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The German Pioneer Legacy

The Life and Work of Heinrich A. Rattermann


Don Heinrich Tolzmann

This study looks at the life and work of the eminent German-American author, poet, and historian, Heinrich A. Rattermann (1832-1923) and provides an historical legacy essential to an understanding of German-American history. He was well-known as editor of the historical journal Der Deutsche Pionier which was published by the German Pioneer Society of Cincinnati, Ohio, and is considered to be the leading German-American historical journal of the 19th century. In addition he edited Deutsch-Amerikanisches Magazin which was also important as a German-American historical journal.
Born in Ankum, Germany, Rattermann emigrated with his family to Cincinnati, Ohio, and thereafter played an important role in German-American cultural affairs both regionally and nationally.
This book is a re-edition of Sister Mary Edmund Spanheimer’s biography of Heinrich Rattermann, which has long been out-of-print. Mary Spanheimer was a professor of German at the University of Saint Francis, Joliet, Illinois. Her biography on Rattermann is considered to be the definitive work on the topic.
Contents: Editor’s Foreword – Editor’s Introduction – Rattermann’s Life and Work, by A. E. Zucker – Author’s Introduction – Rattermann, the Man (Ancestry and Childhood - The Emigrant - Youth in Cincinnati - Early Manhood - The Family - Love of Song and Music - Cultural Associations - Rattermann in Politics - Philosophy and Religion - The German-American Citizen - Old Age) – Rattermann, the Poet (Early Attempts - Poetical Influences - Types and Forms of Poetry - Nature Poetry - The Religious Spirit in Rattermann’s Poetry - The Enemy of Naturalism - The Literary Historian - Conclusion of a Poetic Career) – Rattermann, the German-American Historian (The Historian in the Making - The Historian in the Appraisal of Scholars - The Historical Journal, Der Deutsche Pionier - Contents of the Pionier - Deutsch-Amerikanisches Magazin - The Biographikon - Rattermann’s Library) – Conclusion – Bibliography for Further Reading.