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Otto von Mauderode


OTTO VON MAUDERODE, (1852-1909), German publisher who from 1883 printed forbidden Lithuanian books and periodicals. He was born on April 26, 1852 in Tilze (Tilsit), which was close to the Lithuanian-Prussian border. Mauderode was well acquainted with the national movement and its activists in Russian-ruled Lithuania. He wss an active member of the Lithuanian Literary Society in Tilze. The printing of Lithuanian books in Latin characters during the press ban was not restricted in Lithuania Minor (East Prussia), then under German administration, and at that time was a lucrative occupation in Tilze. An efficient businessman, he earned approximately 80,000 rubles per year (1895-1900) for printing Lithuanian newspapers, books and prayer books. He was more sympathetic to the Lithuanian cause than other publishers, and did not concern himself with the local pro German policies. Thus, his published periodicals intended for Lithuanians were never censored for taking a nationalistic stand. Only in 1906 did German officials use some pressure through Mauderode to weaken the Lithuanian position. Mauderode died in Tilze on Jan 17, 1909.