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GERMAN IMMIGRATION TO
NEW YORK AND PENNSYLVANIA.
A PAPER READ BEFORE THE
WYOMING HISTORICAL AND GEOLOGICAL SOCIETY BY REV.
SANFORD OF ALBANY,
CORRESPONDING MEMBER OF THE WYOMING HISTORICAL AND GEOLOGICAL SOCIETY.
PRINTED FOR THE SOCIETY. WiIvKES-Barre, Pa. 1897.
Baur & Son Print, WILKES-BARRE.
This paper, prepared and read at the request of the
and Geological Society,
statement of the more important facts contained larger manuscript, entitled,
of the Palatines.
History," which the author hopes
soon to publish in book form, with maps and numerous quotations from original documents and authorities.
SAN FORD Albany, N.
THE PALATINE, OR GERMAN, IMMIGRATION TO NEW YORK AND PENNSYLVANIA. That part
American colonies, in the 18th century, which is spoken of the
under the name of the
features of unique experience
of record and memory, that one acquainted with
can but wonder that so
Most of the
unworthy of extended
historians of our colonial period
and so many worthy
bold to add to such brief mention remarks of a very dis-
paraging nature, as though these Palatines were of miser-
Thus Mrs. Lamb, in her history of the City of New York, gives to them but a short half page, in which she yet finds room to say that they bore the same relation to the other colonists of that day, as the Chinese of our time bear to the Americans on the Pacific slope. The co-temporary English historians, Burnet and Mortimer, speak of them in far more respectful terms. Indeed, Mortimer attributes to their sturdy and thrifty able and low character.
virtues the superior condition of the province of Pennsylvania. Macaulay, in our own time, describes them as worthy burghers of the Rhenish towns, whom undeserved calamity had reduced to poverty and exile, and whose
every land which afforded them
Miserable indeed they were, in
years of the exodus, but by no default of character of their
own, but by an excess of
people have been called to
across the sea was the
or the Palatinate of the Rhine, that noble river,
between Bavaria and
Elsass, and extendabove the City of Spires northward to near
Cologne, the Palatinate was as
can show. chants.
Situated on both sides of
Its fertile fields
petence and comfort to
a land as
were wealthy merand vine-clad hills, brought com-
people, and sent abundance of
corn and wine to other countries of Europe.
Religion and knowledge were so well diffused that there was no other
people of their day,
Palatines stood second.
the highway from France into
situation of the Palatinate,
Germany, a Naboth's
whose ambition was colossal, ill brook denial, and whose rapacity recoiled from no extreme of cruelty. His schemes and plots made life a burden to the Electors Palatine, Charles and his son Charles Louis. The death of the latter in 1685 without issue, ended the Zimmern succession passed to line of the Electorate, and the Frederick, of the house of Newburgh. The moment of He at transition seemed to Louis auspicious to his plans. vineyard to
once laid claim to the Palatinate brother,
who had married
the sister of Charles Louis.
claim was opposed by Holland, Austria, Bavaria, Prussia and other smaller German states, which, under the leadership of the great William, organized the Grand Alliance Louis to be beforehand, with the and prepared for war. double purpose of wreaking vengeance on the Palatinate a vengeance made more bitter by the asylum there given to the Huguenots, whom the Revocation of Nantes had and also of making the country driven into exile,
OR GERMAN, IMMIGRATION.
foes, sent an army of 50,000 men, with commander to ravage the province with fire and sword and to make the land a desert. The invasion took place in winter. The French went through the
untenable by his
and breadth of the country, destroying villages, stripping the
people of their possessions,
compelling them to pull down their walls, to stand by and see
endeavored to save anything from the driving
wealth perish in the flames, killing
and then hunger
into the fields to there perish with
or cold. In the following Spring the peasants were forced to
plow under mourning.
The whole land was
starved or frozen to death.
In one day the Elector, stand-
ing on the wall of Manheim, counted twenty-three villages in flames.
ferocity of the
war and the
the people cannot be adequately described.
remain their monuments give so
sufferings of this
ivy covered ruins, which
of beauty and charm to the
which flows the Rhine. It is needless to follow the course For a few years the people had rest, and then of the war. in 1693 another invasion brought on another wave of widespread misery. Then it was that the great castle of
Heidelberg was reduced to that condition which makes
the greatest and most picturesque ruin in Europe.
But a few years had elapsed, Palatines to retrieve their losses,
few for the
the outbreak of the
war of the Spanish Succession dragged them once more between the upper and nether mill stones. This war, brought on by Louis, Spanish crown for
of a claim to the
by the same Alliance with the addition of England, was begun in 1701 and drew out its miseries and cruelties for Most of its fighting was done in thirteen long years. and Germany, but the Palatinate came in for a full Spain share of tribulation.
furnished both armies a pathway.
times they went back and forth, leaving wretched-
ness in their
an army to repeat, so
length in 1707 Louis despatched
twenty cup of misery was full, and at once began that remarkable exodus, which in the next four decades brought so many thousands of the Palatines to
far as possible, the rapine of
America. It needs to be noted also that to these afflictions by war was added as an expelling power, a religious trouble, which in some instances amounted to the dignity of
Reformation period the Elector
Palatine gave in his adhesion to the doctrine of Geneva, his country
a stronghold of the
and under his patronage was published that best of all symbols of the Reformation, the Heidelberg Catechism. There was, however, a strange variation in the Electoral faith. For one hundred and thirty years no two successive Electors were of the
Lutheran and Reformed
princes succeeded each other in regular alternation
according to the
spirit of the age,
bring his people into that his
each prince desired to
communion which had secured
The court religion was constantly changing from Geneva to Wirtemberg, and back again, while many annoyances and distresses to the people were the consequence. Finally, John William, the second prince of the house of Newburgh, the Elector at the time of the Spanish war,
OR GERMAN, IMMIGRATION.
deserted both Reformed and Lutheran, and adopted the ancient faith of the Church of piety,
he endeavored to constrain his people towards
Thus were added
to the miseries
of war the afflictions of religious tyranny.
but narrowness of mind, with a stern and saturnine
of the people looked about for a
for a land of
peace and freedom.
There is not space to discuss the mooted question as It is sufficient to what turned their eyes to America. note that in 1708, the year after the last French invasion, to
in the Palatinate,
note of record
but in the minutes of the British Board
of Trade in London.
from the Lords of Trade to the Queen, setting forth that certain
who had been
driven out of
the Palatinate by the cruelties of the French," forty in
number, with one Joshua Kockerthal, a Lutheran minister, for their leader, had made application to the Board for transportation to America.
Shortly afterward fourteen
would appear constituted a pioneer band, on
others were added to this number; and that the entire fifty-four
whose fortune and report depended the action of thousands of their countrymen.
The Queen and Council were pleased
to receive the
and order was taken both to relieve the necessities of the poor people, and to send them to New York in the same ship that carried Lord Lovelace to the government of that province the new governor being charged by the Queen to do all in his power "for the petition graciously,
comfort of the poor Palatines." the late
7o3, the Palatines, the composition of
whose number had been very wisely chosen, as to ability and trades, for the founding of a new settlement, were planted sixty miles up the Hudson, at the place where the Quassaic, now Chambers, Creek empties into that river. This is the site of the present city of Newburgh, to which it
absence of contrary proof, that
of the reigning house of the Palatinate
its name. Here were given to the Palatines 2000 acres of land, and the community by patent from Gov. Hunter was erected into the Palatine Parish of Quassaic. There is here no space to recount their fortunes, save that in the next thirty years, being crowded by English and Scotch settlers, and thinking that more
lands were to be found in Pennsylvania, a large
number sold their holdings on countrymen
the Hudson, and joined their
province of Penn.
pioneer band at
once to the old country, that he
might report as to their favorable fortunes and the gracious disposition of the English government,
and might organize
a much larger emigration of the people on the Rhine. The success of his efforts was very soon made evident to the astonished eyes of the English government and the
people of London.
roads leading northward from the
Thouswarmed with the moving multitudes. sands of them arrested their journey in Holland, and there settled to add their numbers and virtues to those of that Other thousands crowded across sturdy little republic. the channel and flocked in upon London like an invading 'Here we horde, in effect saying to the English people, are. What are you going to do with us?" It was a most Palatinate
noble than in our times
we have seen
OR GERMAN, IMMIGRATION.
given by Christian philanthropy to the cries of starving Ireland and slaughtered Armenia.
This emigration began in the early spring of 1709, and before the end of April about five thousand reached London. Each month of the following summer brought additions to their number, until by October the aggregate
had amounted incoming of
The than fifteen thousand. number of people was to the The mere most serious matter.
of that day a
question of accommodation was a grave one.
not inns enough to lodge them, and had these been found,
the people had not
pay the reckoning.
A thougovernment had to take very active measures. sand tents from the army stores were pitched on Blackheath and the Surrey side of the
for the shelter of a
Others were lodged in empty warehouses some of the suburbs houses were built for
them, and to this day, or until very recently, four such
Besides this matter of lodgement, the
Palatine houses. authorities
to take order for the subsistence of this
With few exceptions the people were abjectly poor, having lost their all by the ravages of the French. Unless fed by English charity they would starve to death The Queen in council allowed from in London streets. army.
the public purse six pence per day to each Palatine, and issued
for subsistence in
estimated that this Palatine business
for transportation to
of them in this country
during the following two years, cost the English govern-
ment and people
enormous sum of
Considering the state of Christian culture of and the prevalent ideas as to the claims of
may be challenged to produce an instance of charity more munificent than that.
humanity, the records of history
composed of the highest the Arch bishop of Canterbury and the Lord Chancellor, was charged with the question of the future disposition of these people and Meanwhile,
personages of the realm,
the supervision of whatever measures should be devised.
Beyond doubt the America, get
any great length of
one-third of the
the emigrants was
pressure of their poverty, and
work and service caused at least Many five thousand to give up their original purpose. enlisted in the English army and others distributed them-
throughout the kingdom.
In August of suggestion
1709 twenty-eight hundred,
George's Channel and settled
north of Munster, founding there a settlement, which this
day of marked In
September the Lords of Trade
received a proposition from two Swiss adventurers, Baron
de Graffenreid and Louis Michell, to settle seven hundred upon the lands between Cape Fear and
of the Palatines
the Neuse, to which they had obtained a patent from the proprietaries
and made a contract with the Swiss and care of the Palatines,
leaders, for the transportation
which was very advantageous on paper
to that people,
OR GERMAN, IMMIGRATION. onerous to the
company, with a smaller number of Swiss emigrants, embarked for Carolina, and after a prosperous voyage reached the Neuse, and not many miles from its mouth Berne, from the native city of their leaders.
not be detailed.
founded their of
settlement, to which was given the
fortunes of this settlement
some years they had
destroyed about one hundred of their number.
by De some way had ousted Michell and
of the contract giving them lands were not Graffenreid,
seems to have designed founding a barony or manor, with the emigrants as serfs or tenants.
Landgrave and, to the Indians, But his tenure was short-lived. hopes, he mortgaged the great estate and
King of the Not realizing
retired either to Virginia
wards the Palatines received their
from the Legisla-
ture of Carolina.
Later in the the Palatines, but
Autumn of 1709, another detachment of how large in numbers is not known, was
when he came to assume the governorship of that province. He settled them on the upper reaches of the Rappahannock, giving to the settlement the name of Germanna. It was suggested
sent over to Virginia with Spotswood,
Spotswood by the Lords of Trade that he might make
the Palatines useful in the manufacture of wine from the
Virginia was said to abound, and thus lished
"a trade be
which might be very beneficial to
hear nothing of attempts to follow out this suggestion.
have regarded these Palatines as his
iron mines for their
employment and built among them a lordly mansion, to which he retired at the end of his term of office, and there spent the rest of his days. The history and topography of Virginia have abundant testimony of the permanent and sturdy special wards.
which these people brought
to the regions of the
Blue Ridge and the Shenandoah.
Meanwhile, the government and London were growing weary of the burden imposed
times were hard, work was scarce and bread was high
much discontent and murmur London, who accentuated their outcries
circumstances which caused
the poor of
with the bitter complaint that charities, which ought to alleviate the
wretchedness of English poor, were diverted
horde of lazy and worthless foreigners. In the following year these
ment with shall
and disgraceful results, which For the present, it is evident that the desire and inventive genius of
soon be noted.
they added urgency to
the government to find some proper disposition for the
balance of the Palatines.
thought that whatever was done for be with a purpose also ensure
not only relieve the Palatines, but
The apparently happy solution of the perplexing problem was suggested by Col. Robert Hunter, who in November, 1709, had been appointed governor of New York, to succeed Lovelace, the
tenure of office
having been cut short by death after but few months. In
respects Hunter was the best of
in the colonies,
other sent by
and certainly superior to
OR GERMAN, IMMIGRATION. York.
loyal, of strict honesty,
sacrifice himself in the discharge
of his difficult duties, and for the most part actuated
principles of exact justice, he so acquitted himself in his office,
that the only blemish
his administration is
conduct towards the Palatines,
periment he proposed and instituted with them proved to
made by Hunter
the Lords of
him to and employ them
to the effect that he should take with
the balance of the Palatines,
the manufacture of naval stores
and rosin, in the vast pine forest of that province. It had long been both a great expense and a humiliation to the English government, that for such supplies its navy, which affected to be mistress of the Seas, should be dependent upon the
of Russia and
The papers of
the Board of Trade abound in urgencies upon the colonial governors to do their utmost towards the production of such stores in America. It was taken for granted that the pines of the colonies were full of resinous gums, needing only a sufficient number of workmen, with ax, bucket and kiln, to not only make the royal navy independent on foreign supplies, but even to make London the chief market of such stores to all the rest of the world. Care was ordered to be taken that these interests should be conserved, and that the colonial forests should not be despoiled of such trees as were fit for masts, spars and knees for the use of the Queen's ships.
enthusiasm by the Lords of Trade, who at once represented to the
once taken to put the scheme into
was a new thing
experience of the Palatines, a formal
made between them and the Board of Trade. In the shipment of the Carolina company of Palatines the contract was between the government and the two Swiss adventurers, who were explicitly bound to consult the comfort and do all things for the interests of contract for the business was
"poor Palatines, " while the Palatines themselves were bound to no service and only required to repay, after seven the
in the contract
under Hunter the Palatines themof the second part, and bound
themselves to service
for the stocking of their farms.
the American pines in the
production of naval stores, under the direction of the governor.
They were to be fed and clothed by the government, and should labor at the stipulated work until they had repaid the expenses of transportation and maintenance. Each man was
forty acres of land at the
time of settlement, and was not to leave the place on which the Governor should settle
to labor faithfully,
without his consent.
Meanwhile, another circumstance occurred, of which the government
but which the Palatines
considered of great importance, and which exercised upon their after-fortunes a great
and determining influence. While
these people were in London, waiting the disposition of the government, there arrived a notable embassage from
of the province of
esteeming that the mother country did not use
energies to protect the province from the inroads of the
French from Canada and the
OR GERMAN, IMMIGRATION.
of Albany, and Col. Nicholson of
the provincial army, to represent their needs in person, as
was thought, more any written appeal.
mission, conceived the
happy thought that, if he could accompany the embassy, their
than could be done by
influence towards the success of his errand.
he persuaded five Mohawk chiefs to go to England with himself and Nicholson, and found that he had not rashly discounted the influence of his dusky companions. Both government and people were intensely interested, and the former engaged to furnish all the
assistance asked, a promise not fulfilled.
story runs that these Indians observed the poor
moved with pity for their Queen 20,000 acres in the of Schoharie, on which to settle them. Of this offer
destitute condition, gave to the
coming ment. similar
documents, the report
to us only through the avenue of Palatine stateIt is certain,
however, that either
this gift, or
that before the Palatines left
was understood among them that Schoharie was destination at
that the authorities entertained the intention
of settling them in that valley
the tribulations of the people, during their
three years in America, Schoharie was the goal of their
hope, and the watchword of their rebellion.
of January, 17 10, the expedition
of the Palatines was about 3000,
They were embarked
in ten ships,
three of which were
and on one of which was
The voyage was stormy and
ships were separated and driven about
adverse winds, so that the
ship "Lyon," did not enter that port until the middle of
was not accounted
crowded quarters, with
dreadful mortality seized
for until a
upon the wretched emigrants.
Before they reached port one out of every six of their
company had been buried
in the sea.
All the ships arrived safely in
York, with the
exception of the frigate Herbert, which was cast ashore on either
Long, or Block, Island.
of this ship
undoubtedly the origin of the Block Island legend, which
sight of the people, has given their
a curious heterophemy the legend, losing
to the ship,
described as a merchantman laden with goodly
cargo, which the wreckers have decoyed ashore
beacons, have rifled and burned. ship
phantom of a
appears upon the sea, the
rigged ship on
"Behold, again, with shimmer and shine, Over the rocks and the seething brine The flaming wreck of the Palatine.
low and dim, now clear and higher,
Leaps up the
Then, slowly sinking, the flames expire.
of the lost
Sound Skippers, tho skies be when they see the sign
blazing wreck of the Palatine."
OR GERMAN, IMMIGRATION.
the middle of July, 17 10,
island in the harbor of
the survivors of the
number, were encamped on that
Governor's Island, but was then named Nutten,
they remained about four months, and for their regulation the governor appointed from magistrates, the chief of
own number seven
in influence, if
not in rank,
was John Conrad Weiser, who for ten years thereafter Having settled the Palatproved to be their ruling spirit. ines on Nutten Island, Hunter at once despatched a commission to discover a proper place of settlement, in which the people could be
at the destined occupation,
and it is significant that this commission went at once, under the Governor's orders, to inspect the valley of the Schoharie.
Pending the return of the prospectors, the Governor was compelled to resort to a measure which, however proper and just, entailed much bitterness of feeling among the Palatines. This was the apprenticing of Palatine children. Many children had been left orphans by the mortality at sea, and the measure adopted was the only thing possible. It is probable that some harshness was used, and that some families whose parents survived were invaded, as was the case with the family of Weiser, from which was taken a son, of whom from the day of his indenture the family had no knowledge whatsoever. One of these apprenticed children afterwards became famous and conferred upon his adopted country a blessing, the value of which cannot be over-estimated. This was John Peter Zenger, who was apprenticed to William Bradford, the New York printer. Twenty years after, Zenger had set up in the printing business for himself, and in 1733, during one of the periodical quarrels between the royal
governor, at that time Governor Cosby, and the Assembly,
he started a newspaper
the people. caustic
in the interest of the
the governor's party, with the
he was thrown into prison.
refused to indict him, a criminal against
used great freedom of discussion, with no the grand jury
him by the Attorney General. The two
were thrown out of court by an angry and biased bench, and the friends of Zenger brought from Philadelphia the famous Andrew
possession of all his noble powers.
plea was, in the teeth of an adverse
phant acquittal of Zenger, since whose day the Freedom of
foundation for this great bulwark of liberty was thus laid for
our country by the hand of a Palatine.
the prospectors returned from their trip to the
north, they reported to
of land and carriage
while there was plenty
of pine at Schoharie, yet the
So the Governor was perplexed, until he fell in with Robert Livingston of the Manor, who proposed to him the purchase of 6,000 acres of his own lands on the Hudson, forbid the settlement of the people in that valley.
about one hundred miles
Lord Cornbury and Governor of New York, comments on Hunter's bargain with Livingston, History that the Governor " fell into very ill hands." Clarendon,
compels the verdict
that, despite the Earl's
against the Patroon, his
matter was shrewdest,
OR GERMAN, IMMIGRATION. ambitious, covetous and unscrupulous
in the colony.
came out of a transaction with clean hands, but He was the only person he always brought them full. who took any advantage by this Palatine business, adding rarely
to an already large fortune
were reduced to
while the poor Palatines misery,
credulous Governor to bankruptcy and disgrace.
accepted Livingston's offer and before the winter closed settled
about two hundred who 200 on the Manor, and the
balance of them on the opposite side of the river in the
bounds of the present town of Saugerties. For awhile the two settlements were known as the East and West Camps, names which still survive. There
not time to dilate on the details of Palatine
experience on the Manor.
Their woes began promptly. fell
upon them unhoused and
who had taken
the contract for their
about his percentages
than about the quality of food and clothes supplied.
two years the people suffered miserably, and were perpetual state of revolt against those as
They demanded to be sent to the lands given to Queen for them, and on which the Queen meant that they should settle. They complained of their treatment as slaves, and of the folly of making tar where no tar could
occasions the Governor sent soldiers to
put down their turbulence, and adopted such measures as re-
duced them lapse, the
to a state of serfdom. In
two years came the
complete break-down of the enterprise. it
Hunter brought with
as the first installment of the
sum was exhausted and
from London was delayed, the Governor personal fortune, drawing
upon London in his own was sunk in the same sea.
His wife's fortune also
a child-like confidence that his English employers
would make good these advances.
But, because of the
penny beyond that first installment would the government bestow upon the Palatines, and the Governor, whose advances had been to the amount of ^"25,000, was left in such penury and debt that his office alone protected him from arrest and prison. So the funds failed and the work had to cease. But had money been plentiful, it was soon demonstrated that the effort was useless. The northern pines of America are not sufficiently resinous to make such a work remunerative. The whole outlay of the government and Hunter in this objections in Parliament, not another
than sixty barrels of
the funds thus failed the Governor sent orders
to arrest the
to tell the Palatines to seek
from other sources,
Board of Trade would yet take up his paper and permit renewal, he charged them to remain within call, on But this they were the possibility of such resumption. the
They were weary
unwilling to do. villeinage
and had no
of both starving and
third of their
Germantown and contiguous
number on the
of this third went south of the Manor,
tors of the citizens of
faith in tar
to their lands, wishing to
in tenancy, and founded the town of Rhinebeck.
OR GERMAN, IMMIGRATION.
on the Manor,
determined for Schoharie.
sent a delegation of
whom John Conrad Weiser was
their so-called "chiefs," of
the leader, to visit the valley of their choice and bring
back a of
This mission was accomplished
returned with enthusiastic
scriptions of a spot,
surpassed by any region
in the fall
the state of
reported also that the Indians of the neighborhood had received them kindly, and had given a deed for the land.
At once preparations journey through deep
for removal were begun, and the snows and over forest-covered Early in March, 171 3, the two
companies into which the emigrants had been divided, There is were united again in the valley of their hope.
pathetic in the accounts preserved of their
experience on the Manor, and of the disappointment which
overwhelmed them, when their afflictions
Schoharie they found that
had not ceased. disappointment they had to thank Gov.
Hunter, whose attitude towards them had already begun to be that of
The Governor was
angry when he learned that the people had taken their
to the Schoharie, to
obscure his usual sense of
of the workers
months they had been
clamoring he should send them.
allowed his anger to
Seeing the departure
alone he could
hope, by a possible resumption of the work, to retrieve his
broken fortunes, and smarting under the wrongs received from the English ministry, whom he could not touch, he determined to revenge himself upon the poor Palatines,
equally with himself were victims of the government's
Unable to bring them back by proclamation he was resolved that, wherever else they went,
the beloved Schoharie should not be theirs.
The method pursued was as cruel as it was perfidious. must be noted that when the Palatines entered the valley not a claim was made by any white man to a single Obtaining a deed from acre of its upland and meadow. It
the only owner, the Indian, they set themselves to building
houses and breaking the
But by reason of
trance there had gone abroad a rumor of the great beauty of these fertile to seek all
and there were men of sufficient cupidity
from the governor patents to the
too ready to grant them.
Six months after the Palatine
of Schenectady received
a large section by patent, and within the next four years
two patents were granted to five gentlemen of Albany and two of New York, covering all the rest of the land which the Palatines had occupied, or to which they laid claim through their own purchase from the Indians. The grantees of these two patents entered into agreement of
union and were spoken of as "the seven partners."
action on the part of these gentlemen was simply a land
speculation to force rent or purchase
people already it
vindictiveness, to distress those
wise responsible for the ruin of his scheme.
he showed no relenting, and had the duplicity to London the Manor
to represent, that the Palatines in
the part of the Governor in
Afterwards in reports
had gone from
a tumultuous fashion and taken possession of
lands "already granted to certain gentlemen of Albany."
story of the struggle between the Palatines and
many amusing and many
OR GERMAN, IMMIGRATION. passages
too long for recital here.
continued for ten
years, a constantly losing battle for the people with
power of the Governor and
against them. after 1720,
opening for escape appeared
the authority of the courts until,
the province and was succeeded
but found that the legal rights of the patentees
and the stubborn sense of wrong in the Palatine breast admitted, for the most of them, of removal to a new For this purpose he issued location as the only remedy. a grant, buttressed
by an Indian deed,
Canajoharie and reaching north and south of the river "as far as the settlers
the same time as the
Albany a great
issuance of this grant there occurred in council
Six Nations and the
Gov. Keith of
Pennsylvania, while attending this council, learned of the
them an asylum in his them of secure houses and kindly treatment, instancing also the happy fortunes of a small band of Germans, who had recently come to Philadelphia and had settled about 60 miles west of Philadelphia. Thus two avenues were opened. But each involved a third removal and the surrender of all the labor of ten
troubles of the Palatines and offered province,
About one-third of the people, concluding that to compound with their oppressors was better than such removal, made terms either by lease or purchase of the lands which already were their own. The remainder were about equally divided, one part for the
for Pennsylvania. The former settled themselves along that river and for years constituted a strong frontier
against Indian and French attack, and founded flourishing
whose names, such
loved liberty and their
defence of the province.
memory of those sturdy
the struggles of
the Revolution began, Sir Guy Johnson endeavored to swing these Palatines to the side of the crown. But they
be seduced from their love of freedom.
constituted a large portion of the force
Herkimer, himself the son of a Palatine emigrant, led to the battle of Oriskany, a battle characterized by Fiske as
"the most obstinate and murderous of the Revolution."
was a technical defeat indeed, but yet a defeat that
equal to a victory, demolishing the plans of the British
ing Burgoyne into the hands of Gates.
his father, fruitless
choice of Pennsylvania, Conrad
During the Schoharie struggle John Conrad, had gone to England to make a
easily the chief.
appeal to the crown. suffering,
returned after five years
twelve years old
was educated by
and the son
Young Conrad was
Conrad, succeeded to the leadership.
their native land,
who had been
a magistrate in
the Palatinate, and early showed the possession of qualities
of a high order, quick intelligence, a deep religious sense, a logical mind, a strong
sound judgment and great
In his youth
Schoharie he spent
OR GERMAN, IMMIGRATION.
time with the Indians, learned their language and
secured their friendship.
wards of immense
This familiarity proved
became intimately associated with
all dealings with the Indians was the counselor and agent of the Governor. He was also associated with Franklin in educational and other colonial interests, and took a leading
part in the founding and extension of the Lutheran in
There are indeed few names in the more worthy of honor
colonial history of that province
than that of Weiser.
The Pennsylvania contingent parties,
1722 and the other
Following up the stream southward for a few miles, they struck an Indian
waters of the
over the mountains to the upper
canoes and batteaux for the carriage of the most of the
their goods, while
some of the men keeping
near the river drove before them their horses and
Schoharie legend recites
that, in the following
twelve of these horses found their
own way back
Schoharie, their souls lusting after the rich clover of
Having made company embarked upon the peaceful river and quietly floated down its course through the wildness of lower New York, unpeopled, save by wandering Mohawks
their boats, the greater portion of
and Delawares, through the beautiful Wyoming Valley, forty
of occupation and settlement
the present city of Harrisburg, they entered the Swatara,
and so upward
Tulpehocken and the lands secured Here they founded Womelsdorf and Heidelberg, and in the next two decades, with to the
from the Indian Sassouan.
28 their children
and thousands of
kinsmen from the
Fatherland, spread themselves abroad through the counties of
Lebanon and Berks. It
must be noted that previous
Schoharie, several companies of Pennsylvania.
Most of them
to this migration
—were small bands of
Germans had come
far as appears, all
made life a burden in the old country. As early as a 1685 company of Mennonites settled at Germantown, giving the spot its name. About the same time Labadists from views
Friesland settled in
Castle County, Delaware, then a
Ten years after, Kelpins brought a and planted them on the banks of the band of Pietists Wissahickon while in 1719 a company of Dunkers settled in Germantown beside the Mennonites. About 171 another company of Germans came to Philadelphia and passed over into New Jersey, having New York as their objective, but were so charmed with the rolling lands of Morris County that they quietly took possession. Other part of Pennsylvania.
were afterwards added
disciples of Ephrata, list
and the Schwenkfelders
— closing the
with the large and beneficent incoming of the Moravians
which began It
impossible to connect any of these companies,
we may except that which settled in New Jersey, They came from other parts of Gerwith the Palatines. At the same time it is many and from diverse motives. reasonably clear that the immense tide of German immiunless
1720 set into Pennsylvania, was largely
Palatine and was controlled as to reports of kindly treatment received
the hands of the Quakers.
OR GERMAN, IMMIGRATION.
The movement was organized on
a large scale.
committee on transportation was formed at Rotterdam, between which port and Philadelphia the ships bringing increasing
regularity of a ferry, through nearly every
amusing to observe that they avoided New Over that though it was the home of pestilence.
cruelty and sorrow. their ships,
the period noted but one of
compelled by storm, entered the mouth of the
Hudson on which vessel it needs to be mentioned, was the emigrant Erghimer, who gave his son Nicholas Herkimer to New York and to the nation. ;
So great and continuous was the stream of people from the Palatinate that the Elector became alarmed his
dominions should be depopulated,
death on any
should attempt migration, a threat that
as in the night.
Philadelphia that the
became alarmed, lest so large numbers of would corrupt the manners of the people of the colony, and perhaps "steal the province from beneath the authorities there
much and finally
in the colonial
was passed forbidding the Governor vetoed on the
ground of its cruelty. As a sort of safe-guard a measure was adopted quite unique in colonial legislation. As every Palatine ship arrived, the names and
passengers were reported to the clerk of assembly, and
every one of them was required to subscribe the oath of
King George. To no other immigrants to America was accorded such a precautionary welcome, and
of no others exists in the public archives the record of their
The original lists containing over 30,000 preserved at Harrisburg, and have been
Pennsylvania archives, 2d
by Rupp. here no time
exerted by these people on the State of their adoption.
goes without the saying that with their industry,
tenacity of purpose and religious habitude, such influence
could not be otherwise than beneficent.
such as Weiser, Muhlenburg, Heister, Heintzleman, and others, suggest
something of what strain of quality existed
in the Palatine blood.
House of Commons that no people in Pennsylvania had wrought more than these Germans for the prosperity the
of the province.