Biography of Father Nikolaus Kraft

Born in 1875 in Kleinliebental, a German colony outside Odessa. Graduated from Saratov Seminary and was ordained May 2, 1899, for the Diocese of Tiraspol. From 1899 he was pastor of the parish in Kleinliebental; from 1910, in Mariental [Tonkoshurovka] on the Volga; in 1918 he was appointed dean of the newly created Mariental deanery. He and Fr. Gottlieb Beratz headed the German Catholic Youth Union [Jugendverein] on the Volga. In 1921, after the crushing of the uprising of German colonists, he was arrested as one of 270 “participants”; charged with "leadership of insurgent contingents of peasants during the uprising in Mariental.” Fr. Nikolaus and the 269 others were sentenced to death [Court of Expeditionary Forces, Revolutionary Tribunal]. Shot (date of sentence and death unknown). Sources: Osipova (1996), pp. 176-177; Investigatory Matter 95215, Central Archive, FSB, Russian Federation; Dzwonkowski, p. 309-311; Schnurr, p. 57; see also Center for Volga German Studies, > History > Biographies
Variant Names:
Kraft, Nikolaus; Kraft, Nikolaĭ
Malodolynsʹke (Ukraine); Saratov (Russia); Tiraspol (Moldova); Malodolynsʹke (Ukraine); Marʹi︠a︡nivka (Ovidiopol'sʹkyĭ raĭon, Ukraine)
male; clergy and religious; executed