Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Image not available

To view this video download Flash Player


Sign in to turn on 1-Click ordering
Sell Us Your Item
For a $2.42 Gift Card
Trade in
More Buying Choices
Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Tell the Publisher!
I'd like to read this book on Kindle

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

Palatines, Liberty, and Property: German Lutherans in Colonial British America (Early America: History, Context, Culture) [Paperback]

by A. G. Roeber
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

List Price: $27.00
Price: $25.65 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
You Save: $1.35 (5%)
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.
Want it tomorrow, April 25? Choose One-Day Shipping at checkout. Details
Free Two-Day Shipping for College Students with Amazon Student

Sell Us Your Books
Get up to 80% back when you sell us your books, even if you didn't buy them at Amazon. Learn more

Book Description

April 7, 1998 0801859689 978-0801859687

In Palatines, Liberty, and Property A. G. Roeber explains why so many Germans, when they faced critical choices in 1776, became active supporters of the patriot cause. Employing a variety of German-language sources and and following all the major German migration streams, Roeber explores German conceptions of personal and public property in the context of cultural and religious beliefs, village life, and family concerns. Co-winner of the John H. Dunning Prize from the American Historical Association, Roeber's study of German-American settlements and their ideas about liberty and property provides an unprecedented view of how non-English culture and beliefs made their way from Europe to America.

Frequently Bought Together

Palatines, Liberty, and Property: German Lutherans in Colonial British America (Early America: History, Context, Culture) + Hopeful Journeys: German Immigration, Settlement, and Political Culture in Colonial America, 1717-1775 (Early American Studies) + Early Life of the Pennsylvania Germans (Forgotten Books)
Price for all three: $55.00

Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews


This superb book... takes its place as the most comprehensive exploration yet of eighteenth-century German migration to and settlement in America. Ambitious in subject matter, impressive in research and thematic treatment, it is a model of transatlantic investigation that greatly expands our knowledge of mobility in the Atlantic world and ethnic diversity in colonial America. By admirably conveying the variegated experiences of this demographically and culturally significant block of settlers, Roeber establishes them as players in the early American drama.

(Reviews in American History)

A landmark volume, based on a decade of diligent research in German archives and public records as well as in sources in the United States, it marks a new era of more sophisticated knowledge and interpretation of how German understandings of liberty and property were transplanted to and transformed in the New World.

(American Historical Review)

This volume is a significant contribution also to immigration studies. It is a model. Europe is a starting point. Settlement patterns are studied. Village and congregational reconstructions are utilized. Concepts in the German lexicon are analyzed. Throughout, Roeber has avoided oversimplification and recognized the richness and complexity of the German-American contribution to colonial life.

(Journal of American History)

Roeber moves colonial legal history in a direction that colonial social and political history has been traveling: multiethnic, trans-Atlantic, and comparative... Particularly valuable in this respect is Roeber's work on the Germans' Old and New World legal institutions and sources of law, inheritance practices, litigiousness, trans-Atlantic networks, and understandings of liberty and property... Although the book might be read as a study of liberty and property as 'keywords'... it is more impressive, indeed exemplary, as a social history of conceptual change.

(Law and History Review)

The most thoughtful and comprehensive study ever attempted of the German migration to eighteenth-century America and how it affected and was affected by the Revolution. Roeber's research on German law and patterns of landholding has no parallel in English-language scholarship. This is the one book that everyone should read who wishes to understand the scope and significance of the first massive voluntary migration of non-English speaking settlers to British North America.

(John M. Murrin, Princeton University)

About the Author

A. G. Roeber is professor of history and religious studies, head of the Department of History, and co-director of the Max Kade German-American Research Institute at the Pennsylvanua State University. He is the author of Faithful Magistrates and Republican Lawyers: Creators of Virginia Legal Culture, 1680-1810.

Product Details

  • Series: Early America: History, Context, Culture
  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press (April 7, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801859689
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801859687
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #802,722 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars good information, but hard to read July 12, 2012
Verified Purchase
While studying my ancestors and Pennsylvania Dutch heritage, I have read a fair number of books on the subject. This one gave me some good new information about the German states we came from, and how our customs affected our settlement here. It was also one of the hardest reads I have experienced in some time, and my reading includes technical papers. I had to be fairly stubborn to finish it. For me, some of the stories were more interesting than the arguments to support the points about cultural linkages to actions. I think that some of the arguments are a bit strained, but the interesting stories would't be in the book without linkage to the arguments. Overall, I am glad that I read it.
Was this review helpful to you?
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Researched and readable June 23, 2013
Verified Purchase
Nicely researched and nicely readable. An excellent book for people wanting to learn about German Lutheran and Calvinist (Reformed) ancestors from Germany to America in the 1700s, with focus on Palatines. The author adds all sorts of tidbits helping the reader imagine what it was like during those days -- adding perspective -- such as:

page 32: "A more forced scrutiny fro the tower reveals distinct geographic, economic, and institutional contours that explain both differences and commonalities among the villagers who in the eighteenth century left this area in droves for Russia, Hungary, Prussia, and less often, North America."

page 34: "Sheepherding had long been regarded as a dishonorable calling, connected in the popular mind with magical knowledge of the weather, and of the herbs, soils, water, and wood that the herders gathered to make medicines -- and poisons. Persons suspected of witchcraft were often asked if they had had contact with herders."

page 40: "But the prosperity of the Palatinate, due in no small part to its lush vineyards, had led to repeated warfare and devastation."

page 44: "Traditionally, the local authority in the Palatinate had bee the Zentgericht. An old Frankish institution, nearly identical to the English hundred courts, it was governed by ancient collections of oral wisdom handed down by the local elders, the Schoffen, whose main job it was to 'speak the law' by remembering the multiple dues, obligations, rights, and relationships perpetuated in 'sayings,' or Weistumer."

page 59: "That workers in the hayfields in Bavarian Augsburg needed to work three times as long as did similar workers at Speyer to earn a given wage illustrated the limitations place on residents of the eastern borders of the southwest.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
4.0 out of 5 stars For the true Palatinophile! December 29, 2013
Verified Purchase
It is quite detailed and rather academic. I'll need to read it twice, slowly, for ease in understanding some passages.
However, I am very interested in the topic and did not expect to find a book that covers the topic so well.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
1 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Palatines, Liberty and Property December 20, 2009
Verified Purchase
This book was very interested; I read it and then donated it to the Genealogical Society of Bergen County. Thank you.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Sell a Digital Version of This Book in the Kindle Store

If you are a publisher or author and hold the digital rights to a book, you can sell a digital version of it in our Kindle Store. Learn more


There are no discussions about this product yet.
Be the first to discuss this product with the community.
Start a new discussion
First post:
Prompts for sign-in

Look for Similar Items by Category