Billinger Family History: Sending the German Hessians in the American Revolutionary War


Part 1: The Billinger Family Series

By Larry Billinger

The Billinger family is at the heart of our series, telling us unknown stories linked to the Hessians in the American Revolutionary War. This is the first part, and it’s here to introduce the Hessians and to start exploring the history of the Billinger family. While there’s no proof the Billingers were Hessians, we want to share how life in Germany led many families, like the Billingers, to look for new lives in unknown places like Russia.

The Unknown Soldiers – The Hessians:

When we think about the American Revolutionary War, we usually think about American and British soldiers fighting for freedom. But there were also Hessians—German soldiers hired by the British King. They were important but are often forgotten. They brought their skills to many battles between 1775 and 1783.

Who Were The Hessians:

The Hessians were about 30,000 German soldiers that the British government hired from different parts of Germany to help them during the war. They were strong, well-trained, and added new fighting techniques during the Revolutionary War.

Life in Germany in the 18th Century:

To know why Germans fought against Americans, we need to understand life in Germany back then. Germany wasn’t one big country but made up of smaller areas, each with its own ruler. Many rulers were in debt because of wars, their lifestyles, and the cost of running their areas.

Some rulers let other countries hire their soldiers, earning them money. These soldiers were mostly poor and had little choice but to fight in foreign lands.

Hessians in America:

The Hessians were part of important battles and met different people in America. They saw a new world and different ideas. Many Hessians decided to stay in America after the war and became a part of its growing culture, economy, and society.


We’ve started to uncover the stories of the Hessians and the conditions in Germany in the 18th century through the Billinger family’s history. But there’s much more to learn. Our next parts will look more into the Billinger family’s life and their settlement in America. We’ll unravel more layers of history and continue exploring the journey of the Billinger family in a world of change and new beginnings. So, stay tuned as we reveal more stories and connections in the coming chapters!

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