Immigrant Entrepreneurship on Twitter

Follow Immigrant Entrepreneurship on Twitter! We'll post links to our latest articles, news, and events, as well as link to interesting news articles related to Immigration and Entrepreneurship. Read More »

Johann Christoph Sauer (1695-1758)

Johann Christoph Sauer was the most active publisher of German-language print in colonial America. Through his publishing work, based in Germantown, Pennsylvania, he became the mouthpiece for many German immigrants’ opinions on the political and religious controversies of the mid-eighteenth century. Read More »

Isaac Merritt Singer (1811-1875)

The son of a German immigrant, Isaac Merritt Singer was the man behind one of the sewing machine patents that succeeded within an extremely competitive market in the mid-1850s. Read More »

Edward Albert Filene (1860-1937)

Edward Albert Filene was a renowned department store magnate, civic reformer, and one of the earliest and most zealous champions of the credit union movement in the United States. During the first half of the twentieth century, Filene’s became one of the largest and most successful retail stores in the country. Read More »

John Philip Sousa (1854-1932)

Between 1893 and 1932, John Philip Sousa was the most commercially successful bandleader in the United States and one of the best-known American entertainers worldwide. The son of Portuguese and Bavarian immigrants, from 1880 to 1892 Sousa served as leader of the United States Marine Band, “The President’s Own,” in Washington, D.C. Read More »

Max Hirsch (1871-1959)

Max Hirsch was a first-generation German Jewish immigrant to Portland who in 1907 purchased Willamette Tent & Awning from a Portland businessman and turned it into the Hirsch-Weis Company. Building on the success of his father's company, Harold grew his skiwear line into White Stag, one of the largest skiwear companies in the world. Read More »

Otto Bettmann (1903-1998)

Otto Ludwig Bettmann was a German Jewish refugee who emigrated from Berlin to New York City in 1935 and established a unique picture archive in the United States. At a time when photojournalism was on the rise, he was able to channel his personal penchant and obsession for collecting pictures into a thriving business. Read More »

Marianne Carus (1928-)

Marianne Carus is the founder of Cricket magazine. Building on her success with Cricket, Carus created a new niche market for children’s literary magazines in the U.S., eventually launching four more magazines aimed at different age groups. Read More »

Immigrant Entrepreneurship on Facebook

Immigrant Entrepreneurship has now joined Facebook. Please feel free to "like" the project there and comment on the latest content. We'll post links to our latest articles, project news and events, as well as share links to interesting news articles relating to the project. Read More »

Welcome to Immigrant Entrepreneurship

Immigrant entrepreneurship was one of the decisive factors in the United States' rise as an economic superpower in the late nineteenth century. The country benefited from the relative openness and freedom that attracted talent from around the world and encouraged minorities who fled discrimination elsewhere to try their luck.

The collaborative research project Immigrant Entrepreneurship: German-American Business Biographies, 1720 to the Present explores the entrepreneurial and economic capacity of immigrants by investigating the German-American example in the United States. It traces the lives, careers, and business ventures of  German-American businesspeople of roughly the last two hundred and ninety years, integrating the history of German-American immigration into the larger narrative of U.S. economic and business history. This online biographical dictionary synthesizes the results of the collaborative research project with a large collection of archival materials. The project is also a work in progress. New materials and essays will be added on a continual basis as the project expands. Continue Reading about the project...