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Our ancestors embraced America as their new home, and they never forgot where they came from. They left their ancesteral homeland in order to find a better life and end centuries of persecution.

The Transylvanian Saxons (German: Siebenbürger Sachsen; Hungarian: Erdélyi szászok; Romanian: Saşi) are a people of German origin who settled in Transylvania (German: Siebenbürgen) from the 12th century onwards.

The colonization of Transylvania by Germans was begun by King Géza II of Hungary (1141–1162). For decades, the main task of the German settlers was to defend the southeastern border of the Kingdom of Hungary. The colonization continued until the end of the 13th century. Although the colonists came mostly from the western Holy Roman Empire and generally spoke Franconian dialects, they were collectively known as Saxons because of Germans working for the Hungarian chancellery. For much of their history, these 'Saxons' held a privileged status with the Hungarians and Szeklers of Transylvania.

The Transylvanian Saxon population has decreased since World War II. Despite mass emigrations — primarily to Germany — they still form notable minorities in Hungary and Romania.

Reference:

Wikipedia. (2007). Transylvanian Saxons. Retrieved November 5, 2007 from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transylvanian_Saxons

Copyright 2011 ATS Branch 26.