Trade Nov-Dec Interactive - page 15

German American Trade Nov/Dec 2013
15
S P O T L I G H T S
s
ound clips, provide further context
for the individual biographies.
Some entrepreneurs were already
profiled in brief in this magazine in
2011; readers may recall learning
more about the “Sugar King” Claus
Spreckels, the Hollywood movie
mogul Carl Laemmle, the vintner
Beringer Brothers or Rudolph
Wurlitzer and his musical instruments.
Since then, the project has grown by
more than one hundred biographies
that shed light on the entrepreneurial
activities of German immigrants who
made their mark on a wide range of
industries in the United States. There
is Gertrude Boyle, for example, who
developed Columbia Sportswear into a
successful company on the outdoor
apparel market. Or Otto Schnering,
who is responsible for tempting the
American sweet tooth with Baby Ruth
and Butterfinger candy bars. Alfred
Lion and Francis Wolff fled Nazi
Germany and founded one of the
world’s foremost jazz record labels,
Blue Note Records. Sometimes entire
families were involved in the busi-
ness, such as the Ringling Brothers
and their traveling circus. Not all
businesses were big – Emanuel
Bronner found a niche in manufactur-
ing organic soaps and managed to
establish a small, but dedicated
following for Dr. Bronner’s Magic
Soaps – or legal, for that matter: both
peddler Fredericka Mandelbaum and
George Remus, the “King of the
Bootleggers,” pursued entrepreneurial
ventures outside the law.
The project is sponsored by the
German Historical Institute Washing-
ton DC, a not-for-profit research
organization funded by the German
government whose mission is to
encourage scholarship on German,
American and transatlantic history.
Immigrant Entrepreneurship also
receives generous support from the
European Recovery Program (ERP) of
the Federal Ministry of Economics
and Technology.
n
Ringling Brothers poster, circa 1900
Interested?
For more information please contact
the project manager Jessica Csoma at
Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZC4-9675).
A Project of the German Historical
Institute Washington DC
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