Baiersdorf (Freistaat Bayern, Germany)
Baiersdorf, in the 1950s a small market town near Erlangen, once a district government seat in the margravure of Brandenburg. In April 1531 an Anabaptist congregation was broken up there, which had existed since Pentecost of 1530, and numbered about 50 members, in part scattered over the region of Nürnberg and Bamberg. Their beginnings go back to 1525, when they are said to have accepted rebaptism, without outside instigation, because of independently acquired conviction resulting from Bible study. This is the official record sent to the margrave at Ansbach on 9 July 1530, according to which Melchior Kern testified that it was true that he had been baptized again, for he had always heard from the preachers: He who believes and is baptized will be saved. Philip Jakob testified that the Word of God had directed him to rebaptism. Pastor Wolfgang Vogel of Eltersdorf, who was executed in Nürnberg on 26 March 1527, the carpenter Thomas Spiegel at Ostheim, and Johannes von Biberach in Algäu were named as having administered the second baptism before the Peasants' War (Anzeiger für Kunde der deutschen Vorzeit, n.F. XV, 294A).
In 1528, 20 brethren were imprisoned at Baiersdorf; they denied all the seditious tendencies of which they were accused. Hans Schmid, Fritz Striegel, and Marx Mayer of Uttenreuth (Keller, Reformation, 428) were condemned to death on 6 July 1531 and beheaded; the others were whipped and banished from the country.
At their meetings they used to sing Hans Hut's song, "Dank sagen wir dem Herrn der Ehren."
Cornelius, Carl Adolf. Geschichte des Münsterischen Aufruhrs in drei Büchern. Leipzig : T.O. Weigel, 1855-60: II, 47.
Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. I, 111.
Jörg, Joseph Edmund. Deutschland in der Revolutions-Periode von 1522 bis 1526: aus den diplomatischen Correspondenzen und Original-Akten bayrischer Archive. Freiburg im Breisgau: Herder, 1851.
Keller, Ludwig. Die Reformation und die älteren Reformparteien : in ihrem Zusammenhange dargestellt. Leipzig: S. Hirzel, 1885: 428.
Wappler, Paul. Die Täuferbewegung in Thüringen von 1526-1584. Jena: Gustav Fisher, 1913.
Other material in the city archives of Nürnberg, which had not been thoroughly investigated in the 1950s.
Cite This Article
Neff, Christian. "Baiersdorf (Freistaat Bayern, Germany)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1955. Web. 16 Feb 2019. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Baiersdorf_(Freistaat_Bayern,_Germany)&oldid=144769.
Neff, Christian. (1955). Baiersdorf (Freistaat Bayern, Germany). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 16 February 2019, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Baiersdorf_(Freistaat_Bayern,_Germany)&oldid=144769.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 1, p. 213. All rights reserved.
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