In Touch with Prairie Living
By Michael M. Miller
Germans from Russia Heritage Collection
North Dakota State University Libraries, Fargo
September on the Dakota prairies marks the beginning of a new school year. We are pleased to have student employees working with various GRHC projects including web work, processing of donated archival collections and scanning of images.
Bob Dambach, director of television at Prairie Public Broadcasting, and I were deeply impressed and appreciative of the positive response at the Germans from Russia Heritage Society Convention in July at Bismarck for the premiere of new television documentary, “At Home in Russia, At Home on the Prairie.” There were many positive comments for this seventh documentary of the Germans from Russia Series. The program will premiere on Prairie Public Television on Wednesday, October 17 at 7 p.m. (CDT) and will broadcast on other PBS stations in 2013. To secure this new documentary, contact the GRHC or go to http://library.ndsu.edu/grhc/order/tapes/kutschurgan.html.
We look forward to attending the 87th Annual Sauerkraut Day in Wishek, N.D., Wednesday, October 10. There will be a free meal from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Wishek Civic Center including entertainment with the Wishek High School band and choir. The GRHC and the Tri-County Tourism Alliance will have displays at the Wishek Armory with the Craft Fair from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Acacia Jonas Stuckle, GRHC special collections associate, and I will attend working at the display tables with Carmen Rath-Wald, Logan County Extension Agent, Napoleon, N.D., and president of the Tri-County Tourism Alliance. Come join us in Wishek for this festive event.
The GRHC staff has completed the processing and finding aids for collections donated by individual or families. This detailed processing work is done by two NDSU public history majors and Pam Burkhardt, GRHC collections’ manager. Please contact me to identify other historical collections, photographs and documents for preservation for donations to the GRHC Archives.
The Edward and Christina Munsch Berreth Collection donated by Dale Berreth contains 104 photographs of relatives and acquaintances of the Munch and Berreth family, dating from 1889 to 1915. Some of the names of persons include Karl Munsch, Anna and Frieda Mebius, Katy Boettcher, John Pfaul, Henry Berreth, Eva Berreth, Jack Wetzel, Christ and Jack Bentz and Paul Berreth, Carl Wacker, Anna Munsch Haas, Ella Bohley, Art and Adeline Orth, Christ Kauk, Eva and Christina Fehrs, Carl Miller, Martha Beck, Christ Moser, Andrew Fisher, Philip Nimele and Pastor Figer. Christina Munch’s father, Andreas Munsch, was born in 1843 in Neu Danzig, South Russia. He married his first wife Louisa Berreth born in 1946 at Worms, Beresan District, South Russia.
They immigrated to the USA in 1884. Louisa died in 1889 near Zeeland, N.D. Andreas then married Christina Elizabeth Moser in 1889. They gave birth to three children, one of them, Christina Munsch, was born in 1890 at Campbell County, S.D. Edward Berreth was born at Menno, S.D. in 1888. In 1911, Edward Berreth married Christina Munsch and lived on Edward’s parent homestead near Artas, S.D. They had 13 children, nine of which survived into adulthood. Christina passed away in 1979 in Eureka, S.D.
The Josef Tuchscherer Collection contains information relating to a film completed at a German exile camp in 1940, photocopied images of portraits of individuals many identified, and a family history book. The film taken in December, 1940, is considered to be a very rare visual documentation of the movement of the people of Dobrudscha’s exile back to Germany.
The Anton and Agatha Tuchscherer family were from Colelia, Dobrudscha, Romania, who were transplanted to Poland. The family was separated when Anton was conscripted into the Germany Army. Agatha Tuchscherer struggled to survive during this period, starving and working menial jobs for no pay for a family lucky enough to have meager room and board for the young family with Josef and Maria.
After the end of WWII, Anton returned home and the family eventually settled in Bienfait, Saskatchewan. In September 2011, Josef Tuchscherer and his sister Maria traveled from Regina to the NDSU campus to complete videotape interviews and to share their life stories.
For further information about the Friends of the GRHC, the 19th Journey to the Homeland Tour to Odessa, Ukraine and Stuttgart, Germany (May 16-26, 2013), and donations to the GRHC (such as family histories), contact Michael M. Miller, The Libraries, NDSU Dept. #2080, PO Box 6050, Fargo, ND 58108-6050 (Telephone: 701-231-8416’; Email: Michael.Miller@ndsu.edu; the GRHC website: www.ndsu.edu/grhc).
September 2012 column for North Dakota and South Dakota newspapers.