My 2x great grandmother Maria Anna Wolf (nee Fleischmann) was born the daughter of Augustin Fleischmann and Maria Anna Rössler of Schwartzbrunn in Gablonz county on 23 May 1834.
In her application for naturalisation, Anna Wolf declared that she was born on 22 May 1834 in Schwartzbrunn, Austria. At the time of her birth, Schwartzbrunn was in Bohemia (now the Czech Republic) and part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. It is part of the Sudetenland used by Hitler as an excuse to invade Czechoslovakia in October 1938, at which time 86% of the population of Gablonz was German.
Maria Anna Wolf left Hamburg on 9 September 1876 in the Cesar Godeffroy with two children; their residence was shown as Morchenstern. Morchenstern (Czech Smržovka) is in northern Bohemia, which is now in the Czech Republic, but which was then part of the Austro-Hungarian empire. Morchenstern was first settled in the first half of the 16th century and. from the very beginning, Czech and German ethnic groups lived together and shared their fate. In 1878, Morchenstern’s population was 4,551 and glassworks, grinding shops and weaving were the main industries.
The Cesar Godeffroy arrived at Port Adelaide on 7 January 1877. The ship’s register indicates she was travelling with her brother-in-law, the butcher, Kajetan Posselt (aged 39), his wife and 7 children, and that the group of passengers to which they belonged travelled under an agreement with Francis S Dutton, dated 18 October 1875. Information on the passenger list can be found at Ship Cesar Godeffroy (7Jan1877) – Adelaide Hills – LocalWiki and at GRG35_48_1_77-2_Caesar Godeffroy.pdf (archives.sa.gov.au)
The Posselts and the Wolfs, Fleischmanns etc all came from a very small area in the northern hills of Bohemia.
On her naturalisation application, Anna Wolf listed her places of residence in Australia as follows:
|Location||No. of years (about)|
|Hundred of English||1|
|Hundred of Bundey||1|
In summary, she spent about 5 years in the Barossa Valley, about 9 years in the Mid-North of South Australia, and about 24 years in the Murray Mallee. In 1903, she was described as a blocker, living at Towitta, near Cambrai. Her time in South Australia was mainly spent in hot, dry, remote areas, in far different conditions than in the first half of her life in northern Bohemia.
On her application for naturalisation, Anna Wolf stated that she was the widow of Joseph Wolf.
Anna Wolf is recorded as dying at Buccleuch on 5 December 1915 at 81 and is buried in the Sherlock cemetery.
Her daughter, my great grandmother, Anna Wolf was born in Morchenstern, Austria, on 15 January 1867.
Anna was baptised on 17 January 1867 by Ignaz Knobloch. Sponsors were Amalia Dressler, daughter of Ignaz Dressler, carpenter, and Anna Pilz, wife of Josef Pilz.
On 25 January 1883, Anna Wolf married Carl Gustav Nicksch at the Lutheran Church at Appila.
Gustav and Anna Nicksch had seven children, six of whom survived childhood.
On 14 March 1885, it was reported that G Nicksch had reselected Section 137, Hundred of Bower, which he had been the proprietor of, under credit selection, for the original price of £480.
According to the Geranium Plain Church history, this is very marginal farming country. Goyder’s line marked the boundary of successful farming regions and lay at the 10 inches annual rainfall line. Although only 7 miles east of Robertstown, which is inside Goyder’s Line, Geranium Plain lies outside and averages 7 inches of rainfall per year. The soil is limestone with some clay patches. The areas around Geranium Plain were taken up for closer settlement in the 1880s and 1890s. The settlers of German origin or descent moved in from the more established Barossa districts and Robertstown areas; the region near Bundey was settled slightly earlier.
Five of their children attended the Geranium Plain school (four were inaugural students); 3 left that Government school to attend German school.
In 1907, they were among the pioneer settlers on the Pinnaroo line, having agreed to take up land in the Hundred of Roby. I am advised that Gustav and Anna were foundation members of the Buccleuch Lutheran congregation.
Gustav Nicksch died on 13 January 1939 aged 85 years and was buried in Murray Bridge Cemetery on 15 January 1939.
Electoral records show Anna lived in Mannum Road, Murray Bridge, engaged in home duties, from 1939-43 and did so till she died.
According to my brother Neil, she mainly spoke German.
Anna Nicksch died in Murray Bridge on 8 October 1950. She is buried with her husband in Murray Bridge Cemetery.