In March 2010, the German-American Heritage Foundation of the USA (GAHF) opened the German-American Heritage Museum (GAHM) as the first national inspiration for German-American heritage and culture.
GAHF is an educational organization and serves as the national umbrella organization in which German-Americans work together on vital issues of common concern and promote their heritage. Its mission is to preserve and promote the heritage of Americans of German-speaking ancestry. The organization was founded in 1977 and chartered in 1978 as the United German-American Committee of the USA, Inc. (UGAC), which is an independent, tax-exempt educational not-for-profit organization.
Our museum tells the story of all Americans of German-speaking ancestry and how they helped shape our great nation today. It collects, records, preserves, and exhibits this rich cultural legacy. It is a place for continuing discussion, study, and development of ideas about Americans of German, Austrian and Swiss descent, their heritage, their values, and their future.
In an effort to make the German-American history more readily available to a broader audience and easier to comprehend by all ages, the Museum fosters mutual understanding and increases public knowledge about the rich heritage of all Americans of German descent.
Centrally located in Hockemeyer Hall in Washington, DC, the German-American Heritage Museum ™ is not only in close proximity to the National Archives, the National Portrait Gallery and the Newseum, but also serves as a historical setting for German-American immigration itself. John Hockemeyer, a German immigrant who fought in the Civil War and afterward became a successful merchant, built the hall in 1888.
The townhouse is part of the historic Penn Quarter, former home to over 4000 German immigrants in Washington DC including the world famous architect Adolph Cluss (1825-1905), Carl Schurz (1829-1906) first German born US Senator, and Emile Berliner (1851-1929) inventor of the phonograph.