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German immigration has been a huge influence in our countrys development Germans came to this country in the hundreds of thousands to millions over the history of the United States They came in search of religious freedom new farmland more jobs and to flee from genocide Many of the German immigrants settled in the middle and northeastern states of the USA Their influences can be seen in town names name here and there is a high population in the United States of German descendants with German names The Germans also brought with them famous scientists such as Einstein and started many businesses for instance paper mills in the States The first wave of German immigrants came in the 1600s and 1700s In Germany there was a man called Martin Luther and he formed a new branch of the Christian Church His followers were known as Lutherans This sect was persecuted highly in Germany About 150 years later in the 1680s a man known as William Penn traveled throughout Germany spreading word of a new colony called Philadelphia Pennsylvania There he promised freedom of religious worship and good farmland Many Quaker Germans who were also persecuted and Lutherans accepted his offer and settled in Pennsylvania New York and other northeastern states The Pennsylvanian-Deutch colonies were successful but their name was Americanized to Pennsylvanian-Dutch By the 1720s about 200000 Germans lived in Pennsylvania alone They moved on to found Baltimore Maryland in 1729 Other towns in Maryland that were founded by Germans were Frederick and Hagerstown Another wave of about 12000 Swiss-Germans found their way to South Carolina and Georgia late into the first half of the 1700s New York was also a German hot spot Such towns as Austerlitz Berlin and Rhinebeck were set up here Famous folk tales Rip Van Winkle Sleepy Hollow and others from the Hudson River-Catskill area written by Washington Irving were based on old German folk tales Christopher Saur
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