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Baden Emigration and Immigration

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Baden, German Empire
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Emigration and Immigration

It is believed that early emigrants followed the push and pull factor. For them lucrative salaries would have been pulling them while little prospects at home would have pushed them into emigration. Germany experienced unfavorable weather conditions in the 1800's that brought about food crises. Lack of food brought about elevation of prices. With a continually increasing population, some areas experienced devastation. When sons on top of that were not able to inherit the ancestral farm to support themselves and their families, emigration was one way out.

Online Databases[edit | edit source]

Works of Werner Hacker[edit | edit source]

The author, Werner Hacker, has prepared several books on emigrants from different regions. For entries of his works held in the FamilySearch Library, click here.

  • Auswanderer vom Oberen Neckar nach Südosteuropa im 18. Jahrhundert
  • Auswanderung aus dem Raum der späteren Hohenzollerischen Lande nach Südosteuropa im 17. und 18. Jahrhundert : eine Dokumentation
  • Auswanderungen aus Baden und dem Breisgau : obere und mittlere rechtsseitige Oberrheinlande im 18. Jahrhundert archivalisch dokumentiert
  • Auswanderungen aus dem nördlichen Bodenseeraum im 17. und 18. Jahrhundert : archivalisch dokumentiert
  • Auswanderungen aus dem südöstlichen Schwarzwald zwischen Hochrhein, Baar und Kinzig insbesondere nach Südosteuropa im 17. und 18. Jahrhundert
  • Eighteenth century register of emigrants from southwest Germany to America and other countries
  • Kurpfälzische Auswanderer vom Unteren Neckar : Rechtsrheinische Gebiete der Kurpfalz

Emigration of Prisoners from Baden[edit | edit source]

Poverty was in the mind of administrator the cause for social disgrace. Government officials spent a lot of money to ship their poor to America. Such measures were looked upon as more economical. But not only did they send the poor, prisoners were sent as well. In 1850, fifty people were selected and financed to find a new home in America. Friedrich R. Wollmershäuser has listed the unwanted and published their names, their place of residence/origin and when they were shipped out according to gender, male and females:

  • In 1850/51/52 people were released from Pforzheim police custody.
  • In 1853/54 people came from 4 districts of Baden.
  • There are no further documents for the following years, however, prisoners were still released for emigration to America.
  • In 1860/62/64 people were released from Bruchsal prison and the workhouse in Freiburg.


The lists were published in Archiv für Familiengeschichtsforschung, 3. Jahrgang, Heft 1 (1999)., call number 943 B2as.

Palatinate Mennonite Census Lists 1664-1793[edit | edit source]


The Kurpfalz territory included parts of the state of Baden on the east side of the Rhine River and parts of the present-day Palatinate. The state of Kurpfalz ended in 1801 under Napoleon of France. The Palatinate then became part of France. In 1815, this territory fell to the Kingdom of Bavaria, and since World War II is known as “Rheinbayern” or “Bayrische Pfalz”.
The first Swiss-German Anabaptists or Mennonites immigrated to the Kurpfalz in 1664. After the 30 Years’ War the area was hugely depopulated and the religious refugees from Switzerland were encouraged to settle under certain conditions. They had to observe religious restrictions, pay protection fees and other obligations. In order to make sure everything went according to law, the Mennonites needed to register with the authorities at irregular intervals. Hence, censuses were taken in 1664, 1685, 1706, 1717, 1724, 1738, 1743, 1753, 1759, 1768, 1773, 1790, and 1793.

Not every subsequent sovereign upheld the protective rights for the people of a different creed and limited their growth so that especially young people were forced to leave. Many simply moved to a neighboring village if it belonged to a different sovereign, but most saw no other alternative than to pack up, travel down the Rhine and eventually make the voyage across the Atlantic to America.

The census lists were forwarded to the respective authorities (Oberämter). The genealogists Hermann and Gertrud Guth transcribed these lists and discovered that the Kurpfalz officials were not familiar with the Swiss-German names. Names were frequently spelled the way they thought they should be spelled causing some unusual deformities. Several surnames point to the origin of the person. Families had Lower German or Dutch origin. The list of family and village names are available in Palatine Mennonite census lists, 1664-1793 at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City Utah, International Floor.

Source: Guth, Hermann and Gertrud et.al.Palatine Mennonite Census Lists 1664-1793. Mennonite Family History, Elverson PA, 1987.

Ahnenforschung im Neckartal-Odenwald[edit | edit source]

In connection with the above mentioned article of Palatine immigration by Swiss settlers, see also this website. The authors want to emphasize their research on the area left and right of the Neckar between the cities of Hassmersheim and Eberbach. They already produced data for the following places: Aglasterhausen, Asbach, Auerbach, Bargen, Dallau, Daudenzell, Hassmersheim, Heinsheim, Hochhausen, Hüffenhardt, Kälbertshausen, Michelbach, Mittelschefflenz, Mosbach, Neckarzimmern, Mülben, Neckarburken, Neckarelz, Neckarmühlbach, Oberschefflenz, Obrigheim, Rappenau, Rittersbach, Schwarzach, Strümpfelbrunn, Treschklingen, Unterschefflenz, and Wimpfen.

With this data a researcher can determine from where his Swiss families originated. The data is found under "Projekte" and then "Schweizer Einwanderer im badischen Neckartal-Odenwald".