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Chronicle of Alexanderfeld, Bessarabia

Written by Otto Lehmann – excerpt and translation by Elli Wise, 2009

Der Staats-Anzeiger
10 November 1933 – page 8
Alt Elft, South Russia, 16 October 1933

Alexanderfeld was founded in the year of 1908 by settlers from the following mother colonies:

Dennewitz, Fere Champenoise I (Alt Elft), Paris, and others who were able to acquire 2,683 Deßjatines of empty steppeland from the Lady of Quality Elisabetha Nikolaewna Garting.  Alexanderhilf is in the Kahul district about 20 kilometers south of Kahul and 20 kilometers northwest from Bolgrad.  To the north it borders the estates Paruschofka and Peleni; to the west in borders the estate Wladimirowka, to the south are the estates Gawanosy and Wukaneschty, and to the east are the estates Wulkaneschty, Atanafulis, Musait and Sokolow.

The purchase price was 160 rubles per deßjatine.  The payment schedule was set at 50 rubles for a down payment, 10 rubles per deßjatine after one year, 20 rubles per deßjatine after 6 years and the remainder was delayed for 32 years.

The following names are found in the purchase contract:

Friedrich Schill, Andreas Schill, Johannes Schill, Jakob Schill, Karl Schulz, Johann Seitz, Michael Schöttle, Gottfried Schlauch, Georg Schlauch, Georg Schieve, August Broßt, Heinrich Broßt, Christoph Bädke, Ludwig Bädke, Heinrich Scherer, Johann Scherer, and Friedrich Müller, all from Dennewitz; Johann Schulz, Samuel Gehring, August Stach, Emanuel Stach, Christlieb Ziehmann, Gottlieb Habelmann and Michael Steinke, all from Alt Elft; Gottfried Stelter, Wilhelm Kujath, Samuel Kern and Ephraim Kison, all from Paris; Jakob Tobler, Johann Brenner and Christian Schaible, all from Plotzk; Gottlob Willging and Georg Böpple from Teplitz; Christina Schramm and Johann Schramm from Kulm; Adolf Brenner and Adolf März from Lichtental; Johann Keck and Philipp Allmendinger from Sarata; Johannes Paul from Hoffnungsfeld; Georg Silcher from Gnadental; Johann Weiß from Posttal; Reinhold Bogner from Tarutino and Ludwig Jose from Alexanderhilf.  The authorized delegates for the purchase were Johann Weiß, Johann Keck and Philipp Allmendinger. 

On 17 and 18 February 1908 the first founders arrived to establish the new homeland.  The founders of the village were: Gottfried Schlauch, Gottlob Willging, Ephraim Kison, Johann Keck, Michael Schöttle; Christlieb Ziehmann, Johann Schramm, Friedrich Müller, Jakob Schill, Andreas Schill, Johann Stach, August Stach, Emanuel Stach, Ludwig Bädke, Georg Silcher, Friedrich Richter, Georg Schieve, Michael Steinke, Adolf Brenner, Jakob Tobler, Friedrich Tobler, Gottlieb Habelmann, Samuel Kern, Christian Schaible, Friedrich Schill, Johann Brenner, Johann Schulz, Karl Schulz, Christoph Bädke, Wilhelm Kujath, Samuel Gehring, Andreas Blum, Adolf Bädke, Daniel Broßt, Georg Böpple, Johannes Schill and Heinrich Broßt.  Joining them were Michael Klein from Paris, Christian Knodel from Neu Elft, Michael Riß from Leipzig, Johannes Falk from Paris and Johann Rittlinger from Großliebental.  The latter five were not buyers but are included as founders.

The first town council was Friedrich Müller.  He also was administrator of community monies.  During the first year he also was county clerk and manager of other community affairs.

 

Part two:
Der Staats-Anzeiger
14 November 1933 – page 5

During the years of 1908 and 1930 properties were sold, some of the early settlers moved and new ones arrived. 

Those who sold and emigrated somewhere else were:

Johann Weiß, Philipp Allmendinger, Johann Keck, Adolf Merz, Reinhold Bogner, Johann Seitz, Gottfried Schlauch, Georg Schiewe, Heinrich Scherer, Gottfried Stelter, Samuel Kern, Georg Böpple, Georg Silcher, Adolf Brenner, Christian Schaible and Johann Rittlinger.

Those who bought and immigrated to Alexanderfeld were:

Emanuel Vetter, David Schill; Karl Tiede; Heinrich Weber from Dennewitz; Johannes Blum from Plotzk; Gottlieb Gehring, Johannes Habelmann, August Schaber, Johannes Ziehmann, Samuel Rast and Gustav Quast from Alt Elft; Andreas Jasmann, Ferdinand Flöther and Arthur Siegmund from Paris; Gottholf Raab, Jakob Raab and Gustav Kern from Pomasan; Andreas Knodel from Hoffnungsfeld; Ludwig Kautz from Tarutino; Gottlieb Böhner from Malojaroslawetz I; Andreas Scherbinsky from Neu Elft; and Johannes Schneider from Pelinei.

The village lies in the northeast corner of the purchased estate.  The street is one verst long and 15 faden wide. Each homestead is 20 faden wide and 120 faden long.  In 1928 more homestead plots were measured out at the northern corner outside the village.  The 2,683 deßjatines were divided into 49 homesteads.  Several of the residents bought additional land from estates near the Alexanderfeld land: 400 hectares from the heirs Efimow, 100 hectares from estate Sokolow, 100 hectares from estate Atamafulis and 30 hectares from estate Netuscha, a total of 630 hectares.

There were no harvests in the years 1908 and 1918.  Weak harvests occurred in the years of 1909, 1912, 1914, 1920 and 1921. There was no planting during the war years 1915-1918.

Those who died during WWI were: Daniel Broßt and Otto Müller.  Missing were: David Bädke, Michael Göhner, Christoph König, Heinrich Tobler and Bernhard Richter.

Death due to accidents:  Johann Rittlinger at age 39 (1908), Katharina Bädke geb. Scherer at age 28 (1917), Alfred Habelmann at age 5 (1925), Salomina Steinke at age 2 (1929).  In 1910 several people (not listed) perished due to the pock epidemic. 

Almost all citizens of Alexanderfeld are farmers.  There are two smiths, two table makers, one tailor and one shoemaker.  There are only a few who are landless.

Chairs of the municipal administration (voted in for 1 year terms) were:

Friedrich Müller (1908), Wilhelm Kujath (1909), Johann Schulz (1910), Michael Schöttle (1911), Christoph Bädke (1912); Friedrich Schill (1913), Gottlieb Gehring (1914), Karl Schulz (1915), Adolf Bädke ( 1916, 1917), Karl Schulz (1918), Andreas Blum (1919), Samuel Gehring (1920), Friedrich Schill (1921), Andreas Knodel (1922), Johannes Ziehmann (1923), Friedrich Schill (1924), Johann Schramm (1925), Andreas Knodel (1926). 

As of 1927, according to the new church law, curators were installed and voted in:  Johann Knodel (1927, 1928) Andreas Knodel (1929 to current).

During the years 1910-1914 and 1922-1924, Alexanderfeld ran a community tile/brick kiln.  Many houses, especially on the south end of the village, have tile roofing.

 

Der Staats-Anzeiger
21 November 1933 – page 8

In 1930 it was decided to build a church.  Construction began in April and it was completed in October.  The church was christened on 2 November.

Lay teachers which also were the community writers were:

Christian Unterseher 1908-1910

Johannes Flemmer 1910-1911

Rudolf Tobler 1911-1915

The schools were closed from 1915-1917 because of the war.  The sexton duties were performed by the church warden.  Otto Lehmann served as church warden from 1917 to 1927.  He also was the teacher during that time.  Arthur Schaupp served from 1927-1928.  Wilhelm Wagner served from 1928 until current.

Secondary teachers were: Wilhelm Im. Wagner (1922), Johannes Blum (1923-1926), Rudolf Reinöl (1916) Otto Lehmann (1927-1928), Johannes Müller (1928), Samuel Rast (1929-1930).

Alexanderfeld belonged to the Alt Elft parish from 1908-1912.  In 1913 a parish was founded in the Kahul district to which Alexanderfeld then belonged. Alexanderfeld was served by the following spiritual caretakers: Pastor Hanson from Arzis (1908-1911); Pastor Haase from Tarutino (1911-1912); Pastor Wolleydt (1912-1916); Pastor Haase from Tarutino (1916-1922); Pastor Koch from 1922 through current.  The Alexanderfeld citizens are all of the Evangelic Lutheran confession.

At founding in 1908, Alexanderfeld had 49 families.  In 1930 there were 100 families. In 1930 the count of inhabitants was at 545, 264 males and 281 females. During the 22 years there were 490 birth and 223 deaths.

 

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