Alternate History

Alemanitos (Napoleon's World)

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Alemanitos is the Mexican cultural subgroup generally descended from German or Austrian immigrants in the early to mid 19th century. While the westward migration of sizable numbers of German-speaking people to Mexico between 1820 and 1850 is notable, modern historians agree that it was not nearly as minor or isolated of an incidence as the French authorities purported well into the 1960's, but it was also not nearly the same type of mass diaspora seen by the Russian-speaking population of Europe.

Historical analysis of the alemanitos typically falls into two categories - the reasons for their departure from Europe, and their impact in Mexico and other parts of the Americas. Historians generally agree that the majority of alemanitos were Austrian refugees as opposed to a pan-Germanic diaspora, due to Napoleon's good relations with Germanic states in the Rhine and his own marriage to the Hapsburg throne. The first wave of alemanitos, at least in Mexico, arrived in the 1820's and were generally wealthier, upper and middle class people who felt that there was better opportunity for their social class in Mexico due to the allegiance between Agustin I and the Hapsburg family, while poorer Austrians actually largely benefited from French Imperial reform and the absorptions of the 1820's. The second large wave came in the late 1830's and continued on until the early 1850's, buffered by an economic downturn in Europe, the War of Napoleonic Succession and backbreaking famines and crop shortages across the region. Many German-speaking peoples looking for new opportunities were by then aware of the sizable German minority in Mexico and chose to go there, as opposed to the United States, Colombia or Canada. It should be noted that the number of German immigrants to the United States was static during most of this time and even before the Imperial Wars, indicating that the trend of "refugees" fleeing France may be propagandistic.

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