Posted on Fri, 04/28/2023 - 02:48pm

New Online Exhibit

We pleased to announce a new online exhibit, Building Life and Home on the Prairie, curated by Wyatt Atchley, GRHC Graduate Assistant. The exhibit showcases the material and architectural culture of early German-Russian settlers in North Dakota and provides a unique opportunity for visitors to learn about their heritage and history.

"Image of a homestead in Glen Ullin, ND. Circa 1970s."Building Life and Home on the Prairie takes visitors on a journey through the fascinating story of German-Russian immigrants who fled their homeland due to poverty, famine, and the destruction of their culture under the Russian government. By the end of the 19th century, over 60,000 Germans from Russia had immigrated to North Dakota, claiming millions of acres of fertile soil under the Homestead Act of 1862. The exhibit explores the cultural techniques employed by these homesteaders to build homes and sustain their heritage in a new place.

The online exhibit offers an excellent opportunity for visitors to celebrate the unique heritage of German-Russians and their significant role in the history of North Dakota and the Northern Plains. It includes expansive information, audio clips from oral history interviews, photographs, and interactive elements.

We invite you to explore this exhibit and hope you gain a greater appreciation for the resilience and resourcefulness of these immigrants who created a new home and a new life for themselves and their families on the prairie.

In addition to this online exhibit, a traveling exhibit by the same name will make its way around North Dakota. The exhibit is currently on display at St. Paul’s Newman Center in Fargo, ND, until May 18. Beginning in June 2023, you can view the traveling exhibition in Rugby and Medora.

Wyatt Atchley's work on these exhibits is a strong example of the hands-on experiences that are offered at NDSU. The skills he gained while curating these exhibits and collaborating with statewide partners will have a major impact on his career prospects when he completes his degree in May 2023.

The Germans from Russia Heritage Collection's mission is to share and preserve the history and culture of the Germans from Russia in North Dakota and the Northern Plains. North Dakota State University is student focused and committed to its land-grant mission.