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1800 up to 1850

Turnpike toll receipt, Zickhusen, 1838

In 1806 Mecklenburg was occupied by the French. Trade with England and Baltic Sea fishing was forbidden. There was economic decline.

Luise, the daughter of the Strelitz Duke Karl, became Queen of Prussia. She died in Hohenzieritz in 1810. In 1813 the Mecklenburg rulers were the first to leave the Napoleonic Confederation of the Rhine. They became Grand Dukes in 1815. George took over the throne in Neustrelitz in 1816. Paul Friedrich moved his residence to Schwerin in 1837.

By 1840 liberal town charters had been implemented in 16 towns. The Revolution of 1848/49 carved out a civil constitution for the first time, which was abolished in 1850 and rule based on rank was restored.

The economy recovered slowly. Paved rural roads improved the infrastructure. The banking and savings industry developed.

An agricultural crisis up until 1840 led to a fluctuation among landowners. Serfdom was abolished on state farms in 1824. Knights did not complete this process until 1860. Many free farm workers migrated overseas.

Prof. Ernst Moritz Arndt, 1848
Ernst Moritz Arndt, circa 1848

King Gustav IV. Adolf dissolves the constitution of the landed gentry in 1806 and declares Swedish Pomerania to be a province of the Empire.

Napoleon occupies Prussian Pomerania in 1806 and imposes a ban on the export of grain. The knights in Prussian Pomerania put up stiff resistance to the agricultural reforms of 1807 and 1811, as well as to the expansion of farming land used by settlers from Swedish Pomerania and Mecklenburg. In 1809, Major Ferdinand von Schill is killed in Stralsund during an uprising. Napoleon's forces use Pomerania from 1812 onward as a staging area for the conquest of Russia.

The 1815 Congress of Vienna awards Swedish Pomerania to Prussia. The province of Pomerania once again covers the territory of the former duchy. The integration of the inhabitants “in the saddest province of Prussia” is a stated goal. The university becomes the 'Royal University of Greifswald'. Compulsory education is introduced in 1824. The “Society for Pomeranian History” is founded. The most important artists from the north German Romantic period are scions of Western Pomerania. The literary scene concentrates on regional topics.

Many mariners emigrate to Sweden. The economy slowly recovers. The banking sector flourishes. Savings banks emerge. Merchants benefit from the tariff union. Iron works are built in Torgelow and Ueckermünde. Szczecin is a magnet for the surrounding area. The construction of infrastructure receives significant subsidies; the rail connection with Berlin is completed in 1843. Industrial mining and processing of chalk on Rügen and in Greifswald begins in 1832. Wilhelm Malte, Prince of Putbus, founds Lauterbach, establishing Putbus as a modern coastal resort. The people seek cures in water spas and along the Baltic Sea. Granitz hunting lodge is constructed between 1838 and 1852 in a Gothic Tudor style, inspired by Karl Friedrich Schinkel.

Crop rotation replaces the three-field system. Animal husbandry expands. The bourgeois classes are now able to purchase estates. The farmers who buy themselves out of serfdom lose their land and become day labourers.

Frederick William III. emancipates the Jewish population. A Jewish religious society is established in 1816, forming the nucleus for the Jewish community that emerges some time later. The status of the Protestant church remained unchanged.

In Prussia and Pomerania, the first general and free elections to the Prussian House of Representatives and the National Assembly are held in 1848.