Harmony Society

Harmony Society, religious society founded by German Separatists under the leadership of George Rapp. The Harmonists (or Rappites) held property in common and subscribed to the austere doctrines of their leader, including that of celibacy. In 1805 the society founded the village of Harmony, Pa., and developed it into a prosperous agricultural and industrial community. Led by Rapp, the Harmonists moved in 1814–15 to Indiana and founded another Harmony. They prospered there too, but in 1825 they sold their holdings to Robert Owen (see New Harmony) and returned to Pennsylvania to create their third village at Economy (now Ambridge), NW of Pittsburgh. In 1832 a part of the colony, under "Count Leon," a German adventurer, withdrew to form a separate community. The society was weakened by the death of Rapp (1847), dwindled as the members grew older, and went out of existence after 1906.

See studies by A. Williams (1866, repr. 1971); J. S. Duss (1943), and K. J. R. Arndt (2 vol., 1972).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

More on Harmony Society from Fact Monster:

  • George Rapp - Rapp, George Rapp, George, 1757–1847, German religious leader, known as Father Rapp, b. ...
  • Ambridge - Ambridge Ambridge, industrial borough (1990 pop. 8,133), Beaver co., W Pa., on the Ohio River; inc. ...
  • New Harmony - New Harmony New Harmony, town (1990 pop. 846), Posey co., SW Ind., on the Wabash River; founded ...
  • CONFUCIANISM - Kong Fuzi (“Master Kong”), known as Confucius to Western cultures, was a wise man who lived in China from 551 to 479 BCE. His teachings focused on the
  • communistic settlements - communistic settlements communistic settlements, communities practicing common ownership of goods. ...

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Protestant Denominations