The term 'Palatine' comes from the name of a Roman official who was sent by Caesar to govern the southwestern section of Germany after the conquest of Gaul in the first century. The Palatines came from a lush green area on the River Rhine called Palatinate. The Palatines were known for their great craftsmen, artisans, masons, weavers and farmers.
However, religious and political wars in the seventeenth century left the Palatinate people in destitution. Great stories about life in America led the Palatines to emigrate in large numbers to start a new life there in 1708. Some settled in other countries, such as England and Ireland. Two Palatines who emigrated to America established the Methodist religion, of which 14 million Americans are members today.