1960s dating customs
Such practices have now almost universally disappeared in America in favor of the personal proposal by the young man to the chosen one.
The change has been due to the general adoption of the American concept of romantic love as the basis for marriage.
In conformity with general medieval practice Anabaptists expected to supervise and direct the marriage arrangements for their young people.
To a medieval European parent the marriage of a son or daughter without his consent was unthinkable.
Among the Mennonites of Prussia it was customary into the 19th century for the young man to approach the , a sort of deacon, who would consult with the parents and the daughter of the house making known the young man's desire.
After they had consented the young man would come to the home of the girl and the engagement took place.
(Daniel Chodowiecki's painting "Mennonite Proposal for Marriage" illustrates this.) After some visiting among relatives the wedding would take place, usually in two weeks after the engagement.
Among the Swiss Anabaptists in the Vosges mountain region of Alsace the wooing of the bride was carried on according to the most literal interpretation of Gen. The deacon known as the Schteecklimann" took the place of the servant who was sent out to win a wife for Isaac.
In carrying out his mission the "Schteecklimann" mounted a horse even though the prospective bride lived near at hand.