Missouri’s German Americans During World War I - Petra DeWitt

Historian Petra DeWitt examines the suspicions and hostilities faced by Missouri’s sizable German American population during World War I, including questions about loyalty and an effort to ban the German language in the state.
Missouri Valley Sundays
Sunday, August 17, 2014
2:00pm @ Central Library

How do you prove that you are a true American? Especially if you’re of German descent and your country is engaged in a desperate struggle with your ancestors’ homeland?

Historian Petra DeWitt explores the dilemma of German Americans who, at the time of World War I, made up one of the largest and most prosperous ethnic groups in Missouri. But with America’s involvement in the war, the loyalty of those citizens often was called into question and they endured government attacks on their culture and history – including an effort to ban the German language in Missouri.

DeWitt teaches history at the Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla.

This event is part of The Great War | Great Read.

Listen to the audio