As one travels throughout the state of Kansas, one cannot help noticing numerous place names which might lead one to believe that one is, indeed, not in Kansas anymore: Humboldt in Allen County, Bremen in Marshall County, Stuttgart in Phillips County, Marienthal in Wichita County, Windthorst in Ford County, Olmitz in Barton County, Olpe in Lyons County, Bern in Nemaha County, and many others.
Whether named for famous German researchers (Alexander and Wilhelm von Humboldt), German political leaders of the nineteenth century (Ludwig Windthorst), cities and towns in Germany (Bremen, Stuttgart and Olpe), the capital of Switzerland (Bern), a city in Moravia in the former Austrian Empire (Olmütz), or a German colony near the Volga River in the Russian Empire (Marienthal), each of these Kansas communities is a living testament to the massive influx of German-speaking settlers who found new homes in Kansas during the period from the mid-1850s to the 1880s, and continue to immigrate to Kansas at the beginning of the twenty-first century. (Deitsch, Däätsch, Düütsch, and Dietsch: The Varieties of Kansas German Dialects after 150 Years of German Group Settlement in Kansas, William D.Keel, 2006)
Click on a county to listen to German speakers from that county.
This page was last updated on May 5, 2020.