The history of Mestlin

The Thirty-Years-War left a destructed land behind. A reconstruction takes place only slowly. In the following years, Mecklenburg has to suffer through a number of other smaller and bigger wars. In the 19th century, Mestlin develops to a pure estate-village. Just like anywhere in Mecklenburg, many inhabitants emigrate. The situation for the rural population hardly improves till World War II.

In1652, the effects of the Thirty-Years-War on Mestlin are, just like anywhere in Mecklenburg, tremendous. Only 12 peasantries remain.

Rabble-law with embodiment of serfdom

After the rabble-law from 1645, that had already been enforced, the new "Rabble - Day-Laborer - Peasant - Shepherd - Tax- and Victual-law" is being passed on November 14th, 1654. It consolidates the worst way of suppression of peasants by the aristocrats. A marriage, for example, has to be allowed by the estate owner.

Schwedisch-Polnischer Krieg

In 1658, Imperial, Brandenburgian, and Polish soldiers march into Mecklenburg. Warlike incriminations, just like at the time of the Thirty-Years-War, until the peace-treaty of Olivia in May 1660.

1674 - 1675
Brandenburg-Swedish war in Mecklenburg

1688 Andreas Petri becomes pastor of Mestlin / Ruest

1696 The effects of the Thirty-Years-War are still not overcome: there are only six peasantries in Ruest (house-people and people that own cottages): Hans Cords minor, Hans Cords, Köster, Soltow, Dolge and Möller.

Mecklenburg-Schwerin has not quite 100,000 inhabitants, Mecklenburg-Strelitz has 30,000
1700 - 1721
Nordic War

Lootering by the war-parties: Sweden against Prussia, Denmark, Saxony, and Russia.

Third major land seperation through the agreement of Hamburg

Mecklenburg is being seperated into Mecklenburg-Strelitz and Mecklenburg- Schwerin. One agrees on the primogenitural succession.

In1704, Mestlin has 109 inhabitants (over 14 years), Ruest has 64. In Mestlin live the house-people and people that own cottages: Hinrich Cords, Hans Hohe, Soltwedel, Hartwich Cordes, Westphal / Behrens, Kröger, Dolge, Nehls, Welzin, Joachim Cords minor. And in Ruest: Soltow, Stralendorff / Wiese, Hans Cords minor, Möller, Dolge, Soltwedel, Sülocke (Zülck), Köster, Hans Cords.

1706 Georg Brennecke becomes the pastor of Mestlin / Ruest

Beginning of deportments of people from Mecklenburg to the prussian army, the war is raging in Mecklenburg

1717 Carl Helmut Neander becomes pastor of Mestlin / Ruest

1731 the administrator of Mestlin around this time is Langhoff

1733 / 1735
Violent recruitment by Prussians in Mecklenburg

1748 Building of a first windmill in Mestlin.

Um 1748 Building of the brickyard in Mestlin.

1751 Mestlin has 179 and Ruest 106 inhabitants.

1751 the church is being built in today's shape.

At the same time, as the expropriation of the peasants ("Bauernlegen") by the aristocrats, the settlement of "Häusler" and "Büdner" (people that live in houses or cottages) began on the basis of the settlement decree by duke Christian Ludwig.

1754; Johann Clamor Buchholz becomes pastor of Mestlin / Ruest

April 18th, 1755
constitutional heriditary settlement

Further embodiment of serfdom, legalisation of expropriation of peasants ("Bauernlegen"). Mecklenburg has 150,000 inhabitants at this time.

1756 - 1763
Seven-Years War

Prussia occupies the neutral Saxony and fights against a coalition of Austria, Russia, France and Sweden, in the course of the war, Mecklenburg is being occupied a number of times (first in 1757) by Prussia, furthermore money- and payment in natural produces, forced recruitments (altogether approx. 4000 soldiers for the Prussian army) and lootings.
After the war, finally a restricted progress takes place.

Publikation Buchholz Pastors report 1784 / 1785
The pastor of Mestlin writes a church chronicle: "In-depth news of church and parish-matters in Mestlin and Ruest, and what is necessary to know about the overview, set up and confirmed by enclosed documents, plans and tables, by Johann Clamor Buchholz, at this time pastor in Mestlin and Ruest, written in the years 1784 and 85"
Pastor Buchholz put down the history of the village and its inhabitants in a unique way and meticulous completeness (216 pages). Buchholz covers, for example the history of the churches of Mestlin and Ruest, their patrons, their architectural composition. He copied documents, described parish lands, former and current parish villages and monastries of Mestlin. The part on the families of his monastry is of a special importance for geneological research (see publication of 1938).

Reprint 1938 Reprint 1938
A part of the parish chronicle of Mestlin (see publicationn 1784 / 85) by Johann Clamor Buchholz is being printed under the title "Of the old families of Mestlin - a chronicle" in the framework of a series called "sources to the rural court- and geneological research".
For three periods of time (until 1648, 1648-1704, 1704-1785), the peasants and inhabitants of Mestlin, Ruest and Mühlenhof are being listed. Appearing special features are being interpreted and commented. 16 families, "that are the strongest" are being documented in great detail: Behrens, Cords, Dieckmann, Dolge, Eckelberg, Ehmck(e), Garling, Hohe, Kröger, Nehls, Soltau, Soltwedel, Wel(t)zin, Westphal, Wiese, Zülock(Sülck).

A map from 1777 shows 15 peasanties in Mestlin, additionally the estate at the church, a forestry court and two courts of the mayor.

1783; In Mestlin live: Johann Eckelberg, H. J. Garling, Ehmck, Köpcke, Hans Adam Nehls, Westphal, Hans Jacob Kröger, Jochim Nehls, Johann Kröger, Johann Karl Wiese, Friedrich Garling, Soltwedel, Friedrich Cords, H. J. Eckelberg.

May 18th, 1792
Prohibition of emigration to America for the subjects of Mecklenburg- Schwerin by grand-ducal decree.

1793 Johann Adam Schulz becomes pastor of Mestlin / Ruest

1803 House-people and cottage-owners in Ruest are: Schulze Hahn, Friedrich Wiese, Hans Sternberg, Michel Sternberg, Borchert, Krüger Rieck, Zülck, Stüdemann, Friedrich Cords.

escape of Blücher through

Lootings, destructions by the French

1806 - 1813
French time

1815 Gedenktafel entry into membership of the napoleon Rhine union in 1808, billetings, forced recruitment for the fight against Russia in 1812: 2100 people from Mecklenburg (Schwerin: 1700, Strelitz: 400). Less than a hundred survive. In 1813, both parts of Mecklenburg leave the Rhine union.

1813 - 1815
War of independence against Napoleon

1808 - 1815 memory board for veterans in the church of Mestlin

June 8th, 1815
The German Federal File allows (through article 18b) the emigration to other states of the German Union
congress in Vienna

Mecklenburg-Schwerin and Mecklenburg-Strelitz become grand-duchies and members of the German union.

1816 Martin Joachim Jakob Heydemann becomes pastor of Mestlin / Ruest

1817 / 1820
Mecklenburg-Schwerin has 393.000 inhabitants (1820) and Mecklenburg-Strelitz has 72.000 (1817)
January 18th, 1820
annullment of serfdom in Mecklenburg, as of Easter 1821, is being announced
April 4th, 1822
Decree over seperation and heriditary-leaseholding of the peasantries

1828 the leaseholder of Mestlin (including Vimfow and Kadow), Sauerkohl leases Zidderich with Steinbeck as well

1830 Johann Heinrich Birkenstädt becomes pastor of Mestlin / Ruest

In1830, Mestlin has 12 3/4-"Hüfner", parish church, forester, windmill, "Klosterkrug", blacksmith's shop, brickyard, and school and Ruest has 9 3/4-"Hüfner", church, school and "Erbkrug".

In connection with the change from the three-field-farmstead to the effective enclosure-farmstead, the 1834 Mühle acre pieces of the farmers are divided up all over. On Johanni 1833 the 12 peasants of Mestlin are being settled over to Ruest. From the unsecure status as time-leaseholders they now became heriditary-leaseholders. From now on, Mestlin was a pure estate village, whereas Ruest was being upgraded to a big peasants' village, Ruest had 25 peasantries. At this time, the leaseholder of Mestlin is Karl Sauerkohl.

In1834, the step mill was built in Mestlin. Far visible it could still be the famous landmark of Mestlin, unfortunately it burnt down in 1945.

1835 the fair justice, that Mestlin was entitled to until then, was transferred to Ruest.

September 3rd, 1847
A grand-ducal decree rules the procedure for giving away passports to emigrants in Mecklenburg-Schwerin
1848 / 1849
February 5th, 1849
A grand-ducal decree rules the "general repeal of taxes for emigrants" ... for the state of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
Beginning of the mass emigration to America

Political, social and economical problems caused the great emigration wave, at the end of the 19th century. From 1853 till 1908, almost 120,000 people emigrated from Mecklenburg.

June 1st, 1853
Decree over the acquisition and the loss of a subject from Mecklenburg is being passed

1857 Mestlin has 240 inhabitants, court, parish church, school, forestry, mill, "Krug", blacksmith's shop, and a brickyard (Ruest: 443 inhabitants, school, blacksmith's shop, and "Erbkrug").

April 15th, 1857
sovereign decree over the emigration to outer-european countries

1861 the lease-holder Hans Dehns takes over the estate.

June 25th, 1867
The constitution of the North-German union becomes binding upon both parts of Mecklenburg

With the founding of the North-German Union in 1867, a new era begins for Mecklenburg. The constitution grants total freedom within the states of the North-German union, as well as in in the cross-border traffic for all union-members. The existing marriage restrictions are dropped. Mecklenburg was connected with the north-german mail- and telecommunication net and receives standardized measures and weights on the basis of the metric system, and the bank notes of the union. The military of Mecklenburg was placed under prussian command.

Both parts of Mecklenburg become members of the customs union

1869 1871 Gedenktafel The lease-holder of Mestlin, Hans Dehns, takes over Vimfow as well.

1870 - 1871
German-French War

with participation of troups from Mecklenburg

1871 memory board in the church of Mestlin for the dead.

Founding of the German Empire, both Mecklenburg-Schwerin (558,000 inhabitants) and Mecklenburg-Strelitz (97,000 inhabitants) become member states.

1872 Ludwig Heinrich Hunzinger becomes pastor of Mestlin / Ruest

Gutshaus 1877Monastry office Dobbertin 1877 - is the inscription on this board at the front side of a building. In the 70ies of the 19th century, the houses (see picture below) of the day-laborers of the estate were built along the village street (today: Fritz-Reuter-Str., Goldberger Str.).

1894 the lease-holder of Mestlin is H. Dehns.

Important historic book
"Mecklenburgische Vaterlandskunde", by Wilhelm Raabe, Wismar 1894 is written about Mestlin:
Mestlin, post station, 1 1/4 mile to the west of Goldberg, important junction of our avenue-traffic, since the four avenues from Parchim, Crivitz, Sternberg and Goldberg unite here. To the south of the forest of the monastry of Dobbertin.
Lease-court of H. Dehns (blacksmith's shop).
village with parish church, school (2), forester, mill, "Krug", brickyard, court and village 887,7 hectare. 295 (240) inhabitants

Gutshaus The following anecdote from the "Mecklenburg Buch" by E. Schulz (Hinstorff Verlag, 1938) could be from this time from Mestlin:
A boy of maybe seven years from an estate village came late to school, because he overslept. The teacher asked him, when he went to bed. "I dunno," was the answer. The teacher replies: "Was it dark out?" After a short moment, the boy replied: "We could still plow."

1895 Karl Axel Walter pastor of Mestlin / Ruest

At the end of 1895 there were 270 people living in Mestlin, and 305 in Ruest.

imperial law that ruled emigration

Around the turn of the century, Hans Dehn is lease-holder of Mestlin.

Documentary book written around the turn of the century
Dorfstraße How could the village Mestlin have looked like around the turn of the century? An unemployed from Berlin (name is unknown), that somehow got to an estate in Mecklenburg, describes his experiences: "Life of a farm-walker in Mecklenburg".
With simple words he characterizes the people he meets: inspector, farmhands, maids, day-laborers and farm-walkers (... in the point of view of a person from Mecklenburg are the farm-walkers coming here of no good what-so-ever. ...), he describes the village, the manor, Lüstuw, cottages, ... and the daily life of the people. (picture on the right: picture postcard from Mestlin, approx. 1905)

August 1st, 1914 - November 11th, 1918
World War I

1937 Berckemeyer 1917Bernhard Berckemeyer (picture on the right, 1937 in Weisin) leases the estate Mestlin. Owner is the monastry of Dobbertin. A year later, the entire property of the monastry is being taken over by the state.
B. has been leasing the estate of Weisin near Lübz since 1906. In 1936 he buys the former estate of his parents in Gr. Thurow back.
In 1917, Mestlin was in a very bad shape. The approx. 60 families led a hard life. In the middle of the 20-ies, B. irrigates big areas in order to build the estate up again. B. hired the governor Briese for Vimfow, for Mestlin he hires the horse governor Prestin. At that time, Hahn was the governor of Mestlin.

1914 Gedenktafel

1914 - 1918 Again, there are victims among the people from Mestlin: memory board on the cemetery.

November 14th, 1918
abdication of the grand-duke
Takeover of the administration of the monastry of Dobbertin by the free state Mecklenburg-Schwerin

1918 Friedrich Wehner becomes pastor of Mestlin / Ruest

1918 / 1919
Founding of the free states Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1919) and Mecklenburg- Strelitz (1918) as member states of the republic of Weimar
Mecklenburg-Schwerin has 674,000 inhabitants, Mecklenburg-Strelitz has 110,000

1927 Hochzeit 1926 B. Berckemeyer realizes extensive irrigation measures in Mestlin.

Property lease-holder Major a. D. Berckemeyer was the leading force in the soldier union of Mestlin. The union arranged a number of social events (soldier dances, meetings, children's fairs).

A marriage in Mestlin (Hermann Konow, cartwright, 1927)

1934 Otto Schmidt becomes pastor of Mestlin / Ruest

Both parts of Mecklenburg have 805.000 inhabitants
Combining of both parts of Mecklenburg to the district Mecklenburg

Publikation Zacharias Book written 1986
In 1986, the autobiography of Irene Zacharias is published under the title: "My seven children and the course of the world" (267 pages).
Irene Zacharias, born in 1903 in Berlin marries the peasant Paul Holz in Poitendorf near Parchim in 1924. In 1938, the family takes over a farm in Ruest, that's 200 Morgen big (a "Morgen" is an obsolescent unit of measurement comprising between 2,500 and 3,400 square meters). There she lives until 1951. In simple moving words she describes her experiences and thereby the conditions of that time in Mestlin and Ruest. Mentioned are for example the neighbors Wahrmann and Ehmcke, the peasants Nehls, Dollase, Peglau, Radke, the peasants' wives Elsa Welzin, Ida Rinsche, the landlord Brennke, the mayor Martens. In the foreground however, stands the history of her family, the history of her eight children.

1939 Friedrich Heise becomes pastor of Mestlin / Ruest

Mestlin has 1939 369 inhabitants

In 1939, Mecklenburg has 900,593 inhabitants

1939 - 1945
World War II
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