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About this Collection

This collection contains photos, documents, and ephemera related to Jacob Schnaidt. In 1873, he and his family left the village of Kassel in Russia and immigrated to America. His family was one of the earliest German-Russian families to arrive in the Dakota Territory. Jacob and his family settled first in Bon Homme County close to the Odessa settlement near Lesterville before moving to Yankton in 1874. In 1880, he moved to Menno to help found the town. Jacob operated a hardware store in Menno and established the Exchange Bank of Menno, Menno’s first bank. Jacob was elected as county commissioner in 1882. He served two terms, and then he won a seat in the 1887 territorial legislature. In 1890, he was elected to the South Dakota State Senate. To see a map outlining the travels of Johann Georg Schnaidt, Sr. and Christina Magdalena Zeeb from Germany to Russia and, later, Russia to the United States, click here.

Years Covered
  • 1878 - 1902; 1976; 2001-2019
Colony of Origin
  • Menno, South Dakota