Are you a fan of German cuisine like bratwurst, schnitzel, and strudel? Does a good Reisling resonate with you? Or a nice Dunkelbrau? Whether you have a passion for polka or a zeal for zithers, learn more about our German travel opportunity.

Photo Credit: Michael Daft, Deutschheim State Historic Site

By Peg Cameron Gill

Okay, so we aren’t going to take a plane, but we are going to travel back in time with an enlightening documentary that looks at why German immigrants found Missouri River Country so appealing 

More than any other immigrant group, the Germans who settled in Missouri played a major part in shaping the state—both culturally and economically.You can find out more about their invaluable contributions in “Exploring Missouri’s German Heritage” a special documentary produced by Missouri Life

Join Missouri Life TV host Meredith Hoenes as she talks with noted historian Dr. Arthur Merhoff, along with others, about the reasons why German immigrants settled all along the Missouri River in the area that has been designated the German heritage corridor. Dr. Merhoff is the author of the book “Exploring Missouri’s German Heritage,” published by Missouri Life.

From St. Louis to Indian Grove, Missouri has an officially designated German Heritage Corridor. It encompasses sixteen counties on both sides of the Missouri River, from the confluence with the Mississippi and through Lafayette and Chariton counties.

Dr. Merhoff will be your main guide, but Meredith will also talk with other historians, and with area artisans who are well-versed in German culture, crafts, and customs. From winemaking to zither playing to German cuisine like schnitzel, and celebrations like Oktoberfest and Maifest, you’ll come away with a better understanding and richer appreciation for the industrious German settlers who left an indelible mark on the Show-Me state.

Photo credit: Jefferson City’s Octoberfest

The documentary will examine more serious subjects, too, such as the immigrants’ quest for assimilating, while maintaining their native culture and customs. You’ll find out fascinating facts about how Germany’s political situation at that time gave the immigrants a unique perspective on slavery in the state. And much, much more.

Don’t miss this free opportunity to travel back in time and get a taste of Missouri’s German heritage.

For more history about the German Heritage Corridor, see this Missouri Life article.

For hundreds more events, visit Missouri Life’s Event Calendar.