The Lower East Side Tenement Museum was founded in 1988 to promote tolerance and historical perspective through the presentation and interpretation of the variety of immigrant experiences on Manhattan's Lower East Side. To this end, we are restoring a tenement at 97 Orchard Street, which served as working-class housing from 1863 to 1935. As part of our research, we are investigating the life of the John Schneider family, former residents and owners of a saloon at 97 Orchard Street. I post here in hopes of connecting with a knowing descendant of this family.
The Tenement Museum was first alerted to the existence of John Schneider in the 1870 U.S. Census, where he is listed as living and working at 97 Orchard Street. Subsequently, he appeared in the New York City directory as lager-beer dealer and saloonkeeper until 1885, when records reveal that he moved across the street to 98 Orchard Street before dying in 1892 from tuberculosis. Other research has shown that John Schneider was married to Caroline Louisa Dietman and had one child, a son named Harry (aka Henry) Schneider. Caroline died from tubeculosis in June 1885 at 97 Orchard Street; John too died of TB in 1892. At that time, Harry (aka Henry) was adopted by his uncle, John's older brother, George Schneider. We do not know what became of Harry (aka Henry) Schneider after 1892.
John and Caroline Schneider were buried along with fifty other members of the extended Schneider family in Lutheran All Faiths Cemetery, Middle Village, Queens, New York, lot numbers 4367, 4369, 4370, and 4371. Henry Schneider is not buried there. Indeed, the trail of John and Caroline’s branch of the family has gone cold, and we are now looking for descendants to help us in our search.
Based on extensive genealogical research, the Tenement Museum is searching for descendants of John, Caroline, and Harry. If you are a descendant, the names of some of your family members might be: Harold Fielbig, Caroline Reimer, Margaret Frick, Violet Reimer, Rudolph Schneider, and George Reitwiesner. We need your help to learn as much as possible about John Schneider in order to install and interpret an exhibition about his saloon in the Museum, and would be interested in speaking with you and your family about stories, photographs, and memorabilia related to John, Caroline, and Harry Schneider that may have been passed down. Please give me a call at 212-431-0233, x257. I look forward to hearing from you soon.