Gnadenfeld (Neu-Moor) Colony

Gnadenfeld was founded in 1855 on the Weisenseite by colonists from the Bergseite colonies of Schilling, Balzer, Dönhof, Grimm, Norka, Schwab, and Moor.

There were Lutheran and Reformed colonists who settled Gnadenfeld, some Baptists also lived there. In the beginning, the colonists worshiped in private homes. A large prayer house (Bethaus) was built in 1871. It served as a school during the week but was used for worship services as well. The locals often called it the church. Eventually a small prayer house was also constructed by the Baptists.

From 1855 to 1865, the colony was served by pastors from the parish of Warenburg. From 1865 to 1882, pastors from Eckheim served those in Gnadenfeld. In 1882, the Lutheran congregation in Gnadenfeld became part of the parish of Brunnental where there was a resident pastor.

The parochial school served as such until the 1917 revolution. Teachers who taught there included Georg Schäfer (1870-1881), Jakob Fritzler (1881-1883), and G. Rose (1885-1913).

In 1910, there were in the colony the prayer house, the parish school, and two windmills.

On 13 May 1933, the prayer house was officially closed by the Soviet authorities and all religious functions in the former colony ended.

Today, what remains of the former Volga German settlement of Gnadenfeld is known as Kirovo.

Possible Family names from Dönhof are: Eichhorn, Hess, Keller, Meier, Wagner, etc.

(Some of this information was taken from the Volga German Institute website. See their site for more information.)

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