Part 2 takes place at the time of Napoleon and the following years of bitter oppression. Back home on the Rhine, the Bergmann brothers had been subjects of their sovereign, now they were citizens of the USA.
[Rhineland, 1794] While at the Potomac the new capital came into being, no stone remained unturned in Europe. The French Revolution shattered Europe’s monarchies, soon war broke out.
[America, 1812] Napoleonic wars in Europe. Although the United States were neutral, again and again American vessels were captured by British ships and Americans were forcibly recruited.
[Europe, 1812] Napoleon’s “Grande Armée”, reinforced by troops from Prussia, Austria and the Confederation of the Rhine, set out to invade Russia. The Bergmann brothers Heinrich and Niklas were among them.
[Rhineland, around 1815] After 20 years of war, life in the countryside was very hard. Many soils were ruined, there was too little to live on, almost no medical care and infant mortality was very high.
[America, around 1815] A few months later, Hedy Bergmann and her sons had left their home in the Duchy of Berg, to build a new life for themselves in America. Yet, parting had been hard.
[America, 1821] The entire Bergmann family was in Washington. President James Monroe, on whose ship Emmett, John and Laurie had sailed to Europe about twenty years ago, was sworn in for his second term.
[America and Europe, around 1830/1840] For some years now Niklas and Heinrich Bergmann had been living in America. It was a good life, they had worked hard and could live in financial security.
[America, around 1830/40] The United States pushed their border, the “frontier”, further and ever further westwards. More and more Indians were displaced from their traditional lands and forced into reservations.
[America, around 1845] Niklas Bergmann received a book that his German relative Jean had smuggled across the border and sent to him. It was Heinrichs Heine’s “Germany. A Winter’s Tale”, banned in Prussia.
[America and Germany, 1848/49] Good news come from Germany: the March revolution, a country united and the National Assembly. But eventually, revolution fails, and Lorenz Bergmann must flee.
[America, 1850] Niklas and Heinrich Bergmann, now seasoned gentleman, stood on the pier in New York and waited for Lorenz. He had had just enough time in London to telegraph the name of his ship to the USA.