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Whether you seek information on your family tree or the perfect kuchen recipe, NDSU Libraries' Germans from Russia Heritage Collection is a valuable resource. It is located in the North Dakota State University's Main Library, the state’s land-grant university.
Since its inception in 1978, this privately funded, specialized archives has become one of the most comprehensive collections of German-Russian resources in the world.
Today, GRHC has expanded its activities and projects to include:
Audio oral history interviews
Clothing and textiles
Dakota Memories Oral History
tours to Ukraine and Germany
To collect, document, preserve, exhibit, translate, publish, promote, and make accessible resources on the culture, history, folklore, textiles and clothing, and foodways of the Germans from Russia. Our focus is on Bessarabian, Black Sea, Crimean, Dobrudscha and Volhynian Germans and their descendants in North Dakota and the Northern Plains.
8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday
Due to limited staff, appointments are encouraged. Please contact Michael
M. Miller at 701-231-8416 or Jeremy Kopp at 701-231-6596 to schedule an appointment.
The Germans from Russia Heritage
Collection is located in Room 114 on the first floor
of the North Dakota State University Library, 12th
Avenue North and Albrecht Boulevard, Fargo, N.D. Parking
is available north of the NDSU Library; call GRHC
for more information.
The GRHC archives provide many resources for scholarly research, including family histories, information on ethnic culture and foodways, maps and specialized collections from donors/historians.
Search online in the NDSU Library Catalog for most books and audio-visual materials and on Dspace for Finding Aids for Special Collections.
Here are examples of Special Collections available for scholarly research.
- Walter & Alice Riedlinger Essig: Community
and county histories of North and South Dakota families
- Thomas J.
Hoffman: Catholic German families in Europe
and North America
- Herbert Poppke: Comprehensive cultural
identification including specialized maps
- Gwen Bernice Black Pritzkau: Genealogical
- Ernest E. Zeiszler: Lutheran/Reformed German
families of Crimea, Hutchinson County, S.D., and
Mercer County, N.D.
GRHC features several historic photographic collections including the Graf-Buck, Kusler-Grosz,
Baumgartner, Fischer-Masterson and Marguerite (Bullinger-Gustin) Lien collections. Other collections focus on
theology and music/hymnal themes, such as the Leona (Woeszner) Neu Collection.
The GRHC will consider adding to our collections: materials brought over during emigration; objects displaying cultural heritage made or used by people during early years of Germans from Russia settlement in North America/ northern plains; items illustrating the impact of assimilation while retaining cultural identity; and items, representing on-going traditions, created by descendants of emigrants. The objects should be relevant to and consistent with the mission of the GRHC.
The object should tell a story in and of itself.
A representative selection may be made from a large set or collection.
Technological, social, and historical function should be reviewed. Physical condition, aesthetic merit, rarity, and status may be factors in acceptance.
Fragment of larger objects may not be accepted. The materials should be in a sustainable condition.
Items that duplicate those currently in the collections may not be accepted.
If you have questions, please contact Pamela.Burkhardt@ndsu.edu.
For donations of textiles and clothing,
the GRHC staff collaborates with the Emily P. Reynolds
Historic Costume Collection, College of Human Development
and Education, NDSU.
For more information:
Dr. Ann Braaten, Curator
Emily P Reynolds Historic Costume Collection
You can help us build our photo collection
of historic German-Russian photographs including images of weddings, homemaking,
farming, military and family. We will handle your
family photos with great care, keeping them only long
enough to create digital copies. We appreciate your
cooperation in loaning your photographs and other
historical documents for archival preservation, publications
Oral History Project
The GRHC staff launched the Dakota
Memories Oral History Project (DMOHP) in 2005.
DMOHP organizers designed this project to document
the cultural heritage and preserve the childhood memories
of second- and third-generation Germans from Russia
on the Northern Plains.
In 2000, The Marie
Rudel Portner Germans from Russia Endowment was
established to assist in privately funding this collection.
Journey to the
The GRHC hosts special tours for
individuals and families who wish to travel from the
United States and Canada to Germany and Odessa, Ukraine.
Travelers visit the villages of their ancestors near
Odessa, including the former Black Sea, Bessarabian
and Crimean German villages. Since our first tour
in May 1996, we have sponsored at least one trip per
here to learn more about GRHC tours
Books, cookbooks, maps, CDs, videotapes and DVDs can be found at the
GRHC Web site, by calling 701-231-6596 or visiting
us in the NDSU Library. Here, you’ll find books
in both English and German, resources on this important
ethnic group, regional books and a variety of music.
You’ll also find numerous award-winning
documentaries. The GRHC works closely with Prairie
Public Broadcasting, providing financial assistance
and research for acclaimed documentaries such as Schmeckfest:
Food Traditions of the Germans from Russia, and
Crosses, Prairie Voices: Iron Crosses of the Great
here to visit our online Order page
Locate information on German-Russian
food recipes, ethnic customs, folkways and traditions
for events such as weddings, Christmas and New Year’s.
Find an extensive collection of regional,
German and English cookbooks,
all available for purchase at the GRHC.
Use our Recipe
Index Search to search for and locate more than
10,000 recipe titles found in
cookbooks available for purchase from GRHC.
to the GRHC
A financial gift from you will allow
us to continue to preserve a living legacy for future
generations, so they too will know the history and
culture of the region’s Germans from Russia.
All financial donations are greatly appreciated. Personal
checks, debit and credit cards are accepted.
Another way to assist in our efforts
is by donating family histories, oral histories, photographs
and memorabilia. If you would like donate to Special Collections, please fill out this Potential Acquisitions Form and return it to the GRHC (directions are available at the link).
here to view a list of past donations
Michael M. Miller
Director and Bibliographer
Special Collections Associate
Jay “Surrey” Gage
Textiles and Exhibits Curator (part-time)
Collections Manager (part-time)
here to view a complete staff and volunteer list