Stille and Krumme
The Stille and Krumme piece is about Germans emigrating from their home countries to America in the early 1800s. The piece inludes letters writting by said immigrants once they are in America attempting to make a living for themselves. The letters are all easy to read and interesting in that we get to learn about different experiences such as work, where all the Germans live, how buying land works, etc. When writing home there are a lot of common suggestions or questions asked. Many of the German immigrants mention that it is much harder to come to America when one has a family because the journey is expensive enough for one person, which I thought was interesting because travel can still be very expensive nowadays. Many of them in their letters also asked their relatives back home to send clothes and or suggested that if anyone do come that they should bring their own clothes. Another thing I found interesting that came up in the letter is that the Germans spoke about religion a lot and how the Americans were different in that they did not baptize their babies. The immigrants were clear that they went out of their way to look for German pastors for getting married and just for going to church in general. They also talk about cities like New Orleans, Pittsburgh, Wheeling where there are German communities.
In the Martin Weitz piece we learn that he is also a German who comes from the county of Schotten. Schotten is at a very high altitude thus farming cannot be done and a lot of the people there were weavers and craftsmen. Weitz himself was a weaver that left Germany in 1854 to come to America. He ended up settling in Rockville, Connecticut, where a lot of Germans lived. In the letters we again see that living in America as a single individual is expensive and many are eager to marry for it is easier to afford housing between two people. Weitz himself seemed eager to marry and kept mentioning in in his letters he sent back home but he did make clear that often marriages fail and partners run away from each other. Weitz also talks about the temperance going on in America and how alcohol cannot be bought or consumed. In his letters to home he also talks about politics in America, specifically about slavery and how he was and always has been a democrat and believes in freedom. Weitz mentions that fifteen states in the south have voted for slavery and talks about Kansas being a dangerous place because there is voting happening in regards to slavery. He also talks about education or the younger generation and how they are trying to establish schools in Rockville who will provide German education. Weitz took English classes himself and informed his family back home that it is simply more difficult to get by in America without knowing the language and without any money of course.