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New Ulm, Minnesota

5971 Views 22 Replies 16 Participants Last post by  Jennifat
Yesterday I decided I'd enjoy the unseasonably hot weather and take a road trip down to New Ulm, tucked into the Minnesota River Valley in the south central region of the state.

The town was founded and settled by German immigrants, and today it is one of the most heavily German-American communities in the country. I was interested to discover that the town was destroyed twice in its early history — first in the Sioux Uprising of 1862, and then again in 1881 by a devastating tornado. Despite that, the town came back and became a major brewing center in the Upper Midwest.

New Ulm was packed with Oktoberfest madness, which seemed completely bizarre in the 85º heat. I also paid the $1.75 admission to climb the Hermann Monument — a German folk hero, and a symbol of the town's German heritage.

New Ulm, Minnesota
Population: 13,594
Seat of Brown County
October 9, 2010






























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Looks like a beautiful little city, named after the German city with the world's tallest cathedral. The tower on the top looks cool!
a small vibrant town....nice people and nice buildings.
Indeed looks like a beautiful, great and very nice town; well done Jenni :)
Lol, Americans in Lederhosen :)
Lol, Americans in Lederhosen :)
Yeah, I thought those old guys in the lederhosen were so comically cute I had to sneak some shots. Lots of Americans LOVE to identify with their ethnic heritage by wearing traditional dress, eating traditional food, and celebrating traditional events or holidays from the "Old Countries".

As you can see, Oktoberfest is very popular here...and not just with German-Americans, but with everyone! You see the same thing happen on St. Patrick's Day (Irish holiday), or Cinco de Mayo (Mexican holiday). Americans love any excuse to drink. :)
Who is the Teutonic-looking fellow in the first two pictures? (the statue). And what is the building in pic 8?

Great pics by the way, and lovely looking town and architecture. You can tell its German origins by looking at the names of some of the businesses in the shop windows.
Who is the Teutonic-looking fellow in the first two pictures? (the statue). And what is the building in pic 8?
The monument and the statue on top were built as a tribute to Hermann the Cheruscan (also known as Arminius), a German chieftain who defeated the Roman army in A.D. 21. He's a famous German folk hero.

The building in the eighth photo is the former New Ulm Post Office, but it's now a museum.

Great pics by the way, and lovely looking town and architecture. You can tell its German origins by looking at the names of some of the businesses in the shop windows.
Thanks, I'm glad you like them! It is indeed a very German town; 66% of the town's population reported German ancestry in the 2000 Census, which makes it the most German-American community in the United States.
These pictures surprises me. I trough German-Americans shame their ancestry because of WW2. I also trough that white americans don't care their origin because if they care how they can be patriotic.
Nice town :) Is German still spoken in New Ulm? or any other German-American towns?
These pictures surprises me. I trough German-Americans shame their ancestry because of WW2. I also trough that white americans don't care their origin because if they care how they can be patriotic.
German-Americans shame Hitler and the Nazi government for WWII, not Germany or the traditional culture. Besides which, Hitler was Austrian. :)

While it's true that there are some white people that don't care about their heritage (mostly people who don't know their ethnicity), I live in a region of the country where many people do identify with their ethnic origin. For instance, my family is Swedish-American, and we still take part in Swedish traditions, especially at Christmas.

As far as patriotism goes, ethnic heritage doesn't factor into it. A person can be proud to be both. Personally, I don't go the "patriotic" route – I think patriotism is kind of an antiquated concept in our global society.

Nice town :) Is German still spoken in New Ulm? or any other German-American towns?
There probably are some older people who can speak fluent German, but as a first language, definitely not. Students can study German in high school if they like, at least here in Minnesota. That being said, there are some Amish communities in the Eastern United States that speak Pennsylvania Dutch, a form of German.
Great thread, Jennifat! Looks like a great town. It looks much bigger than 13,000.
The perfect ydillic American town! With happy, friendly and jolly Deutsch-Amerikaner. Those traditions are so interesting. About 1.5 million Americans speak german says wikipedia. Quite unique that you hear something about the ethnic origin of white Americans, since it seems to me that they never really care.
Quite unique that you hear something about the ethnic origin of white Americans, since it seems to me that they never really care.
I find this very interesting from a European perspective.

There are all sorts of European ethnic festivals, communities, and events all over the US. Here in Minnesota we have a very heavy Scandinavian-American population, so you find all sorts of little towns with Swedish or Norwegian names. Lindström, Minnesota uses bilingual English/Swedish business signs, and has a Swedish tea kettle for a water tower. :)



Anyway, most white Americans do take at least some interest in their ethnicity in varying degrees. Some people go all the way back to Europe solely to study their lineage. Actually, just a few years ago my mother's family held a family reunion in Lidköping, Sweden where I met some of my unknown relatives. It's so strange yet really awesome knowing I have cousins on the other side of the Atlantic.

Another weird thing is that white people here love to ask other white people things like, "so, what ethnicity(ies) are you?" Of course, I have to answer by saying "well, I'm 3/4 Swedish, 1/8 French, 1/16 English, 1/16 Native American".

Sure enough, almost no one is fully one ethnicity entirely – thus is the proverbial melting pot.
Interesting city. Architecture doesn't look German at all...
Very interesting and nice town. Thanks for photos.
Interesting city. Architecture doesn't look German at all...
The architecture is definitely not German, but typical of other Victorian-era North American towns. Towns and cities here in Minnesota are young by European standards (~150 years), so most have Victorian or Italianate architecture.

Very interesting and nice town. Thanks for photos.
Thanks for visiting, M-120!
I live 25 minutes down the valley in Mankato

=)

:cheers:
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