In Touch with Prairie Living
By Michael M. Miller
Germans from Russia Heritage Collection
North Dakota State University Libraries, Fargo
The Germans from Russia Heritage Collection (GRHC) at the NDSU
Libraries in Fargo reaches out to prairie families and former Dakotans.
In various ways, it affirms the heritage of Germans from Russia
as an important part of the northern plains culture.
In March, Prairie Public will broadcast a fascinating new series
of local oral histories. "Growing Up German Russian: A Radio
Series" is a collection of narratives gleaning from the oral
histories collection of the Dakota Memories Oral History Project.
The 3-6 minute narratives will air in the "Dakota Datebook"
time slot each Monday and Friday at 8:35 a.m., 3:50 p.m., 6:30 p.m.
and 7:50 p.m. beginning in March and continuing through April. This
radio series will also be available on the Web at www.prairiepublic.org/radio.
Jessica Clark, project coordinator, explained that these interviews
are designed to preserve the precious history and heritage of Germans
from Russia on the Northern Plains. "These narrators contain
vivid childhood memories - memories of learning to drive a tractor,
witnessing a prairie fire, adopting a little colt, listening to
German funeral songs, and growing up on the prairie during the Dirty
Thirties," Clark said.
The radio series is part of a larger project that will record numerous
narratives for study and archiving. the project is sponsored by
Prairie Public, the Germans from Russia Heritage Collection, and
the North Dakota State University Libraries. Partial funding for
this series was provided by the North Dakota Humanities Council.
This series will feature the following narrators: Adam Boschee,
West Fargo; Alice Ruth (Miller) Buck, Streeter; Marvin L. Hartmann,
Fargo; Marvin G. Fiechtner, Wishek; ElRoy and Ruth (Dockter) Fischer,
Gackle; Emil E. Schaffer, Gackle; and James Vetter, Fargo.
To find the Prairie Public radio frequency in your area, visit www.prairiepublic.org/radio
or call 800-359-6900. The North Dakota Humanities Council, Prairie
Public, and GRHC have provided funding for Growing Up German Russian:
A Radio Series. A CD version of this series will be available for
purchase later this year.
The Dakota Memories Oral History Project will continue this year
(2007), conducting interviews in North Dakota. For more information,
visit our website at library.ndsu.edu/grhc/dakotamemories/index.html.
To contact Jessica Clark (Project Coordinator) call 701-231-8419
or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are making final plans for the 13th Journey to the Homeland Tour
to Odessa, Ukraine and Stuttgart & Wiesbaden, Germany for May
17-28, 2007. The tour includes four days in Odessa visiting the
former German villages, and six days in southern Germany. Tour members
will attend the large Germans from Russia gathering called the Russlanddeutschen
Bundestreffen, at Wiesbaden on May 26. The dates for the 2008 tour
will be May 20-30. Tour members from Alberta, California, Florida,
Hawaii, Michigan, Montana, North Dakota and Washington will be visiting
their ancestral German villages: Rosental (Crimea); Bergdorf, Glueckstal,
Kassel, Klein Neudorf, Marienberg & Neudorf (Glueckstal District);
Fruedental, Gueldendorf & Hoffnungstal (Odessa District); Lichtenfeld
& Worms (Beresan District); Arzis, Borodino, Eigenheim, Kloetstitz,
Mannsburg, Plotzk & Tarutino (Bessarabia). Please contact me
for further information and registration for the 2007 or 2008 tours.
GRHC has reprinted and has available an outstanding cookbooks: “Favorite
Recipes: Lehr, ND” (1961);“Favorite Recipes: Lehr Thimble
Bee, Lehr, ND” (1973); "Grace Baptist Church Jubilee
Cookbook: Lehr, ND” (1979); “Grace Lutheran Church Cookbook:
Lehr, ND” (1983); “Kulm, ND Centennial Cookook”
(1992); "What's Cookin'? in Lehr, North Dakota, King Homemakers
Club” (1967); and “What’s Cookin’? in Wishek,
North Dakota” (1979). For more information, contact GRHC.
The award-winning DVD documentaries: "Germans from Russia Food
Pantry"; "Heaven Is Our Homeland"; "We'll Meet
Again in Heaven; "The Germans from Russia: Children of the
Steppe, Children of the Prairie" & "Prairie Crosses,
Prairie Voices: Iron Crosses of the Great Plains" are available.
The California Germans from Russia Heritage Fest is April 14, 2007,
Los Angeles Lutheran High School, Sylmar, California. The American
Historical Society of Germans from Russia Convention is June 11-16,
2007, Holiday Inn, Hays, KS (www.ahsgr.org); the Germans from Russia
Heritage Society Convention is July 19-22, 2007, Ramkota Hotel,
Bismarck, ND (www.grhs.org).
For further information about Germans from Russia heritage, Dakota
Memories Oral History Project, donations to GRHC including books,
events, documentaries, CDs, DVDs, cookbooks and the tours, contact
Michael M. Miller, NDSU Libraries, PO Box 5599, Fargo, ND 58105-5599
(Tel: 701-231-8416; E-mail: email@example.com; GRHC website:
March, 2007 column for North Dakota and South Dakota