The Ministers of Zion Lutheran Church, Chattanooga, Ohio (7-11)

This is the second installment of short biographies of the ministers of Zion Lutheran Church, Chattanooga, Ohio. The information for these biographies is from the ELCA Archives at Trinity Seminary, Columbus, Ohio, and from my personal research.

The next five ministers of Zion, Chatt, ministers 7-11:


Rev. Carl Reichert

Carl G. Reichert was born 16 November 1807 in Welthau, Saxony, Prussia, the son of K.G.H. Reichert. He studied Latin at the Latin School in Halle, in the Prussian Province of Saxony, and later studied theology at the University of Halle. He immigrated to America in 1834 and that same year was licensed to preach and first served at a church in Morgan County, Ohio. He was ordained in 1847 and served in the following parishes: Zanesville, Ohio, 1859; St. Paris, Ohio (2 churches), 1860-1862; St. Paul, Greenville, Ohio, 1862-1863; St. John, Grove City, Ohio, 1863-1885; and Zion, Chattanooga, 1889. He was the secretary of the synod in 1868 and in 1871. Rev. Reichert never married. He retired in 1885 and died from a stroke in Grove City, Ohio, on 15 August 1898, at the age of 90.



John Frederick Carsten Soller was born 29 November 1863 in Loge, in the Province of Hannover, the son of John and Ann (Winter) Soller. He immigrated to America in 1884 and graduated from Capital University in 1886 and from the ELT Seminary in 1889. He served congregations in Butlerville, Ohio, 1889-1892; Zion, Chattanooga, 1892-1895; and St. Paul, Youngstown, Ohio, 1895-1941. He was a Capital University Trustee for 12 years and was president of the Eastern District of the Joint Synod for 15 years. In recognition of his many services Capital University bestowed the title of Doctor of Divinity on him in 1927. He married Dorothea Zum Mallen 30 May 1889, the same day he was ordained and installed. They had two sons and one daughter. Rev. Soller died 22 September 1941 in Youngstown, Ohio, at the age of 77.


Johann J Vollmar was born 17 September 1852 in Gensungen, Kurhessen, the son of Johannes and Maria (Schomber) Vollmar. He immigrated and moved to Iowa in 1871. He graduated from Wartburg Seminary and served the following parishes: Elkport, Iowa; White Willow, Minnesota; Town Penn, Minnesota; St. Paul, Michigan City, Indiana, 1884-1897; Zion, Chattanooga, 1897; St. Paul’s, Detroit, Michigan, 1897; Bridgewater, Michigan; and Craig, Iowa. He also served as the superintendent of Wernle Orphans Home in Richmond, Indiana, during his career. He married Lucia Ruegg in 1874 and they had five sons and three daughters. Three sons died young and two lived to adulthood–[Rev.] John J. and O.F. One daughter died young and two lived to adulthood–Mrs. Fred Kusch and Mrs. Fred Townsend. Rev. Vollmar died 22 July 1928 in Detroit, Michigan, at the age of 75.


Rev. August Affeld

Rev. August Affeld

Carl August Affeld was born 2 March 1868 in Zippnow, West Prussia, the son of Friedrich and Pauline (Marohm) Affeld, He immigrated to America in 1883. He graduated from Luther Seminary, Afton, Minnesota, in 1893. He served the following congregations: North Washington, 1893-1997; Zion, Chattanooga 1897-1900; St. Johns, New Bedford, Ohio, 1900-1902; he organized and served eight congregations in the vicinity of Turtle Lake, Coleharbor, Garrison, and Max, 1902-1914; three congregations in Anamoose, North Dakota, 1914-1920; New Leipzig, 1921-1926; Los Angeles, California, 1926-1928; and Churchtown-Center, Rosebud, North Dakota, 1928-1939. He retired from the ministry in 1939. He married (1) Maria Baier in 1896 and (2) Ulricke Peske in 1919. Three sons and five daughters were born from his first marriage. Rev. Affeld died 31 October 1944 at Center, North Dakota, at the age of 76. For additional information about Rev. Affeld, see blog post Rev. August Affeld, Pastor at Zion Chatt 1896-1899.

The oldest confirmation photo I have from Zion Chatt, with Rev. August Affeld, 1897. Row 1: Ida Kessler, Maria Regina Mueller, Katharina Strebel, Lydia Doellinger. Row 2: Otto Christian Kessler, Johann Heinrich Friedrich Becher, Rev. Affeld, Anna Maria Brandt, Samuel Clarence Brandt.

1897 confirmation class at Zion Chatt with Rev. August Affeld

The above photo is the oldest confirmation photo I have from Zion Chatt, taken with Rev. August Affeld in 1897. Row 1: Ida Kessler, Maria Regina Mueller, Katharina Strebel, Lydia Doellinger. Row 2: Otto Christian Kessler, Johann Heinrich Friedrich Becher, Rev. Affeld, Anna Maria Brandt, Samuel Clarence Brandt.


Rev. Reuben Smith

Rev. Reuben Smith

Reuben Valentine Smith was born 14 February 1877 in Columbus, Ohio, the son of Benjamin L and Mary Ann (Poth) Smith He graduated from Capital University in 1896 and from ELT Seminary in Columbus in 1899. He served at Zion, Chattanooga, from 1899-1905 and at Marion, Indiana, 1905-1906. He was a college professor and Dean of Classic Language at Capital University from 1906-1955, completing nearly fifty years of uninterrupted teaching and missing only two days of classes during those years. Rev. Smith returned to Zion Chatt in 1916 for the dedication of the new church’s cornerstone. He was married to Nora Mangold. Rev. Smith died of a sudden heart attack in Columbus, Ohio, 18 November 1955, at the age of 78. In 1955 Rev. Smith wrote a narrative about his personal experiences as Zion’s pastor. To read his recollections see blog posts Recollections of Chattanooga, Ohio and Recollections of Chattanooga, Ohio, Part 2.


Cornerstone dedication, 1916. Rev. RV Smith, Rev. Heuer, ?

Cornerstone dedication, 1916. Rev. R.V. Smith, Rev. W.F.H. Heuer, and Rev. B.F. Brandt.


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    • Kenny Miler on October 10, 2015 at 9:50 am
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    It seems that Dad may have been old enough to attend Rev. Smith’s school.

    1. You are right. I wonder if he did. It would be interesting to know

    • Rosanne on August 1, 2016 at 2:25 pm
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    I am researching information on a pastor J. Kusch & wife, Mrs. Kusch who served a church in rural Oregon, called Evangelica Peace Lutheran Church, at Warren Station or Myrick Station.
    He served eastern Oregon from 1912-1914 of which I have found he was at St. John’s United Church of Christ in 1917-1921 Have not confirmed these are the same. Our Pendleton church will celebrate 125 years in 2017 so I am looking everywhere. Thanks

    1. Is there a Lutheran or UCC archive in that area of Oregon? They should have information about their pastors that might include things such as biographies, parishes they served, education, newspaper articles, and obituaries. You might try to locate the minister in the census records or on Find a Grave. Those searches might show where he lived and his movements. I hope this gives you some ideas. Good luck!

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