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October / November 2008

German-American Journal


Schlaraffia Chicagoana Im März haben wir unser 120. Gründungsfest (Bestehen) gefeiert. Diese innige Gesellschaft von Männern, die sich von Oktober bis Mai – jeweils am Freitag Abend für 2-4 Stunden treffen um die “Deutsche Sprache” für ein paar Stunden Unterhaltung zu gebrauchen. Es war eine schöne Feier und wir hatten viele Einritte (Besuch) von vielen Freunden aus Detroit, Cleveland und Milwaukee. Da wir eine weltweite “Deutsche Männer-Gesellschaft” sind, die zur Zeit ca. 11,000 umfaβt, erhielten wir viele Sendboten (Briefe) zur Gratulation. Ebenfalls hatte ein Schlaraffe (Mitglied) von uns ein 50 jähriges Jubiläum (Mitgliedsschaft) zu feiern. Dazu gab es Anerkennung durch viele Ehrungen von anderen Reychen (LokalGesellschaft). Das Fest fand am 28. III. 2008 statt und wir hoffen auch unser 125. in fünf Jahren hier zu feiern. Die innige Verbundenheit der Reyche wird durch die gegenseitigen Besuche unterstützt. Wir bekommen viele Ritterbesuche (Gäste) während unserer Sippungszeit (Treffen) vom Oktober bis Mai jeden Jahres. Seit die Einwanderung aufgehört hat

geht es uns genau wie vielen anderen Gesellschaften. Die Mitgliedschaft schwindet. Wir suchen Männer, die sich mal für ein paar Stunden vom Alltag erholen wollen und gleichzeitig die “Deutsche Sprache” während dieser Zeit zu benutzen! Die Schlaraffia ist ein “Jungbrunnen”, wir laβen den Alltag vor der Tür unserer Burg (Treffsaal). Unser Motto ist: Freundschaft, Kunst und Humor (& Toleranz). Ausgeschloβen bei uns sind Politik, Religion und Geschäftswesen. “Ein Ferien vom ich” so bezeichnen wir unser Zusammenkommen. Die meisten Frauen unserer Mitglieder freuen sich ebenfalls über diese “Freistunden”, die sie für sich selbst benützen können! Zur Zeit sind wir in der Sommerung, wo wir Stammtische und Picknicks veranstalten. Falls Ihr interessiert seid, meldet Euch bei uns- somit wir uns kennen lernen können!

Your “Hummel Figurines” Are More Valuable Now By: Harald Pitz

The childlike drawings of Sister Maria Innocentia Hummel came to the attention of businessman Franz Goebel in 1934. He decided to mold and paint the same which turned out to be an excellent business decision for him as well as the Frankonian town of Roedental. Already one year later he exhibited his first Hummel figurines at the Leipzig Fair with great success. Brisk business necessitated the expansion and hiring of personnel to satisfy the increased demand. Demand was especially strong from the United States. During World War II the production of these lovely figurines continued on a limited basis. When USA occupation forces entered Bavaria, Goebel saw his chance to restart full production. He received permission to export his products to the USA.  The huge success after the war was unfortunately not well known to Sister Maria Innocentia, for

she passed at an early age of only 37 in 1946. Cause of death was determined as tuberculosis. Demand for Hummels slowed after September 11, 2001 and the company started to reduce the output. At present, 230 employees turn out these charming products. However, by the end of this year production will cease at Roedental for economic reasons. So, ladies and gentlemen, your beautiful figurines will not only remain sought after items but their value is bound to increase. This is what we call “a sign of the times.”

Translation By: Margita Mulsoff

In March we celebrated our 120th anniversary. This close knit group of men, who meet on Friday evenings, from October through May, for about 2 to 4 hours to speak the German language for a little while. It was a nice celebration with a lot of visitors form Detroit, Cleveland and Milwaukee. Since we are a worldwide “German Men’s Club” with approximately 11,000 members, we received many congratulatory letters and good wishes. One of our members also celebrated his 50 year membership. There were many recognitions and awards from other chapters. The celebration took place on March 28, 2008 and we hope to celebrate our 125th anniversary here in five years as well. The close chapter to chapter relationships are supported through member’s visits. Each year we receive many

Columbus, Ohio Chapter Re Established By: Erich Wittmann

On Saturday, August 23rd Chapter 31 was re established as an active Chapter within Region 3. It all started when a group of primarily Austrian and German families in Columbus decided that they needed an active German language school for their children to assure that the family’s native language would not be lost. Various families struggled with the same issues. In their exploration of how to solve the issue of teaching German to their children in a quality way, the idea of a German school took hold. Christ Garcia, former National President and current School Superintendent at Northern suburbs, was informed by a colleague, of the Columbus effort/ struggle. Christa always championing the cause of teaching and maintaining the German language made contact and suggested the Language Education Program be operated as a DANK School. Of course, being a DANK School requires the establishment of a DANK Chapter. After discussing this option

Welcome Columbus Chapter By: Beverly Pochatko

Saturday, August 23rd , was a momentous day at the Columbus Männerchor in the German Village of Columbus, Ohio. It was a pleasant drive for Reg. 3 Rep, Margaret Potocki and I to go to Columbus to welcome our “new” DANK Chapter Columbus. Arriving early, we had the opportunity to lunch at the German Village Café (outstanding sandwiches) and a visit to the Juergen’s Backerei und Kaffee-Haus for a take home treat of fresh baked German Brot und Kirsch Kuchen. Arriving at the German Village, we were pleased to see the number of families that were there. You could feel the excitement in the air that something was

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about to happen. There was no doubt that these folks were committed to join DANK and to start their own German Language School. It made me happy to know that they truly value the heritage of their Heimatland and wanted to continue it here. Thanks to Christa Garcia, a Director on the Schools Committee, they are able to start their school this fall. VP Wittmann, informed of their desire to have a DANK School, set about the reestablishing of the Columbus Chapter, the pre-requisite to start their language program. Through Dr. Zika’s efforts and that of several other families in Columbus and with the support from the National Board (Christa Garcia and Erich Witt-

visitors during our meetings form October to May. Since the immigration from Germany stopped, we are in the same situation as other clubs - the membership is dwindling. We are looking for men who want to get away from the everyday life for a few hours and would also like to use the German language at the same time. Schlaraffia is a “youth fountain”. We leave our everyday problems by the front door of our clubhouse. Our motto is: “Friendship, Art and Humor (along with Tolerance).” We exclude politics, religion and business. “A vacation from me,” that’s how we describe our meetings. Most member’s wives and girlfriends are happy to have some free time as well, which they can use for themselves. Currently we are in the “Sommerung,” where we organize “Stammtische” and picnics. If you are interested, please contact us, so that we can get to know each other.

mann,) the chapter developed a Board of Directors which currently has 45 active members, with plans to expand the membership numbers. Congratulations to their new Executive Board: Dr. Ulricke Zika, President, Gudrun Herzog, Treasurer and Johannes Hofinger, Secretary. The Language school is scheduled to start in late September, and other activities are in the works, including expanding the Chapters membership and social functions. Pictures of the Chapter Board and opening celebrations are reflected in various photos of the August 23rd event by Christa Garcia and Gerald Gillman. Hertzlich Willkommen to the Columbus Board and Chapter Members to our DANK Family!

among the various parties involved, Dr. Ulricke Zika stepped forward and indicated a willingness to re establish a chapter in Columbus. Through her effort and that of several other families in Columbus and with the support from the National Board (Christa Garcia and Erich Wittmann) the chapter developed a Board of Directors and currently has 45 active members with plans to expand the membership numbers. The new leadership in Columbus is represented by Dr. Ulricke Zika, President, Gudrun Herzog, Treasurer and Johannes Hofinger, Secretary. The Chapters first activities revolve around the opening of a DANK School scheduled to start operating some time in late September of 2008 but other activities are in the works including expanding the Chapters membership and social functions. Pictures of the Chapter Board and opening celebrations are reflected in the various pictures of the August 23rd event. Thank you and congratulations to the Columbus Board and Chapter Members. ATTENTION DANK MEMBERS

We are proud to offer you a lapel pin that shows your heritage with the organization’s logo. This attractive pin comes in 2 sizes: Men - Cost $6.00 (Large) Women - Cost $5.00 (Small) You may phone your order by calling our toll free number at: (866) 926-1109 or write/email our National Office at

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German-American Journal | October/November 2008  

Volume 56, Issue 5