Tscherwenka - 1785-1944 - Tscherwenkaer Familien (K. Abel) .

    Copyright 2002, Karen Abel, Morgan Hill, CA

Tscherwenka - official name Crvenka, German variants Rotweil, Hungarian name Cservenka, other variants Cervenka and Rot. Earliest German settlements was 1784. Location is now in the country of Yugoslavia near Kula. The following, taken from Angela Hefner's out-of print book, includes: a translation of the book's introduction, a 1790 list of residents, and an 1802 liquidations (loan repayment) list. We owe thanks to those who translated and brought this work to us in the English form as well as Angela Hefner for allowing us to share this translation in this manner.                                TSCHERWENKA                        Cservenka-Crvenka, Batschka                                1785-1944                         Tscherwenkaer Familien  

        "Children are the crowning of the elders and the pride

By Angela Hefner      [Translated by Bob Berger and Betty Lang, edited by Karen Abel]                            

   INTRODUCTION Dear Friends, dear Countrymen !

Tscherwenka ! Much has been written and published about it, especially by the person who is most knowledgeable about Tscherwenka, our last Evangelical pastor, Rev. Johannes Albrecht.  He had a lifetime of remembrances of our unforgettable hometown and told about the history of Tscherwenka in books, newspapers and calendars. In this report I would like to deal only with the origin of the Tscherwenka families.  Since we live in Germany, not far from the original homes of our ancestors, I began searching archives, church offices and libraries for traces of our emigrated families.  I worked hard on it, since I got the job to publish the hometowns of our ancestors in our Heimatbuch (home journal) "Unser Tscherwenka" ("Our Tscherwenka").  The time was too short to get information on all the settlers, since many families have no records.  Names of hometowns of many families are missing, since not all church books from Elsass to the northern parts of Hessen could be looked through and many did not survive or were not available.  Some were destroyed during the war or in the church fires. Back home we knew that our ancestors came from southwestern Germany, and that they emigrated from the Palatinates or Elsass, but we did not know the towns of origin. In spite of the good correspondence between the emigrants and those in their homeland, as we can see from their letters, it seems that the grandchildren no longer knew where their grandparents were from. They became Tscherwankian.   When the first part of the Tscherwankaer Ansiedler was published on the occasion of the 150th anniversary in 1935, Prof. Lotz aroused in us a great interest in our genealogy.  We requested Ahnenpaesse (ancestor or genealogical documents) from church offices, and in most cases we were glad to have found the names of our ancestors.  Unfortunately, church records could not give us any other information.  Only now and then was the birthplace mentioned when a death was entered, and then in the vernacular of the time.  Beside Greilach was the entry Tessl, which should have been Desloch; beside Noll was entered Esterhausen which today would be Essershausen; beside Rosalie Vetter was the entry Wochtolsheim.  Her brothers' entry had their mother being a Lohrmann, so one could see by the origin of the Lohrmanns that the entry beside Rosalie should have been Machtolsheim.  A piece of luck with hundreds of towns that ended in "-heim"!  In some cases there can be an estimated "age at death" notation with the death entry, but that often was incorrect because at that time name days were celebrated instead of birthdays.  The worst of it is that in the early years the parents of the marriage couple were not listed.  If the family name was unique, one would usually know the father's name, but not in the case of more common names such as Muller, Mayer, Schmidt, Schneider, and other frequently used names.  This is why there can be incorrect information in the Ahnenpaessen.  This could only have been prevented by cross-referencing the church books.  Other mistakes as well, such as recording a birth to a 55 year old mother, could have been prevented. These mistakes are endemic, since parents and children shared the same first names for generations.  That is why in some Ahnenpaessen whole generations were skipped, because women sometimes still bore children at the age of 46.  The difference in the ages between the oldest and youngest child could be as much as 27 years.  Then there is the added difficulty that in the evangelical church books, marriage entries were missing from 1789-1798.  At that time there were few references as to how a widow should be cared for after the death of her husband.  In such cases there might be an agreement of how a childless widow could keep her husband's possessions for her own use, if she would not remarry.  Only after her death would the husband's properties be deeded to the husband's heirs.  Commonly acquired wealth was evenly distributed among the heirs.  On the other hand, a widower, in the case of a childless marriage, had to return the wealth his deceased wife had brought into the marriage back to her family.  (Different than today's right of inheritance.) For the purposes of this undertaking, I collected more than 250 Ahnenpaesse, which our countrymen had entrusted to me.  I heartily thank them.  With their names and sometimes few dates, and with the help of the Hungarian Settlement (immigration) Department in Vienna, I was able to find proof of the origin of our ancestors in the local archives and church offices.  At the same time, I could determine that many of our forefathers were related to each other.  Seldom would someone emigrate on their own; one would go with relatives, friends, and neighbors into an uncertain land.  It took at least 5-7 weeks to travel from their homes to the Batschka area and to be temporarily housed for the winter. At that time distances were measured in the amount of hours it took a "stagecoach" to go a certain distance.  Tscherwenka was 320 hours away from Bebra.  To cover such distances cost a lot of money, which our large families did not have or did not want to pay for.  Johann Eimann reports in his journal that he took along 90 guilders, of which he had only 20 left when he got to Werbass.  This is why whole groups have made the journey on foot to Ulm or Regensburg for embarkation for the Donau trip  (see the letters of Weissenhasel).  Luggage and toddlers were pulled along on a cart.  Such groups were then settled near to each other in Tscherwenka, since the Kaiser had commanded that relatives and countrymen were to stay together in one community.  This is the reason why later on the children married their countrymen again. People spoke the same dialect and had the same eating habits.  With the Elsassians especially, one could determine that for four generations they intermarried.   They were predominantly "Nassau-Saarbruecker" subjects and were settled in close proximity to the "Nassau-Saarbrueckers" from the middle-Lahn area, the "Nassau-Weilburgers", and the "Nassau-Usingers", even though they had lived 400 kilometers from each other back home.  That is why Elsassians and Nassauers from the Lahn married each other.  (Kern married Eschenauer, Schmidt married Zimmermann, Schlotter married Baer, etc.)  On the first census list of 1790, one can see that the Naussauers from the Lahn were settled on the "Ewrgass" (Obere Gasse) on the Winterseite. They were followed by the Elsassians and Saarlaenders, who were also Nassauers, who settled further up the Obere Gasse, and then down the Sommerseite.  Many of these families, Noll, Balg, Kern, Reiter, among others, stayed "Ewrgaessers" until the Flight.  If one wanted to know the origin of someone in this group, one would know approximately in which archive to look for them.  Or if you were looking for the origin of one of the partners in a marriage, you would just have to look in the area of the other partner, if that was known.  That sounds simple and logical. However, it took me forty years to find proof of the town of origin of the few mentioned here.  Furthermore, it is evident that the large group of Niederkirchners, as well as those of adjoining towns, lived in the lower Ratzengasse on the Winterseite.  Across from them were the Singhofener families. (Michael Welker, Jr. from Niederkirchen married his neighbor from across the way, M.K. Willner from Singhofen).  In 1944 many a family still lived on the original land of the settlers, Walter, Dech, Gutwein, among others.  The group of Muenchweilers--Hess, Scherer, Schmidt--lived down on the 5th Gasse.  The Buetteners were at home on the 4th Gasse.  In the case of tradesmen, settling next to each other was a problem, since they were to live in corner houses as a rule.  We have determined that most of the Odenwaelder, who were trained craftsmen, settled as tradesmen, even though many farmer settlers were never farmers back home but were tradesmen.  However, they were people of the land and knew the art of farming.  In their new home, because of the large area, farming practices would be different than at home, and that is why everyone had to adapt to the new circumstances and learn a new trade. If one were to visit the birthplace of our ancestors and see how beautiful and neat everything is, the question would arise as to why they left in the first place.  Couldn't they have stayed here and spared us the flight and the immense sacrifice of the expulsion?  In order to understand better, we have to comprehend the situation 200 years ago when Germany was splintered into many large and small duchies which, for the most part, were never a cohesive territory but were dotted among other principalities.  Our ancestors were subjects of these nobles, who oppressed them and gave them no rights.  To these nobles they had to pay high taxes, which only be led to indebtedness. That is why our forefathers realized that the only way out was emigration.  Before they could start their trip into a strange land, however, they had to apply for Manumission (permission to leave) and pay a percentage of the sale of their belongings as an exit fee. (Prof. Werner Hacker explains this in detail in his books on emigration).  Since most of our ancestors had some possessions but little cash, many abandoned everything rather than purchasing their freedom, and left in secret.  In these cases the nobles took possession of the belongings, "vergantet" [meaning unknown] and auctioned them off to their own advantage. Robert Carius found among documents of the state archives of Oldenburg a receipt of the "Birkenfelder Kellerei" of 1787, Bd.1/165, for Confiscation Income, showing that in the year 1787 the nobles had an income of more than 2,000 guilders from such auctions.  This was just for the area around Birkenfeld on the Nahe River and Reichenbach, from which many of our ancestors secretly escaped to Tscherwenka.  Because of the publication of Robert Carius, we have come to know the names of the people in the official auction documents, especially those from Ausweiler and Frauenberg, from which many families secretly fled to Tscherwenka.  Among them were families who had applied for an emigration permit and had been refused (see Werkhaeuser).  When the nobles noticed the massive departure of their subjects, they forbade all emigration-such an act was to be "enforced by strict punishment".  This prohibition was pronounced from the church pulpit.  In it the subjects were told to watch their neighbors and, should they get ready to leave, to report them. In spite of that there was not a town in the Palatinates from which families didn't want to emigrate.  "The whole area wanted to emigrate.  So many families set out, among them even well-to-do ones, that the streets were completely covered, and it seemed as if every person wanted to leave the area." (Karl Stumpp in "Auswanderungen nach Russland...")   Johann Eimann tells us in his journal that from his little birthplace, Duchroth, from 1783-1785, 41 families emigrated, 31 settled in Galizia and 10 in the Batschka, Sivac. That totaled 143 souls that this little town had lost. Our ancestors not only left because they were being taken advantage of by the nobility,  but they had a lot of children and not enough land to feed them, which was often given as the reason for wanting to emigrate. They just did not see any future for their many children.  In the absence of an alternative way to acquire their own property, many young men would marry a widow with an established business or farm, even if she was many years older.  This habit continued even after the settling of Tscherwenka, and we should not query these cases, and not ask if that is a mistake. In the case of the emigration of tradesmen, one can see that in small towns there were too many tradesmen, who could not subsist in their profession.  In the Chronik von Niederkirchen, by Karl Baecker, we can read that in this little town there were 28 weavers, who could hardly earn their daily living.  They worked for starvation wages at a large textile mill in Kaiserslautern.  This would have been the case in other towns, since there were many weavers among the emigrants.  (At about that time mechanical looms were invented.) Because of employment uncertainty young men could not marry just for love.  The nobility kept a close eye on it, so that the young men would be in a position to feed a family. After settlement in Tscherwenka, this was not the case anymore. People would marry at a continually younger age.  The marriage age for girls went down so far that they wed at the age of 14.  The groom was often only 17. These child-marriages appear many times in the Ahnenpaessen; it is not a mistake.  A further peculiarity, which at first glance seems unbelievable, is the mourning period.  When a wife and mother died, the widower frequently remarried within 6 weeks.  This was understandable when one realizes that most of time little children had to be looked after, besides all the work in the kitchen, large garden and an animal barn.  At that time milking was always woman's work.  While in the first marriage the wife usually came from the homeland, in the second marriage he had to take a newly-widowed woman who happened to be available.  If the husband died, the widow was also forced to marry to keep the business or farm going. The Vienna Protocol for Settlement mentioned earlier had many incorrect declarations.  Many a father indicated the next largest town or his last residence, which was neither his nor the children's birthplace. Besides, large groups of people had ditto marks to indicate the same birthplace as the person ahead of them, even though there was proof that they were not even from the same area.  This is how we know Kruttschnitt did not come from Brandau but from Brenz, a totally different area; Lelbach was not from from Neu-Buschheim but from Neulussheim; Dohm and Duerkes were not from Ellperthsheim but from Eppelsheim; Mengel was not from Ebershausen but from Imshausen and he was not Catholic but Reformed.  It took me years to find the correct place of origin. Unfortunately I could not find proof of the correct place of origin of Johann Mueller with six sons, who was registered as coming from Loellbach, because of the frequency of appearance of the last name; neither that of David Schneider, a miller with four sons, who had left Weinheim.  Even Litzenberger "from Nahbollenbach" (?) did not come from this place.  It depended on the profession of the father whether the family moved around, i.e. many in the family had different birthplaces.  In the case of millers, who were hired for their milling skills, and shepherds, children were often born in different places. Not only would the place of origin be incorrectly registered in Vienna, but many names would also be changed: Woell became Will, Proeter became Breder or Bretter, Hovrath or Hopprath became Obrath.  Even in the Tscherwenkan church books, names were so turned around that the original name could hardly be recognized. Goettgen to Kettke-Ketche to Goettche, Braeunel became Preyl, Buechler became Biegler, Wegehenkel became Weyhinger-luckily he could be identified as a Wegehinkel because of his rare first name - Balthasar.  Since both our first pastors were Hungarian and did not understand the special and diverse dialects of our ancestors who had come from different German speaking lands, it is easy to see why the surnames were so altered.  (Rev. Gets was Evangelical, and Rev. Gozon was Reformed) Despite the many inaccurate and vague declarations made in the Settlers' Protocol, it remains our most important source for genealogical and historical research.  An enticement letter to relatives reads: "...you must come to Vienna..."  People were listed according to origin, age of the head of the family, marital status, religion, profession (often they would say farmer, when in reality, very few were farmers) , number of children categorized by sex, cash, and even expectant inheritances.  Among all this were inaccurate statements, which were never checked.  Frequently it specified, "bringing brother-in-law along", or "also two farm hands" (it was understood that knecht was a young man), or "with two maids" (girls). Even young adults who were traveling on their own were counted as part of families.  These were either countrymen or people who befriended one another on the long journey, and so they were counted as one of the family.  Whole families were registered as having the same town of origin as the list-leader, who seemed to be the spokesman for the group.  Such incorrect statements cannot be verified anymore, but one can see from church records that these entries are wrong.  Sometimes one can find these families in other church records if one has enough clues.  In Vienna it was important, above all, that the number of persons was correct, as they received 2 guilders per head travel allowance to get to Ofen.   It was bad when someone did not register either in Regensburg with the Austrian envoy nor in Vienna.  Then he would not be recognized as an emigrant with the usual privileges (see son of Hagenmayer). Double names were obviously common among the family fathers.  Johann was a common first name.  Then followed a second name, which when coupled with the first name served as the commonly used name.  So Johann-Nikolaus became Hanikl, Johann-Georg became Hanjer, Johann-Theobald became Hantewl, Johann-Gerhard became Hangert,  Johann-Adam became Hanam, Johann-Peter became Hanpetr, Johann-Karl became Hankarl, etc.  If a person had only the name of Johann, he was called Hannes. Many times the women also followed the practice of double names. If the first name was Maria, it would be coupled with the second name in such a way that there would be almost nothing left of Maria: Maria-Elisabeth became Mriliss, Anna Maria Elisabeth became Amriliss, Elisabetha-Margaretha became Lissegret, and so on.  But usually people were called by only one name. Most of the Evangelical and Reformed people who registered in Vienna between April and the beginning of June 1784 were settled in Torscha, and those who registered between June and August were settled in Tscherwenka.  Some who were registered in September and October were assigned to Tscherwenka, and the others went to Werbass.  The final decision as to who went where for settlement was made in Sombor.  This is why Ottilie Saeckler writes in her letter: "Ask for me in Vienna, Ofen and Samburg. There you will get your travel allowance."  All families registered at that time should be accounted for in our report, even though not all of them were later mentioned in settlers and inhabitants lists. If the head of the family died shortly after registering in Vienna and the widow remarried thereafter, his name no longer appears on the lists.  She, along with any of her children, would be going by a different name.  (Children were registered in church book under their father's name, but, alas, our church books are missing.).  The local genealogy offices are grateful when they come across a family of emigrants that had previously been labeled missing according to the church books.  Unfortunately, there was no central registry by family name in Vienna from the spring of 1785 to July 31, 1785.  There were so many families arriving at that time that they were merely counted so as to receive the 2 guilder travel allowance.  At this time also, many anticipated families for Tscherwenka arrived-most were relatives of people who had come the previous year.  Not everyone who had been invited by relatives could settle in Tscherwenka; they had to be settled in other towns, such as Sekitsch, Werbass, Sivac, Bulkes, and Kischker.  Some time later they began to visit back and forth, which then often resulted in marriages.  From Aug. 1, 1785 till the end of 1786 registrations were done by name again.  The official halt to immigration was the end of 1787.  At this time, families for the aforementioned places, as well as for Schowe and Jarek, were still expected to come.  In the Batschka area there were nine Protestant German settlements.  As one can tell from Ahnenpaessen and Revision Lists, the odd family or person still moved into the Tscherwenka area afterwards.  A special mention should be given to the many Protestant Germans who arrived from settlements that were founded after 1720 in Hungary-areas such as Tolna, Baranya, Vadkert and Harta.  These people had been living for three generations in these towns and now came looking for new land in the Batschka area for their children.  Many of his countrymen who had settled in Harta in 1730 (?) followed after Rev. Quirsfeld came to Tscherwenka from Harta in 1797 after living under unfavorable conditions.  (Many went to Kucora.)  Even our Tschwenkan ancestors, after only two generations, looked for new settlement possibilities for their children.  The first possibilities were found in 1820 in Schajkatsch Sentivan (by Neusatz) and Feketitsch, and then Altker.  Their well known tendency to have many children led many families around 1860 to Syrmia and Slavonia; to Beschka, Kertschedin, Vincovci and vicinity; Jancovci, Schidski Banovci and surrounding towns, where the land was cheaper than in the Batschka. Later on, daughter colonies were even founded in Bosnia.  Two completely Tscherwenkan settlements, Benzenz and Batiz, were in the Siebenbuergen since 1890.  I wrote the names of these families in my book, "Unser Tscherwenka". There was hardly a German speaking or mixed town in the southeast that did not have Tscherwenkans in it. After the emigrants were registered in Vienna and got their travel money, they went by ship to Ofen (Buda), where they received another guilder per person for the further travel to Sombor.  This part of the trip they made by wagon.  In Sombor, at the settlement head office, people were registered again and with wagons taken to the German Catholic towns (the so-called winter quarters) which had been settled 20-30 years earlier under Empress Maria Theresia.  It was from this era that we get the curious name for the Protestants as "Hannikl", because many settlers had the name Johann-Nikolaus and were therefore called Han-Nikl. Unfortunately, the lists of people from the Batschka over-wintering in the Banat area, called "Schlafkreuzerlisten", do not exist any more.   For this period we have notations in some Catholic church books for births, marriages and deaths.  Especially noticeable were the large number of deaths listed.  The strain of the long trip and the long stretches often covered on foot were too much for many.  They died in the winter quarters.  For the period from May 1, 1784 to the end of March 1785, a report of deaths from the winter quarters was kept in Sombor. (This list is in the Budapest Archives.)  The emigrants were supplied with groceries, so births and deaths had to be added and subtracted from the provisions list.  Since this list was kept according to dates and not towns, we cannot tell in which town our ancestors spent the winter.  This is the first report of our ancestors in the Batschka.  Unfortunately there are no reports of births. The first list made in Tscherwenka was a provisions list.  In it were listed all the people who received foodstuffs between Sept. 1785 and March 1786 in Tscherwenka.  It cannot, however, be called a list of Tscherwenkan settlers, since one can recognize families who were in a winter-settlement one year and then settled in a neighboring town in the spring.  It is possible that some families were not mentioned even though they came through Vienna the previous year.  They could be listed under the father-in-law or brothers-in-law. Accordingly, extended families lived in the same house. The first list of inhabitants of Tscherwenka is of July 14, 1790.  This was undertaken because Baron von Redl wanted to lease the area of Tscherwenka, along with Kernei, Alt- and Neu Sivac, between 1791 and 1794.  This list was drawn up separating the 351 colonists who were farmers and the 74 craftsmen or small- cottagers/day-laborers (Kleinhaeuslern).  We can see that there weren't 550 names of settlers as anticipated, but only 425 immigrants from Germany, plus four earlier "smaller householders of the area"  (Popovics, Voletics, Csakitsch, and Pataky).  Because of the heavy rains in the spring of 1786, the foundations of the houses were softened to the extent that 33 houses totally collapsed, and another 100 scattered throughout the town were not habitable.  The people who had been assigned to those houses were then resettled in the neighboring communities.   Items such as sand and other building materials had to be brought in from afar via bad roads in order to rebuild and repair.  The scarcest resource was wood, since the Batschka area had no forests.  There were probably families who temporarily lived with relatives so that they wouldn't have to leave each other, since we have determined that several families were not mentioned, even though they were in Tscherwenka according to the Ahnenpaesse. Be that as it may, there were more households in Tscherwenka than the 425 that were listed.  This list was signed by Judge Christian Ehrenfeld, Juror Johann Heinrich Sauer, Juror Philipp Hussong, and Town Notary Franz Krudt. The aforementioned lease agreement, according to the contract of Sept. 16, 1790, indicates on over 68 pages that after the death of the Kaiser in Feb. 1790, the one-tenth rental was no longer adhered to.  The Lessors were determined to get as much as possible from the settlers. They now insisted on one-seventh.  In Fedevieh a farmer had to pay with two roosters [n.b. especially fattened for sale], 2 chickens, 12 eggs, and one calf per year.   Every settler was apportioned a vineyard and one-ninth of the produce in cash was required from there.  The rental was not necessarily expected to be paid in goods, but the value was reckoned against the rent due.  Moreover, each settler was expected to provide gratis labor, which could be partially fulfilled in kind.  The farmers were expected to donate 52 days of labor with horse and wagon per year; the craftsmen and day-laborers were asked to provide 18 days of labor.  The value of this was also applied against the rent.  Our settlement chronicler, Johann Eimann, states on page 94 of his book, "Der Deutsche Kolonist", "what is easily acquired here, is poisoned by the enormous amount of forced labor..."  Because of so much extra required free labor, the settlers were often left with very little time to do their own work.  Houses were immediately charged a one guilder tax.  Even when this contract was signed, it was recognized that the burden was onerous.  It was noted: "otherwise the circumstances of the new settlers were not the best, since the money, livestock and supplies received from the land owner amounted to a debt of 20,770 guilders, which was almost impossible to pay off at the end of the year".  This difficult burden was recognized as early as 1790, but it was not eased!!   With all these difficulties in the early years, there were also failed crops due to bad weather, which led to more dissatisfaction and bitterness among the settlers.  Another complaint arose at the beginning of the year 1795 when the land owner's manager did not show up on the fields in time to tally the crops to get an accurate figure from which to calculate the seventh.  That is why the crop (wheat) rotted during that bad weather.  Many settlers considered themselves to have been taken advantage of and cheated.  They lost their spirit and looked for a way out.  The biggest burden came in 1802 when new taxes were added for the building of the canal. This canal was to join the Theiss to the Danube and was built to drain the groundwater from the central Batschka that prevented further development of the area.  After completion, the building costs were calculated to be much higher than anticipated.  That is why the newly founded villages in Middle Batschka now had to pay higher taxes. Their lands were leased to the privileged Hungarian ship-building and canal-building companies for 25 years. Many colonists reported that they could not keep up with these high demands and followed the tempting call to settle in South Russia.  The conditions for settlement were more favorable there than in their settlement in the Batschka.  Between 1804 and 1806, 216 families left the Batschka secretly by horse and wagon from Tscherwenka, Torscha, Werbass, Sivac, Sekitsch, Bulkes, Kischker, as well as 2 families from Kucora.  They settled in new villages in the Odessa area.  Among them were some families from Franzfeld and Liebling in the Banat; most settled in Peterstal and Franztal.  Karl Stumpp reports that the Freudentalers, even at the compulsory resettlement and forced evacuation of the town in 1942, were still known as "the Sekitschers". They still used Hungarian names for their horses:  Szarvas (deer), Gesche (horse with white feet).  As the German troops conquered the area in 1941, the Germans from these towns were resettled into the so-called "Warthegau". When the Russians advanced again in 1944, those who could fled to the west; the others were deported to Siberia and Kazakhstan. Communities were torn apart and destroyed. In the archives in Dnjepropetrovsk, Mr. Stumpp found a list of the settlers.  Among them were 35 Tscherwenkan families.  They were:  Bender Joh. Peter, Bingenheimer Joh. Jakob, Dobler Andreas, Friederich, Georg and Michael from Beutelbach-Waiblingen, (this family does not appear on any list in Tscherwenka), Fuehrer Jakob, Gaertner Jakob and Michael, Gerber Johannes, Hedrich Philipp, Hussong Nikolaus, Koehl/Kehl Jakob, Kiefer Christian, Kniesel Nikolaus, Krieger Joh. Georg, Lorenz Joh. Adam (from Bernwiller/Elsass), Martin Joh. Jakob, Neubauer Christian, Off Joh. Georg, Opp Urban and Heinrich, Oster Theobald and Heinrich, Pflug Leonhard, Rose Johannes, Ruppert Philipp, Sandmayer Katharina, Schuetz Adam and Christian, Dohm Viktoria (married to Wilking Daniel), Vollweiler Joh. Peter, Welker Michael (born 1786 in Tschw.), Wilking Daniel (born 1791 in Tschw.) 1816 to Bessarabia.  In another place there is named Dormeyer Kaspar, 60 years old, and a Riess Katharina from Saarbruecken.  (Source: Letter exchange with Karl Stumpp. Author of "Die Auswanderung von Deutschland nach Russland...") The list, as it is known thus far, which was published inaccurately in "Unser Tscherwenka" as the list of settlers, was published in 1904 by Rev. Keck, after he found it in the Sombor archives, in his book  "Die Entstehung und Weitere Entwicklung der Reformierte Kirchengemeinde Cservenka von 1784 - 1904" ("The Founding and Further Development of the Reformed Church Community of Tscherwenka from 1784 - 1904").   The list was called:  "Urbarial Tabelle von dem Cameral Orth Cservenka welcher in Jahr 1785 angeliedelt worden" ("The Land and Tax/Deed Table of the Incorporated Town of Tscherwenka which was Settled in the Year 1785").  This list was recorded March 27, 1801, as was evident on the copy of the original. Since it was prepared as to benefit the Lessor (land owner) at the time, it was again divided between farmers and craftsmen, or small-cottagers. Instead of the agreed tenth for taxes, they were again asked for a seventh.  We don't want to expound on the economics of our settlers-one can look at the copy and see that themselves.  Again 351 farmers are mentioned, but this time 164 craftsman and small-cottagers.  In this work we were interested in the recorded families.  Unfortunately, names of those who were residents of Tscherwenka at that time are missing.   But one can recognize those that have died already.  It seems that the names of the previous owners were registered in the book of settlers.  Sons-in-law, who had married into a family, don't appear if they lived with the father-in-law. Besides these residences were the Bethaus (prayer house), the houses of the evangelical and reformed preachers, the evangelical and reformed school master, which were not taxed; the barn owners, the notary's house, the land owner's butcher shop and the land owner's pub.  The assessor, Peter Weidman, was responsible for the accuracy; the list was signed by Josephus Polyak and Arcadius Popovics, Cservenka, March 27, 1801. The next list recovered at the court chamber archives in Vienna was the so- called Liquidations List of December 31, 1802.  In it were the demands for repayment of the advances given to the settlers and their guarantee of repayment, which were already recorded in the lease agreement of 1790. These were for requested seed, additional livestock, tools (aside from the free grant of 50 guilders for craftsmen-see the letter by Kahm).  For example, on May 4, 1788, the following colonists received repayable loans: Adam Burghardt and Philipp Mickl Roth, each 16 guilders for a loom; Friedrich Nehlich and Michael Hunzinger, each 17 guilders for a flax harvesting machine; Balthasar Reiner, 15 guilders for an additional cow; Jakob Fuehrer, 24 guilders for the purchase of leather.  (This document is in MOL Budapest, Impopulationalia 80).  On this list are the families that had died out, those that had fled, and those that could not be found, and thus could not fulfill their obligation.  Here, for the first time, we see a number in the booklet-it was a house number.  At the time of settlement, every settler received this booklet.  This is how one could calculate where the individual lived, because we know that in every straight block were nine houses between intersections with little streets, and each side of the main street had six such intersections. House numbers started at the bottom of Oberen Gasse Winterseite with #1 and continued to the other end.  The last house was #54; on the Sommerseite across the street, they continued back from #55 at the top, down to #108.  On the Ratzengasse, they started at the bottom of Winterseite (by the lower mill) with  #109 and continued to the top end to #162, and so forth.  This list was signed by the judge at the time, August Gresser, and jurors Johann Schmidt, Ludwig Hoffmann and Nikolaus Lotz. This list only contained the names of those settlers who owed money to the government treasury.  Because of the assigned numbers we can tell where each group lived.  Unfortunately, there is not a complete list with house numbers. The last list at our disposal was the tax roll of 1828, "Conscriptio Regnicolaris Possessionis Cservenka".  It is organized according to house numbers.  Here again one can see where the specific taxpayer lived.  The names under Rubrik #1 are hard to read which is why they appear according to number, as well as alphabetically.  #8 are the vineyards; #9 are either apple or plum orchards; #10 are large animals: oxen, cows, heifers, horses;  #11 are sheep, goats;  #12 & 13 are omitted (treed area).  #14 was listed as shops and how long the craftsmen were hired during the year.  Most of them were employed only half the year in their profession.  At harvest time many helped the farmers harvest the wheat, husk the corn, feed the pigs and chickens, so as to earn enough wheat for baking bread the next year.  Aside from them were listed the oil presses and grain mills.  In that year Tscherwenka had 572 registered households.  Dealing with the Hungarian script, one can't be sure if one translated the names correctly.  For example, #572 Jakob Vebl could be interpreted as Webel or Febel. According to the Ahnenpaessen it could be Febel.  #532 Trich Hez is Dietrich Hess.  There are more similar doubts, which, from experience, one has to interpret according to the Ahnenpaessen at hand.  It is not uncommon to make translation errors.  Mistakes can be made.  From this list one can hardly recognize any of the old settlers-mostly their children, even their grandchildren, are recorded-since many settlers, on the average, emigrated at 40 years of age. Unfortunately we have no later sources for our town history.  The description of Tscherwenka in 1859-60 by the town notary, Johann Mikelics, is very plain and has no index of residents' names. (According to r.k. KB Kula, Johann Mikelics was married to Isabella Poor, daughter of the then Reformed Rev. Poor.)  Such reports of all towns in the Batschka, the Banat and most parts of Syrmiens were required by the authorities in Temeschvar at that time and according to a designated format.  From the report we can determine that as of October 31, 1857, Tscherwenka had 749 houses and 7,004 people.  Of them, 4,950 were Lutheran, 1,412 were Reformed, 247 were Roman Catholic, 209 were Jewish, and 186 were other.  In the 1920s these documents were in an archive, but they were removed when the newly founded states of Serbia, Croatia and Slovenia (renamed Yugoslavis in 1930) were formed.  Paper was scarce in the area and butchers wrapped meat and sausages in irreplaceable source material-the former jurisdictions had no interest in them.  Our now dead countryman, Dr. Jakob Greifenstein, remembers how as a young student he read the sausage wrapper with great interest. Finally, it must be mentioned that in the last years, when we were still at home, Tscherwenka was unofficially known as "Rotweil".  The chief editor of our German daily newspaper, "Deutsches Volksblatt", Mr. Jakob Kraemer, gave German names to the towns that had German inhabitants.  He tried to translate the original name into German, but if that was not possible he gave it a German name that was related to its history or geographic location.  Since crveno in Slavic means 'red', Tscherwenka became "Rotweil".  This name was only used in reports in the paper.  The general population did not adopt it. Tscherwenka was and stayed Tscherwinke or, with most older folks, "Scherwinke". All the sources collected in the last decade are full of gaps and can't give the total picture of Tscherwenka.  The only true sources would have been our church records, which were destroyed during the war.  By means of the Ahnenpaesse and other sources, it was possible to trace most of the settlers back to their places of origin.

TSCHERWENKA

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