Wokeck, Marianne S(ophia)

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WOKECK, Marianne S(ophia)

PERSONAL: Female. Education: Hamburg University, M.A. (Stätsexamen), 1973; Temple University, Ph.D., 1982.

ADDRESSES: Offıce—Department of History, CA 503N, Indiana University-Purdue University, 425 University Blvd., Indianapolis, IN 46202-5143. E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER: Educator and historian. Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, professor of history, adjunct professor of American studies and women's studies, and director of American studies department.

AWARDS, HONORS: Regional Economic Research Center fellowship, Eleutherian Mills-Hagley Foundation, 1978; Philadelphia Center for Early American Studies fellowship, University of Pennsylvania, 1980; Albert J. Beveridge grant, American Historical Association, 1982; travel-to-collections grants, National Endowment for the Humanities, 1985, 1992; David Library of the American Revolution fellowship, 1994; Isaac Comly Martindale Fund fellowship, American Philosophical Society, 2001.


(Editor) The Papers of William Penn, 1701-1718, University of Pennsylvania Press (Philadelphia, PA), Volume 3, 1986, Volume 4, 1987.

(Editor and author) Lawmaking and Legislators inPennsylvania. A Biographical Dictionary: 1682-1709, Volume 1, University of Pennsylvania Press (Philadelphia, PA), 1991.

Trade in Strangers: The Beginnings of Mass Migration to North America, Pennsylvania State University Press (University Park, PA), 1999.

Biographical Dictionary of Early Pennsylvania Legislators, director of advisory council.

SIDELIGHTS: Marianne S. Wokeck is an historian with research specialties in immigration as well as American colonial and revolutionary times. She is also the author of Trade in Strangers: The Beginnings of Mass Migration to North America. Immigration studies often focus on the English or on African slaves. Wokeck, however, explores the second wave of immigration to America, particularly the German and Irish who arrived in the middle colonies. She traces how this movement of peoples grew from a trickle to a torrent as the merchants on both sides of the Atlantic became increasingly more sophisticated in providing room on underutilized cargo ships for passengers. The fares for these immigrants were thus low enough to attract all sectors of society. The development of mass transoceanic migration made possible the settling of entire new areas of North America.

"Trade in Strangers is an important addition to the study of mass migration," according to Nupur Chaudhuri, writing in International Migration Review. Chaudhuri further noted that the "author has successfully argued that the three basic components [generally] worked together to populate North America: pushes, pulls, and a connecting transportation system." By "pushes," Wokeck means the negative economic and social conditions in both Germany and Ireland conducive to emigration, and by "pulls," she refers to the religious and material benefits attracting new colonists to America. Germans generally arrived first, starting in the late seventeenth century, and were then followed by the Irish in the eighteenth century.

David W. Galenson, writing in the Journal of Interdisciplinary History, stated that Wokeck's book "has two intertwined but distinct parts. One is a painstaking study of the volume of German and Irish immigration to North America, particularly the Delaware Valley, during the eighteenth century." Galenson explained that the secondary focus on the industry and economy that attracted immigrants to America is "less successful." Despite this criticism, Galenson still felt that Trade in Strangers "makes a useful contribution to our knowledge of colonial immigration, and raises many questions for future research." Similarly, in the Journal of American Ethnic History Review, Aaron S. Fogleman found that Wokeck's "argument that the German model for transportation was a prototype for future migrations . . . is both intriguing and problematic." According to Fogleman, "Clear explanations of how the German model was a break with the past and directly influenced future migrations are lacking in this book." On the other hand, Fogleman concluded that Wokeck "presents impressive evidence on the sophisticated nature of recruiting and [transport] networks."



International Migration Review, spring, 2001, Nupur Chaudhuri, review of Trade in Strangers: The Beginnings of Mass Migration to North America, p. 323.

Journal of American Ethnic History, fall, 2000, Aaron S. Fogleman, review of Trade in Strangers, p. 85.

Journal of Interdisciplinary History, summer, 2000, David W. Galenson, review of Trade in Strangers, p. 125.


Indiana University-Purdue University IndianapolisWeb site,http://www.iupui.edu/ (July 26, 2004), "Marianne S. Wokeck."