Excerpts From Kulturtage der Deutschen aus Rußland in Geretsried (Oberbayern) Cultural
Days of the Germans From Russia
in Geretsried (Upper Bavaria)
"Kulturtage der Deutschen aus Rußland in Geretsried (Oberbayern) Cultural." Volk auf dem Weg, July 1999, 7.
Translation of article from German to English by Alice Morgenstern, Munich, Germany.
Geretsried is a community near Munich. After World War II, it played an important historical part in the integration of German refugees from Eastern Europe. In 1950 it was founded as a village by refugees from Czechoslovakia. Presently this town has 20,000 inhabitants. The "Aussiedler", the ethnic Germans, repatriated in Germany from the former Soviet Union, have become increasingly important. Many of them, the "Spätaussiedler", emigrated during recent years.
Thus, it is not surprising that "Cultural Days of the Russian Germans" were celebrated in Geretsried from June 8 - 27, and that the Public Library showed the traveling exhibit: "Germans from Odessa and the Black Sea Region".
On June 8, the opening day of the exhibition, the audience was welcomed by Adolf Fetsch, the Chairman of the Russian German "Landsmannschaft" (an organization for the Russian Germans heritage) in Bavaria, plus their public relations representative Jacob Fischer.
As an honored guest, Michael Miller from the United States made an appearance as he happened to be in Germany on his return tour from a "Journey to the "Home Land", traveling through Kutschurgan district in the Black Sea Region plus Bessarabia. He is known as an avid Researcher of ancestral roots of German immigrants to the United States about a hundred years ago. He felt honored to be present at that event.
"I'm proud to be a Russian German", he commented."But it makes me very sad when I see what hardship is like these days for the Russian Germans in the Odessa region." It is difficult to imagine what he told his listeners about the opportunities of Russian Germans in America. The number of German descendants from Russia to his his home country, the United States of America, was especially concentrated in the state of North Dakota: amounting to 64,000 which is almost 10 percent of a population of 650,000. And there are 3 million Russian Germans who live within a population of 270 million inhabitants in the United States. Professor Miller earned the greatest applause when he assured his audience: "You need not be afraid that these people will come back, they will not!"
Our appreciation is extended to Alice Morgenstern for translation of this article.
Reprinted with permission of Volk auf dem Weg.