Friday, September 14, 2018

Elizabeth Kölsch 1827 - 1902

The 1880 Federal Census and the 1885 Nebraska census says she was born in Baden, Germany, The Federal Census says her parents were born in Baden, Germany. Baden is an area not a town. Baden-Baden is a town. Philipp is number 19. 

According to the Zion Evangelical Church in Falls City, Nebraska (see document below)  records" Elizabette Koelsch” (number 37) was born May 11, 1827. This name may have been difficult to pronounce so she probably changed it to Kolsch or Kelch. Some of the words on the document are written in German others in latin. 

Look at the words to the left of her birthdate. According to the German expert of 40 years, the first word is Rheinland, the second is unknown but is  not the name of a city because it isn’t capitalized and the third word is Deutschland or Germany. Rheinland is a principality or a county to us. There are many cities or villages there. It is located North west from Graben.
What do we know about Elisabeth Kölsch?
1. She probably was born in Rheinbaiern, Germany near Pirmasens, Neustadt (church death record in Arago, NE)
2. Elisabeth Költsch 11 May 1827- 7 Dec 1902 (her grave marker)
3. She immigrated when about 18 in 1844, (1900 census) 
4. She married about 1848 in NYC when she was 22.
5. Her last child Josephine was born in 1865 in NYC.

Ulrich Neitzel: Hello Kent,
The first part of the location name is most probably "Rhein". The second part looks like "hai__n" or "bai__n". I cannot find any village or city that fits. However, it could be "Rheinbaiern" (or "Rheinbayern") the historic region now called "Pfalz" (Palatinate), see This area is situated on the left (western) bank of the river Rhein, adjoining Baden near Karlsruhe and Graben. The province was under Bavarian rule after the Congress of Vienna (1815/16) until the end of WWII.
Note that there are several clusters of the name Kölsch (without "t") in that region, e.g. near Pirmasens, Neustadt, and the Moselle river (

Kent:We do not have Elizabeth's birth certificate but her church records in Arago, Nebraska say:

Serra: To clarify, no, I searched Meyers for a possible town with the spelling close to "eiern". Rheinbaiern (or Rheinbayern after 1825) is a province and would not be found in the towns and villages in Meyers. On your document the "l" at the end of "Rheinl" looked identical to the "l" at the end of "deutschl". I concluded that the letters in between could be a separate place name, even though the first letter was not capitalized because the "d" in "deutschl" was also not capitalized. When I didn't find anything, I then thought it must be one word--Rheinbaiern.

From the FS Community
, 2022

I see why you have spent time in the German Community! Thank you for sending the link to your website. I have a German line of my own, but unfortunately in a place where all the documents were destroyed. ☹ However, I have logged many hours helping others read German records.'s my take on your Elisabeth Kolsch birthplace:

In looking at how the scribe wrote other place names on the page, "Rheinbeyern" is at the top. It's likely that it was a different person who wrote Elisabeth's entry as "Rheinbaiern". The first one uses no Kurrent German script and Elisabeth's is written all in old German. When I first looked at it, I saw clearly three words: Rheinl (standard abbreviation for Rheinland), eiern?, and Deutschl (standard abbreviation for Deutschland). However, I could find no town name anywhere close to "eiern" in Meyers Gazette, so I'm thinking you are probably right with "Rheinbaiern". 

Here is the link to Meyers, if you don't have it. Search with just the first two letters followed by a wild card (*), then scroll through the possibilities.

Thomas Fox: 
My best guess is that it was meant to be Rheinland-Pfalz. There are 3 words. Rheinland, then the P is difficult to recognize because the person just wrote it badly. I believe that first letter is a P regardless. But the end is really looking like a l and z. The other alternative of the combined wording is Rheinland-Palatinate. The 3rd word is an abbreviation of a sort. If it is part of the 2nd word, i.e. Palatinate, then it is written this way because it is squeezed in between and shortened, or the the end 3 letters mean either born or died also abreviated. I would have to spend more time on it. It is just badly written. The writer didn't know how to write it correctly. Rheinland, the word was already misspelled. He/she like wrote Rheinlannd, or something like that. And that was maybe because of poor education or foreign language. What is the context of the document, that information would help me to better identify the meaning of it all and whether there are 2 words parts to the city or 3, 2 for the city and 1 something else or 2 parts for Rheinland-Palatinate. Look up Pfalz and Palatinate on google. To be continued... Think about these options. As you look at the line on Elizabeth, after Philipp Scholl’s name it says “sel) which means righteous person according to the German expert. At the far end of the line is a term which means, “died of old age.” It looks to me like Philipp (number 19) died for the same reason.

History of Rhineland:
After Napoleon’s downfall, the Congress of Vienna (1814–15) limited France’s frontier on the Rhine to the Alsatian zone again. North of Alsace a new Palatinate was constituted for Bavaria. Northwest of the Palatinate were some little exclaves of other German states; but north of these the whole left (west) bank as far as Kleve, together with Jülich and Aachen in the west and Trier and Saarlouis in the south, became Prussian. This Prussian territory was united with Prussia’s adjacent possessions on the Rhine’s right bank to form the Rhine Province in 1824. Prussia annexed Nassau and Meisenheim after the Seven Weeks’ War of 1866 and Alsace-Lorraine after the Franco-German War of 1870–71. The Rhineland became the most prosperous area of Germany, the Prussian north in particular being highly industrialized.

If she came in 1844 as the 1900 census says, she was only 17 and may have come with her parents. 
The following people came from Graben and attended Zion's Evangelical Church with Philipp Scholl and Elisabeth Kölsch:
1.  Margarethe Trefzer b Graben, baden 13 April 1813 d Arage Pct, NE 10 Sep 1884; married Michael Roth
2.  Heinrich Ebel b Graben Baden 5 Feb 1844; died Rulo, Richardson Co NE 13 Dec 1911; bur Arage PLct NE 17 Dec 1911 married Elisabeth Kohler
3.  Wilhelm Becker b Graben, Baden  19 Sep 1819 d Arago Pct, Ne 15 Jan 1892; bur Arago Pct 17 Jan 1892; m Elisabetha
4.  Philipp Zimmermann b Graben Baden 24 Aug 1855; d Falls City NE 27 Jan 1920; bur Arago Pct NE 29 Jan 1920 married Mina
5. Maria Elisabeth Zimmermann b Graben, Baden 26 May 1856; d Falls Cigty NE 18 Aug 1921; bur Arago Pct Ne 21 Aug 1921m Fred Reschke

Death and birth record for Philipp and Elizabeth from Zion's Evangelical Church (Luthern):

There is some evidence that Elizabeth Kolsch (German Spelling) or Kelsch (English spelling) was born in Rheinbayern, Prussia. Rheinbayern is a cultural area, sometimes referred to as Pfalz.  The Kingdom of Bavaria had a large central area with an unattached area to the west called the Pfalz. Bavaria was under Prussian rule in the middle of the 19th century.
In 1835, King Ludwig I of Bavaria's romantic outlook gave rise to the adoption of new names for the administrative districts of Bavaria by a system of historical allusion. As such, the Rheinkreis officially became the Pfalz (Palatinate). The historic Electorate of the Palatinate was on both sides of the Rhine with Heidelberg and Mannheim as its capitals on the eastern side, whereas the new "Palatinate" established in 1815/16 was solely on the left bank of the Rhine. It included territories that were never part of the historical Palatinate (e.g., territories of the former Bishopric of Speyer, the imperial city of Speyer or Kirchheimbolanden, which had formerly belonged to the Weilburg branch of Nassau). To avoid confusion of the new Palatinate and the former one (and with the Upper Palatinate), the name Rhenish Palatinate (Rheinpfalz) became common and is still used today, but was never made its official name. Another term, that of Rhenish Bavaria (Rheinbayern), though used occasionally, never gained great currency, but can, nonetheless, be found sometimes on older maps. Wikipedia 

1. Kingdom of Prussia in purple
2. Kingdom of Bavaria in green 
3. Kingdom of Saxony
4. Kingdom of Württemberg in yellow
5. Grand Duchy of Baden in brown

1880 federal census:

1885 Nebraska census:
Internet: Baden, former state on the east bank of the Rhine River in the southwestern corner of Germany, now the western part of the Baden-Württemberg Land (state) of Germany. The former Baden state comprised the eastern half of the Rhine River valley together with the adjoining mountains, especially the Black Forest (Schwarzwald), which fills the great angle made by the river between Schaffhausen and Strasbourg.

Notes from FamilySearch:
For German Research, You Must Know Your Ancestors' Town
  • To begin using the records of Germany, knowing that your family came from Baden-Württemberg will not be enough to use the records of Germany. Records are kept on the local level, so you will have to know the town they lived in.
  • Historically, Baden and Württemberg were two separate states or countries.
  • Details about the town will also help:
    • the county of that town, called "Amt" in Baden and "Oberamt" in Württemberg. (NOTE:Württemberg is also divided into regions called "Kreise", which should not be confused with a "Kreis" in other states where it represents the "county" level of jurisdiction.)
    • where the closest Evangelical Lutheran or Catholic parish church was (depending on their religion),
    • where the civil registration office ("Standesamt") was, and
    • if you have only a village name, you will need the name of the larger town to which it belonged.

1860 NYC Census:

By 1870 he moved his family to Arago, NE, became a farmer and raised his children in a rural environment mainly populated by immigrant Germans.

1870 census:

1880 census, says Elizabeth was born in Baden Germany. 

1885 Nebraska Census:

Baden-Württemberg is a state in southwest Germany bordering France and Switzerland. The Black Forest, known for its evergreen scenery and traditional villages, lies in the mountainous southwest.

1900 census

Close up of 1900 census: 


Elizabeth Kelch
Question: What last name should be used for Elisabeth in FamilySearch and the George Scholl book—Kelsh or Kelch or Költsch or Kolsch?
1. FamilySearch says:
In the Vitals section, enter the person’s birth name or complete legal name.
Maiden and married names—If a woman changed her surname after marriage, use her maiden name.
Legal name changes—If a person changed his or her name legally (other than surname changes after marriage), enter the newer legal name.
2. Marriage records of 4 of Elisabeth’s children give their mother’s maiden name as: Kelsh (3), Kelch (1) and Waker (1).
3. 1897
Zion’s German Evangelical Parish Record, Arago Precinct, Richardson Co, Nebraska, Register 1, Series 1, Vol. 1, 1886-1926, pg. 176
No. 19 Philipp Scholl buried 2 Feb. 1897, gives his wife as Elisab. Költsch
No. 37 is Elisabeth’s buried 9 Dec. 1902
4. 1897
Zion’s Evangelical Lutheran Church, Arago Precinct, Richardson Co., Nebraska, NEHS Microfilm No. 316, compiled by Rachel Hoover and Roger P. Minert.
Philip Scholl b. Karlsruhe, Baden 12 Feb 1825; d, Arago Pct. NE 31 Jan 1897; bur. Arago Pcgt. 2 Feb 1897; m Elisabeth Költsch. Ref. pg. 176-177
5. Between 1961 and 1981 Family Tree Philipp Scholl, Elizabeth Kolsch
Family genealogy compiled by Fred and Gus Scholl, and “relatives in Falls City, Nebraska.”
Geogen shows distribution of surnames in Germany and where they lived:
Kelsh 0
Kelch 865
Költsch 51
Kolsch 118
Koelsch 1,415

7. 1972, March 1
Audrey Kroksh’s researcher, Herbert Büssenschütt said in his letter:
“We are still searching to find out where Elisabeth Kelch (or similar) was born 11 Mary 1828 (or1827). Most times the name is written Kölsch, but as yet we did not find Elisabeth in Alsace.”
1. ‘Kelch’ is probably an Americanization of the maiden name.
2. “Kölsch” is another name to research as given by the German researcher, Herbert Büssenschütt (see Audrey’s Information). This is also the name (excluding the umlaut over the o) that Gus and Fred Scholl and “relatives in Falls City, Nebraska” gave as Elisabeth’s maiden name.
3. “Költsch” The name written in the Zion’s German Evangelical Parish Record would be the most correct because it was written by a German at a time Elisabeth was still alive and a member of the congregation.
This is also the name typed into the Zion’s German Evangelical Parish Record (which came from the Parish Record).

Zion Evangelical Church burial record for Elizabeh Kolch     

Ulrich Neitzel: Hello Kent,
the first part of the location name is most probably "Rhein". The second part looks like "hai__n" or "bai__n". I cannot find any village or city that fits. However, it could be "Rheinbaiern" (or "Rheinbayern") the historic region now called "Pfalz" (Palatinate), see This area is situated on the left (western) bank of the river Rhein, adjoining Baden near Karlsruhe and Graben. The province was under Bavarian rule after the Congress of Vienna (1815/16) until the end of WWII.
Note that there are several clusters of the name Kölsch (without "t") in that region, e.g. near Pirmasens, Neustadt, and the Moselle river (
Elisabetha Kolsch  birth in Trulben, Rheinland-Pfalz film 008110750 page 44
Translation by Robert Seal from the Latin:
In the year 1827, on the 27th day of July Elisabetha was born, legitimate daughter of Christoph Kölsch and Magdalena Mistler, married couple from Kroeppen [Kröppen], and was baptized the next day. Godparents were Christoph Reber? and Elisabetha Mistler, both from Kroeppen [Kröppen].
[The father, godfather, and priest sign the record.]
Right margin: Elisabetha Kölsch.
Comment: Here is the link for Kröppen from Meyers Gazetteer: Kröppen is approximately one mile north of Trulben.
vol 6 below


Elisabeth Kolsch mentioned in Fischelbach film 102627670 page 326
Translation by Robert Seal:
Number: 10.
Baptismal name of child: Elisabethe.
Month and day of birth: 3 May [1827].
Hour of birth: 10:00 am.
Legitimate/Illegitimate: illegitimate.
Father: Johannes, son of Johannes Anzion from Hainchen, ___ _______, declared himself verbally and in writing as the father of this child on May 7th (_____ 1826, no. 13).
Mother: Anne Barbara, daughter of the deceased Johannes Hatzig from Sohl.
Residence: the child was born at Sohl.
Day of baptism: 6? May [1827].
Baptizing cleric: Fr. Chr. E. Pagel?, pastor.
Baptismal witnesses: (1) Elisabethe, daughter of Eckhard Kölsch from Sohl.
Comment: Here are the links from Meyers Gazetteer for the two places named in this record: