Bonwetsch, Gottlieb Nathanael


The Rev. Gottlieb Nathanael Bonwetsch was born 17 February 1848 in Norka, the son of Pastor Christoph Heinrich Bonwetsch who was serving in Norka at the time, and Beate Christiana Friederich. He died in Göttingen (Germany) on 18 July 1925. He married in Grimm to Lydia Deggeller on 15 December 1883. She was born in Karras in the province of Stavropol on 5 March 1861 and died in Göttingen on 4 January 1939. She is the daughter of Pastor Bernhard Deggeller and Elisabeth Lang.

From 1859 to 1865, he attended high school and college in Reval (now Tallinin, Estonia). He was a theology student at the seminary in Dorpat from 1866 to 1870. He was ordained in Moscow on 7 February 1871. From 1871 to 1874 he served as the assistant to the dean of the Bergseite colonies. He received further theological education in Göttingen in 1874-1875. He served then from 1875 to 1877 as the assistant pastor to his father in Norka. He returned to Germany again, this time to Bonn, for further education in 1877-1878. On 8 April 1878, he became a professor of church history at the seminary in Dorpat, Estonia. He earned a doctorate in theology on 2 November 1881 and became a tenured professor on 3 October 1883. He served on the Göttingen City Council from 1891 to 1921, retaining an emeritus professorship in church history.

Pastor G. Nathanael Bonwetsch is the father of Dr. Gerhard Bonwetsch, the author of the 1919 publication Geschichte der deutschen Kolonien an der Wolga.


Bonwetsch, Gerhard. Geschichte der deutschen Kolonien an der Wolga (Stuttgart: Engelhorns, 1919): dedication page.

Schnurr, Joseph. Die Kirchen und das religiöse Leben der Russlanddeutschen – Evangelischer Teil (Stuttgart: AER).

Gottlieb Nathaniel Bonwetsch (Norka website - Steve Schreiber)