Classification scheme: 
Hist. Mss. 1.229

Title: Isador B. Snyder fonds

Dates of creation: 1843-1938

Physical description: 35 cm of textual material

Biographical sketch​: Isador Betzner Snyder (15 November 1859-18 April 1938) was the oldest child (of six) of Joseph C. Snyder (1837-1909) and Elizabeth Betzner Snyder (1839-1932). He was a farmer east of Berlin/Kitchener (where the Kitchener Memorial Auditorium is now located). On 19 November 1884 he married Hannah Bingeman (22 June 1860-13 April 1926); they had five children, including Earle Snyder.

Isador and Hannah were active members of the Christian Eby (First Mennonite) congregation in Berlin; in their last years they were associated with the Stirling Ave. Mennonite Church. Isador was musically gifted, and was an early song leader in the Sunday school movement.

The Isador Snyder diaries are revealing about life the Mennonite community in the last decades of the 19th century. They include descriptions of evening edification meetings, the Sunday school movement, and the John S. Coffman revival meetings. He has a notes taken at these revival meetings in 1891.

Custodial history: The material was preserved by Helen Reusser, granddaughter of Joseph C. Snyder. She donated it to the Mennonite Archives of Ontario in October 2008.

Scope and content​: Diaries and account books. Also included are legal documents pertaining to several generations of the Snyder family, including his father, Joseph C. Snyder, grandfather, Jacob E. Schneider (2 September 1800-2 October 1884), and great grandfather Joseph Schneider (24 May 1772-27 October 1843), and some correspondence.

The fonds includes five series: 1) Legal documents; 2) Correspondence/Writing; 3) Diaries; 4) Account books; 5)Miscellaneous.


Original archival description created October 2008 by Sam Steiner.

Series 1: Legal Documents

  1. Joseph Schneider (1772-1843) estate
    Agreement of Executors, 7 November 1843 
    Probate of will, 1 December 1843
    Release of heirs, 25 May 1850
  2. Jacob E. Schneider (1800-1884) estate
    Will [Signature & date torn away]
    Probate of will, 21 October 1884 
    Receipts & releases of heirs from Joseph C. Snyder, 1884
    Sale list of buyers & articles from Jacob Schneider estate, 10 November 1884 
    Indenture re: care of Franklin Snyder from estate of Jacob E. Schneider, 23 September 1905
  3. Joseph C. Snyder (1837-1909) indentures, invoices, etc., 1867-1908,
    including property conveyances, personal notes, etc.
  4. Joseph C. Snyder (1837-1909) estate
    Correspondence, statements and releases re: Joseph C. Snyder estate, 1911-1935
  5. Isador B. Snyder (1859-1938)
    Includes wills of Isador and Hannah Snyder, various property transactions, and legal proceedings related to estate of Joseph C. Snyder, 1894-1938

Series 2: Correspondence/Writings

  1. "Historical Sketch of the Betzner Family" / Isador Snyder, 1919/1920 (based on age of his mother, mentioned in the text)
  2. "Self-culture, or How to Educate Each Man for His Proper Work" / Isador Snyder, 1881
  3. Hannah Snyder to Earle Snyder, 1922-1924
  4. John S. Bingeman to Hannah Bingeman Snyder, 1921-1922
  5. N. S. Stauffer to Isador Snyder & family, 1921
  6. Grant B. Snyder (son) to Isador & Hannah Snyder, 1923-1925

Series 3: Diaries (Some include financial records as well)

1880-1881, 1883 (travel diary of trip to Vineland), 1883-1884, 1885, 1886-1888 (included visitors in 1892), 1892-1894, 1894-1896, 1898-1901, 1902 (travel diary of trip to California), 1909

Series 4: Account Books

1879/80, 1885/86, 1887, 1888/89, 1890/91, 1892, 1893-1897, 1898/99, 1905/06, 1915

Series 5: Miscellaneous

  1. Booklet containing notes on John S. Coffman meetings at Christian Eby Church, January, 1891; account of a visit to Vineland, Ontario; summary of worship service on March 18, 1894; List of persons baptized on March 30, 1891; Notes of Waterloo District half-yearly conference, April 12, 1894; sermon summary April 15, 1894 (sermon by Samuel Bowman).
  2. Memorandum book with notes about a wide variety of agricultural items and lists of people and numbers. Also included is a two-page personal summary of the "bonnet" issue at First Mennonite Church in the 1920s
  3. Hannah Bingeman travel diary of extended trip to Pennsylvania, probably 1881
  4. Hannah B. Snyder "Egg record and account book", 1911-1912
  5. Hannah B. Snyder garden records, 1914-1916
  6. Minutes of meeting at Christian Eby Mennonite Church in regard to repair of the church, 9 April 1902 (re: the fence); Isador Snyder served as secretary of the meeting
  7. Notes from a Sunday school conference of undetermined date. Reference to Bishop Hallman suggests it was after 1907.
  8. Legal petition of Albert S. Snyder (1853-1940) re: estate of his father, Moses C. Snyder (1829-1871) (Moses was brother of Joseph C. Snyder), Oct. 24, 1876
  9. Exit visa of Wilhelm Hofstaetter (Hofstätter) and his wife, Maria Magdalena Hofstatter, and two children from Königreich Württemberg, 20 August 1853
  10. Bond of sale from Matthias Rassner (Rasner ?) to William Hofstetter (Hofstatter, Hofstätter), 12 April 1854
  11. Article of agreement between Michael Frances (Franz ?) and Andrew Fornwaller (Fornwald ?) to purchase rear of lot 9 on Bleams Road, Wilmot Township, 9 June 1847.


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Mennonite Archives of Ontario
Conrad Grebel University College
140 Westmount Road North
Waterloo, ON N2L 3G6

Phone: 519-885-0220 x24238