In the 1840s an organization of German noblemen, the Mainzner Adelsverein, attempted to settle thousands of German emigrants on the Texas frontier Nassau Plantation, located near modern day Round Top, Texas, in northern Fayette County, was a significant part of this story No one, however, has adequately documented the role of the slave plantation or given a convincing explanation of the Adelsverein from the German point of view.James C Kearney has studied a wealth of original source material much of it in German to illuminate the history of the plantation and the larger goals and motivation of the Adelsverein, both in Texas and in Germany Moreover, this new study highlights the problematic relationship of German emigrants to slavery Few today realize that the societys original colonization plan included ownership and operation of slave plantations Ironically, the German settlements the society later established became hotbeds of anti slavery and anti secessionist sentiment.Responding to criticism in Germany, the society declared its colonies to be slave free zones in 1845 This act thrust the society front and center into the complicated political landscape of Texas prior to annexation James A Mayberry, among others, suspected an English German conspiracy to flood the state with anti slavery immigrants and delivered a fiery speech in the legislature denouncing the society.In the 1850s the plantation became a magnet for German immigration into Fayette and Austin Counties In this connection, Kearney explores the role and influence of Otto von Roeder, a largely neglected but important Texas German Another chapter deals with the odyssey of the extended von Rosenberg family, who settled on the plantation in 1850 and helped to elevate the nearby town of Round Top into a regional center of culture and education Many members of the family subsequently rose to positions of leadership and influence in Texas.Several notable personalities graced the plantationCarl Prince of Solms Braunfels, Johann Otto Freiherr von Meusebach, botanist F Lindheimer, and the renowned naturalist Dr Ferdinand Roemer, to name a few Dramatic events also occurred at the plantation, including a deadly shootout, a successful escape by two slaves documented in an unprecedented way , and litigation over ownership that wound its way to both the Texas Supreme Court and the U.S Supreme Court....
|Title||:||Nassau Plantation: The Evolution of a Texas German Slave Plantation|
|Publisher||:||University of North Texas Press September 26, 2011|
|Number of Pages||:||368 pages|
|File Size||:||977 KB|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Nassau Plantation: The Evolution of a Texas German Slave Plantation Reviews
I bought this as a gift for my mom, and she enjoyed it a lot! She said the writing or book style was a bit too "dry" for her, because she prefers reading about history in story form, but she did still really like the book despite that. Very interesting information that a lot of our Texas German relatives did not even know about (e.g. my 82-yo grandpa knew the plantation existed but not much more than that). Cool piece of history!
It's great history. I always wanted to know what things were important back then.
Loved this history of early german immigration to Texas. Very well written and interesting. The author's drawings add a lot.
James C. Kearney has written an original and insightful work on an often-overlooked aspect of the Society for the Protection of German Emigrants in Texas (Adelsverein), the Nassau Plantation - an attempt to set up a slave plantation by German noblemen in the 1840s near present-day Round Top. Drawing heavily on the reports, letters, and documents contained in the Solms-Braunfels Archives, Kearney traces the development of the plantation from the formation of the Adelsverein in Germany to its beginnings in Texas, the rise of the plantation as a valuable asset to the Society, and, finally, to the eventual demise of the plantation. The result is a wealth of new information on German-Texan history.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading Nassau Plantation. Kearney has done a masterful job combining original, in-depth research of the German-language letters, reports, and legal documents pertaining to the Adelsverein with a pleasing narrative style. He has kept the book focused on the events and personalities surrounding the plantation and has avoided repeating the broader history of German migration towards and into the Fischer-Miller Grant. I would recommend the book to anyone who has an interest in South Central Texas history (1831-1865; Fayette, Austin, and Colorado Counties), German immigration into Texas in the 1840's and 1850's, Texas slavery, and antebellum life on the Texas frontier.