KAVEL, Augustus (1798-1860)


KAVEL, Augustus (1798-1860)
founder of German settlements in Australia
was born in Germany in 1798. He was pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church at Klemsig from 1826 to 1835. A new liturgy had been introduced into the German Protestant churches in 1822, which did not meet with general approval, was long resisted, and led to much persecution. Kavel resigned his charge in 1835, and early in 1836 called on George Fife Angas (q.v.) in England, hoping that Angas might be able to help the members of his congregation to emigrate to a British colony, where they would be allowed to worship in accordance with their consciences. Eventually Angas advanced the money to enable Kavel and some 200 of his followers to pay their passages to South Australia. They arrived towards the end of 1838, and were the forerunners of the many thousands of Germans who came in later years and proved to be good colonists. The settlement of Klemsig was formed which in a few years became very prosperous. Kavel showed great foresight and shrewdness in supervising the German colonists when early difficulties had to be overcome. In later years he was involved in doctrinal quarrels in his church, became engaged in a law suit, and was compelled by the supreme court to leave his manse. He died on 11 February 1860.
Kavel was a natural leader of men. He helped his followers to adapt themselves to new conditions, encouraged them to become naturalized, and, in assisting them to become prosperous citizens of a new country, had an important influence on the early development of South Australia.
A. Grenfell Price, Founders and Pioneers of South Australia; E. Holder, George Fife Angas.

Dictionary of Australian Biography by PERCIVAL SERLE. . 1949.


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