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Russian Germans

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Large numbers of ethnic Germans who had migrated earlier to Russia migrated to the United States in the late 19th century and early 20th century. In Russia they had lived mostly in the Ukraine, then a part of Russia, some near Odessa, most on the Volga River, thus the name Volga Germans[?].

The migration of Germans to Russia was mainly at the initiative of Catherine the Great, a German herself. Settlement by ethnic Russians had been slow in the lands in the Ukraine lately conquered from Turkey. Later when the need for conscription into the Russian army arose in the latter part of the 19th century the Germans, who had little commitment to the Russian Empire, often emigrated to avoid the draft.

In the United States they settled mainly in the Great Plains in eastern Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota and North Dakota often succeeding in dryland farming[?], a skill learned in Russia. Many of the emigrants who arrived after the turn of the century spent a period doing farm labor, in Northeastern Colorado in the sugar beet fields.

Famous descendants of Germans from Russia include John Denver, Lawrence Welk, Angie Dickinson[?] and Steven Dietz[?].

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