Davis Germany to America: An Immigrant’s JourneyThe United States of America: a nation of immigrants. For centuries, this is what our great country has been known as. The people we call our families and neighbors come from all over the world, including places like China, Mexico, Somalia, and many more. All of these cultures have come together to make this nation what it is today. But where did we all come from to begin with? What were those places like? Why did our ancestors leave their homelands for this strange, new place? These are all questions that have been asked and answered throughout history.I had a chat with my grandmother Patricia Hoek about our familial roots. My grandmother’s side of my family emigrated from Germany in the mid- to late 1800’s. Most of our family records were lost in the immigration; therefore there isn’t much information as to why we left Europe. According to my grandmother, her great-grandpa John Kappenman was born in Germany in the year 1835. He was a German farmer and provided for his family as best as he could. During the mid-1800s, Germany was not the ideal place to live. With many “failed revolutions” in 1848 and a “hungry” Germany, the immigration rate to America rose drastically (Berghahn para. 5). According to historian John Flynn, there was much conflict between the monarchs and lower classes in Germany; the lower classes, including the bourgeoisie, or industrial class, and the even lower proletariat, like my family, needed to come together to enable capitalistic ideas to prosper. The bourgeoisie encouraged the proletariat, to revolt in the streets (para. 2). Later Flynn states, “monarchs feared for the loss of their thrones and the industrial bourgeoisie linked their aspirations with those of the revolutionists in the streets” (para. 2).
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