Associated Colonies
Place of origin
Rohrbach, Büdingen, Hessen, Germany

Johann Jacob Sorberger, son of the schoolteacher Jacob Sorberger and his wife Ester Cornelia, was baptized in Vonhausen on 23 July 1730. Anna Catharina Armbrüster, daughter of Johann Heinrich Armbrüster and his wife Catharina, was baptized on 31 January 1726 in Erbstadt.  Johann Jacob and Anna Catharina married in Rohrbach on 22 June 1752. Johann Jacob and his brother Johann Friedrich (baptized in Vonhausen on 12 April 1728) followed in their father's footsteps and also became schoolteachers.

Schoolmaster Sorberger and his wife Anna Catharina had six children, all born and baptized in Rohrbach: Johann Heinrich, born 6 May, baptized 13 May 1753, died 20 October 1756; Henrietta Cornelia Catharina Louisa, born 30 March, baptized 2 April 1755; Catharina Maria, born 5 March, baptized 8 March 1758; Johannes, born 18 April, baptized 20 April 1760; Abraham Georg, born 17 January, baptized 19 January 1762; and Johanna Wilhelmina, born 27 December, baptized 30 December 1763. 

The family is recorded arriving in Oranienbaum on 31 July 1766 with the following children: Louisa (age 13), Catharina (age 11), Johann (age 7), Abraham (age 5), Wilhelmina (age 3), and Heinrich (age 1/4).

Evidently Jacob and the three boys died between their arrival in Oranienbaum and the family's arrival in Norka because Catharina Sorberger is listed on the 1767 Census of Norka in Household No. 207 as the widow of Jacob Sorberger, along with daughters Louisa, Katharina, and Wilhelmine. Some records spell the surname Sorbeger.

As all the male members of the family died before reaching the Volga colonies, the surname of Sorberger does not continue to future generations among the Volga German colonies.

Research is ongoing in an effort to document a connection between these Sorberger individuals and two other Sorberger individuals with connections to Volga German colonies: Schoolmaster Johann Georg Sorberger of Wolf, whose daughter Catharina Elisabetha settled in Moor; and Esther Jacobina Sorberger, daughter of Schoolmaster Jacob Sorberger, who settled in Norka.  


- Vonhausen (Büdingen) parish records (including Lorbach and Diebach-am-Haag) on
- Rohrbach (Büdingen) parish records (including Aulen-Diebach, Büches, and Stockheim), FHL Film #1201847. 
- Erbstadt parish records on
- Bonner, Wayne H. Volga German Settlers Identified in Isenburg and Other German Church Records Part I (Gardena, CA: Wayne Bonner, 2007): 56.
- Decker, Klaus-Peter. Die Auswanderung von 1766/67 aus der Grafschaft Ysenburg-Büdingen nach Russland: p. 180
- Pleve, Igor. Lists of Colonists to Russia in 1766: Reports by Ivan Kulberg (Saratov: Saratov State Technical University, 2010): p. 185
- Pleve, Igor. Einwanderung in das Wolgagebiet, 1764-1767 Band 3 (Göttingen: Göttinger Arbeitskreis, 2005): p. 286

Wayne Bonner
Brent Mai
Maggie Hein