Duplex Tenement House from the Vogelsang Farm from Damme

Duplex Tenement House from the Vogelsang Farm from Damme (Vechta County), built between 1773 & 1811. Re-constructed at the open-air museum in 1937.

Twenty-two people under one roof

Two inscribed gables at both ends of the building, two side entries and two almost identical floor plans; these are the significant characteristics of a building, which could be considered an excellent example of a shelter for the dependents of the country lower class. Four groups with a total of 22 people lived here in 1828 under one roof, or rather two roves. Today, the rooms still seem small, dark and tight to visitors.

 

On the way to work

The people who once lived here were among the so-called hirelings, a type of lessee with a small building and a minimal land area used for self-sufficiency. Often, only a very tight income could be achieved with the ownership of such leases and tradesman activities. For that reason, many men from these families periodically migrated in the summer to the neighboring, rich country of Holland to mow grass or cut peat, or they hired themselves out as sailors on ships. When the United States of America began to actively solicit immigrants and workers in the early 19th century, it was mostly the Holland migrants from Oldenburg Münsterland and Osnabrück who built a new life for themselves in the New World.

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