Hartmut Berghoff & Uwe Spiekermann, eds.

Immigrant Entrepreneurship: The German-American Experience since 1700

Bulletin Supplement 12 (2016)


From 2010 to 2016, the German Historical Institute’s research project “Immigrant Entrepreneurship: German-American Business Biographies, 1720 to the Present,” explored the entrepreneurial role and the economic performance as well as the social and cultural experience of German-American businesspeople in the U.S.1 Combining nearly 200 thoroughly researched biographies, it off ers a new integrative perspective not only to trace the lives, careers, and business ventures of signifi cant immigrants but also to answer core questions of American, business, and migration history in a new way. Using a freely accessible website, the project presents the results of thorough research not only into the academic world but also into the general public. It is part of the German Historical Institute’s ongoing commitment to digital and public history



Immigrant Entrepreneurship as a Challenge for Historiography
Hartmut Berghoff and Uwe Spiekermann

The Analysis of Immigrant Entrepreneurship

Entrepreneur Biographies as Microhistories of X
Jürgen Finger

Why Biographies? Actors, Agencies, and the Analysis of Immigrant Entrepreneurship
Uwe Spiekermann

The Immigrant Entrepreneurship Project: Rationale, Design, and Outcome
Hartmut Berghoff

A Credit to Their Nation: Eastern European Jewish Immigrant “Bankers,” Credit Access, and the Transnational Business of Mass Migration, 1873-1914
Rebecca Kobrin

Entrepreneurship in the Mirror of Biographical Analysis

From the Colonial Economy to Early Industrialization

Johann Christoph Sauer: Pioneer of the German-American Press
Hans Leamann

Johann Andreas Albrecht: Making Rifles in Eighteenth-Century Moravian Economies
Scott Paul Gordon

The Emergence of an Industrial Nation

Mathilde Franziska Anneke (1817-1884): Social Entrepreneur and Suffragette
Stephani Richards-Wilson

A Reputation for Cross-Cultural Business: Henry Villard and German Investment in the United States
Christopher Kobrak
From the End of the Gilded Age to the Progressive Era

“A Most Remarkable Man”: Adolphus Busch and the Evolution of the American Brewing Industry
Timothy J. Holian

Jacob H. Schiff, Banker and Philanthropist
Bernice Heilbrunn

The Age of the World Wars

Making Entertainment American: Florenz Ziegfeld Jr.
Heather Hester

An Ordinary Man among Titans: The Life of Walter P. Spreckels
Uwe Spiekermann

Builder of the Liberal Consensus: Henry J. Kaiser (1882-1967)
Tim Schanetzky

From the Postwar Boom to Global Capitalism

“My Golden Gut” and Other Stories: How Lillian Vernon Built Her Brand
Ute Mehnert

Political Ideology and Economic Activity: Peter Thiel’s Libertarian Entrepreneurship
Meghan O’Dea