In the spring of 1834, nearly five hundred Germans board two ships headed for America, all led by the idea of Freedom and Democracy! The Giessen Emigration Society crossed the Atlantic Ocean in hopes of founding a model democratic German State in the U.S., a Utopian colony in Missouri. The Society’s founders Friedrich Muench and Paul Follenius plan failed. However, because of their strong beliefs and leadership, with the right conditions, it soon led others to take up their brave idea. Traces of their influence can still be found today.
These fellow students from the University of Giessen created the largest organized emigration society to ever come to Missouri. This politically motivated group came from various cities and villages, from all occupations and religions, united in their search for freedom.
This new book Utopia – Revisiting a German State in America shares a nearly forgotten piece of Missouri history, in both Germany and the United States, and is being shared by an International group of writers, historians and photographers. Full color and illustrations, this 352 page book was first released in Giessen, Germany with the Exhibition by the same name, on November 1, 2013 by the publication firm Edition Falkenberg. This beautifully illustrated story of the Giessen Emigration Society told by Ludwig Brake, Dorris Keeven-Franke, Walter D. Kamphoefner, Rolf Schmidt, Kilian Spiethoff and others; photographs by Folker Winkelmann. The book is now available in the U.S. through the Missouri History Museum and the University of Chicago Press.
Paperback: 352 pages / 233 color plates and halftones
Publisher: Edition Falkenberg (November 1, 2013 Germany)
Edited by the Traveling Summer Republic and the City Archives of Giessen.
Product Dimensions: 10.25 x 8.25 x 1.5 inches
Shipping Weight: 3 pounds