The Life and Times of Christoph Geiszler: A German – Russian Pioneer

By Edwin A. Gruneich

Printed by, written in 1986, reprinted in 2012, 91 pages, hardcover.

The Introduction includes the following text: “As a small boy I would see him [Grandfather Christoph Geiszler], frequently. My mother loved to go home, near Ashley, North Dakota, to visit her parents and siblings. Grandfather Geiszler arrived in this country in 1884 and soon caught up in the spirit and confidence of his newly adopted nation”.

“Although Christoph Geiszler is the central figure in our story, the main purpose in telling it is to recount the experiences of a typical German-Russian pioneer. There were literally thousands of German-Russian emigrants from the Russian steppes to the Dakota prairies between 1884-1095 of whom the same story could be told”.

“Christoph Geiszler, to be sure, was a product and parcel of the culture and values system that shaped his philosophy and character, and which he pass on to us as a part of our heritage. It is true he had no formal education, never occupied a position of honor or distinction, he was, nevertheless, a unique person, in his own peculiar way”.

The end of the book includes the Family Chart showing the relationships of five generations beginning with Christoph and Christina Geiszler.

About the author

Rev. Edwin A. Gruneich was born on November 19, 1914, to Gottfired Gruneich and Christian Geiszler on a farm southwest of Kulm, North Dakota. His parents were descendants of Germans who had lived in Russia for several generations before immigrating to the United States in the 1880s. Edwin was the oldest child with three sisters. Edwin grew up helping is parent with the many chores involved with grain farming and farm animals.

Edwin attend a one-room school close to his parent’s farm through the 8th grade but in order to get a high school education he had to leave home. At the age of 18, he move to Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he graduated from the North Central Bible Institute after completing three years of high school studies. He paid for his tuition, board and room by being a custodian for a church.

Edwin received his degree in divinity from the Evangelical Theological Seminary in Naperville, Illinois, and went on to do graduate work at the University of Chicago.

From 1936 to 1977, Edwin served as pastor in various churches in six Midwestern states. In 1939, Rev. Gruneich married Aneta Schindler, a public school teacher and deputy county treasurer, from McClusky, North Dakota. They were married for 61 years and had four children. Rev. Gruneich died on December 6, 2009, at the age of 95.

This book reprint was completed in 2012 by Kyle Geiszler, great-grandson of Christoph Geiszler. If you have additional family information or corrections in the book, contact Kyle Geiszler at More information is available at his person website of

The Life and Times of Christoph Geiszler: A German – Russian Pioneer

$38.00 plus Shipping & Handling

Printable Order Form

Permission to use any images from the GRHC website may be requested by contacting Michael M. Miller