Cleveland’s oldest German pioneers

The Jubilee Edition of the Cleveland Wächter und Anzeiger 1902 contains a section that lists “the Oldest German Pioneers of Cuyahoga County,” although it only includes the names of those still living who were residents in Cleveland and Cuyahoga County in 1902. For the benefit of those who may be researching genealogy who don’t have access to this publication, I’ll post the list below. (I’ll do it in batches, since it’s quite long.) The list shows the year of arrival in Cuyahoga County, followed by name, year of birth, place of birth, and occupation.

1832: Scheekley, Carl, born in 1825 in Zell, Württemberg, livery stable owner.
1833: Krehbiehl (Crable), John, born 1828 in Wachenheim, Rhenish Palatinate, insurance agent.
1834: Hecker, Karoline, born 1825 in Klingenmünster, Rhenish Palatinate, retired.
    Hoffman, Fritz, born 1829 in Steindorf, Nassau, oil business.
1836: Beckenbach, Katharina, born 1833 in Klingenmünster, Rhenish Palatinate, retired.
    Hecker, Elizabeth, born 1822 in Klingenmünster, Rhenish Palatinate, retired.
1837: Dietz, Gregor, born 1823 in Weissmain, Bavaria, clockmaker.
1839: Denzer, John, born 1826 in Württemberg, farmer.
    Kölges, Margaretha, born 1835 in Heppenheim, Hesse-Darmstadt, retired.
    Wägenbauer, Eva, born 1835 in Erlenbach, Rhenish Palatinate, retired.
1840: Burger, Katharina, born 1823 in Mandel, Prussia, retired.
    Lauterwasser, Leonh. Friedri., born 1823 in Ilsfeld, Württemberg, retired.
    Klein, Abraham, born 1820, in Unsleben, Bavaria, retired.
    Repp, Philipp H., born 1830 in Mutterstadt, Rhenish Palatinate, retired.
    Schüttheim, Peter, born 1827 in Hamm, Rhenish Palatinate, insurance agent.
1841: Ball, Karl, born 1822 in Asbach, Alsace, farmer.
    Adam, Stephan, born 1821, retired.
1842: Bretzmeier, George, born 1822 in Rothenacker, Württemberg, retired.
    Körper, Peter, born 1825 in Weiber, Prussia, farmer.
1843: Böhning, Ernst Heinrich, born 1833 in Barthausen, Hanover, farmer.
1844: Buhrer, Stephan, born 1826 in Zoar, Ohio, wine and Liquor.
    Henke, Franz H., born 1824 in Hanover, furniture business.
    Kappler, Ernst Johann, born 1814 in Ittersbach, Baden, retired.
    Umbstätter, Pauline, born 1824, retired.
1845: Fuldheim, Mayer, born 1818 in Grenzhausen, Nassau, retired.
    Risser, Christian, born 1815 in Schwabing, Bavaria, retired.
1846: Heil, Heinrich, born 1825 in Eichen, Electoral Hessia, tailor business.
    Schaab, Valentin, born 1831 in Darmstadt, Hesse-Darmstadt, retired.
    Steinbrenner, Andreas, born 1833 in Zuzenhausen, Baden, furniture-maker.
    Walker, Heinrich G., born 1832 in Barkhausen, Hanover, painter.
1847: Comery, Elisabeth, born 1838 in Oggersheim, Rhenish Palatinate, retired.
    Gintz, Elisabeth, born 1827 in Stade, Hanover, retired.
    Kindsvater, Paul, born 1822 in Böhl, Rhenish Palatinate, retired.
    König, Anna, born in Coburg, Saxony-Gotha, retired.
    Mehringer, Rosina, born 1831 in Oggersheim, Rhenish Palatinate, retired.
    Müller, Louis, born 1823 in Alsenz, Rhenish Palatinate, retired.
    Nungesser, Adam, born 1831 in Münster, Hesse-Darmstadt, oven-maker.
    Ortli, Josua, born 1822 in Glarus, Switzerland, smith.
    Paillon, Ferdinand, born 1844 in Oggersheim, Rhenish Palatinate, shoe business.
    Probeck, Johann, born 1825 in Dirmstein, Rhenish Palatinate, tailor.
    Pfeil, Lorenz, born 1820 in Königheim, Baden, baker.
    Schöninger, Conrad, born 1827 in Werldistadt, Württemberg, building contractor.
    Unkrich, Jacob, born 1829 in Hochstetten, Rhenish Palatinate, building contractor.
    Urban, Jacob Philipp, born 1829 in Ungstein, Rhenish Palatinate, pharmacist.
    Wirtz, Mathias, born 1838 in Horethen, Rhenish Province, hauling contractor.
    Zurlinden, Charles, born 1845 in Massmünster, Alsace, butcher.
1848: Albrecht, Louis, born 1829 in Pforzheim, Baden, jeweler.
    Brunner, Heinrich, born 1834 in Switzerland, shoemaker.
    Heine, Anton, born 1822 in the Black Forest, Baden, painter.
    Jassaud, Friedrich, born 1817 in Hagen, Westphalia, smith.
    Maedje, W. E., born 1847 in Börsum, Brunswick, bookkeeper.
    Köhler, J.P., born 1822 in Wertheim, Baden, tailor.
    Seckel, Karl, born 1828 in Krailsheim, Württemberg, paper merchant.
    Tiedemann, Claus, born 1823 in Steinburg, Holstein, farmer.
    Tiedemann, Hans, born in 1832 in Steinburg, Holstein, bank director.

5 responses to “Cleveland’s oldest German pioneers

  1. The insurance agent threw me.

  2. I laughed over “private person” and imagined myself adding “very” to the description.

  3. Betsy Sheekley Metzger

    I am a direct descendant of the first person on your list, Carl Scheekley. I never knew what he did for a living. As you can see, he was only 7 years old when he arrived. This is a mystery to me – with whom did he travel? Who did he live with? is a wonderful source but can only go so far. I hope to get more answers when I travel to Cleveland soon. I figure I will start with the Western Reserve Genealogy Society library. Do you have other suggestions as to where to look? Thanks!

    Betsy Sheekley Metzger

    • Hi Betsy,
      One place I found my ancestors was by actually going to the National Archives and Records Administration facility (the one in Seattle) and scrolling through microfilm. It helped that I had a good idea of the port of departure and port of arrival, as well as the approximate months and/or year in which my ancestors arrived. It is also a help to know the age of your ancestor (7) because the manifests usually list the age– although I’d pause at any listing between the ages of 6, 7, 8, just in case they had a birthday during crossings. Whoever is “in line” near your ancestor will no doubt be family, perhaps on his maternal side? This can be cross-checked in the census, as his name might appear near those he lived with as a young boy. “Germans to America” index in some public libraries is a good resource, but does not list any U.S. citizens (in case a relative from America “brought him over.”)

      Also, if you are able to access the images of census records, and locate your ancestor on it, the persons with whom he resided will no doubt be listed. Note that spellings vary, sometimes dramatically. I spent hours looking for Handrich (or Hendrick, or Hendricks) and finally found my ancestors under “Henry.” Plus, in “Old German Script” the two e’s in your ancestor’s name might resemble an “n” or “m” or “w” to an English speaker. (I found Scheuermann listed under Schnurnumann.)

      If you’re going to Cleveland, you might want to check out this German Genealogy seminar scheduled for September at the Western Reserve Historical Society.

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