interested in researching their German Russian ancestry. My best documents for this are still the 10 Nov 1857 Pobochnoye Aussiedler List. This list of 1560 settlers, about one-half of the population of Pobochnoye, left between 1855 and 1857 to help found Schoendorf, Schoenfeld, and Schoental. Neu Jagodnaya and Strassendorf were founded from "Sproeslinge" (sprouts) of these and other villages.

I am getting old, rather grouchy, and nearly blind, so I do not do much research any more. I have been researching Pobochnoye and Schoenfeld for fifty years. I miss the excitement of finding new information in a census, church book, or other public record and tying it into the family history book. It seems that getting access and information out of the Russian Archives is mission impossible.

Reinhard(t), Samara, Volga

Jerry Sitzman

In early July 2005, I became the VC for Reinhardt and have since received the paper files held by my predecessor, Margo James.

One request for information about the Kraus family was received by letter. The requestor also supplied the genealogical information that she held. There were no inquiries about Reinhardt at the Oklahoma City AHSGR Convention Village Night.

I am compiling all available vital (BMD) information for Reinhardt, including data from the 1798 census, into a database program (TMG) and will also attempt to organize other genealogical information (photos, stories, village histories, etc.). I will also search online for passenger ship lists, census records, obituaries, naturalization records, and other sources of relevant information.

A primary goal is to expand the content of a sparse Village File. To this end, I'll be looking for Reinhardt surname charts, additional censuses, and submissions from those who may contact me.

Reinwald, Samara, Volga

Susie Weber Hess H339

See Krasnoyar for combined report.

Rosenberg / Umet, Saratov, Volga

Rosenberg Web Site

Dr. Richard McGregor M236

There has been only a small amount of activity on the Rosenberg village website this past year. This is much as it has been for the last three or four years. I attribute this partly to the fact that Rosenberg was relatively small and the number of families consequently smaller than most of the mother colonies, and partly to the fact that it is possible now to get back to the mother colonies much more easily than before.

The big acquisition this year has been the 1857-1858 Census information. Many years ago I receieved a list of surnames in the village at the time, with the mother colony of origin. This list is still on the website as it has been since 1999 when the website was created. I have been surprised how little access of the information there has been by descendants of those who lived in the village. In common with the other VCs, I have set a small price for the information in order to attempt to recoup the outlay made to purchase the information from Russia in the first place. It's possible that this charging system puts people off but I have no doubt that the other VCs, like myself, actually laid out the cost of these acquisitions ourselves.

Reviewing the information sent to me I find there have been no new family history books, but I have had copies of photographs from Manweiler and Kuxhaus descendants, and a great school photograph of Rosenberg from descendants of Maria Morkel. I have also had some information from Manweiler families, as well as from Shibbelhut, Seifert, Erdmann, Martin, Schwartzkopf, Rahmig and Kuhlmann families. Sometimes this information is in GECOM format but usually it is only general information contained within one or two e-mails. I had a useful correction to the detail on a Martin photograph, which has been on the website since it was launched and, for the most part, the pictures and any relevant information has been uploaded.

I would remind searchers that I maintain a file, now over 220 pages in length, which has all the information on Rosenbergers sent to me since I became VC a decade and a half ago. I am happy to look up families in this file and send out relevant data. The website has a lot of photographs and I do get occasional messages on the message board. I encourage message posters to contact me on the website e-mail address but surprisingly not all do so.

The website also contains copies of all the Newsletters I sent out before the creation of the website so altogether there is a wealth of information for searchers there.

Rosenfeld, North Caucasus

Arthur E. Flegel F010 / L

See Alexanderfeld, North Caucasus for combined report.

Rosenheim, Samara, Volga

Randi D. Bolyard

This year I received about five inquiries about Rosenheim, including one interesting overseas e-mail. It was from Mr. Stadler of Sao Paolo, Brazil asking where he could get a copy of a wedding certificate of a marriage that occurred in Rosenheim. I referred him to the Engels Archive, where he could possibly get a copy of the church record.

One of my frustrations over the last several years has been my inability to get the most current census data from Rosenheim. I have the 1834 and 1850 census data, but not the last one. I will continue to search out leads for this, as it would be so helpful to the people who contact me.

Rothammel, Saratov, Volga

Nicholas & Barbara Bretz B296

Joseph Gertge

Rothammel Mail List ~ email Kathy Frank Jones to join

Combined report for Rothammel and Seewald.

The highlight of our year was a trip in April to Russia. Nick, who is Chair of the Archives Committee of AHSGR, and I flew to St. Petersburg where we stayed for three days taking a tour of the city, tours to the restored palaces, and to St. Peter and Paul Fortress where most of the Russian monarchy from Peter the Great to Nicholas II are entombed.

After taking a night train to Moscow, we were joined by Ed Hoak, President of AHSGR; Jerry Siebert, Chair of the Editorial and Publications Committee; and Blair Hoffman, a member from California. We stayed two days in a hotel adjacent to Red Square. We toured the city and took a walking tour of the Kremlin before flying on to Saratov where we spent a week.

The primary reason for our trip was to make contact with officials in the archives and the universities in order to facilitate better communication and to establish a method for retrieval of information from those institutions. We met with Victor Rodionov, Minister of the Saratov Oblast Regional Archives as well as Elizabeth Erina, Director of the Engels Archive, and Dr. Alexi Voronethsev, Director of the Saratov Archives. While in both archives, we were shown books that contained information about the villages of Rothammel and Seewald. We visited with faculty members at Saratov State University and viewed a number of publications they have written about German-Russians. The society will have some of them translated and published in the AHSGR Journal or as monographs.

Our trip to the villages of our ancestors was secondary so we did not have much time in the area. We drove three and a half hours to the site of Rothammel, which doesn't exist any longer. We found evidence of homes that once stood in the village and the remains of the cemetery. The latest burial appeared to have been of Jacob Ivanovich Lechmann b. 1907 d. 1981. He appears on the Lechmann charts as son of Johannes. We were unable to locate the site of Seewald but imagine we looked out over it as we stood on the steppes of Russia, which very much resemble the hillsides of Colorado, Kansas and Nebraska. It was a very long but rewarding day trip.

Dr. Igor Pleve was our host for dinner at a Chinese restaurant near our hotel. He informed us of his new position as Minister of Education for the Saratov Oblast.

Ilmira Khansvyarova, owner of a travel agency in Saratov and speaker at the 2004 AHSGR Convention, arranged our Saratov portion of the trip. Ilmira had been a participant in a project of the Rotary Club where young Russians came to the US to learn entrepreneur skills. Our driver and the interpreters who accompanied us to the villages had been part of the same program. In fact, Anton, our driver, had spent time in Julesburg, Colorado learning about agriculture.

We took another night train to Volgograd where Dr. Lyudmila Koretnikova, a faculty member of the Volzhsky Institute of Humanities and also a speaker at the 2004 Convention arranged our trip. Her mother even came down from Saratov to prepare a delicious German meal for us. We met with Nikolai Smirnov, Director of the Volgograd Archive. While there we saw many books pertaining to Rothammel and Seewald such as census records, church records, tax records and even criminal records. More publications about German-Russians were seen at Volgograd State University. We learned that students there have begun to write papers about the villages, beginning with the formation to the demise or condition of the village today. It would be both beneficial to the student and to us if we could contribute money to help with this project. We also sat in on an English class at Volzhsky Institute. We are hopeful that Mila in conjunction with her students will be able to help us with translations. While at the archive, we were shown a book, "History and Geography Dictionary of Saratov Province" by A. N. Minkh Published: Saratov, 1898. It contains descriptions of the villages of which we had Mila translate those about Rothammel and Seewald.

It was a wonderful trip but not nearly long enough for us to spend time in the villages. Nick would like to go back and have time to visit with people from his villages. A complete report of our trip appeared in the Summer 2005 AHSGR Newsletter.

The highlight of the year for the villages was the purchase and translation of the 1834, and 1857 census for Rothammel and the 1857 census for Seewald. Each contains the census for the entire village and a copy of the description of the village mentioned above. Proceeds from the sale of these booklets will be used to purchase and translate church records that have been ordered. We understand that the Rothammel church records have been sent and the Seewald records will soon be copied. If you are able to help with the translations, we would appreciate your help.

"Genealogical Charts" have been purchased for Rothammel surnames as follows: Basgal, Bieber, Gertje, Hartmann, Kloberdanz, Lauer, Lechmann, and Matza. For Seewald: Artzer, Kaiser, Ingethron, and Ostertag. For Volmer: Ertle and Gartner. Ordered but not received: Appelhanz, Barbie, Frank, and Weingardt.

Over 30 obituaries have been shared by the mail list group. Please send obituaries from your files, both old and new, so they can be added to the AHSGR obituary files. We have noticed that there are very few Catholic obits in the files so if we add ours, researchers won't be disappointed as they search the SOAR database when it goes on line.

Kathy Jones continues to host our free mail list. Please contact her at address above to join. We have over 100 members so it is a very helpful tool in your research. We have had inquiries almost weekly from the mail list or from researchers who have found our names in the VC list. This past month we have been contacted by a researcher in Siberia looking for information on Bauer, Distel, and Artzer. We were able to give him information that takes those three lines back to the original settlers. They then sent us copies of records they had procured from the archives.

Our database, maintained by Joe Gertge, now contains almost 20,000 names and is expected to grow significantly over the next year as numerous charts and census records are incorporated. Please send Joe your family files to be added to the database so we can complete the linking of families. Joe's address is above.

A new video entitled, "A Soulful Sound - Music of the Germans from Russia" is available in the AHSGR Store. Maria Appelhans and her daughter, Rosalinda Kloberdanz are featured singing "Die Konigskinder". Maria won the Story Telling Contest at the 2004 AHSGR Convention. Her story, "Back Home on the Volga, 1937" was published in the Winter 2004 Journal. The booklet, "Rothammel on the Volga - Translation of Chronicle by Theresia Dahn" is still available.

Only a few from our villages attended the 2005 AHSGR Convention. We shared stories and showed some village photos from our trip. Let's try to have a large group attend the 2006 Convention in Lincoln.

Schilling, Samara, Volga & Schilling, Saratov, Volga

Schilling Web Site

Gary Martens M405

Combined report for Alt-Schilling, Konstantinovka, Neu-Schilling I, Neu-Schilling II, and Schilling.

I received eight inquires for the Schilling villages (except Alexandertal) during the past year. I have been able to provide at least some information to all of these inquires.

The Schilling database continues to grow slowly, currently with 6200 people in the database. One family chart was received during the year for a family that lived in Schilling / Konstantinovka.

Schönchen, Samara, Volga

Schoenchen Web Site

Terri Dann

Denise Grau

There has been little interest shown in Schoenchen this past year although we have received a few inquiries.

We have obtained a copy of the Schoenchen 1857 census that Kevin Rupp has for sale. His village report mentions that he has also acquired some Schoenchen marriage records as well.

We're not aware of any surname charts in existence or on order for Schoenchen families.

Schöndorf, Samara, Volga

Schoendorf Web Site

Laurin Wilhelm W022 / L

See Neu-Yagodnaya for combined report.

Schönfeld, Samara, Volga

Schoenfeld Web Site

Laurin Wilhelm W022 / L

See Pobochnoye for combined report.

Schöntal, Samara, Volga

Schoental Web Site

Laurin Wilhelm W022 / L

See Neu-Yagodnaya for combined report.

Schuck, Saratov, Volga

Lola Stattelman

This has been a busy year. I have provided information on the following families: Kress, Hochnadel, Sieben, Edelman, Kloberdanz, Artzer, Ingenthron, Falkenstein, Berger, Kohlman, Appelhans, and Rohleder. 

I have received the 1850 census of the village of Schuck, and I am in the process of having it translated.

Schwab, Saratov, Volga

Schwab Web Site

Rolene (Eichman) Kiesling B334

Schwab is one of the smaller villages with very little activity. Since my last report, I have received ten queries, only eight of which were specifically addressed to Schwab.

I have not received any new family charts or family data regarding Schwab. I am hopeful that perhaps some may be received soon.

In addition, I am editor for the Lower Volga Villages Sheet. It is published in May and November and covers the villages in the two parishes of Galka and Stephan.

Seewald, Saratov, Volga

Nicholas & Barbara Bretz B296

See Rothammel for combined report.

Shcherbakovka, Saratov, Volga

Shcherbakovka Web Site

Janet (Laubhan) Flickinger F224

Janet's Germans from Russia Research

I have had email queries from several different individuals throughout the year and have helped them the best that I could either with information from my files and database or suggesting that they contact a named person who is also researching the same name. 

The main things that I have done this year to promote ongoing research in the Volga Villages, and Shcherbakovka in particular are: 

1. Donated a total of $300, or $100 for each of the three years of census copies that are now becoming available (1834, 1850, and 1857) 

2. Previously, Kathy O'Malley and I have taken each of the surname charts that we have received for our village, extracted all of the information, and entered it in a Family Tree Maker database. In anticipation of receiving the new censuses, I merged each of these individual databases into one. Then I went through the 1798 census, found each person in this database, and made note of the information from the 1798 census. Upon receipt of the translated version of the 1834 census, I worked through it line by line to do the same thing with that information. Brent Mai has emailed me that the translation of the 1857 census has been completed and it is on the way to me as I write this report. I will immediately do the same thing with this census. Brent and I have found that the method I used on the 1834 census proved to be a good way to proof read it and that is why I will be starting immediately on the 1857 census, to serve as proofreading before the copies that have been ordered by our village descendants are mailed out.

3. I attended the National Convention of AHSGR in Oklahoma City in Aug. 2005. Village Night was wonderful. This was the first convention that I had attended since the death of Kathy O'Malley (our fearless leader). She always contacted the organizers for a separate room because it can get pretty crowded with other groups and we usually have a pretty good turnout since we combine the group to include 9 villages in the Lower Volga (Shcherbakovka, Galka, Dreispitz, Dobrinka, Holstein, Kraft, Stephen, Mueller and Schwab). I emailed Marianne Long, in Oklahoma City, who seemed to be in charge of everything and asked for a separate room. I never heard back, so a few days before the convention, I emailed again and she told me that we had been assigned the "Red Carpet Room". I am not a very good "leader" but I knew that we needed a plan. Ed Hoak, (President of AHSGR) is a descendent of several lines from our Volga villages. Ed had just returned from Russia, so I emailed him to see if he would be willing to share something about the trip. His comment was that he would "say a couple of things", but didn't want to present a program because one or two of the others on the trip were scheduled to speak at the convention. We were so lucky to have Ed, as it really kept everybody interested and talking. There were about 30 in attendance, including a lot of people from Oklahoma who had never attended a convention before. I think that we must have had the best location of all the villages with the most attendance. Although a lot of those attending had never attended a convention before, they seemed very comfortable to speak up and share with the group. It's a good thing that Ed only agreed to a "few comments" because it was scheduled to end at 10 p.m., and it was 11:30 by the time we got to our room. No one wanted to leave. I thanked Marianne later for the private room and she said that we were the only group to ask, so it was no problem to grant our wish. 

4. I attended the Kansas Roundup of AHSGR in Topeka, Kansas September 30-October 1, 2005. Then on October 2, I presented a report about the two conventions to my local chapter (Post Rock Chapter) in Russell, Kansas. 

5. I have extracted the church records for Dubuque Lutheran Church in rural Russell Co., Kansas this year. This is about the 6th Lutheran Church, mostly located in Russell Co. that I have extracted. Quite a few immigrants settled in Russell County and I am doing all that I can to save important records on file in Russell. 

6. While attending the Oklahoma City Convention, in the village file for Shcherbakovka, I found a 12-page letter, written in German, apparently addressed to Timothy Montana dated May 1993 and February 1994. I have sent a copy of the letter to Arlene Rolfs in Geneso, Kansas who has graciously agreed to translate it to English for me. She reports that it is about half done at this time. It appears to be listing people who lived in the village. Upon receipt of the translation, I will send a copy of it to Lincoln for inclusion in the Village File.

Solodyri, Volynsk, Volhynia U

Dr. Richard Benert B160

I've been working on the Deportation of 1915 from Volhynia, but have done nothing related to my village of Solodyri.

Stahl am Tarlyk, Samara, Volga

Paul E Koehler K287 / L

I have received twelve inquiries during this past year. I was able to help three of these with the information for which they were looking.

It is always a joy to be able to help someone find answers to their search for their ancestors.

The Stahl am Tarlyk database continues to grow and now has over 8000 entries.

I received the Haar chart from Judy Xanthos of the Southern California Chapter and these names have been added into the database.

Strassendorf, Samara, Volga

Strassendorf Web Site

Laurin Wilhelm W022 / L

See Pobochnoye for combined report.

Straub, Samara, Volga

Sharon White

I have had the following inquiries this year about Straub families: Diel, Scharton and Schwabenland.

I bought the two "Index to Kirchenbote Obituaries" books (original book and supplement book) from the Central Washington AHSGR chapter. The Central Washington chapter has 41 obituaries for sale of people born in Straub. The obituaries are in German and contain a lot of information on the entire family. The index books contain basic information about the people: birth date and place, death date and place, spouse and parents' names.

I was able to copy Emma Schwabenland Haynes' book "Descendants of Johann Konrad Schwabenland" which I found on microfilm. The book is about Emma's father who was born in Straub in 1871. Johann Konrad Schwabenland and his parents and siblings left Straub in 1891. The book contains information on the entire Schwabenland family. The chapter "Life in Straub, 1871-1891" is of interest to anyone who has Straub ancestors. I will put this information in my newsletters so that people will know what life in Straub was like.

I continue to gather information about people from Straub by obtaining obituaries, ship lists, declarations of intent and biographies. I would appreciate information on more of the original settlers.

I have the names of 13 of the original settlers in Straub. I have the place of origin in Germany of all of them.

The Straub newsletter is $5 for two issues.

I would appreciate receiving copies of genealogies, biographies, photographs, obituaries, etc. of anyone born in Straub to add to my database or for use in my newsletter. I have had some donations of photographs, obituaries, and genealogy information this year that I appreciate very much.

Susannental, Samara, Volga

Susannental Web Site

Kerry S. Thompson

Susannental Mail List

The Susannental Village database now consists of 5,337 individuals and 1,955 families.

The Ship record database now consists of 563 individuals and 62 families migrating in the years 1903-1917 through the ports of Galveston, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Boston, and Ellis Island.

The Village members Social Security Death index database consists of 804 individuals.

I have gathered 164 obituaries of village members.

I have located 241 individuals in the Montana, California, and Michigan death indices.

I have also completed a search of the WW1 Draft Registration cards where I have located 131 individuals.

I have conducted an exhaustive search of the Russian Germans in Big Horn County, Wyoming in the 1910-1930 censuses, which includes 115 families.

I continue to track village members following immigration with census records from the 1910-1930 censuses.

In my research efforts, I have also located information on families from the neighboring villages of Meinhard and Kind.

This year a village member made a trip to Russia to the villages of Sussanental and Kind and provided us with digital pictures from the villages. We have also received information from the Engels archive from the same individual on the following surnames - Wasmuth from Susannental, Pickelhaupt from Kind, Langolf from Brokgauzen and Baskatovka, Holzer from Bazel.

Major Village surnames include:

Hergert / Hergett
Loeber / Laber / Lober
Schaeffer / Shaefer
Schmidt / Smith
Wegner / Wagner
Winterholler / Winterhalter

Tarutino, Akkerman, Bessarabia

Arthur E. Flegel F010 / L

See Alexanderfeld, North Caucasus for co

Unterdorf, Saratov, Volga

Unterdorf Web Site

Larry Miller

I just agreed to serve as a VC a few weeks ago, so I'm unable to provide anything at this time. As I obtain all the files and other information I need, I hope to create a website for Unterdorf.


Vakarskii Khutor, Glückstal, Odessa, Kherson

See Glückstal Colonies Research Association


Leona Janke J030 / L

I am still available for help regarding Volhynian questions, translations or whatever. I had some health issues, which put me out of commission for a while, but I'm back. Since so much of the Volhynian info is in German it would be nice (wonderful) if we could find some translators among the Volhynians to do some translating for AHSGR.

We need more Volhynian material in our AHSGR Library. The Board is currently working on getting "The German Question" in the Black Sea Region and in Volhynia translated. The author is Dietmar Neutatz. This is a 468-page book that deals with the years 1856 to 1914. However, there are many projects that are just a few pages that would be of interest to Volhynians and not an overwhelming challenge to translate.

Vollmer, Saratov, Volga

Submitted by David Easterday E106

I answered three inquiries from new correspondents.

Several AHSGR members expressed interest in the Vollmer 1834 census to be completed soon.

Of greatest significance, I located a capable and willing person to assume Village Coordinator responsibilities beginning January 2006.

Warenburg, Samara, Volga

Warenburg Web Site

Ronald E. Brott B310

Sharon White

Report from Sharon White:

I have had inquiries about the following Warenburg families this year: Klamm, Lorenz, Roth, Leisle, Kinzel, Kaiser, Trippel, Funkner, Stumpf and Reitz.

I bought the two "Index to Kirchenbote Obituaries" Books (original book and supplement book) from the Central Washington AHSGR chapter. The Central Washington chapter has 42 obituaries for purchase of people born in Warenburg. The two index books have basic information about the people: birth, death, spouse, and parents' names.

I continue to gather information about people from Warenburg by obtaining obituaries, ship lists, church records, declarations of intent and biographies. I have been looking at a lot of microfilm available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah.

I have the names of 93 of the original Warenburg settlers. I have the place of origin in Germany for 81 of them. I will put this information in my next newsletter.

My Warenburg newsletter is $5 (for two issues).

I welcome any information about people from Warenburg (biographies, obituaries, photographs, photographs, etc.) I would appreciate copies of these items to use in my newsletter or to add to my Warenburg database. I have had photographs of Warenburgers, a photograph of Warenburg, and genealogy information given to me this past year that I appreciate very much.


See Susannental

Wittman (Soloturn), Samara, Volga

Wittman Web Site

Kevin Rupp R311 / L

Wittman has had a good year. I have had a number of e-mails from Germany concerning this colony. I have received the 1834 heads-of-household. I have been obtaining many of these family lists for 1816 and 1834. We were also able to get the 1857 Wittman census, which researchers said was not available. These books were found listed under another colony. I also have the 1890 family list. We received the 1879 and 1881 marriage records this year. These records included the Schoenchen marriage records.

Yagodnaya Polyana, Saratov, Volga

Yagodnaya Polyana Web Site

Kris Ball B465 / L

Elizabeth A. Meyer M368

Patrice (Morasch) Miller M410

Report from Kris Ball:

Yagodnaya Polyana was fortunate to have another year of high activity. Three village coordinators serve the village: Kris Ball, Patrice Miller, and Elizabeth Meyer. This team approach works well for us, as we divide duties for the newsletter, and we also have copies of each others' digital records as a back up.

Among the three of us, one or more is usually able to attend the AHSGR convention each year. Kris Ball attended the 2005 AHSGR convention in Oklahoma City. Nine descendants from Yagodnaya and her daughter and granddaughter villages came to the table at Village Night. Queries continue to come in from around the globe, and we work to answer them to the best of our abilities. We have developed a document that we attach to queries listing general information about Yagodnaya and how to find resources about the village. It lists information about our newsletter, about websites with good information and records, and other helpful sources.

Newsletters for the past year include some discoveries about the fate of our ancestors. One of our village people helped obtain a list of families from Pobochnoye (a daughter colony) who were deported to Siberia in 1930. One descendant returned to Yagodnaya Polyana in 2004 and wrote of her visit for the newsletter, complete with pictures. Karl Scheuerman, son of Dick Scheuerman, also make a visit to Yagodnaya Polyana and was able to attend the 2004 convention in Modesto and share stories and pictures with us.

Copies of "Fremde Heimat" by Frau Alwina Maiber (born in YP) were obtained by Elizabeth Meyer and offered for resale for the first time in the U.S. The book tells of her struggles and heartbreak after deportation. She is working on a second book. Elizabeth took a trip to Siberia in the summer of 2005 and will be writing an article for our newsletter, Usu Leut, about her trip and her discoveries.

Frau Maiber also drew a 1941 village map from memory and indicated the houses of many families and locations of landmarks on the map. What a treasure to know who lived in each house right before the deportation! Elizabeth translated it from German to English for us and we will publish it in the next newsletter.

The newsletter also had stories on the Pfaffenroth and Daubert families, along with obits from descendants from Yagodnaya Polyana. We received and were given permission to print a picture of schoolteachers from 1941 in Yagodnaya Polyana. The picture was taken in the school, just a few months before deportation took place, and a large picture of Stalin hangs ominously above the group. Patrice Miller wrote an article on researching the Captured German Records, which are on the Odessa Digital Library.

We will have upcoming articles on Elizabeth's trip to Siberia, including some other exciting record discoveries we have been fortunate to receive. We have a memorial book from one of the work camps in Siberia, and it lists the names of those who died at the camp. It is in Russian, but one of our dedicated volunteers translated it for us and we plan to print the names of those who we know, or suspect, are from Yagodnaya Polyana.

We are indeed fortunate to have dedicated coordinators and volunteers who work to keep the memory of our ancestors alive.

Zug (Gattung), Samara, Volga

Zug Web Site

Kevin Rupp R311 / L

I have had a few e-mails this past year. I have received the 1834 head-of-families list. From this, I have received a number of family censuses for 1816 and 1834. The big news is that we have the 1857 Zug census coming this fall.  It was reported that this census was not available, but it was found in another book. I also have the marriage records for 1875.

Miscellaneous Items: I am working on the 1857 census for Luzern. I have the 1850 Katharienstadt census, but it not compiled. I had Rosemary Larson translate and compile the 1834 census of Pfeifer. She has also completed the 1850 census. Marriage records for Katharienstadt 1875, Louis 1890, Luzern 1875, Pfeifer 1850 will be available soon.

Web Site - I continue to update my site as much as possible. I changed computers this fall, so that set me back on updating, since I had to re-upload everything.

It's been an expensive year, but fun!!