We have identified our community as Swiss pioneers, but find many of our ancestors came to American from France and we need to go further back in our history and find the reasons.
When our Swiss pioneers lived in Switzerland, many were persecuted because of their religious belief.
Mennonites in Switzerland were not permitted to own land, thus causing a hardship to better their families. Also compulsory military training was against their belief.
The French government at that time was more lenient to these people, which caused this migration.
Christian Steiner was born on May 20, 1774, in La Charme Cme Florimont France.
His father was Hans Johanne Steiner (1746-1814) and mother Elisabeth Leeman (1750-1814). This was where many of our Swiss families (Steiner, Amstutz, Luginbuhl, Schumacher) lived. The area is close to the Swiss border, or 25 miles west of Basel, Switzerland.
Christian was one of the leaders who founded the Swiss Mennonite Church when they arrived here. Christian married Katharina Luginbuhl around 1795 in France. Katharina was born June 16, 1781, in Magny Belfort, France, which is near the Florimont area.
Christian died at age 71 and Katharina died at age 67 and both are buried in the Old Swiss Mennonite Cemetery in rural Bluffton.
Her parents are David Niclaus Luginbuhl (1732-1794) and Barbara Elizabeth Schumacher (1745-1808).
Both parents of Christian and Katharina remained in France. The Christian Steiner family came to Ohio in 1835 with six children. They all came to Putnam County except their son, Christian, who stayed in Wayne County.
Rev. Christian Steiner Born: May 20, 1774, La Charme Cme Florimont France Died: Jan. 5, 1846, Riley Township Putnam County Burial: Old Mennonite Cemetery, Bluffton Occupation: one of the founders of Mennonite Church in Putnam County
Father: Hans Johannas Steiner (1746-1806) Mother: Elisabeth Leeman (1750-1814) Married: 1795c
Spouse: Katharina Luginbuhl Born: Jan. 16, 1781, Magny Arr. Belfort, France Died: Feb. 15, 1848 Burial: old Mennonite Cemetery, Bluffton
Father: David Niclaus Luginbuhl (1732-1794) Mother: Barbara Elizabeth Schumacher (1745-1808)
Children Barbara Steiner Born: Jan. 21, 1801 Died: Nov. 30, 1868 Spouse: Ulrich Steiner Spouse: Johannes Luginbuhl
Johannes Steiner Born: Nov. 21, 1803, La Charme Cme Florimont France Died: May 17, 1805, La Charme Cme Florimont France
Christian Steiner “Big Christ” Born: July 30, 1806, La Charme Cme Florimont France Died: May 16, 1885 Spouse: Marie Steiner Spouse: Barbara Amstutz
John F. Steiner Buchwald Hans Born: Sept. 12, 1807, Charme Cme Florimont France Died: April 22, 1900, Riley Township Spouse: Barbara Habegger Spouse: Katherine Neuenschwander
Peter Steiner Born: Oct. 21, 1810, La Charme Cme Florimont France Died: Aug. 21, 1870 Spouse: Barbara Schumacher
Elizabeth Steiner Born: April 1, 1814, La Charme Cme Florimont France Died: March 19, 1866 Spouse: Johannes A. Amstutz, wagonmaker
Rev. Ulrich Steiner Born: April 27, 1816, La Charme Cme Florimont France Died: April 7, 1853, Bluffton, Allen County Spouse: Mary Ann Moser