DESCRIPTION of our Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana Tour:
The year 2021 marks the 300th anniversary of the initial settlement of the German Coast of Louisiana in 1721. Early pioneering families of Colonial Louisiana were recruited from Alsace, Lorraine, the Rheinland, and Switzerland by John Law to settle in what is today St. Charles Parish, Louisiana. The community of settlers came from various regions of Europe. As the modern country of Germany did not unify until the 1870s, these ancestors were from different countries -- kingdoms, duchies, and principalities, but were united under the common Germanic languages, each with their own local dialects.
In Louisiana, the German language was soon replaced completely within 3 generations by the predominant French language of the time. By the 1800s these “Germans” had mostly Gallicized names. As their community grew and prospered their settlements soon extended upward to the Second German Coast and the establishment of a second church parish dedicated to St. John the Baptist. The populations would soon encompass both the west and east banks of the river. As the 19th century progressed 4th and 5th generation German coast families spread even further up the river into St. James, Ascension, Iberville, and even Pointe Coupée Parishes. Others traversed the swamplands and established along Bayous in what is today Lafourche & Terrebonne Parishes. And others even further west into the Attakapas region along the Bayous Teche and Vermilion and along the prairies of the Opelousas Post in the southwestern part of Louisiana. The majority of people in South Louisiana today can trace their ancestry to a German Coast settler, if not many of the original settlers. As genealogy became popular in the mid-20th Century up until it’s present boom in the 21st century, many scholars have traced the European origins of the settlers of “la côte des Allemands” and with this research, in mind, we intend to go back to these locals to enjoy the offerings of Europe and to visit the villages from which our ancestors hail.
The itinerary is designed with travelers in mind. Every attempt was made to minimize the change in hotels so we can enjoy more time visiting places than packing up each night. We have incorporated many of the main families in the itinerary below, but if you’re coming and we overlooked a family you descend from let us know and we can make every attempt to incorporate it into the itinerary. Likewise, if no one in the final group is descended from a particular family we’ll be eliminating those stops to maximize time elsewhere.
Cynthia Breaux Seitz owner of Heritages Tours by Seitz Travel is a genealogy buff and experienced tour director that has led many international “genealogy” oriented tours has partnered with Jay Schexnaydre, President of the German-Acadian Coast Historical & Genealogical Society to plan this trip in celebration of the Tricentennial of the German Coast of Louisiana!!
Albert Robichaux - Historian and Author of several genealogical books including: German Coast Families: European Origins and Settlement in Colonial Louisiana
Jay Schexnayder - President of the German-Acadian Coast Historical and Genealogical Society
The Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana Tour package includes:
A unique program focusing on the history and culture of our European ancestors in Germany, France, and Switzerland. This tour is custom curated for those whose ancestors settled the German Coast of Louisiana.
Bus transport to all destinations during your tour.
A visit to the area of Europe where our ancestors inhabited before they settled on Louisiana's German coast.
German Coast Of Louisiana Expert Al Robichaux will be traveling with us.
Local Tour Guides, your Louisiana tour director Cynthia Seitz, and your German Coast expert Jay Schexnayder.
17-night accommodation at hotels in the city centers of Metz, Strasbourg, and Zurich. (note that hotel rooms in Germany are smaller than North American rooms).
All breakfasts and one other meal a day are included in the price. beginning on Thursday, May 12 which is the official start day of the tour.
Entrance fees for attractions, activities, and guided tours as described in the program.
IMPORTANT: The itinerary provided below may be changed in order to improve the tour experience for the group or for any unforeseen reason.
Don't miss out on this German Heritage Tour! for the people of the German Coast of Louisiana
Email Cynthia today!
Meals - B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner
German Coast of Louisiana
Day 1 - Tuesday, May 10, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
Your German heritage tour begins with an overnight flight to Frankfurt, Germany
Day 2 - Wednesday, May 11, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
Arrival & Willkommen
Today you arrive in Frankfurt, Germany. Upon arrival at the airport, tour director, Cynthia Breaux Seitz will escort guests to the hotel near the airport. Once everyone settles in there will be a welcome orientation to prepare for the tour. We will have dinner at the hotel. We will use this day as a day to rest and recover from jetlag and be ready to start discovering the European origins of the settlers o the German Coast of Louisiana. (Overnight in Frankfurt, Germany)
No meals will be supplied today as the tour officially starts tomorrow.
Day 3 - Thursday, May 12, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
Start your day off with breakfast as we depart to the quaint village of Rudesheim, Germany in the Middle Rhein Valley for a cruise on the Rhein River - the German “father” of all rivers, where you will see many medieval castles, lovely vineyards, and the famous rock formation, Lorelei. After the cruise, you’ll visit the famous Drosselgasse Street for souvenir shopping, wine tasting, and a delightful lunch. In the afternoon, you’ll visit the medieval Marksburg Castle before heading across the border to France to check-in at the hotel in Metz. (Overnight in heart of the city of Metz, France)
Day 4 - Friday, May 13, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
Metz is the Capital of France’s Grand-Est Region. Visit to the Metz Cathedral known as La Lanterne du Bon-Dieu (The Lord’s Lantern) because it has the most stained glass of any cathedral in the world and is one of Europe’s tallest. Le Temple Neuf and honey-colored stone buildings make this a beautiful stop In the afternoon we will visit several ancestral villages en route to Germany. (Overnight in Strasbourg, France)
Click your town to view a video about the town.
[TASSIN - Thionville] [TROXLER, TROSCLAIR, TROXCLAIR - Lichtenberg] [JACOB - Ingwiller & Menchoffen] [BERENHARDT, HESSINE & MEHL - Schillersdorf] [MEEL & SCHERLE - Bouxwiller][JACOB & SCHERLE - Kirrwiller] [BLOCH & MEYER, Dauendorf]
Day 5 - Saturday, May 14, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
Drive along the Moselle River from Scenic Bernkastel-Kues to Trier. Discover the medieval town of Trier with its historic gates and charming buildings settled along the Mosel River -- the “mother” river in Germany. Enjoy a wine tasting at the oldest winery in Germany established in 330AD when Trier was under Roman rule. Visit the impressive Vianden Castle built in the Romanesque style it dates back to the 10th century. (Overnight in Metz, France)
[HARTMANN - Engelstadt] [SEIFERT, STRUEMPFEL - Wolsfeld]
Meals - B and D
Day 6 - Sunday, May 15, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg
Today you will visit the country of Luxembourg, the ONLY remaining duchy in the world. Famous for a strong economy which they attribute to their role in the industrial revolution of the early 1840’s and its primary product: steel! A city tour will highlight this unique city and will include a visit to the American Military Cemetery with over 5,000 US WWII soldiers burials. (Overnight in Metz, France)
Day 7 - Monday, May 16, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
FREE Day to enjoy and explore Metz, France.
Day 8 - Tuesday, May 17, 2022
Venture into the Black Forest
On the way, we will stop at Mummelsee. The Mummelsee is a 17-meter-deep lake at the western mountains of the Hornisgrinde in the Northern Black Forest of Germany. It is very popular with tourists traveling along the Schwarzwaldhochstraße. According to legends, the lake is inhabited by a Nix and the King of the Mummelsee. In Mummelsee you will have some famous Black Forest cake and maybe spot a Nix or even the king. On this day you will visit the beautiful Black Forest and the Black Forest Museum (Schwarzwald Museum) along with waterfall watching and shopping along the main street shops. (Overnight in Strasbourg, France)
[PRESTENBACH, ZELLER - Hügelsheim, KRAEMER - Stollhofen]
Day 9 - Wednesday, May 17, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
Day in the Bas-Rhin, Northern Alsace
Go back in time as we visit the Maginot Line and the Fortress of Schœnenbourg. In the afternoon you will visit the potters of Betschdorf and you will have the opportunity to buy a few souvenirs in their magnificent pottery shop. (Overnight in Strasbourg, France)
[ HAUSER - Lauterbourg][CHAUFFE/SCHOFF/SCHAAF - Schœnenbourg & Keffenach] [FOLTZLOGER - Memmelshoffen] [ELFER - Lembach] [LAICHE/LECHE - Trulben][ABWENDEN, ACKERMANN, GOTZ - Beinheim] [CRETZMANN, REIBEL - Fort-Louis]
Day 10 - Thursday, May 19, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
Splendors of Strasbourg
A day in Strasbourg - Capital of Alsace!! Enjoy a guided tour of Strasbourg and a visit to the Astronomical clock. Today you will take a riverboat ride on the Ill River and a visit to the Palais de Rohan. Pack your suitcase, last night here! (Overnight in Strasbourg, France)
[BISCHOFF/PICHOFF, KLEINPETER, KNOBLOCH, TRICHE - Strasbourg]
Day 11 - Friday, May 20, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
Free Day in Strasbourg, France
Today you will enjoy Free Day to rest and relax. Restaurants, museums, and even a casino are within walking distance.(Overnight in Strasbourg, France)
Day 12 - Saturday, May 21, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
A Day in Central Alsace
Early stop in Schwobsheim - home of the Waguespacks. Later, you will visit the famous Chateau of Haut-Kœnigsbourg in the morning. In the afternoon you will enjoy visits to the small villages of Riquewihr and Kaysersberg, which offers a WWII memorial for those who love history. (Overnight in Strasbourg, France)
[ORY - Lutzelhouse][WAGUESPACK - Schwobsheim]
Day 13 - Sunday, May 22, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
At Home in Haguenau
Today you will visit the town of Haguenau, France. Take a walking tour of this charming city and enjoy time to explore the city on your own. Pack your bags! Last night in Baden Baden.(Overnight in Strasbourg, France)
[BUERKEL/PERCLE/PERQUE - Batzendorf] [CLAUS & STEIN - Hochfelden] [DEBES & FREDERIC - Wingersheim]
Day 14 - Monday, May 23, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
Rheinland-Pfalz (Palatinate) & Baden-Württemberg Villages
Visit the chateau of Trifels. A reconstructed medieval castle at an elevation of 500 m (1,600 ft) near the small town of Annweiler,, Then to the ancient imperial city the Middle Ages in Speyer, the ancient imperial city on the Rhein, and then tour the Cathedral which is the largest Roman edifice in Germany, and is a UNESCO world heritage site. The cathedral is known as the cathedral of emperors as 8 emperors are buried there. The afternoon will be to several villages as needed. (Overnight in Strasbourg, France)
[ACKERMANN - Rastatt] [FREDERIC - Rothenberg][HAYDEL - Neunkirchen][SCHANTZ, WIRTH - Hochhausen] [MARKS, HAUSER, EDINGER - Sinsheim][EDELMAYER, HIRTZEL, LAUTERMILCH, SCHNEIDER, STEINER - Reihen][ALTOFER, GEISSER, MULLER, ROMMEL / ROME, SCHNEIDER, STEIGER, WEIDLER, ZIRCKEL - Kirchardt] [WESELE, WICHE - Stebbach] [TOUPS, BARTHE, EDINGER - Eppingen]
Day 15 - Tuesday, May 24, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
Haut-Rhin, Southern Alsace
Today we will head towards Zurich, Switzerland. We will visit the beautiful city of Colmar for a walking tour and a relaxing gondola ride in the city known as “Little Venice”. Afterward stops in villages as needed. (Overnight in Zurich, Switzerland)
France: [KOENIG, ZANCHER - Gueberschwihr][BELSOM - Bourbach-le-Haut][EHRET, MARTIN, SOULT - Sentheim][EDELMAYER - Mulhouse][WILLIG/VILLIQUE - Walheim][KOENIG - Wittersdorf & Obermorschwiller] [KATTERLÉ - Waltenheim][ZERINGUE - Huningue]
Switzerland: [SCHERER - Breitenbach][BURAS & HIRTZEL - Solothurn][STEINER - Bätterkinden]
Day 16 - Wednesday, May 25, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
Bern: A Capital City!
Today you will visit the Old City of Bern on a walking tour, a UNESCO heritage site. You will enjoy a lovely lunch and have time to explore the city on your own or relax as needed. (Overnight in Zurich, Switzerland)
Day 17 - Thursday, May 26, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
Today you will visit the lovely city of Luzern (Lucerne in French). (Overnight in Zurich, Switzerland)
[HUBER - Hausen-am-Albis] [TOUPS, KLEINER, STEIGER - Affoltern-am-Albis] [LOUP - Zurich]
Day 18 - Friday, May 27, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
A Day in Zurich
Enjoy the Swiss city of Zurich. Today, you will experience a morning at the Lindt Chocolate Factory! Take a boat ride on the Limmat River as well as visit the Swiss National Museum. We will end the trip with a farewell dinner. (Overnight in Zurich, Switzerland)
Day 19 - Saturday, May 28, 2022 - Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana
Trans-Atlantic Flight Home
Return Home - Flights depart from Zurich back to the USA
Historian and Author of several genealogical books including:
German Coast Families: European Origins and Settlement in Colonial Louisiana
President of the German-Acadian Coast Historical and Genealogical Society
When I was growing up in Louisiana I thought I had pure, 100% Acadian Heritage. I did not realize that I had German Heritage in me as well. I did not realize that Matherne was of German Heritage. I came to realize much later in my life that a lot of names in my area that I thought were Acadian were actually German. After working on my family tree for the last year and working on my ancestry.com research, I have found lots of ancestors in my tree that are considered to be Germans of the German Coast of Louisiana. The German Coast of Louisiana is officially on the Banks of the Mississippi River south of New Orleans. I knew about Des Allemands, Louisiana which literally means "The Germans".