Reinefeld (Kaneau)

Spelling Variations: 
Reinfeld (Kaneau)
Reinefeld (Kaneau)
Settled in the Following Colonies: 
Discussion & Documentation: 

An article by Hermann Wäschke records the following going to Russia:

Andreas Reinefeld, a carpenter's assistant (Zimmerbursche) from Oranienbaum, left secretly with his wife and three children on 3 March 1766. His house had a debt of 34 Thlr. 14 Gr. and was sold for 68 Thlr (p.85 & p. 86).

He settled in Schwed, Russia, and wrote a letter back to Oranienbaum from there, dated 3 July 1788. This letter appears on pages 98-99 of the Wäschke article, and is signed "Andreas Rennefeld."

"To David Reinefeld - citizen resident in Oranienbaum near Dessau. Greetings in the name of Jesus. Dear siblings and friends. My deepest wish is that you are in good health as you read these few lines, and that you will like me are faithful. It will have been quite a long time before my promise to [write to] you was fulfilled. On this occasion, which has been lacking so far, I feel obliged to tell you how things are going. My first wife, with whom I have 2 sons and 3 daughters, died in 1770. The two sons are also gone for eternity [in heaven]; the 3 daughters are married. On the other hand I got married to our neighbor [in Kaneau] Christian Grassmann's eldest daughter, Maria Rosina, and with her so far had 2 sons and 5 daughters, of which 1 son and 1 daughter also died. The father-in-law Grassmann has been dead for 6 years, the mother-in-law is still alive and is remarried; the brother-in-law Christian and [sister-in-law] Henrietta [Grassmann] are married. As far as my status is concerned, I live in the peasant class, and thank God I have fields, meadows, horses, cows and other cattle as much, yes, more than I can afford, so I have never had any cause to complain about shortages. We also have a church and schools, and we have about an hour to drive to the main church. The place of my home is Svonarevka [Schwed] - live far from the city named Saratov, near where the Big Karaman River joins the Volga. Our journey from Roßlau to our current home took from March 1766 to July 1767. The weather here is very cold in winter and conversely very warm in summer, the fields are fertile, and food is cheap. What was left of my house in Oranienbaum [near Dessau in Germany], I give to you, beloved sibling. Sell it and share the money among you as a proof of my brotherly love, which I still have for my beloved siblings. Incidentally, like my wife and children, greet my father and mother, wherever they live, beloved brothers and sisters, brothers-in-law, fathers and other good friends many thousands of times and recommend you to the care of God, He bless you in body and in God bless your entrance and exit from now on and forever, Farewell, I remain your faithful and well-meaning son, brother, brother-in-law and godfather and friend until my death. [signed] Andreas Rennefeld, Svonarevka [Schwed], July 3rd, 1788. [P.S.] If you write to me again, you have to put an envelope around the letter, but write the address on the cover to Mr. Georg Heinrich Rieger, and hand it in at the H. H. Emmendörfer host in the city of Ansbach in Frankfurt am Main. P.S. I ask you once more that you write to me again with this opportunity and do not miss it, because this H. Rieger, mentioned above, is an authorized representative sent by our highest authorities, and he lives only a quarter of an hour from me."

Andreas Reinefeld, a farmer, wife Sophia, and children (Elisabeth, age 6; Louisa, age 4; Christian, age 2) arrived from Lübeck at the port of Oranienbaum on 4 July 1766 aboard the English frigate Love & Unity under the command of Skipper Thomas Fairfax.

Andreas Rannefeldt [sic], his wife Christiana [sic], and children (Anna Elisab., age 7; Louisa, age 4; Joh. Andreas [born en route]) are recorded on the list of colonists being transported from St. Petersburg to Saratov in 1767.

They settled in the Volga German colony of Kaneau on 7 June 1767 and are recorded there on the 1767 census in Household No. 37.

In 1785, Andreas Reinfeld and his family moved from Kaneau to Schwed.

Andreas Reinefeld from Kaneau and his family are recorded on the 1798 census of Schwed in Household No. Sw22.

The death of Andreas Reinefeld in 1817 is recorded on the 1834 census of Schwed in Household No. 61.

The 1767 census records that Andreas Reinfeld came from the German village of Oranienbaum in the region of Dessau.


- 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): Sw22, Mv1134.
- Mai, Brent Alan and Dona Reeves-Marquardt. German Migration to the Russian Volga (1764-1767) (Lincoln, NE: American Historical Society of Germans from Russia, 2003): #1140.
- Pleve, Igor. Einwanderung in das Wolgagebiet, 1764-1767 Band 2 (Göttingen: Göttinger Arbeitskreis, 2001): 251.
- Pleve, Igor. Lists of Colonists to Russia in 1766: Reports by Ivan Kulberg (Saratov: Saratov State Technical University, 2010): #1251.
- Rauschenbach, Georg. Deutsche Kolonisten auf dem Weg von St. Petersburg nach Saratow: Transportlisten von 1766-1767 (Moscow: G.V. Rauschenbach, 2017): #0516-0520.
- Wäschke, Hermann. "Deutsche Familien in Russland" in Roland, Archiv für Stamm- und Wappenkunde, Jubiläumsschrift, 18 January 1912: 85, 86, 98-99.

Contributor(s) to this page: 

Brent Mai

Karl Becker

Article (May 1766) announcing the public auction of the house and household goods left behind by Andreas Reinefeld after he immigrated to Russia.
Source: Karl Becker.

First page of the letter from Andreas Reinefeld in 1788.
Source: Karl Becker.

Second page of the letter from Andreas Reinefeld in 1788.
Source: Karl Becker.

Pre-Volga Origin

Volga Colonies