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A Remembrance of the Past; Building for the Future." ~ Eve Eckert Koehler



Remembering Our Danube Swabian Ancestors
     
 

Life and Death

by Stefan Schmied
Translated by
Gerald "Jerry" Thomas Boyle
 

      Professor Dr. Stefan Vonhaz has established, in his eminent work about the settlement of the Sathmar Swabians, that during the 18th Century 2,000 families settled in 30 communities. The number of German inhabitants in these towns was around 18,000 in 1821, rose to 38,000 in 1912, and in 1930 was over 40,000. The population increased in one hundred years by more that 100%. At the turn of the century, the birth rate began to drop, as we can see from the following figures for every 1,000 inhabitants:

Year

Births

Deaths

Population increase
(Births minus deaths)

1909

57.0

26.8

30.2

1910

60.5

33.8

26.7

1911

54.3

32.7

21.6

1912

58.6

23.2

35.4

1913

47.8

27.3

20.5

1931

39.6

22.3

17.3

1932

39.7

21.3

18.4

1933

36.8

21.6

15.2

1934

38.5

21.4

17.1

1935

36.6

21.1

16.5

Former Judge Gherman gives us the following figures from the Grosskarol district for 1934-1936, comparing Germans with other nationalities per 1,000 inhabitants:

Nationality

Births

Deaths

Increase

German

35.3

20.9

14.4

Romanian

28.5

16.1

12.6

Hungarian

26.9

19.5

7.4

      In proportion to the number of inhabitants, therefore, the Germans had an annual increase of 225, the Romanians 168, and the Hungarians 40. The above tables show that the Swabians had the greatest number of infant mortality.

What about Scheindorf?

      The settlement of 800 recorded in the years 1925-1934: 288 births, 194 deaths, and an increase of 94 souls. The corresponding figures for 1935-1943 were: 270 births, 160 deaths, and an increase of 110. Translated to figures we have the following picture, per 1,000 inhabitants:

 

Births

Deaths

Increase

1925-1934

36.0

24.2

11.8

1935-1943

37.5

22.0

15.5

 

      Infant mortality in Scheindorf was also relatively large. Of the 26 registered deaths in 1937, there were 9 children. In 1938; 9 adults and 5 children died; in 1939, 13 adults and 6 children; in 1940, 10 adults and 8 children; and finally in 1943; 12 adults and 8 children.

      In spite of the calculated increase in population, the number of people in Scheindorf did not increase during the ten-year period, because the town was affected more than all the other Swabian settlements by emigration because of economic need.

[Published at DVHH.org 29 Sep 2006 by Jody McKim Pharr]

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