This story of our Schake family from Humfeld, Lippe (Germany) of the Teutoburger Forest with related history and Ethnohistories is lovingly dedicated to the first Schake mother of America. Wilhelmine Friederike Kuhfuss Schake came to the SCHAKES OF LA CHARETTE farms in Charette Township, Warren County, Missouri with her farmer and blacksmith husband Kurt in 1855. To this day we do not know when she died or where she is buried. Little apparently was recorded on her behalf. We have every reason to believe she was a loving wife, mother and grandmother.
(As of August 1998 Lois Gerstenberger Butler, a great granddaughter of Johann Heinrich Franz Schake of Cleveland Ohio, a half-brother of Johann Cord Christoph Schake, informed us that her great Aunt Mary Schake had a book of dates. Lois now has this book which documents the death date of Friederike as March 17, 1895. The Missouri and Ohio Schake families corresponded into the early 1900s allowing us to recover this date. Since no tombstone marks the gravesite of Friederikes, the Schakes of La Charette are arranging for one to be placed there.)
While searching the Marthasville, Missouri ´ Kirche´ records of the 1892 church book we found the following entry listed among her neighbors, fellow church members and her family:
Thank you Friedericke, and all other Schake ´Mutters´ who nurtured their families and added so much to our lives - past, present and future - with the assurance that your contributions have not been forgotten. - - The Schake Families of La Charette
Lowell M. Schake and Family, Authors
It would almost seem unnatural not to wonder about one´ heritage. We each represent the culmination of earlier happenings passed on through our culture and by genetic and physiological processes. In short, we are the sum of our heredity and of our environment. Environment in this case takes on the broad definition of society, family and physical environment, i.e., everything not genetic. Generations of the future will have greater difficulty in capturing certain aspects of their past if an attempt is not now initiated to document what is known. The process of recording family heritage would be much more accurate and easily compiled if it had been accomplished as it was lived -- one generation at a time. Unfortunately this has not been the case in our family except in the most recent past.
A strict record of genealogy, while interesting and necessary to this process, somehow seems incomplete without information offering insights into the lives and times of all the people represented. Where did they live? Who lived there previously? Who were their forgotten ancestors? How were their communities established? Who discovered, explored and exploited these sites? Why did they choose to live there? What constituted their daily routines of work, family and society? Did they worry and struggle to accomplish their aspirations in life any differently than we? And most importantly, did their lives represent what they intended? These and many other questions are interesting to contemplate, but in reality very difficult to document with accuracy. Most of recorded history is about military, church or political leaders, creators, inventors or developers within society and mostly recorded by those who could write. Precious little is known of the daily thoughts and actions of those who were the peasants, the illiterate and those otherwise taken for granted. Most of us, and all of our Schake ancestors, fit within this little represented category of history. Except for oral history and what may be gleaned from archaeological evidence we are unable to probe into the past of most human lives. Ironically it is the masses of humankind that have contributed the most to our genetic heritage, yet they have the least recorded on their behalf. At this level much of human history appears to be the result of our innate curiosity, the common everyday struggles of life, a desire to improve upon life by our urge to find a better place to live, to explore and wander, or wanderlust. Perhaps the 1700 Prussian philosopher Immanuel Kant expressed this concept most succinctly when writing his Eternal Peace and other Essays, "The history of the human race, when viewed as a whole, may be regarded as the realization of a hidden plan of nature to bring about a political constitution, internally and externally perfect, as the only state in which all the capacities implanted by her in mankind can be fully developed." We are able to document that three of our four grandparents attended school for perhaps a few winter months of 3 or 4 years. It is unknown how much training Adolph Schake received either in Germany or Missouri, although we know he could read. His father, Kurt Schake signed his last will and testament of January 25, 1890 with an ´.´ With respect for the contributions of those who have preceded us, but were unable to completely record their lives and to whom we owe so much, we happily undertake this opportunity to capture as much Schake heritage as possible before it becomes further obscured by age or time. This genealogical ethnology is organized to capture, as accurately as possible, the contributions and events of the earliest peoples whose presence from around the world has influenced the lives of those of us who lived at The SCHAKES OF LA CHARETTE farm for a brief moment in the span of time, to document the merging of three distinct cultures into one, and to chronicle the heritage, the families, farms and communities of those we acknowledge as our ancestors while at the same time attempting to capture the life styles of a lot of very wonderful hard-working everyday people struggling through life with ambitions largely unknown to us today. They gave us our culture and lives, along with a much better than average chance to live them.
This work is presented in four components to better portray details and perhaps enhance readability. Part One deals with the compelling human urge to travel, explore or to wander-out, auswanderung in German, as rendered in this history and Ethnohistory of SCHAKES OF LA CHARETTE. Part Two is our Schake genealogy, Part Three chronicles our pictorial history and Part Four depicts an oral history of the Schake family as we knew it.
The following surnames are the major ones presented in the GEDCOM file, representing over 3500 individuals which include the collateral relatives and their families representing several hundred surnames in total.
|Ancestors||Prominent Collateral Relatives|