Missouri Germans Consortium

Everything German in Missouri

Emigrant / Auswanderer


verb \ˈe-mə-ˌgrāt\


Definition of EMIGRATE (Merriam-Webster Dictionary)

intransitive verb
: to leave one’s place of residence or country to live elsewhere <emigrated from Canada to the United States>
— em·i·gra·tion noun

Origin of EMIGRATE

Latin emigratus, past participle of emigrare, from e- +migrare to migrate

First Known Use: 1766

German: Emigrant – to leave one country and settle in another.

Beginning in 1830, there were as many reasons to emigrate to Missouri, as there were Germans, and there were thousands who chose to do so.  From the beginning, Missouri was a mecca for German emigrants, who came in search of that dream, and built homes, raised families and shared their culture. First inspired by the writings of Gottfried Duden, chain migration continued as letters poured home to the Old World, about opportunities in the new. Missouri’s immigration issue began in the 1830s, when large groups of Germans arrived from Osnabrück, Soligen, and Giessen.

The traditions and heritage of those German emigrants can still be found today. It can be seen in the historic architecture of cities like Washington, Hermann, St. Charles, Augusta and St. Louis. It is celebrated in the festivals and celebrations, from the Maifest to the Strassenfest,  Weihnachten and ChristkindleMarkts. It will be heard in a quiet German church, near Krakow, on a snowy Christmas, with a candlelight sermon and German carols.  You can experience it on a Sunday afternoon, enjoying the music and wine in a hillside winery, along the Missouri Weinstrasse. Or you will see it in an old German family bible, carried and cherished, filled with notations of important chronicles of births and deaths, as the legacy and heritage continues to this day.

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