Before talking about the foundation of the French colony of Strasburg/Uckermark some remarks about the situation of that town in the 17th century.
Strasburg is located in the northwest corner of the Uckermark, northwest of Prenzlau and west of Pasewalk. The Uckermark was bordered by Mecklenburg and Pommerania. Due to the course of history, borders changed again and again. In the timeframe of this report, from 1685 until 1870, Strasburg belonged to Brandenburg and later to Prussia.

Strasburg and the surrounding area had been devastated and depopulated by the 30-year war (1618-1648) and the plague. The town was recovering slowly and more than once hindered in  development by fires. You can read this history of Strasburg in the "Ortslexikon Uckermark" (by Liselotte Enders) :

1625 The town had 217 fireplaces (that means about 2,000-2,500 inhabitants)

1636 Town plundered by the Swedes, 1638 again; loss of about 1,500 inhabitants

1641 Only 9 town burghers (that means about 150-200 inhabitants, each "burgher" had a family and also some families living in Strasburg without citizen rights)

1645 Out of 182 houses only 39 were inhabited, 66 were deserted, 15 deserted totally ruined, 62 empty places (no trace of a house left);

1653 Great fire

1680 Town fire

1681 Strasburg burnt down except of 7 huts and 5 old houses, including town hall, church and bells

Again and again the inhabitants had to start over and rebuild their town.
1691 The "Ortslexikon" announces the settlement of 74 refugee families, among them tobacco planters

The number of settlers varies in the different sources*) from 55 families to 374 people. Nobody was counting them upon arrival and put down the number in an official paper. Not all of the first set of immigrants stayed in Strasburg but moved on to other places. Others had settled elsewhere first and later found Strasburg more comfortable. 

*) Sources:

 Werner Lippert, Geschichte der Stadt Strasburg in der Uckermark, Wiederherausgabe des Buches von 1920, 1996 Schibri-Verlag

Dr. Eduard Muret, Geschichte der französischen Kolonie in Brandenburg-Preußen, 1885 Berlin, Nachdruck 1990 Berlin

Wilhelm Beuleke, Die Hugenottenkolonie zu Strasburg in der Uckermark, 1982, Verlag des Deutschen Hugenottenvereins

Dr. Richard Beringuier, Die Colonieliste von 1699, Berlin 1888, Nachdruck 1990 Berlin

(these books are available in German only)


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The French colony of Strasburg/Uckermark