German Immigration Essay

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Thesis: The German immigrants on both the Catholic side and throughout America were and they positively affected it in their way to expand the land by moving east and by adding some of the things that they brought over like Oktoberfest, then they were being welcomed into society and also expanding the Catholic faith through close communities.

The Germans that had come to America gave the country a huge rise in population in both helping the United States grow in a way they have never seen before and also to expand each individual faith that they were a part of. They had also started to support and build communities when they had decided to focus more on the Midwest to live as opposed to the east with the Irish and have their main focus be on agriculture and small communities like back in Germany where many of them were farmers. The German immigrants on both the Catholic side and throughout America, was positively affected in their way, for example on how to expand the land by moving east and by adding some of the things that they brought over like Oktoberfest, then they were being welcomed into society and also expanding the Catholic faith through close communities.

The effect that the Germans had on America was overall a positive one and many of them fit very well back into society and began to participate openly within and around their community. They were welcomed with open arms and they took the society very well in adapting to the American way of living and most of the Germans that made the journey across the Atlantic could afford the trip to the Midwest and start to form a large part of the land or find some sort of work in town. The reason that they moved over to America was to avoid the government that was going through uneasy times with the discrimination that the Catholics were experiencing with the Nazis. The jobs they had greatly varied on how much money they had come over if they did not have much money coming over they generally went out of town and went into the farming business and tried their best at trying to make a new life in America. If they had more money coming over and were not as desperate for their next payday they had tended to stay closer to the main towns in the Midwest and many had opened up small storefronts in the town. To help keep their culture when they had moved to the Midwest and try to keep as many things from home as they can.

Some of the lasting effects of the Germans were the effect on the architecture of some of the buildings I many towns around the Midwest, for example, the cathedral in St. Paul and the Gothic architecture that it exemplifies through the spires facing upwards towards God. It also has left an impact on the Catholic religion and help it to expand and spread throughout the new world and make the realm of Catholic influence even bigger. Thus they then grew their communities to broaden their area of influence for example, my mother’s grandmother who grew up in St. Michael Minnesota and was taught lessons in German at her local Catholic parish.

The German immigrants were very influential in that many of the Catholic Germans went on to become very influential people in the church and helped to spread it through the new world. The Germans influenced the spread of the faith because of the mass number of Catholics that are coming over from Germany to avoid persecution from the Nazis. “The 18th century saw a flood of immigrants from the German-speaking territories of Europe, including present-day Germany, Switzerland, and Austria, arrive in the British American colonies. Recent research indicates that more than 110,000 German-speaking people arrived, changing the complexion of the British American colonies”. They also helped to spread it deeper and deeper into America because of the majority of the deciding to settle in the Midwest as opposed to the east coast where most of the Italians settled. Most of the Germans settled in the Midwest because of the better soil for farming and the ability to own more land as opposed to the cramped land in the east.

Some of the lasting effects that they had was the bishop of Philadelphia John Nepomucene Neumann as he began the first American diocesan school system and later was canonized a saint in the year 1977 by Pope Paul VI and he was very influential and help the Catholic church in America grow by developing a way for both young and old Catholic scholars to become more educated in the faith and be a more well informed laity to help serve their local communities around the area through service. The Catholics that had affected America in many ways, whether it be through their faith directly like when Bishop John Neumann had begun to pave the way for all Germans wanting to become a bishop or of a higher power role in the church.

Another important German immigrant was a German printer named Christopher Saur who had printed the first Bible in America and that has helped to spread the faith through America by making bibles, more accessible and cheaper for local people to buy and read in their daily lives. He has also helped to spread the reading of the Bible to many people across America and helped to start the movement of the Catholic religion to become one of the largest across the United States and made the Bible easier for everyone to have access to in many homes and in every church across America.

The German immigrant’s religious identity helped to shape their migration to the new world by helping to start communities oriented around a church to help them start to develop in their faith. Many of the Germans that had come over had made the journey to escape religious persecution and that is why the mass a great increase in the amount of Germans that had to escape Germany and the incredibly harsh discrimination by the Nazis and they had felt that there were many opportunities to find work and the democratic ideation at the time that they had promised growth in the economy and in the job market. This had caused the German population to catapult the Catholic population in the largest religious denomination in the country, making them the most influential in America because of the large increase of the German Catholics.

The reason he had a lasting impact on America because they had increased the Catholic religious member numbers to new heights in North America that have never been reached before by a single religious group yet. They had also impacted on some holidays that were adopted into American life, for example, is Oktoberfest and that is why they were very against prohibition and had greatly impacted on their daily lives and had affected almost every aspect of their lifestyle. They had also had developed a very strong presence in where the larger part of the population of America at that time was very highly German or of German influence of some way, shape or form, whether they grew up in a German culture in many communities scattered across the Midwest or if they knew of the German people and what they do.

In conclusion, the German people have left their mark on American history or whether it’s them starting mainly small agricultural towns or cities where they can feel at home because of the many similarities that the Midwest has with the German landscape. Also on how they grew and spread the Catholic faith to be as influential as it is today in America and how it has led to many settlements over many subjects of matter whether that be politics or disputes, but they will still all go to church together as one as the Germans had come to show when they had come to America and stayed and formed communities on their own where they could keep their traditions and not face any persecution like they Catholics would have received if they would’ve stayed in Germany at that time.

Work Cited
Daniels, Roger. Coming to America: A History of Immigration and Ethnicity in American Life. New York: HarperCollins, 1990.
Frost, Helen. German Immigrants, 1820–1920. Mankato, MN: Blue Earth Books, an imprint of Capstone Press, 2002.
“German Immigration.” U.S. Immigration and Migration Reference Library. Ed. Lawrence W. Baker, et al. Vol. 1: Vol. 1: Almanac. Detroit: UXL, 2004. 221-246. U.S. History in Context. Web. 9 May 2016.
“The Germans in America.” Chronology : (European Reading Room, Library of Congress). European Reading Room, 23 Apr. 2014. Web. 09 May 2016.
“Irish and German Immigration.” Independence Hall Association, n.d. Web. 09 May 2016.

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