Regina Barbara Zechiel

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About Regina Barbara Zechiel


1. Jacob peter Stahl, Historian, Stahl Famil History, The (Dayton, Ohio, August 10, 1924; publisher not stated), pg 67-71

"Regina Barbara (Stahl) Zechiel, Family - Regina Barbara, the oldest daughter of Jacob Frederick and Christina (Gehring) Stahl, was nborn in Gechingen, Wuertemberg, Germany, Mary 24, 1846. Among the records of the Gechingen Church  which was Luthern, her name is recorded in the list of infant baptisms. Her educational career was begun in the village school house, hard by the church edifice. The course was about six weeks long, just long enough to get an idea of school life- at the close of which she emigrated to America with the family. This she well remebrs and of this she tells an inteeesting story. 
In this connection let us suggest that much of this story has alrready been wrought into the account of the family emigration to America being or general family interest and needs, therefore, not be reiterated here. Large credit is due to our sister for the presentation of the facts relating to this family ppppol;grimage. 
As noted before, the journey across the Atlantic Ocean was free from storm and one one occasion for the whole week there was not sufficient wind blowing to move the ship. THis was not so bad, but this prolongeded stop on the ocean endangered the food situation, and in due time, it became very mecessary to economize lest a famine should be created. The drinking water likewise became dangerously near being exhausted, so that "drinking water was proportioned to each person so much and no more". - - Castle Garden, the New York port, was reached at the end of fifty-two days. THis all was very interesting and exciting to the little people. The rising and the falling of the tide; the laying of the planks for the landing of the people all this was scene enough to remain inforgotten.

The journey toward the west, Ohio and then Indiana, are incidents of travel which were common interest to the family. The part which sister Regina especially played, was to help Mother withtaking care oof the smaller children, especially the "Baby", Sophia

School Privieges

One of the striking conditions was, that there were so few school privileges, and this supplemented with lack of clothes and shoes at home, made school going practicallyimpossible. This was true first of their Ohio life, and the Indiana life later on. SPeaking of school days, Regina says: - - My school privileges were very poor in those pioneer days. Three months of the year was all the time we had school. The ages of the pupils in all the school years ran from six to twenty-six years. The small scholars were neglected. Twice a day the teacher came to my seat and ran over the A-B-C; this was the daily program.

Home conditions not favorable...: Hard times, you say? Yes, few clothes and no shoes. I did not go till New Year the first year. But I did not loose all this time as my intelligent Mother was my teacher in the home. She taught me in the German, for which I am very grateful. Later I used it to good advantage. Then, somehow, we got a German-English New Testament which helped us to translate the language.

Her Indiana school experience only paralleled those of Ohio. She wrties: A SUnday School was conducted in the schoolhouse (Germany schoolhouse, probably) by the people of the Evangelical Association, the first I ever attended. Our first Day School in Indiana was also in that building; but unfortunately, I took lung fever and did not get to go much. 

The next spring, Father moved to Leiters Ford. No church at Leiters. Brother Fred and I walked four miles to SUnday School held in the Germany schoolhouse. One of the pioneer problems: The school house was across the river and a mile north of Leiters with no bridge to cross over the river, no boat nearer than a mile west. Certainly a trying situatiion for children seeking an education. And so, when the end of the school term came I was still sitting on the long benches without a back, learning, the A-B-C's and I was elven years old.

Church and SUnday School

Concerning church and sunday school privileges she writes:  NO church and no sunday school here.. That was at the Dr. Durr place, Delong. Our church was at home. On SUnday monriiiing we usually read a chapter or two from the Bible amd mother read a  sermon appropriate to the day, following the order of the Church year. Father instructed us to listen to the reading of the chapters in the Bible and when the reading was done he would ask us to tell what was in the chapter. 
An incident 
An incidinet in the way of church going. A confirmation service was announced at Bruce Lake, eight miles diiiistant from home at the place now known as Delong. Fred and I were permitted to go to the service. Mother started us off early. We carried our shoes until we had crossed over the river whjich we had to wade. When finally we reached the place it was announced that the service was to be held after dinner. We carried no lunch with us. SOme people from a distance had brought their dinners but no one invited us to eat with them. So Fred said, "well we had better go home". SO without dinner we started on our long weary trip and once more crossed the Tippecanoe, no wiser than when we started save the experience of a nice walk.
About two years before we left the Dr. Durr place a church was started by the Evangelical Associatioon and meeting were held in the Kaley schoolhouse. They also organized a SUnday School. TO this SUnday School Fred and I walked not every SUnday, but most of the time of those two years. Occasionally Reverend Nicaloi, a German Reformed Minister and Rev. James Michael, an English Refomed minister held services here. Under these men Fred and I with others, received our Catechetical instruction; and in 1892 a clas of fourteen was confirmed, of which we wer two. In this same schoolhouse my chuch life was principally developed. Here I taught my first Sunday School class, a class of girls of my onw age. Our textbook was the German New Testament. I was happy to be able to teach a SUndy School class. The years so diligently begun under circumstances often most trying, have been fruitful of encourageing rewards, only reminding us of the proverb, "No reward without great labor." 

Personal Reminiscences

Here again we make quoation from the writer herself: At this time we had a great experience when the Bowman Mill was being built and all the people were anxious to get their grain goooround tere. The Mill was on the border  of the farm we lived on and was later known as the Old Kaley MIll. The nearest mill was at Rochester. Every family left the flour-bin run low waiting for the new mill to start, but father could not wait; something to east was very much needed. And so he went to mill. The neighbors knew this and the next Sunday the Ditemyers, a family of six came to eat dinner with us. Corn meal, it was. So we had corn bread and molasses cake for the main meal. Mother was kind enough to let me help her get dinner. Everybody was so hungry we ran out of bread; then Mother let me finish up with corn dodgers until all had enough. There were after all happy days for we enjoyed our company and the mill was soon started

Another incident: I remember when the son of the owner of the Bowman Mill died. There was no church and no preacher. Our parents happened to knw that at that particular time there came a Lutheran Minister from Fulton to Rochester, and out into the country near Uncle Graebers. Father was sure they could get this minister but he was sick, and brother Fred was also sick. A question: Who will go? Rmemebr pioneer days, neighbors few and far apart. No one knew the way or place about twelve miles or thirteen miles away. I was the only one who knew where to go, so I was the lucky one to go. On SUnday monring, to walk twelve or thirteen miles to get the preacher to preach a funeral. Who would like to walk with me at fourteen years of age? Next day we come back, my Uncle Graeber accompanying me.

Another personal experience is recorded as follows: When I went to Logansport to work, there were no railroads and scarcely a wagon road. Father took a load of wheat to the city and I rode on the load (of wheat). I lived at Logansport three months. This was, we should say an exciting and pivotal experieince in those early days of the evolution of the community and the civi life of Indiana, and all who passed through that experience and contributed even a mite of their toil asnd blood for the accomplishment of what we now may see and enjoy, are deserving of our hymn of praise and the gratitude of our hearts.

The historian would lkie to subjoin a statement or two in appriciation of the life and devotion of his "Big Sister" who next to Mother herself, has always seemed to him like a mother. Her life has been a life of earnest toil and labor; she ne'er despised the "horny hands of toil". In matters churchly, she was ever willing to hear her share of responsibility. In her recent years of physcicall affliction and suffering she has endured it patiently and bravely, like the ture heroine of the cross, looking only for the reward of faith that shall be the reward of those who love the Lord's appearing."
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Regina Barbara Zechiel's Timeline

April 2, 1865
near Marmont now Culver, Marshall, Indiana
August 29, 1870
December 15, 1872
Culver, Marshall, Indiana, United States
June 28, 1875
Marshall County, Indiana, USA
July 19, 1877
near Marmont now Culver, Marshall, Indiana
October 3, 1879
March 26, 1882
near Marmont now Culver, Marshall, Indiana
April 1884
Marmont (now Culver), Marshall, Indiana
Gechingen, Wuertemberg Germany