On This Day …

Wednesday 27th October, 1841

A very interesting part of South Australia’s history, and one which I would like to involve in one of my novels some day … unless another writer beats me to it, of course.

Photo by Zsuzsanna Kilian

The persecution of Lutherans in Prussia, which is now part of Germany, forced many troubled believers to emigrate to Australia and other countries. King Frederick William III had tried to unite the Reformed Churches and the Lutherans and had created a common liturgical agenda for everyone to use. Unfortunately the Lutherans saw it as a compromise to their faith, particularly in reference to the Lord’s Supper.

Needless to say, those devout in their beliefs continued to worship the way they felt compelled to, thus raising the ire of the governing officials against them, and soon enough pastors were being imprisoned for their dissent.

And so began an exodus of Lutheran believers to other nations. The first shipload arrived in South Australian waters in 1838, and on this date in 1841 one of the last boatloads of immigrants arrived. King Frederick died in 1840 and after that the persecution against Lutherans diminished.

However, over those few years, hundreds of Germans settled in South Australia in towns such as Klemzig and Lobethal, adding much to the cultural history of their region.

 Have you ever been persecuted for anything? Can you imagine it being enough to make you move to another country?

Published in: on 26th October, 2012 at 10:08 am  Comments (2)  
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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Yep, many of my old relatives were caught up in this. Some old German ancestors on my mother’s side of the family fled for this reason and settled around Hahndorf in the Adelaide Hills, very close to where I live. You’re right, it’s a situation with lots of scope for historical fiction.

    • I knew you’d enjoy or relate to this post, Paula. I thought of you when I was writing. 🙂

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