Kevin Patrick Law - April 2021

The Origins of a Truly American Language:


People often assume American culture isn’t as rich as other cultures, but that simply isn’t true. Americans have developed unique values, mannerisms, art, music, and even languages across their diverse nation. One great example of this is Pennsylvania Dutch. The language didn’t evolve from Dutch, interestingly enough. It started when early German immigrants needed to escape from the Holy Roman Empire regions of Europe to avoid religious persecution. Many of them escaped to Pennsylvania, which is still 29.9% German today. These immigrants generally didn't bring many belongings; however, they did bring a rich dialect. So, why is it called Pennsylvania Dutch? Rather than a mistranslation, it’s a corruption of the Pennsylvania German endonym Deitsch , which means “Pennsylvania Dutch/German” or “German.” The terms Deitsch, Dutch,

Diets , and Deutsch are all cognates of the proto-Germanic word piudiskaz , meaning “popular” or “of the people.” The language flourished safely within German immigrant communities and religious sects; however, while 10% of the original Pennsylvania Dutch settlers were Amish and Old Order Mennonites, today over 250,000 people speak the Germanic language, mainly in Pennsylvania and Ohio. considering its roots. It’s entirely different, as it turns out. Pennsylvania Dutch shares the most similarities with the Palatine German dialect, a small southwestern region of Germany where most Pennsylvanian settlers came from. If you can speak Pennsylvania Dutch, you can likely converse with Palatine Germans to a limited extent. You might be wondering how this language is different from German,

Can you write in Pennsylvania Dutch? Yes! However, not many speakers read and write in it, so it doesn’t have standardized spelling rules. If you’re curious to see it in print, however, look at the only Pennsylvania Dutch newspaper in the U.S.: Hiwwe wie Driwwe. Scholarly efforts have also been made to advance the language, such as the Pennsylvania German Studies minor program at Kutztown University. We hope you enjoyed learning a new fact or two about American history! Enjoy your April!

Happy Earth Day From the Birds and the Beasts!

Did you know that Georgia is home to 62 plants and animals that are protected by the Endangered Species Act? That’s a lot of responsibility on our shoulders! In honor of Earth Day on April 22, we thought it would be fun to share some trivia about the critters we’re obligated to protect. Here are five fun facts you can dole out during your next Zoom happy hour. 1. Georgia is home to five threatened/

issues. It’s an adorable bat with little mouse ears that weighs about as much as three pennies. 4. The carnivorous green pitcher plant is endangered here because people keep digging them up and selling them! This plant has hollow, pitcher-shaped leaves with liquid in the bottoms. The hungry plant lures in flies and mosquitoes, then dissolves and absorbs their bodies. Tasty! 5. The West Indian manatee swims off the Georgia coast and has been endangered for years creatures might have inspired some local mermaid legends. When Christopher Columbus arrived in America, he caught a glimpse of “mermaids” that were likely manatees. Our state is home to so many incredible creatures — these five facts only scratch the surface. To learn more, check out because of hunting and accidental collisions with boats and barges. Amazingly, these very

endangered sea turtle species, including the loggerhead, green, leatherback, hawksbill, and Kemp’s Ridley. The Kemp’s Ridley sea turtle is the smallest marine turtle in the world at just 2 feet long! 2. One of Georgia’s endangered birds is the

Kirtland’s warbler. It has gray wings and a yellow belly, and every year, it flies all the way from Michigan to the Bahamas for the winter. Even though we’re only one stop on its journey, we can still help protect it. 3. The Indiana bat is endangered in Georgia because of human disturbance and vandalism in caves, among other

You can always reach Kevin directly at 404.566.8964 or (If you ever need it, his cell phone is 404.409.3160.)

2 • KEVINPATRICK.LAW I 404.566.5880

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