10 November 2016

Sonderkarte vom Terek-Gebeit

The Stumpp map for the Caucasus colonies included an interesting area labeled Sonderkarte vom Terek-Gebeit, or special map of the Terek region. The Terek region was an oblast of the Russian Empire in northeastern Caucasus that existed between 1860 and 1920.  
Source: Map of the German Settlements in the
North and South Caucasus, by Karl Stumpp 

Between 1900 and 1903, 17 Mennonite colonies were founded in this area close together and were considered a closed German settlement area, according to the German-Russian Handbook.  At least one of the colonies was established by residents of the Molotschna Mother colony Halbstadt.  It's possible that the other villages in this area were settled by sons from other German-Russian Mennonite colonies.   The colonies were both numbered and named.  
  1. Wanderloo
  2. Chartsch
  3. Talma
  4. Konstantinowka
  5. Sulak
  6. Alexandrowka
  7. Marianowka
  8. Rohrbach
  9. Nikolaevka
  10. Müdelburg
  11. Pretoria
  12. Ostheim
  13. Taranowka
  14. Kamyschljak
  15. Kaplan* - Founded in 1901, abandoned by 1913.
  16. Agrarkhan* - Founded in 1901, but original site was never settled.
  17. Aktasch* - Founded 1903, but original site was never settled.
* not on Germans from Russia Settlement Locations map, defunct very early on

Many of the colonies had problems farming due to unfavorable conditions in the area, and most had only a percentage of farms operating at any time, anywhere from a 25-75%.  Colonies 16 and 17 had such adverse conditions that although founded, they were never settled.  

Between 1917-1919 during the Russian Revolution and Russian Civil War, many of these (and other) village residents fled their homes.  They returned between 1921-1923 after the war, only to abandon these villages again in 1925 after Stalin assumed power.  Some immigrated at that point to Western Canada. 

Location of Terek-Gebeit colonies.

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