The chapter on the Czech Republic (Bohemia) would have been clearer if the author'd acknowledged the German/Czech situation before 1850, but maybe they assumed readers would know that. What I'd like to share with you is this, from page 336, top. It describes the position Johann & Marya Hesch and their 3 sons were in:
"At the bottom of the complex class structure were the day laborers, who worked for others and had no land of their own. Forced labor ended in 1848, but not until 1867 could a peasant leave without the estate owner's permission".And later on the same page:
"The number of people departing from the Czech provinces in the 1850s was small, ranging from 287 in 1850 to 6,573 in 1854, with an almost even ratio of males and females. Although some scholars believe these figures are much too low, various factors "mitigated against emigration on a larger scale" during that period. Passports were costly and difficult to obtain, and borders were closely patrolled. Steamship companies were not allowed to maintain agents or to advertise within the Austrian Empire. After 1859, most of these restrictions were gradually removed. Transportation companies and American states then actively encouraged emigration from the ports of Hamburg, Havre, Antwerp and Bremen. By the 1860s pamphlets in German extolling the virtues of Minnesota appeared in Bohemia. In the 1870s, Northern Pacific Railway literature, also in German, called attention to the availability of Minnesota land; at the beginning of that decade, the fare from Prague to St Paul was $61.80."We think that Paul and Mathias left earlier, but Johann, Marya and Anton left in 1859. We think they spent some time in Prague earning money for the trip and left as soon as they had it. Cool, huh?