Skip to main content

Historic Zoar Village

The German-American Heritage Foundation of the USA®

German-American Heritage Museum of the USA™

The German-American Heritage Museum of the USA™ opened in March, 2010 in a building once known as Hockemeyer Hall. Renovations were completed by the GAHF after acquiring the building in 2008. Located on 6th Street NW in the heart of the old European-American section of Washington, the Museum sits in what is now a thriving commercial neighborhood.

Follow us

Meeting House in Zoar

Meeting House in Zoar

Spring 2017

Historic Zoar Village: 1817 – 2017

This exhibit, which commemorated the 200th anniversary of the Historic Zoar Village in Ohio, shared the story of how German immigrants created one of America’s most successful communal settlements. The German religious separatists who founded Zoar, fled religious persecution in their homeland of the Kingdom of Württemberg, in southwestern Germany. The Society of Separatists of Zoar named it after the Biblical village to which Lot and his family escaped after their flight from Sodom. 

In 1817, 200 men and women arrived on the banks of the Tuscarawas River in northeast Ohio and began building a communal settlement that would last until 1898. The Separatists thrived on agriculture but also applied their work ethic and entrepreneurial spirit to other endeavors, such as helping to construct a portion of the Ohio and Erie Canal, creating a “Zoar-style” of furniture for export, and building a popular tourist destination for weekenders in the mid-1800s.

In addition to highlighting these and other aspects of Zoar life, the exhibit also included a three-dimensional replica of the Zoar Garden – a 2.4-acre, scripture-inspired meditative space that remains the centerpiece of the village today – and displays of Zoar artifacts including furniture, tools, pottery, and art. This exhibit was a loan from the Zoar Community Association.

Travelling Exhibit Panels to Celebrate the Bicentennial

Exhibit Artifacts