Friederich Schienlein, jr – What is known?

Freiderich Schienlein, jr is the immigrant from whom the Schoenly/Schanely/Schonely family descends. He was born in Steinenbronn, near what is today Stuttgart, Germany. When Friederich came to America in 1754, Pennsylvania was still a British colony and Steinenbronn was a village in Swabia.

Friederich was born on November 14, 1732 to Friederich Schienle and his wife Maria Catherina Lieb. He was the third of four sons and the fifth of eight children. Friederich’s father was a baker by trade and at one time held an office which was nearly the equivalent of mayor in Steinenbronn. At that time the village probably had a population of fewer than 100 people.

When Friederich was 15 years of age his father died. It was only four years later, when he would have been 19 years of age, he came to America. I have been told that a 1754 notation in the records of Lutheran Church in Steinenbronn state, “Friederich Schienle has left for America, without his mother”. Since older sons and other children remained behind at the time, one can only wonder why such a statement was made.


We next hear of Friederich in 1760 when he receives a land grant of 100 acres in Berks county. He is also married to Anna Elizabetha Kolb on December 29, 1760 at the Lutheran Church at Red Hill, PA. I have often wondered and actually suspect that this gap in time between 1754 and 1760 was the period Friederich was serving as an indentured servant to pay for the passage to America. However, this is only speculation.

Friederich and Anna Elizabetha had six children all of whom lived to adulthood and married with one exception. A daughter, Anna Maria Schoenle, was born on July 3, 1772 but lived only to November 1774. She is buried by the New Hanover Lutheran Church in New Hanover, PA. This is the same cemetery Friederich will be buried in on March 9, 1810.

In addition to Anna Maria, other daughters Barbara, Elizabeth, Christina and Magdolena were born to this couple and one son, Andreas from whom this family descends.

During the Revolution, Friederich served in 1777-1778 in Capt. Folck’s Company, 1st Battalion. He missed drill and was fined only once during that period of time, which was probably a better than average record. His rifle has been passed down through the generations and is in possession of family members.

Friederich dies in his 78th year on March 5, 1810. His wife lives until 1840, reaching the age of 97. The farm passes to his only son Andreas but with provision for his wife and all his daughters.

If anything more is known by family members, please consider sharing.