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Capturing the day-to-day life of the German-American community of Hermann during the years from 1895 to 1920, Little Germany on the Missouri is an illuminating and fascinating look at Missouri's German heritage. Featuring nearly a hundred images taken by Edward J. Kemper, a gifted horticulturist and viticulturist, the book depicts life in Hermann during the height of its cultural and economic achievements. Although Kemper's photographs center around his family, friends, and relatives, they encompass the "essence of Hermann.' Kemper had an eloquent visual realization, and these photographs, taken over a twenty-five-year period, record scenes that are now totally lost to us. They embody the inner character of the town, leading the viewer into the life-afrirming world Kemper knew and loved. To this world, Kemper brought an affectionate eye, a sense of fun, and pride in his community. Produced from glass-plate negatives and original prints by Oliver Schuchard, the photographs are arranged in three parts: agriculture and manufacturing; grape and wine industries; and customs and traditions.
The images, along with supporting commentary by Anna Hesse and the contributing editors, explore the economic, cultural, and social life of the community. The contributors conclude that the Kemper photographs provide new evidence pertinent to the understanding of how immigrant groups acquired the culture of their society and new data reexamining the immigrant experience in the United States. Because of its unique insights, Little Germany on the Missouri will make an invaluable contribution to German American studies. It will also be of great interest to local historians and genealogists.
Anna Kemper Hesse, a private researcher, is the daughter of Edward Kemper - Erin McCawley Renn is Administrator of the Deutschheim State Historic Site in Hermann - Adolf E. Schroeder, Professor Emeritus of Germanic Studies at the University of Missouri - Columbia, has written extensively on the immigrant experience in America - Oliver A. Schuchard, whose photographs have earned national recognition, is Professor of Art and teaches photography at the University of Missouri - Columbia.
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- ID: 9780826212054
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