Eichstock, a Mennonite congregation northwest of Dachau in Upper Bavaria, Germany, which was founded in 1818 by Mennonites from the Palatinate, Baden, Alsace, and Donaumoos. In the first 25 years about 35 families settled on farms and in small villages in the wooded region of Eichstock; often from two to six families lived at one place, as in Eichstock, Hammerhof, Thann, Schwaig, and Singern, which were at that time almost exclusively Mennonite settlements. All of these families owned their land. Since they came from regions which were farther advanced, they were able to be a progressive influence on the peasants of the Dachau region. The principal reason for settling here was probably the fact that land was cheaper than in the Palatinate or Baden.
Religious services were held alternately in Eichstock and Hammerhof in the homes of members until the church was built. There was some difference of opinion as to where it should be erected; the government of Upper Bavaria decided in favor of Eichstock because of its burial site, and granted the concession on 18 January 1841 (Records of the B.K.M. No. 25, 606). The funds were raised by the members.
Thus the church had its wished-for meetinghouse, in which they could worship undisturbed. Economically the families were also prosperous. But a certain restlessness took possession of many families; in the years 1844-1856, 22 families emigrated to America, most of them to Iowa ; six families returned to the Palatinate. The church decreased rapidly, but until the end of the 19th century a considerable number remained. Then still other families left, chiefly for economic causes, so that by 1922 the little church was nearly deserted; only three Mennonite families were left.
The following preachers served the congregation through 1956: Johannes Strohm 1821-1847, Franz Krämer 1821-1824, Jakob Seitz 1825-1839, Jakob Haury 1825-1839, Elias Dettweiler 1839-1845 and 1854-1855, David Ruth 1839- (emigrated to America), Jakob Krehbiel 1845- (emigrated), Johannes Stiess 1845-1848, Georg Zeiset (1844 until he emigrated), Christian Dettweiler 1851-1855 (emigrated), Ulrich Hirschler 1854- ?, Johannes Berger 1855- ?, Jakob Dester 1861- ?, Jakob Schowalter 1861- ?, 1856, 1862-1864; Häuser (no dates), Jakob Ellenberger (1872-1881, called to Friedelsheim in 1881), Michael Landes 1881-1887, Johannes Hirschler 1887-1899, Daniel Bahr 1889-1905, Emanuel Landes of the Ingolstadt congregation 1905-1954; Hermann Schmutz 1954- .
In 1954 meetings were held monthly at Eichstock. In addition, the young people of Munich as well as those of the Regensburg and Ingolstadt congregations held youth conferences here, for the church is very beautifully located. On the Sundays when there was no service in the church, the families gathered in various homes for Bible study. The congregation belongs to the Vereinigung and is incorporated. The membership in 1954 was 20.
Hege, Christian. "Der Kirchenbau zu Eichstock bei Dachau."Mennonitische Geschichtsblätter (December 1937): 57-60.
Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. I, 534.
Kauman, Edmund G. The development of the missionary and philanthropic interest among the Mennonites of North America. Berne, IN: Mennonite Book Concern, 1931: 37.
Krahn, Cornelius. "Zur Auswanderung der Mennoniten von Maxweiler und Eichstock." Mennonitische Geschichtsblätter (December 1938): 81.
Mennonitische Blätter 3 (1856): 62-64; 9 (1862): 32.
Ringenberg, Richard. Familienbuch der Mennonitengemeinde Eichstock. Schriften des Bayerischen Landesvereins für Familienkunde, No. 18. München: Bayerischer Landesverein für Familienkunde, 1942.
Cite This Article
Dettweiler, Hermann and Emmanuel Landes. "Eichstock (Oberbayern, Freistaat Bayern, Germany)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1956. Web. 29 Aug 2014. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Eichstock_(Oberbayern,_Freistaat_Bayern,_Germany)&oldid=103121.
Dettweiler, Hermann and Emmanuel Landes. (1956). Eichstock (Oberbayern, Freistaat Bayern, Germany). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 29 August 2014, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Eichstock_(Oberbayern,_Freistaat_Bayern,_Germany)&oldid=103121.
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