The Culm Military Academy, a building and institution in the city of Culm, then in West Prussia, built in 1778 by King Frederick the Great, was closely associated with the history of the Mennonites of West Prussia. For its support the Mennonites had to contribute 5,000 talers annually, thereby purchasing their continued exemption from military conscription. The building, a large barracks-like structure, was burned on 18 August 1912. Until 1 April 1884 it was used to train officers for the army. Then it became the barracks of a battalion of sharpshooters. On 20 June 1774 a mandate was issued ordering the Mennonites in West Prussia and Lithuania to pay 5,000 talers annually as of 1 June 1773, for the benefit of the Culm academy. But not until the Gnadenprivilegium of Frederick the Great of 29 March 1780, did they receive an express guarantee of freedom from military duty. The sum had to be paid until the revocation of the privilege of military freedom on 9 November 1867.
Brons, A. Ursprung, entwickelung und shicksale der altevangelischen taufgesinnten oder Mennoniten in kurzen Zugen übersichtlich dargestellt. Emden, 1912.
Hege, Christian and Christian Neff. Mennonitisches Lexikon, 4 vols. Frankfurt & Weierhof: Hege; Karlsruhe: Schneider, 1913-1967: v. I, 383.
Mannhardt, W. Die Wehrfreiheit der Altpreussischen Mennoniten. Danzig, 1863.
Mennonitische Blätter (1912): 66 f.
Cite This Article
Neff, Christian. "Culm Military Academy (Culm, Kuyavian-Pomeranian Voivodeship, Poland)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1953. Web. 18 Apr 2015. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Culm_Military_Academy_(Culm,_Kuyavian-Pomeranian_Voivodeship,_Poland)&oldid=94286.
Neff, Christian. (1953). Culm Military Academy (Culm, Kuyavian-Pomeranian Voivodeship, Poland). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 18 April 2015, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Culm_Military_Academy_(Culm,_Kuyavian-Pomeranian_Voivodeship,_Poland)&oldid=94286.
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