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Immigration History Research Center

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Czech & Slovak American Studies Fund

Ensuring the Future of the IHRC's Ethnic Collections

In partnership with the Czech and Slovak American Communities, the Immigration History Research Center has established an endowment devoted to the preservation and promotion of Czech and Slovak American history.

Czech American  collection description

Slovak American  collection description

Goals to establish the fund

The Immigration History Research Center (IHRC), University of Minnesota, is dedicated to fostering research on and understanding of the history of American immigration.  Among the IHRC's vast holdings of printed and archival materials is a substantial body of documentation on Czech and Slovak American experiences.  Among its most important collections are the archives of the American Fund for Czechoslovak Refugees, the Czechoslovak Society of Arts & Sciences, and the papers of the Reverend Kenneth Dexter Miller, friend and mentor to Czechs and Slovaks in Europe and America.

The Czech American Collection

...includes an extensive number of books, pamphlets, newspapers, serials, and manuscript collections relating to the history of Czech settlements in the U.S.  Included are over 1,200 printed volumes,  produced by, for, and about Czech immigrants and their descendants.  The collection also includes files of approximately 30 newspaper and 165 serial titles ranging in dates from the 1860s to the present.  Key titles include Slavie (c.1861-1918), Novy Svet (The New World: 1966-present), Hlasatel (Bohemian Herald; c.1902-12, 1941-79) Amerikan Sokol (c.1898-1981), Amerikan Narodni Kalendar (The American National Calendar; c.1897-1957), Hospodar (Farmer; c.1894-1982), Promeny (Metamorphosis, 1964-1991) and Svedectvi (Testimony, 1956-1991).  Manuscript/archival material comprises approximately 300 linear feet of documents from Czech American organizations and individuals.  Among these collections are the records of the Czech American Dramatic Society of Chicago, and the Freeborn County (Minnesota) lodge of the Zapadni Cesko-Bratrska Jednota as well as the papers of author Marion Bergman, sociologist Joseph Roucek, radio commentator Miloslav Rechcigl, Sr., and St. Paul (Minnesota) community leaders, Joseph Pavlicek, Jan Pesek and Henry Jansen.

The Slovak American Collection

...consists of approximately 1000 books and pamphlets, 26 newspaper titles, 154 serial titles, and 375 linear feet of manuscript material.  Among the books are various publications by Slovak individuals and organizations on topics such as religion, education, literature, art, music, folklore, the ethnic press and political activity.  Extensive files exist for several major Slovak American periodicals, including Amerikansko Slovenske Noviny (American Slovak News; 1893-1904), Narodne Noviny (National News; 1901-41), Jednota (The Union; 1893-1940, 1965-present), Slovak v Amerike (Slovak American; 1894-1938, c.1951-present), Slovensky Hlasnik (later titled United Lutheran; 1908-75), Narodny Kalendar (The People's Calendar; c.1899-present), and Svedok (The Witness; c.1910-82).

The IHRC holds exceptionally rich archival collections on Slovak fraternal organizations, including the records of the National Slovak Society and the First Catholic Slovak Union along with the papers of former FCSU president Adam Podkrivacky.  Among the other manuscript collections are records of Catholic parishes in Minneapolis (Minnesota), Streator (Illinois) and Cleveland (Ohio) as well as the papers of Lutheran minister Rev. Andrew Rolik.

Your help is needed

Because of the unique value of this documentation, used by researchers from around the world, its care and development require the ongoing commitment of knowledgeable staff.  The Czech and Slovak American Studies Fund will provide staff support, research awards, and outreach services to the Czech and Slovak American communities. 

As a major national initiative, the creation of the Czech and Slovak American Studies Fund will raise public consciousness and understanding of Czech and Slovak histories and culture and constitute an  investment in the future of research and scholarship pertaining to Czech and Slovak Americans.

Please consider an online donation today

Follow the University of Minnesota Foundation link to make an online gift through the University of Minnesota Foundation's secure site. Type in the designation "IHRC: Czech and Slovak American Studies Fund (Fund 7679)" in order to have your gift directed to this particular fund. You may also submit a pledge through the same Web page.