24 June 2017

On This Day, 24 June 1767...or maybe 1764...or possibly 1776...

Location of Semenovka on
Karte der deutschen /Siedlungen im Wolgagebiet
(Map of German settlements in the Volga region, AHSGR map #6)
Sources do not agree on the year Semenovka (Röthling) was founded.

Several of them indicate that Semenovka, a Catholic Mother colony, was founded on 24 June 1767.   Others state it was founded as early as 1764,  or as late as 1776.  One cites it as the first colony in the Kamenka district, settled around the same time as Galka, which was founded 12 August 1764.  But there is also a dispute on the year Galka was founded, too.   But most agree on the year 1764.  Other early colonies settled in the Kamenka district were Dobrinka (29 June 1764) and Volmer (18 July 1764...or possibly 1766).

In the 1767 population records, 43 households were recorded with a total of 144 colonists, 73 male and 68 female.  There was a cooperative store, an agriculture kolkhoz founded with loans, a school with grades 1 through 4, a reading room, and it was the soviet seat as of 1926.

Plat map of Semenovka, courtesy of AHSGR.  The creation date is unknown, but the agency which produced it,
Main Department of Geodesy and Cartography under the USSR Council of Ministers
(Главное управление геодезии и картографии при Совете министров СССР), existed between 1967 and 1991.

A partly cloudy day in the  Volga colony Semenovka,
which still goes by the same name today.  

Learn More: 
Center for Volga German Studies - Semenovka
Volga German Institute - Semenovka
Wolgadeutsche (History of the Volga Germans) - Semyonovka

2017 marks the 250th anniversary of the founding of the Mother colonies along the Volga River. There are many events throughout the year to commemorate the anniversary, and the Germans from 
Russia Settlement Locations project joins in the celebration of this rich Volga German heritage.  

The German immigrants that came to the Volga region were among first colonists to take up Catherine the Great on her manifesto. They came from Hesse, the Rhineland, the Palatinate and Württemberg.  They are also among the most well researched and documented groups of German colonists in Russia. Thus far, the Volga Mother colonies settled between 1764 and 1767 are the only colonies that have precise dates they were settled.  

For more historical and current events related to Germans from Russia, see our calendar page or link to our public Google calendar.

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