Nodak "Germans From Russia" Convention
Draws Interest of Many
Straub, Theodore. "Nodak "Germans From Russia" Convention Draws Interest of Many." Northwest Blade, 30 September 1971, 1-6.
Mr. and Mrs. Theodore Straub attended the 1st Annual Convention
of the year old organization of the North Dakota Historical Society
of Germans from Russia in Bismarck, No. Dak., during September 24-26.
The Society is headed by Judge Ray R. Friedrich, Rugby, N. Dak.
The secretary is Mrs. Walter Essig, Denhoff, N. Dak., and the treasurer
is Rev. Wm. H. Simpfenderfer, Bismarck, N. Dak.
The purpose of the organization is to preserve the heritage of
the German-Russians who came to the Dakotas penniless, but through
extreme effort and sacrifices, beginning 10 years ago, prospered
and aided in converting the barren prairies into a pleasant place
The Society will encourage the teaching of conversational German
in schools, so that the young people may be benefitted in communicating
with German speaking people. Mention was made that regardless of
the dialect that is known to the individual, it's use should be
exercised freely and spoken regardless of a possible high German
Mrs. Armund Bauer, formerly of Zeeland, is the Societies Genealogist
and had on display various family trees and stress will be used
to encourage all families to trace and record their forefathers.
The plan for a state Archive pictures, records and materials is
in progress and all books, relating to the German-Russians received
will be filed for the purpose of recording as much as possible history
pertaining to the people who migrated from Germany to Russia and
then in great numbers to the United States.
On the lighter side of the convention there was a Bier-Stube, an
opportunity for Maistub. Also there was a Tanz, to the music of
a Little German Band.
In an address to the Convention, Kurt Peters, Public Relations
Director for Montana Dakota Utilities Co. of Bismarck, asked that
the Society not only look backwards in preserving the history and
customs of their forefathers, but also look forward, working and
striving toward the preservation of our democratic way of life in
our United States of America. For this is the reason and place for
their coming. The German-Russians wished to live as individuals,
prosper up to their capabilities, choose their faith, their politics,
and that their children might also choose their future.
Dr. Karl Stumpp of Germany, an authority on the German-Russians,
was voted to the office of Honorary President of the North Dakota
Historical Society of Germans from Russia following the tremendous
impact he made in behalf of these people during his visit to North
Dakota this past summer. Dr. Karl Stumpp also appeared in Eureka
and spoke to a large audience in the school auditorium.
On Sunday morning a sacred Memorial Service was held in the Bismarck
Auditorium and a tribute was paid to those courageous pioneers who
face difficulties with a daring patience and since have gone to
The North Dakota organization presently has a membership of approximately
250 and will welcome the membership of any interested people, regardless
of location. The national group was founded at Greeley, Colo., in
1968, and already has a membership of more than 1,300
in 38 states and five Canadian provinces.
Reprinted with permission of The Northwest Blade.