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Gnadenfeld Zentralschule, Molotschna, Russia, was preceded by a Bruderschule established in 1857, which in turn was a continuation of a school which the settlers had had in Prussia. Because of differences of opinion the school was closed in 1863.  When it reopened in 1873 it became known as a Zentral­schule. The first teachers of the Bruderschule were David Hausknecht, Heinrich Franz I, Johannes Lange, and Friedrich Lange; it was sponsored by a group of progressive and pietistically inclined in­dividuals, such as Johann Claassen, Jakob Reimer, Nikolai Schmidt, and August Lenzmann, and sup­ported by voluntary contributions. The aim was to train workers for home missions according to the pattern of the Rauhes Haus, Hamburg.

The first teachers of the Zentralschule were Her­mann Lenzmann and Wilhelm Neufeld. They were followed by Abraham Braun 1875-84, P. H. Heese 1877-78, A. Hausknecht 1878-80, D. J. Dück, F. W. Teneta, B. Ratzlaff, J. H. Unruh, Jakob Rempel, Jo­hann Sudermann, and Nikolai Ediger. The school had a three-year course with the usual Zentralschule subjects.

Before World War I the school was reorganized as a school of commerce (Handelsschule), patterned after the Alexanderkrone Business School. The teachers at this time were K. K. Martens, Abraham Bergen, and Isbrand Rempel. After the revolution of 1917 the school went through another transformation. First it was combined with the Gnadenfeld Mädchenschule and later, in combination with an elementary school, it was turned into a seven-class Arbeitsschule.


Dirks, H., ed. Mennonitisches Jahrbuch (1911-12): 28-40.

Friesen, Peter M. Die Alt-Evangelische Mennonitische Brüderschaft in Russland (1789-1910) im Rahmen der mennonitischen Gesamtgeschichte. Halbstadt: Verlagsgesellschaft "Raduga", 1911: 86 ff., 621 ff.

Author(s) Cornelius Krahn
Date Published 1956

Cite This Article

MLA style

Krahn, Cornelius. "Gnadenfeld Zentralschule (Gnadenfeld, Molotschna Mennonite settlement, Zaporizhia Oblast, Ukraine)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 24 May 2018. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Gnadenfeld_Zentralschule_(Gnadenfeld,_Molotschna_Mennonite_settlement,_Zaporizhia_Oblast,_Ukraine)&oldid=90364.

APA style

Krahn, Cornelius. (1956). Gnadenfeld Zentralschule (Gnadenfeld, Molotschna Mennonite settlement, Zaporizhia Oblast, Ukraine). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 24 May 2018, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Gnadenfeld_Zentralschule_(Gnadenfeld,_Molotschna_Mennonite_settlement,_Zaporizhia_Oblast,_Ukraine)&oldid=90364.


Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, p. 532. All rights reserved.

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