Last week I met some distant Rueck cousins on the Internet and we shared some Rueck information and photos. These cousins descend from Friedrich Rueck, the brother of my great-grandmother Christine (Rueck) Miller. They were both children of Jacob and Maria (Gross) Rueck.
I decided to look through my Rueck information again. I have quite a few unfinished notes in this family line.
Jacob Rueck was born 24 December 1828 in Appensee, in the governing district of Crailsheim, Württemberg. Maria Regina Gross was born 22 July 1833 in Hassfelden, Württemberg. They married 19 June 1855.
The couple had the following children: Johann George (1856-1925), Jacob Jr. (1857-1935), Christina (1858-1945), Johann “Friedrich” (1860-1924), Michael (1862-1862), Margaretta (1863-1864), Johannes (1865-1865), Catherina (1866-1955), David (1868-1956), Regina (1870-1951), Carl (1872-1933), and Caroline Rosina (1874-1875).
Four of their twelve children died in infancy in Germany but the rest of the children immigrated to America.
Jacob and his wife and children probably immigrated together. We believe they arrived in New York in 1880. However, Jacob Jr. gave 1881 as his date of immigration when he was enumerated in the 1900 census. He may have come to America a year later than the rest of the family. If the Ruecks had only immigrated a year or two earlier they would have been enumerated in the 1880 census. As it is, I have not found them in this census.
By 1881 the Jacob Rueck family had settled in Van Wert County, Ohio. Jacob purchased 120 acres of farmland east of the village of Willshire, in Willshire Township. His farm was between Willshire and the Schumm settlement.
It was probably no coincidence that the Ruecks settled in the Schumm area. Most immigrants moved to where relatives or friends from the old country had already settled. The Schumms were from Ruppertshoffen and the towns of Appensee and Hassfleden are only a few miles away. New immigrants probably knew where the German Lutheran settlements were in the new country. Maybe they knew someone who knew someone that had already settled in the area.
On 7 March 1881 Jacob Rueck purchased the 120 acres from Johnson Nye for $4500. He purchased the southwest quarter of the southwest quarter of Section 28 which consisted of 40 acres. The other parcel of land was the west half of the northwest fraction of the northwest quarter of Section 33. It was between the above southwest quarter of the southwest quarter of Section 28 and the St. Marys River and consisted of about 80 acres. (Van Wert County Recorder’s Office, Deeds, Vol. 16, p. 513-14)
Below is part of an 1872 Map of Willshire Township. I have outlined in red the property that Jacob Rueck once owned.
The parcels are just a couple miles east of Willshire. What is now State Route 81 cuts through the north part of the farm.
Three years later, on 3 October 1884, Jacob sold his 120 acres to Martin Schinnerer for $4500. (Van Wert County Recorder’s Office, Deeds, Vol. 26:130-131) There were two Martin Schinnerers at that time but this was probably the brother of my great-great-grandfather, Friedrich Schinnerer. It is a small world.
It was during this brief time when the Ruecks lived near Willshire that Christine learned to quilt from the Schumms. (See my blog “Family Quilts” for a story about this.)
While living in the Willshire/Schumm area the Ruecks attended Zion Lutheran Church at Schumm. According to the records at Zion two of Jacob’s children were confirmed at Zion. David Rueck was confirmed on Palm Sunday, April 1882 and Regina Christine Rueck was confirmed on Palm Sunday, April 1884.
Confirmation age was about 14 years and both of them would have about 14 years old at the time. Unfortunately I do not have copies of Zion’s communion records. They would probably give a good indication of when the Ruecks arrived in the area, what family members were here and when they left the area.
Also in the records at Zion, Schumm: Jacob Miller, a widower from Mercer County, married Christine Rueck, of Zion’s parish, on 9 November 1882 at the home of the bride’s parents. Jacob would have lived about seven or eight miles from the Rueck home. I wonder how he and Christine met? It also appears that they married before the rest of Christine’s family moved out west.
After Jacob Rueck sold his farm to Martin Schinnerer everyone in the family but Christine moved westward. Christine stayed in Ohio because she had married Jacob Miller. They lived about two miles north of Chattanooga.
Where did Christine Rueck Miller’s parents and siblings move? To be continued…