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Thread: German Stature, ca. 1804

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    Lightbulb German Stature, ca. 1804

    Yesterday I was happily surprised to find some physical anthro. data within the pages of the American genealogical work Pennsylvania German Pioneers by Dr. R. B. Strassburger & Dr. W. J. Hinke (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1980); so, I decided to post some articles here per this topic.

    On 11 August 1804 a ship from Hamburg arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with a cargo of German(deutsch) immigrants from (probably) various parts of German-speaking Europe. Among the manifest of passengers the statures (under the English system) of 84 men and 20 women were provided (see file attachments). The facts of this data (in both English & metrics) are below:
    • The average height of the women was: 60.4" (5' 2/5") or ~153.42cm
    • The tallest woman was: 5' 6" or 167.64cm
    • The shortest woman was: 5' or 152.4cm

    • The average height of the men was: ~5' 5" or ~165.1cm
    • The tallest man was: 6' or 182.88cm
    • The shortest man was: 5' or 152.4cm
    The ultimate origins of these folks aren't listed, but as was often the case with German immigration to America in the old days most of them were probably from the western and/or southern areas of German(deutsch) speaking Europe. But, I'm merely speculating here, these folks could have come from anywhere in the 'Deutschland' of that day.

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    Lightbulb Middle German(Mitteldeutsch) Stature & Skin Pigment., ca.1805

    Below is further phy. anthro. data (stature & skin pigmentation) from the American genealogical work Pennsylvania German Pioneers by Dr. R. B. Strassburger & Dr. W. J. Hinke (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1980) [cf: http://www.forums.skadi.net/showthread.php?threadid=4470] in relation to a group of Middle German/mitteldeutscher immigrants to America who left from Bremen and arrived at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on 30 Nov. 1805. Of the 61 passengers listed (see file attachments) I have excluded 2 due to one probably being a Frenchman and the other being a girl with no stature or skin pigment. info. provided. Of the remaining 59 their specific ethnic heritages were evidently: 27 Thuringians, 15 Hessians, 7 either Franconians and/or Hessians, 5 Braunschweigers(Sax.), 4 hochdeutsch, and 1 Sax. Thus, 49 were mitteldeutscher, 6 plattdeutscher, 4 hochdeutscher.
    Stature (59 studied)
    • The average height of the women was: 5' 2 1/3") or ~158.33cm
    • The tallest woman was: 5' 8" or 172.72cm
    • The shortest woman was: 4' 6" or 137.16cm
    • The average height of the men was: ~5' 6 3/5" or 169.164cm
    • The tallest man was: 6' or 182.88cm
    • The shortest man was: 5' 2" or 157.48cm
    Skin Pigmentation (58 studied)
    • 'Light' (probably 'pale,' freckle-capable, ruddy, impossible to difficult to tan): 1 person or 1.7% of total.
    • 'Fair' (probably ranging from: 1. 'pale,' freckle-capable, ruddy, impossible to difficult to tan; to 2. 'light,' non-freckle-capable, ruddy, impossible to difficult to tan): 41 persons or 70.7% of total
    • 'Dark' (probably meaning 'medium-light,' tannable skin) 16 persons or 27.6% of total.

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