of Father Anthony Kopp
By Father Anthony Kopp
Germans from Russia Heritage Collection, North Dakota State University
Libraries, Fargo, ND, 1999, softcover, 145 pages, English language.
The Germans from Russia Heritage Collection is pleased to announce
publication of Memoirs of Father Anthony Kopp. The original
manuscript of Father Anthony is housed in the archives of the Assumption
Abbey Library, Richardton, ND. Our appreciation to Jolenta Fischer
Masterson, Sequim, WA, a native of Strasburg, ND, who worked closely
in the completion of this valuable addition to the literature of
North Dakota's heritage and history. The book is a literate story
of his German-Russian youth and his life in North Dakota capturing
the unique dialectal German speech as he himself directly translated
into English text.
Father Kopp was born on December 11, 1891, in Krasna, Bessarabia.
Anthony Kopp attended elementary schools near Harvey, ND. He completed
high school, college and theological studies at Assumption Abbey,
Richardton, ND. Father Kopp finished his seminary studies at St.
Paul Seminary, St. Paul, MN. He was ordained a priest for the Diocese
of Bismarck, ND, on June 21, 1917, at St. Mary's Catholic Church,
Father Kopp served five parishes in the Bismarck diocese including
Rosebud, Odense, Mott, Bowbells and Foxholm. He was the pastor of
St. Mary's Catholic Church at Foxholm from 1933 to 1962. Father
Kopp died at Garrison, ND, on July 10, 1964. He is buried at Assumption
Abbey Cemetery, Richardton, ND.
Jolenta Fischer Masterson writes in the Foreword: "Several years
ago, I received a copy of the Memoirs of Father Anthony Kopp.
The document was a bit hard to read, because Father Anthony thought
in German and wrote in English. He started telling his life story
in 1964 while he was Chaplain at the Garrison Hospital in Garrison,
ND. The typewriter that he used was certainly not new in 1964; many
of the letters were blurred and difficult to read.
Father Anthony's phrasing was so reminiscent of the language familiar
to those of German-Russian descent. We very likely spoke that way
ourselves as we were growing up in North Dakota. When he spoke of
Father Bernard Strassmeier, I remembered that I had met that venerable
old priest when I was eight years old.
The opportunity to work with Father Anthony's autobiography has
been a privilege for me. I have learned much about the life and
time of my grandparents and their family and relatives during their
early years in this country. I hope that my efforts will help preserve
their precious story."
|Father Anthony Kopp, Foxholm,
North Dakota, circa 1950.
||John Kopp Sr. and Carolina Pastler family.
Back row, left to right: Pius, Anthony, Melchoir, Angela; front
row, left to right: John Jr., John Sr., Celestina, and Carolina,
Harvey, North Dakota, circa 1902.
||Anthony Kopp, Harvey, North
Dakota, age 11.
Review of the book by Father Jonathan Fischer
Review of the book by Mary Lynn Axtman
Review of the book by Father Leonard Eckroth
Review of the book by Vi Kruckenberg Schielke
Review of the book by Paulette Tobin
Review of the book by Jo Ann Winistorfer