The Tenth Schumm Reunion, 1949

Zion Lutheran Church at Schumm celebrated their 175th anniversary as a congregation in 2021. That is quite a milestone.

Later this year the Schumm family will celebrate yet another milestone–the 100-year anniversary of the John George Schumm Family Reunion. It will be the 45th Schumm reunion.  

2016 John George Schumm Family Reunion

Zion Schumm’s congregation is named after one of the first families of the area, the John George Schumm family, and one of the founding families of the church. John George Schumm and his five adult children immigrated from Wuerttemberg in 1833 and settled in the Schumm area about 1837, purchasing 800 acres around Schumm. One of John George’s children, Johann Friedrich Schumm, donated land for the church grounds and cemetery. John George Schumm and his five immigrant children are all buried in Zion Schumm’s cemetery.

The first Schumm reunion was held 10 August 1924 at the original Schumm homestead, behind the church. They took a photo to memorialize the event.

The first Schumm Reunion, 1924, at the Schumm homestead.

The Schumm reunion was held for many years at the Schumm homestead, until the majestic old barn was razed. After that, reunions were held at the farm across the road from the church, to the east, the Ned Alspaugh farm at the time. Now reunions are held at the pavilion at the church.  

The Schumm reunion is usually held every other year in August, but none were held during the WWII years. They skipped two reunions at that time and they were resumed in 1947.    

This is the program from the 10th Schumm family reunion, held 21 August 1949. That reunion was held at the home of Walter Emanuel Schumm (1888-1967), who was married to Erna Teresa Schumm (1894-1971). It was the second reunion held after WWII.

1949 Schumm Reunion program

There was a selection from Mary and Martha Etzler. Mary and Martha were the twin daughters of Leonard (1910-1988) and Amanda Barbara (Schumm) (1916-1965) Etzler. The girls would have been 8 years old at the time. I assume theirs was probably a musical selection.

1949 Schumm Reunion program

Next on the program was The Schumm Family. Perhaps this was something about the history of the Schumm family. Or perhaps it was a skit. Family members used to dress up and perform skits at reunions.

Then, music from Margrete Germann. I believe this was Margrete Germann (1931-2014), the daughter of Kletus (1902-1972) and Hulda Anna (Merkle) (1909-1983). Germann. Margrete would have been 17 at the time.

And another musical selection from the Schumm Quartet. I wish I knew who was in the quartet.

Finally, the business meeting and election of officers, followed by singing God Be with You Till We Meet Again by everyone.

1949 Schumm Reunion program

You may have noticed that the Schumm family enjoys music and is musically talented.

This has always been a very organized and well documented reunion. How many families have regularly held family reunions for 100 years? An event this well organized takes a lot of time and work from many volunteers. After the church service there is a carry-in meal, followed by a business meeting, program, music and singing. A schedule of the afternoon program is printed and distributed. There are reunion officers, including president, secretary, and treasurer. Minutes and details are recorded and there is a treasurer’s report. And like typical, conscientious Germans, nearly everything is recorded is saved. We love having documentation and records!

The last Schumm reunion, the 44threunion, was held in 2021. Over 200 people usually attend the gathering. There are literally thousands of John George Schumm descendants. I know that because I maintain the family genealogy database.

This year the Schumm reunion committee has a number of events planned for the 100th anniversary. I won’t spoil anything here, but they have some interesting and fun events planned.

I am looking forward to another memorable Schumm reunion, a milestone reunion, this August.

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