On June 17, 1905, Henry Klaas, John Kehle, Valentine Fitsch, Peter Schmidt and Joseph Weilandt, German descendents from Klaasville, Indiana, purchased farmland from the Highland Colony Company at Calhoun, Mississippi. Total cost was $22,000. Optimistically, they changed the name of the community to Gluckstadt (Lucky City). In the fall, nine families moved their household furnishings, farm implements and livestock to the South in Illinois Central Railroad “immigrant cars.” Over the winter they worked to build new homes and clear land in preparation for the spring planting.
Other German-American families who joined the growing community included Henry Aulenbrock, John A. Minninger, Peter Miller, Joseph Haas, Anthony Weisenberger, Peter Endris, and Peter Minninger.
In 1908 the early families suffered a tremendous blow when they found out that they did not actually own the land they had lived on for three years. They discovered that the Highland Colony Company never owned the land they sold these families. The land that the settlers bought and paid cash for actually still belonged to three widows, and the Highland Colony Company had only taken an option on the land, having never actually purchased it.
The law firm of Alexander & Alexander in Jackson was contacted for guidance in this matter. The firm’s partners were secretaries of a trust that was created for the purpose of providing loans. Loans were arranged and the families were able to keep their land, actually having to pay for it a second time.