Pfeif(f)er (Kolb)

Spelling Variations: 
Pfeifer (Kolb)
Pfeiffer (Kolb)
Пфейферъ (Kolb)
Settled in the Following Colonies: 
Discussion & Documentation: 

Johann Georg Peiper [sic] & Anna Catharina Fries were married 6 May 1751 in Bruchköbel near Hanau. He had been baptized in Bruchköbel on 4 March 1723. She had been born in neighboring Niederrodenbach on 5 December 1719.

They had the following children, each born in Bruchköbel: (1) Anna, born 24 February 1752; (2) Johannes, born 4 October 1755; and (3) Jakob, born 5 April 1758.

Georg Pfeifer, a farmer, his wife Katharina, and children (Anna, age 14; Johann, age 12; Jakob, age 8) arrived from Lübeck at the port of Oranienbaum on 18 June 1766 aboard the ship Die Perle under the command of Skipper Thomson.

The surving children settled in the Volga German colony of Kolb on 13 May 1767 and are recorded there on the 1767 census in Household No. 1 (Anna Maria, age 14) and No. 18 (Johannes, age 12). [This Johannes, age 12, is not included in the 1767 census translation that was published by Igor Plehve, but he is on the original.]

Daughter Anna Maria Pfeifer is recorded on the 1798 census of Kolb in Household No. Ko01 as the wife of Georg Meier.

Johannes Pfeiffer, a cobbler, married Helena Kroh. The births of four of their children are recorded in Hussenbach: (1) Johannes, born 3 November 1772; (2) Johann Georg, born 14 April 1775; (3) Johanna Margaretha, born 20 February 1783; and (4) Katharina, born 11 December 1784.

Mother Helena Pfeiffer née Kroh died in 1785 in Hussenbach. Johannes Pfeiffer (senior) remarried to widow Anna Maria Jäger. She had a son (Johannes Geiger, born in 1779) from a previous marriage.

Johannes Pfeiffer (senior) received his first passport to travel to Sarepta on 25 June 1787. He arrived in Sarepta with both sons on 7 October 1787. The two sons were accepted into the Moravian community of Sarepta. Johannes Pfeiffer (senior) then returned to Hussenbach. Two years later, he received his second passport on 24 September 1789 to return to Sarepta where he arrived on 1 November 1789 along with his two daughters, his second wife, and her son.

The Moravian congregation in the Sarepta had strict rules that everyone had to follow, and his second wife Anna Maria could not cope with them, so she and Johannes (senior) had to leave Sarepta. Johannes Pfeiffer (junior) had the same problem and also had to leave Sarepta.

Johannes Pfeiffer (senior), his wife Anna Maria, and Johannes (junior) moved to the colony of Bauer. Johannes Pfeiffer Senior was a believer. Anna Maria, however, left her husband. Johannes (senior) also argued with Johannes (junior). Johannes Pfeiffer (senior) wrote about his difficulties in his last letter dated 9 October 1797:

“...An der Leibeshütte ist es etwas schwer für mich, weil der Frau Pflege nicht mehr ist, und der Sohn es noch schlechter macht als die Frau, ist zu manchen Zeiten sehr schwer für mich, weil die Mutter fort ist. Jetzt will er heiraten und mein bisschen Sagen an sich ziehen, wo ich das nicht tun will er auch fordert, weil ich das nicht kann und tue, so ist er so erbittert auf mich, dass er auch kein Wort mit mir manchmal in 8 Tagen spricht..."

Johannes Pfeifer (senior) died in November 1797 in Bauer. Pastor Seifferth recorded the death in the parish register of Grimm on 28 November 1797: "… der alte Bruder Johannes Pfeiffer in Karamyschevka treu freigegangen" ["... the old brother Johannes Pfeiffer in Bauer loyally released"].


- Mai, Brent Alan. 1798 Census of the German Colonies along the Volga: Economy, Population, and Agriculture (Lincoln, NE: American Historical Society of Germans from Russia, 1999): Ko01, Mv1054.
- Parish records of Bruchköbel.
- Parish register of Grimm (including Bauer).
- Parish register of Hussenbach.
- Parish register of Sarepta.
- Pleve, Igor. Einwanderung in das Wolgagebiet, 1764-1767 Band 2 (Göttingen: Göttinger Arbeitskreis, 2001): 385.
- Pleve, Igor. Lists of Colonists to Russia in 1766: Reports by Ivan Kulberg (Saratov: Saratov State Technical University, 2010): #1017.
- Rauschenbach, Georg. Deutsche Kolonisten auf dem Weg von St. Petersburg nach Saratow: Transportlisten von 1766-1767 (Moscow: G.V. Rauschenbach, 2017): #0425.

Contributor(s) to this page: 

Karl Becker

Maggie Hein

Brent Mai

Immigrated to the following locations: 

Entry on the 1767 census of Kolb (Household No. 18) recording Johannes Pfeiffer, age 12, son of the deceased Georg Pfeiffer. This entry is not recorded in the 1767 census published by Igor Plehve.
Source: Karl Becker.

Signature of Johannes Pfeiffer on a document dated 20 June 1788.
Source: Karl Becker.

Pre-Volga Origin

Volga Colonies

Immigration Locations