German Quaker Says Persecution of War Tax Resisters Led to Decline of Sect

The Friends Intelligencer and Journal published a translation of a letter from a German Quaker written on in which the author, Max Rasche, discussed the decline of the Society of Friends in Germany, due in large part to the persecutions the sect had undergone because of their refusal to serve in the military or pay war taxes. Excerpts:

The young people, if they would not become soldiers, had to emigrate. Besides, a military tax of three per cent. of their incomes was laid upon them. Since the payment of this tax to support the militia was not freely given by most of the Friends, the Government resorted to attachments and seizures. Induced by all these adversities, the weak fell off. Many, almost all, emigrated to America, principally to Philadelphia, (), so that the number gradually decreased, and to-day only about thirty members exist here. And now, in consequence of the military exactions, almost all the able-bodied young people have wandered away, the old are dying, — there is no fresh growth left behind.