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Schoenchen (Paninskaja), Russia

AHSGR Village Coordinator - Denise Grau

                                                          VC - Schoenchen Website

Schönchen (Paninskaya), Russia was established in 1767 and located 10 miles up the Little Karaman River just north of the newly established village of Ober-Monjou. By 1770 they determined the soil was not suitable for farming and relocated the village 40 miles northeast of Katharinenstadt (Marx), between the two Catholic villages of Zug (Gattung) to the south, and Solothorn (Wittman) to the north. This location was on the Wiesenseite of the Volga River near the Karshinaya Brook.

The livelihood of most villagers consisted of farming. They kept with the tradition of their homelands by traveling to their farmlands during the day and returning to their homes in the village at the end of the day. They grew rye, wheat, barley, oats, millet, potatoes and tobacco, with the village homes keeping vegetable gardens to supply food for the family table. They also raised cows, sheep, swine and chickens and kept a stable of horses.

In the late 1870's, as part of a larger Volga German migration to destinations in the United States and South America, several families from Schönchen migrated to the U.S. in search of freedom from an increasingly oppressive government. For those who remained, the future was one they could not have imagined. During World Word II, with Russia at war with Germany, the Volga Germans were considered suspect of loyalty to the German government. On August 28, 1941, Stalin ordered a Decree of Banishment of those Volga Germans to areas of Sibera and Khazakstahn, leaving this once prosperous farming area of Russia almost devoid of those who made it so.

WEBMASTERS NOTE - This page on the Volga-German Colony of Schoenchen is very basic.  I would suggest for more in-dept information that you go to the AHSGR VC Coordinator, Denise Grau's website.  Please check HERE to take you to that page.

Photograph from the collection of the Kansas State Historical Society, Copy and Reuse Restrictions Apply.

Scouts Peter Stoecklein, Jacob Ritter, Nicolaus Schamme, Peter Leiker and Anton Wasinger

This photograph was published in the Hays Daily News, November 11, 1929, with the following caption: Here is a group picture of the five pioneers who came to Ellis county, Kansas, from the Volga region of Russia in 1874. These five men were delegates sent to America by the Volga colonies for the purpose of seeking a location to establish new settlements, as many of the Germans of the Volga region were determined to leave Russia and migrate either to North America or South America. This picture was taken of those men shortly before they left Russia bound for America. Reading from left to right are Peter Stoecklein, Jacob Ritter, Nichlas Schamne, Peter Leiker, and Anton Wasinger. They fulfilled their mission successfully, having come as far west as Nebraska. On their return to their home towns they made a favorable report, on the strength of which the first emigrants left Russia in the year of 1875. Four of the five delegates backed up their judgment by coming to the United States themselves, namely: Peter Leiker, Peter Stoecklein, Anton Wasinger, and Nichlas Schamne. The first three named here remained until they died, while Nichlas Schamne returned to Russia. This photograph published for the first time today, was procured through the efforts of Mr. A. D. Wasinger who, knowing of its existence, corresponded with his sister in Russia, who sent it to him. It is a valuable addition to the historical data covering the history of the early settlements of this colony.

Schoenchen, Russia Population of Village

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Resarch Material Available
Archival Records Available & Where

Census Books


Kulberg List

First Settlers List

1857 Census

1920 Family

Birth Records


Marriage Records






Death Records



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