Ewert, Wilhelm (1829-1887)
Wilhelm Ewert, a Mennonite elder and leader, born 23 February 1829 at Stronske, Thorn, Prussia, died 21 June 1887 near Hillsboro, Kansas, was the youngest son of Peter and Maria Ewert. He attended a secondary school in Thorn, and learned carpentry. On 30 May 1854 he married Anna Janz, a daughter of Cornelius and Sarah Janz. Of the 13 children, only six outlived their father.
In 1843 Ewert was baptized by Elder David Adrian of the Obernessau Mennonite Church, which elected him as minister in 1860 and as elder in 1868. When the West Prussian Mennonites were in danger of losing their principle of nonresistance because of the compromise accepted by most of the West Prussians following the order of cabinet of 1867, he was active in finding a country which would honor their convictions. In 1870 he and Peter Dyck visited Russia to investigate settlement possibilities. When they saw that the Mennonites in Russia were confronted by the same problem, they directed their attention to America. Again Ewert was one of the delegates who investigated the prairie states and provinces.
In the spring of 1874 Ewert and his family and a few families of his congregation settled in Marion County, Kansas, joining with a group of Mennonites from Russia to found the Brudertal Mennonite Church the same year. Ewert was the first elder. He at once became active in community and conference activities and was one of the great promoters of elementary and secondary education, and particularly of Bethel College. He was always generous in aiding needy individuals and groups financially and spiritually. He was succeeded as elder by his son William J. Ewert. Another son, H. H. Ewert, was the well-known teacher of Halstead Seminary and Gretna Collegiate Institute.
Ewert Collection, Mennonite Library and Archives, North Newton, Kansas.
Goerz, David. "Wilhelm Ewert." Christlicher Bundesbote (15 July 1887).
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Waterloo, Ontario, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, p. 276. All rights reserved. For information on ordering the encyclopedia visit the Herald Press website.
©1996-2013 by the Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. All rights reserved.
To cite this page:
MLA style: Krahn, Cornelius. "Ewert, Wilhelm (1829-1887)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 22 May 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/ewert_wilhelm_1829_1887.
APA style: Krahn, Cornelius. (1956). Ewert, Wilhelm (1829-1887). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 22 May 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/ewert_wilhelm_1829_1887.