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Germany's Convict Exports

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Richard Evans tells the little-known story of how 19th-century Germany attempted to solve its prison problems by secretly sending felons to the United States as immigrants.

In the course of the nineteenth century, as America became a magnet for Europe's poor and dispossessed, many European governments saw the opportunity to rid themselves of the burden of supporting the destitute by encouraging emigration to the United States. Their efforts were reinforced by numerous voluntary associations and societies dedicated to helping European paupers start a new life across the Atlantic.

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