I wish you great luck with your research and hope this info turned out to be something positive for you.
To the best of my knowledge, no, none of our Kaufmann's were ever in Russia. They came from the Wurttemberg,Baden,Black Forest area of Germany as has been told over and over again in family stories. They were there up until around c1750 when they came over to Nor. America. Some of the descendants left behind in Germany however I cannot speak for as we have no knowledge of that.
Yes indeed the name of "Melchior" was a common name amongst our branches but Melchior was also a famous Lutheran writer, or he had something to do with Martin Luther I believe in Germany so the name was probably commonly given to males born to those of the Lutheran faith during that time. Ironically, the name Daniel also appears amongst our family branches.
I did find out that our name was at one time spelled "Kaufmann" in Germany which as I am told means "merchant". I still know very little about our branch, wish I could be of more help to you, but good luck on your own research.
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