Local Senator Marks PA German Heritage Week

HARRISBURG PA – The contributions of descendants of Pennsylvania Germans to the state’s literature, art, architecture, written records, pottery, furniture, and culture are being observed by the state Senate this week (Oct. 23-29, 2016), which it has designated as “Pennsylvania German Heritage Week.”

The observance, under Senate Resolution 470 submitted by 24th District Sen. Robert Mensch, encourages “the participation and observance of celebrating the contributions and history” of the Pennsylvania Dutch, he said. Mensch in part represents residents of West and Upper Pottsgrove, New Hanover, Upper and Lower Frederick, Perkiomen, Skippack, and Upper and Lower Salford, and the boroughs of Pottstown, Boyertown, Trappe and Schwenksville.

  • Watch a video (above) about Mensch’s resolution and the Goshenhoppen Folk Festival in Perkiomenville PA, which annually puts Pennsylvania German heritage on display. It also can be seen at The Post’s YouTube channel, here.
  • Hear Mensch talk in the Senate chamber about his resolution as an audio podcast, here.

Mensch noted the largest community of Pennsylvania Germans lives at the state’s eastern end, with smaller settlements elsewhere in the U.S. and Canada. The German population immigrated in droves during the 1600s to escape religious persecution in Europe and seek a better life, he explained. At one time, Mensch added, more than one-third of Pennsylvania’s population spoke the language which had a tremendous impact on the local dialect of English.

Photo and video by The Post Publications