Notes and Documents
William von Rosenberg's Kritik: A History
of the Society for the Protection of
German Immigrants to Texas*
Translated and Edited by Louis E. BRISTER
A Rebuttal to the Charge That the Society for the Protection of Ger-
man Emigrants to Texas Received a Premium Paid by the British
Government for Each Emigrant Sent to Texas.81
IT HAS ALREADY BEEN DEMONSTRATED THAT THE AUTHOR OF THE SEN-
sational article discussed here is quite careless with the truth. He
presents facts in such a manner that they are defamatory to the char-
acter of the Society's founders and members. At each opportunity he
ascribes every failing of the Society in its administration and in the
care and transport of immigrants to evil intent and criminal neglect.
He wants to spread the notion that the Society was ultimately to blame
for all the suffering that some people had to endure and that cost
others their lives. Moreover, the Author would now like to ascribe the
founding of the Society to the venality of the German princes and
noblemen in Mainz, as the crowning achievement, so to speak, of all
their other evil deeds. It seems to be the Author's intent to arouse our
*This is the third of a three-part serialization
81The author of the allegation that England had supported the Society financially
seems without a doubt to have been August Siemering. According to Frederick Law
Olmsted, Siemering had claimed as early as 1857 in a study on the Germans in Texas
that there had been a contract between the Society and the British government. Frederick
Law Olmsted, A Journey Through Texas (New Yolk, 1837; reprint ed., Austin, 1978), 173.
Frederick Kapp had by 1855 also examined Siemering's study, but he rejected completely
the notion of exploitative profiteering by the Society. Kapp, Aus und ilber America, I,
273, 275-276. The extent of any British influence in the Society's venture, however, has
not yet been thoroughly investigated. See Robert W. Shook, "German Migration to Texas
183o-1850: Causes and Consequences," Texana, X (1972), 232-233; Tiling, German Ele-
ment, 114-119; Benjamin, Germans in Texas, .5-37.
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 85, July 1981 - April, 1982. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101208/. Accessed July 10, 2014.