We have spent the last several years forming partnerships and developing programming dedicated to commemorating and interpreting Missouri’s rich German cultural heritage.

In 2019, Missouri Humanities partnered with Missouri Life Publishing to create a “book-a-zine” exploring the many facets of “Germanness” in our state: Explore Missouri’s German Heritage. Authored by Dr. W. Arthur Mehrhoff, the publication serves as both a travel guide and coffee table book. 

We are excited to present this eight-part program series below, diving into each chapter of the book and exploring the people, places, and ideas that helped shape Missouri’s German cultural heritage. These programs originally aired between September 2020 and April 2021. You can also listen to the podcast version at the link to the right.

Series Details:

Chapter One: “In the Eye of the Beholder” (ein Bildungsroman)

Thursday, September 10th, 10AM  – 11:30AM

In this chapter, we’ll explore the inspiration behind creating this book, the beginnings of MH’s German Heritage program, and the fascinating evolution of this publication.

Chapter Two: “Marking the Spirit of the Times” (der Zeitgeist)

Thursday, October 8th, 10AM  – 11:30AM

We dive right in with Alexander von Humboldt, Missouri Germans during times of war, and reflections upon cultural identity.

Chapter Three: “O Brave New World” (die Auswanderung)

Thursday, November 12th, 10AM  – 11:30AM

Join us as we discuss Gottfried Duden and the first waves of German immigration into Missouri. We’ll also discuss some of the first German settlements in Missouri and other significant historic sites.

Chapter Four: “Shaping the Land” (die Landschaften)

Thursday, December10th, 10AM  – 11:30AM

Caitlin and Arthur discuss the strong “sense of place” in the German Heritage Corridor. We explore what it means to have a “sense of place” and look at examples throughout the state.

Chapter Five: “Good Work” (die Arbeit)

Thursday, January 14th, 10AM  – 11:30AM

Old World traditions, New World adaptations. In this chapter, we take a look at the working German—agriculture, viticulture, brewing beer, building, creating—and the legacy today. Special Guest: Cindy Browne.

Chapter Six: “The Enchantment of Every Day” (Alltagskultur)

Thursday, February 11th, 10AM  – 11:30AM

What was part of a typical day for a German in Missouri? In Chapter 6, we discuss German cuisine, Gemüsegarten, or the “kitchen garden”, German music, and other material culture. We’ll even tell you where to find authentic German cuisine! Special Guest: Katy Holmer.

Chapter Seven: “Remember Missouri’s German Heritage” (der Geist)

Thursday, March 11th, 10AM  – 11:30AM

What do historic sites and local groups do to preserve and remember their German heritage? We look at examples of these efforts, such as religious institutions, house museums, cemeteries, festivals, and more. Special Guest: Marc Houseman.

Chapter Eight: “Eiswein, Savoring Missouri’s German Heritage” 

Thursday, April 8th, 10AM  – 11:30AM

To wrap up our series, we consider one of the major tourist attractions and significant elements in the German Heritage Corridor: its German wine heritage. We’ll also do a special shout out to book sponsors, and will tell you what’s on the horizon for Missouri Humanities’ heritage programs.

Explore Missouri’s German Heritage by Dr. W. Arthur Mehrhoff

The German Heritage Corridor of Missouri, highlighting the heavy concentration of German settlements in the area

Click the link below to purchase your copy of Explore Missouri’s German Heritage for $25.00. All proceeds from this book help bring more programs like this to Missourians.