52 Ancestors #34 Samuel Frederich Schneiter, A Miner in Farm Country

Samuel Frederich Schneiter (1835-1902)

Samuel Schneiter, my husband Kenneth Ross Badertscher’s 2nd great grandfather, made the same journey that so many of Ken’s ancestors made–from Switzerland to the dairy farm country of Ohio. But unlike most of his contemporaries, Samuel worked in coal mines in Tuscarawas County, Ohio instead of making cheese and butter on a dairy farm.

Here’s a map showing the Ohio Counties where most of the Swiss immigrants in Ken’s family tree settled–Tuscarawas, Wayne and Holmes; and coincidentally, also Holmes and Coschocton counties where my own ancestors mostly settled.

Ohio Counties

Ohio Counties Labeled, from Wikimedia Commons

Had he made Swiss cheese, Samuel would have fit neatly into the suggested theme for this week’s 52 Ancestor challenge–non-population census.  I have used those non-population census reports that give information on farms and industry among other things in the past. I dipped into them liberally while I was exploring my mother’s roots, [revised] but the one record I found for a Frederick Stucky, was not the right age or the right county.

[revised]So I have not much on Ken’s great-grandmother Ida Schneiter Stucky‘s father, Samuel Schneiter. (Ida and Fred were the parents of Ken’s grandmother, Helen Stucky, who I have also written about.)

Even a small amount of information about a female line of any family is exciting, however.

Here’s what I know thus far about Ida Schneiter Stucky’s father.  He was born in a small town called Steffisburg in the District of Thun, Region of Bern, in Switzerland in 1835. He was baptized in Thun.

When he was twenty-three, he married Anna Barbara Müller in Switzerland, and they had seven children, three of whom died before they made the voyage to American in 1869.  Four children, ages 2, 3, 7,  and 10 came with them on the journey, including Ken’s great-grandmother, Ida, Schneiter (Stucky) who was the youngest.

Among the things they had to get used to in the new country was the fact that Englishers (as the Swiss called anyone who spoke native English) sometimes insisted on spelling their name Schneider or Snyder instead of Schneiter.

As far as I can tell, they were missed by the 1870 census, perhaps enroute to their new home in Tuscarawas County, Ohio.  But I have no proof as to where they were between 1869 and 1880. I do know that they kept producing offspring, two sons and a daughter between 1870 and 1877. However, the two younger children died in childhood, so by the 1900 census, they had five living children. Samuel became a United States citizen in 1883.

One family tree on the Internet says that Samuel was a miller and baker in Switzerland, but I have no proof of that. At any rate, he took a job in the coal mines of Warwick Township,  Tuscarawas County. Since there was no coal mining in the area he came from in Switzerland, this tells me that he was willing to work at any job, even the back-breaking work of mining, in order to provide for his growing family.

I have to assume, also, that Samuel’s desire was to live a life more like the one he lived in Switzerland in dairy farming country, because by 1900, when he and his wife were in their sixties, they owned a farm in Goshen Township, next to Warwick Township where they had lived previously in Tuscarawas County.

Tuscarawas County, Ohio

Townships in Tuscarawas County, Ohio, showing Warwick County where the Schneiters first lived, Goshen County where they lived in 1900 and New Philadelphia, where they are buried. York County, on the left, is where Ida Schneiter later lived with her husband Frederick Stucky.

I hope that Samuel was able to buy and enjoy that farm much earlier than 1900, but I have not checked the property records.  At any rate, two years after that census, Samuel and Anna had moved to the county seat of New Philadelphia where he died at 67 years old. Samuel was buried in the East Fair Street Cemetery in New Philadelphia. He was buried beside a son and daughter who died before him, and when Anna passed away ten years later, she joined him under this lovely tombstone.

Schneiter Tomstone

Schneiter Family tombstone in New Philadelphia, Ohio

How Ken is Related

  • Kenneth Ross Badertscher is the son of
  • Agnes Bair Badertscher, who is the daughter of
  • Helen Stucky Bair, who is the daughter of
  • Ida Schneiter Stucky, who is the daughter of
  • Samuel Frederich Schneiter

Notes on Research

United States Federal Census 1880, Warwick Township, Tuscarawas County, Ohio; 1900, Goshen Township, Tuscarawas County, Ohio.

Swiss Birth and Marriage Records

Find a Grave.com


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