Ernest E. Zeiszler

Ernest E. Zeiszler Collection:


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The Germans from Russia Heritage Collection (GRHC) became beneficiary of this historically significant donation (documenting ethnic Germans of Southern Crimea) upon the bequest of the estate of Ernest E. Zeiszler from Hazen, Mercer County, North Dakota.

Documenting ethnic German extended families of southern Crimea with Wuerttemberg, Germany origins: Swabian heritage. Friederich Zeiszler/Zeissler (born 1776) and his wife Maria (born 1787), with two sons, Georg (born 1806) and Frederich (born 1080), [hired hand, Franz Kettinger] emigrated from province of Wuerttemberg in year 1809, with the destinaton of Kronental [Kronenthal], Crimea, South Russia, [Cousin Katherina Zeissler was of thirty-seven colonists to Rosenthal, Crimea.] The difficult ninety-day trek in 1809 was hazardous for approximately eleven hundred trekkers (while Napolean had military conflict against Austria on the upper Danube region). The overland route of 1809 through Saxony, Silesia, Polish Galicia, and Bessarabia caused only healthy travelers to reach their destination of Kronenthal [Kronental], Crimea.

The Zeiszler family lived in Kronenthal [Kronental] from 1809 to 1886 as farmers and the Kaiser family as blacksmiths (wrought iron). Son Heindrich Zeiszler (born 1823) married Maria Kaiser. Grandson Christian Zeiszler (born 1853) married Rosina Guenther from Friedental. Great grandson Michael Zeiszler (born 1880 in Neu Borlak), immigrating in 1886 to Freeman, Hutchinson County, Dakota Territory.

In 1887, Christian Zeiszler and family with a caravan of thirty wagons (with future grand step-father John Suess, Sr.) trekked from Scotland, Dakota Territory, via Mandan and Hebron to north of Stanton in Mercer County, northwestern North Dakota. Michael Zeiszler homesteaded near Mannhaven and later established a mercantile business in 1899 at Expansion, North Dakota, supported by forty eight families with origins in Kronenthal [Kronental], Kasmer, and Neusatz, southern Crimea region.

Michael Zeiszler married Helena Bohrer, in 1898. Later as a widower, he married Helena Sailer.

Colonist families to Mercer County in 1886 and 1887 were:
• First caravan in 1886:
Daniel Schimke, Wilhelm Priebe (both origins of Egenheim), John Suess, Sr., Wilhelm Richter, Robert Lauf, Daniel Isaac, David Isaac, Gottlieb Isaac (Heinemeyer and Charles Eger were earlier.)
• Second caravan in 1887:
Adolf, Buckfinck, Bohrer, Ellwein, Kuch, Krause, Kruckenberg, Miller, Oster, Radke, Richter, Shell, Schlender, Carl Semmler, Sailer, Schweigert, Tschaekofske, Werner, Weisz, Zeiszler, and Ziemann.
• Third influx after 1887:
Baische, Bauer, Baeszler, Eebele, Fandrich, Froeschle, Goetz, Grosz, Koehler, Link, Lang, Malke, Maas, Miller, Morast, Rahn, Weigum, Weidenmeier and Weidrich.
• These families settled in four townships: 144-85, 144-86, 145-85, 145-86. (Mercer County, North Dakota).

Scope and Content:

Materials in this collection include family histories; family group sheets; pedigree charts; birth, death, marriage, confirmation and citizenship/naturalization certificates; obituaries; news clippings, census information; a few maps, ships’ passenger lists and correspondence. Virtually all images and photos are photocopies. Books cover town and county histories and other family genealogy publications. Publications found are several FEEFHS newsletters and Hazen Alumni directories. One binder holds North Dakota WPA Historical Data Project stories (1937-1938), the survey forms and family group sheets. Zeiszler kept a binder with his LDS microfilm research and larger one with passenger list transcriptions. The collection also has duplicate, support or non-genealogy materials, floppy discs and a record of his book sales and expenses.  

Summary of Contents:
Extended family histories (21 Volumes minus #19 and #20):

Vol. 1 Christian Zeiszler: Hazen, Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 2 Martin Zeiszler, Sr.: Beulah, Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 3 Frederick Zeiszler: Golden Valley, Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 4 Bernhardt Zeiszler: Butte, Boyd County, Nebraska
Vol. 5 Vallentine Zeiszler: Butte, Boyd County, Nebraska
Vol. 6 Gertrude Zeiszler Koehler: Hazen, Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 7 Daniel Zeiszler: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Vol. 8 Katherine “Zeissler” Wegerle: Hazen, Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 9 Bohrer-Schamber: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 10 John Ellwein, Sr.: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 11 Guenthner-Weisz: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 12 Lenhardt Herrmann: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 13 Christoff Knecht: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 14 Peter Sailer: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 15 Johannes Walz: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 16 Phillip Weigum: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 17 Adolf Schlender: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 18 Karl Reiner: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 19 None
Vol. 20 None
Vol. 21 Andreas Sailer: Mannhaven, Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 22 Andrew Sailer: Beulah, Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 23 Mathies Sailer: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 24 Christian Sailer: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 25 William Bieloh: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 26 Benjamin Oster: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 27 Neuberger: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 28 Roemmich: McIntosh County, North Dakota
Vol. 29 Konrad Weidner: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 30 Jacob Heib: Sheridan and Wells Counties, North Dakota
Vol. 31 None
Vol. 32 Daniel Fandrich: Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 33 Anton DeWald: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Vol. 34 Christoph Timaeus (year 1637): Kassel, Hesse, Germany
Axel Stenstrom = Axel Storm [Swedish], Manitoba and California
Vol. 35 Adam Hoffman (son of Joseph Morast/Hoffman): Kronenthal, Crimea to Mercer County, North Dakota
Vol. 36 Clifford Wright [English]/Ringel: Montpelier, Idaho.
Vol. 37 None
Vol. 38 Fern Bieloh/Stetson (wife of Ernest Zeiszler): Bismarck, Burleigh County, North Dakota
Vol. 39 Stetson (Clarence Bieloh): (origins of Plymouth county, Massachusetts, but born in Maine) Center, Oliver County, North Dakota
Vol. 40 Ward: (Boston, Lincolnshire, England/Montreal, Quebec, Canada/ Crawford County, Wisconsin) Hettinger County and Burleigh County, North Dakota


The following information has been entered verbatim, as received, from material of Ernest E. Zeiszler. Given the discrepancies that can contribute to error in interpreting genealogical records and other documents, no one can guarantee their complete accuracy. The Ernest E. Zeiszler collection is offered as a source for those seeking genealogical and family research information. Researchers must use judgment and do their own verification.

1. Access is limited only to Germans from Russia Heritage Collection staff members.

2. Collection is housed in a controlled and restricted area.

3. Browsing or researching of original collection at the NDSU Libraries is not permitted.

4. Requests for information are available as entire files only, as shown in The Ernest E. Zeiszler Collection search engine or printed complete file listing.

5. Copies of any materials from the collection, must be requested with letter only including pre-payment.

Mailing Address:
Germans from Russia Heritage Collection
Ernest E. Zeiszler Collection
NDSU Dept #2080
PO Box 6050
Fargo, ND 58108-6050

Sample Photographs:


Johannes Wegerle Sr., (born in 1856 in Kronenthal [Kronental], Crimea; died in 1921), and wife Katherina Zeiszler, (born in 1858 and died in 1930.) They immigrated to Kronthal [Krontal], Mercer County in 1891, via Hutchinson County, South Dakota. Photo circa 1891.


Founders of Expansion, Mercer County, shipping port on Missouri River, are photographed circa 1910 by H.D. Myers, Washburn, North Dakota:

(Back Row, Left to Right): Ed Kees, Expansion Banker; Michael Zeiszler, postmaster and merchant; August Zeiszler, financer

(Front Row, Left to Right): Gottlieb Bertsch, merchant; and Paul Goetz, financier.


Gertrude Zeiszler Koehler, born in 1847 in Kronenthal [Kronental], Crimea, to parents Friederich "Zeissler" and Christina Burghart, married Daniel Koehler, born in 1844 in Kronenthal [Kronental], Crimea, to his father Johann Koehler.


Daniel Zeiszler, (born in Kronenthal [Kronental], Crimea), and Magdalena Koehler, (born in 1877 in Neusatz or Kronenthal [Kronental] , Crimea), with seven of ten children. Refer to page 165.


Peter Sailer, born in1860 in Bestreck, Crimea, to parents Stephen Sailer(1815-1893) and Lenora Hafner, (later at Kambar, Lesy, and Sochta-er villages in Crimea), died 1946 at Hazen, Mercer County, Peter married in 1884 in Kronenthal [Kronental], Crimea, to wife Margaretha Morast, born 1865 in Meschen, Crimea of affluent parents Gottlieb Morast and Katherine Wiedrich, died in 1955 in Hazen, Mercer County:

With ten of thirteen children: Rosina, Frieda, Emilia, Elizabeth, Gottlieb, Jacob, Rudolph, Regina, George, Helen, and Katherine (married and not present in photo).

Immigrating circa 1906 to Krem, Mercer County, The Peter Sailer family protrait is circa 1912. Refer to page 186. They moved to Hazen in 1924.



Circa 1892, toddler portrait of Peter Sailer, born in 1860 in Bestreck, Crimea, of parents Stephen Sailer(1815-1893) and Lenora Hafner. Peter Sailer became a young orphan circa 1864, and struggles of homeless poverty.


Elizabeth Morast of Kronenthal [Kronental], Crimea, (sister of Margaretha Morast Sailer), Elizabeth's daughter, and Elizabeth's husband Johann Wassel, circa 1884.


Adam Hoffmann and wife Katherina Morast (sister of Margretha Morast Sailer), circa 1884.


Julianz, grandmother's sister and husband ?? Klaus. [Julianz Morast Klaus, sister to Margaretha Morast Sailer]


Anton Bieloh and wife Barbara Kunstatter at Portland, Oregen, later to Beulah, Mercer County.

Bielohlowek family had origins in Peatchow (Bohemia), now Becov village.


Sunday's - "after church" family gathering at Krem, circa 1903.

(Back Row, Left to Right): Regina Schlender, Elizabeth Isaak.

(Second Row, Left to Right): Theresa Schlender, Rosina Neuberger (holding child Ella Neuberger), Catharine Mohl, Mrs. August Isaak, Mr. August Isaak, Jacob Mohl, John Neuberger, Gustave Schlender.

(Third Row, Left to Right): Amanda Neuberger, Hertha Schlender, Emma Isaak, Hilda Mohl, Herbert Mohl, Ervin Mohl, Herb Isaak, Bennie Isaak, Art Isaak, Herb Schlender, Ralph Neuberger, August Neiberger, Bill Schlender, Fred Isaak, Oscar Neuberger, Ann or Frieda Isaak in the baby crib in front.

Facts about Gustave Schlender (Second Row far Right):

  • Gustave Schlender and Christian Zeiszler were half-brothers.
  • Gustave Schlender sponsored Adolf Schlender to immigrate to America; thus, Adolf homesteaded in 1887.
  • Gustave Schlender and wife Theresa Nesper homesteaded in 1893 at Krem.

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