King Frederik V wanted the sparsely populated heathland of Jutland to be colonised. He therefore rounded up a large number of South German wine growers and persuaded them to move to the area in 1758. Eighty-eight of the families settled on the rolling heath called…
The German families came to Central Jutland with great expectations, imagining a rich and welcoming country. Instead, they were met by hostile residents who wanted the heath for themselves. The integration process was long and painful. The Germans kept to themselves with their own church and schools and continued to speak German to each other. To make matters worse, the soil was almost barren. Potatoes were the only crop that the immigrants managed to cultivate in the heath soil and the fruits of these labours were sold at the town square in Viborg. Potatoes became the trademark for the immigrants to such an extent that their nickname, Potato Germans", quickly became firmly rooted. "
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