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Global Austria

Günter Bischof
Fritz Plasser

II. The World and Austria

Austria and its Migrants

Rainer Münz

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Habsburg Monarchy, Interwar Period, and World War II

During the nineteenth century, the Habsburg Empire was one of the most important source countries of transatlantic migration.1 Between 1820 and 1914, more than 4 million of its citizens emigrated to the United States, Canada, and Latin America. At the same time the emerging urban and industrial centers of the Habsburg Monarchy also became prime destinations of migrants leaving agrarian peripheries and small towns. Today’s telephone directories of cities like Vienna and Graz containing a large number of Czech, Hungarian, Polish, Serbian, and Slovak family names still give account of this nineteenth-century mobility within the Habsburg Monarchy.2

In 1918-20 the newly created Republic of Austria repatriated some 200,000 predominantly German-speaking members of former bureaucratic and military elites of the empire that saw themselves “stranded” in other successor states. During the rest of the interwar period, however, emigration prevai...


© innsbruck university press, 2011

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