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The Letters of Johann Ernst Bergmann, edited and translated by Russell Kleckley, chronicles the experiences and perceptions of a German Lutheran pastor called to serve a struggling community in the American South soon after the Revolutionary War. Written mostly to Bergmann’s superiors at the important center of German Pietism in Halle, the letters not only report on conditions in Ebenezer, Georgia, established over a half-century earlier by religious refugees from Salzburg, they also offer a distinctive and often critical look at American culture, religion, and politics from an outsider’s viewpoint. Bergmann stresses the practical and corrosive impact of American notions of freedom in everyday life while also commenting on a wide range of other issues, including Georgia’s relationship with Native Americans and the practice of slavery.