The Chicago Foreign Language Press Survey was published in 1942 by the Chicago Public Library Omnibus Project of the Works Progress Administration of Illinois. The purpose of the project was to translate and classify selected news articles that appeared in the foreign language press from 1855 to 1938. The project consists of 120,000 typewritten pages translated from newspapers of 22 different foreign language communities of Chicago.

Read more about this historic project.

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  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- January 19, 1861
    South Side Union Club Organized

    A well attended meeting was held in the Archer Road Hall, the owner of which is Mr. Adam Sohn.

    Mr. John Koch called the meeting to order. Mr. F. Schlund addressed the assembly and pointed out that in serious times like the present it is necessary to forget all local and party differences or interests and to keep in view that which is most important to America, namely, the preservation of the Union.

    "History teaches us that victories have been won only by concentrating the united efforts of patriots upon one and the same object," declared Mr. Schlund. "Thus Germany once accomplished great things, and only thus did Garibaldi recently attain the unity of Italy.

    "The Union of our adopted country will also be preserved if all men, regardless of their political, social, or religious affiliations, unite in defending our 2United States."

    He recommended that the resolutions accepted January 14, at the organization of a Union Club at the Metropolitan Hall, be adopted by those present as fundamental paragraphs of the constitution of a club. A committee was then elected to frame a constitution and to submit it to prospective members for adoption.

    The report of the committee was accepted after some minor details had been altered.

    Then the constitution of the Union Club of the South Side was submitted for signatures, and the following persons were elected officers: F. Schlund, president; John F. Koch, secretary; Ludwig Bachale, treasurer.....

    Adjournment followed.

    A well attended meeting was held in the Archer Road Hall, the owner of which is Mr. Adam Sohn. Mr. John Koch called the meeting to order. Mr. F. Schlund ...

    German
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  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- January 23, 1861
    Resolutions of the Seward Club of the Seventh Ward

    The following resolutions were adopted by the Seward Club in a meeting which Was held Saturday evening:

    Whereas, We American citizens, members of the Seward Club will do all in our power to help maintain the unity and concord of the United States, in view of the difficult and dangerous situation in which our adopted fatherland now finds itself, and

    whereas, We offer to the just Government of the United States our assistance and every means at our disposal; for since the Democrats of Illinois blame the Republicans for the present disturbances in the country, and have openly and emphatically stated that they will place every possible obstacle in the way of the Republican Administration; therefore be it

    Resolved, That we shall fearlessly oppose the Democratic party and shall not 2permit ourselves to be intimidated in any way or by any means,

    That we appeal to all citizens of German descent to unite with us and aid in maintaining our constitutional rights,

    That these resolutions shall be published in all local newspapers.

    H. Hett, President,

    G. Scheef, Secretary.

    The following resolutions were adopted by the Seward Club in a meeting which Was held Saturday evening: Whereas, We American citizens, members of the Seward Club will do all in ...

    German
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  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- February 19, 1861
    Seventh Ward Seward Club

    The following resolutions were unanimously adopted in a meeting which the Seventh Ward Club and the Seward Club held Saturday evening, February 16, 1861.

    Whereas, Several Chicago meat packers and grain merchants are doing everything they possibly can during the current week to support the compromisers in the Senate and the House of Representatives, by stating that nineteen twentieths of the Republicans of Chicago are in favor of compromise; therefore be it

    Resolved, That we consider honesty to be a prime virtue in business as well as in politics, and that we deem it a great injustice that those gentlemen want to barter free territories to slavery, and that they approve of such bartering because now they probably are not able to buy as much pork and flour as they were wont; further

    2

    That those gentlemen are guilty of an infamous lie when they claim that they represent nineteen twentieths of the Republican party of Chicago; for in the Seventh Ward alone there are more than twelve hundred Germans who are affiliated with the Republican party, and thus far we have not heard of a single one among them who approves of such an ignominious compromise as the Kellogg Compromise; further

    That we are firmly resolved to a bide by the Chicago platform and to oppose any and every compromise which cedes even an inch of free territory to slavery, and will hand over those of our representatives who barter free territories to slavery to the scorn and contempt of the present and future generations.

    The gentlemen speak of a dictatorship which the Tribune is trying to exercise over them, but to which they will not submit. And they wax angry, very angry, indeed. Poor Tribune, you had better tremble--for didn't you adhere to and defend the principles of the Republican Party?

    3

    However, the gentlemen referred to apparently do not know that the Rebels have insulted our flag and stolen our forts, our ships, our money, and our weapons--that they have heaped shame upon our flag and humiliated it in the sight of the world; these acts seem to be of no consequence to these men whose sole honor and distinction seems to consist of making money. The Southerners have long had the privilege of making and ridiculing the North, of tarring and feathering the opponents of slavery, and as a reward for such acts we are to donate the free territories to them; for they are our dear, dear brothers of the South! Do you not notice a trace of dictatorship in their conduct? Therefore, be it further

    Resolved, That we declare the proposed compromise of Mr. Kellogg treason to the Republican party and openly comdemn it.

    In conclusion we would say that these resolutions will be published in the English language and German language newspapers, and a copy will be sent to each of our congressmen. We ask all German Republican clubs of Chicago 4to voice their opinions on this matter.

    H. Hett, President; C. Scheef, Secretary; Seward Club Philipp Wetzel, President; E. Kaeseburg, Secretary; Seventh Ward Club

    The following resolutions were unanimously adopted in a meeting which the Seventh Ward Club and the Seward Club held Saturday evening, February 16, 1861. Whereas, Several Chicago meat packers and ...

    German
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  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- February 27, 1861
    Resolutions of the Seward Club

    The following resolutions were passed in a meeting held by the Seward Club, February 23, 1861:

    Whereas, An amendment to the present charter of the city of Chicago was adopted by the Illinois State Legislature at Springfield, abolishing the Board of Sewers, Streets, and Water, and replacing it with a Board of Public Works consisting of three commissioners who are to be elected by the voters of Chicago next spring; therefore be it

    Resolved, That we, as German-Republican citizens of the North Side, consider it necessary that a citizen of German descent be elected to this Board to represent the interest of Germans and to protect the rights and the welfare of the working class; further

    That we will exert our influence only in behalf of a man who possesses the necessary qualifications and ability; further 2That we appeal to all German-Republican clubs of the city to co-operate with us in our endeavors to gain our objective when the next municipal election is held.

    The following resolutions were passed in a meeting held by the Seward Club, February 23, 1861: Whereas, An amendment to the present charter of the city of Chicago was adopted ...

    German
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  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- October 31, 1861
    A German on the Independent People's Ticket (Editorial)

    Judge Eustace rejected the nomination of a delegate to the Constitutional Convention because the man was not eligible. The nomination was then offered to Caspar Butz. When he declined the honor, Mr. John Henry Muehlke was nominated. Neither Mr. Muehlke nor Mr. Butz, sought the nomination, but were requested to serve their German fellow citizens in the very important Constitutional Convention; and we sincerely hope that Mr. Muehlke will accept the responsibility. There can be no doubt that a German should be a member of this Convention in which a constitution is to be drawn up for the purpose of protecting the rights of not only the Germans, but of all citizens by adoption, when their civil or political interests are at issue, or to preserve the interests of the laboring classes and the businessmen when proposals regarding the all important bank-question are made.

    2

    Mr. Muehlke is not a politician, but an able business-man, and we are convinced that the interests of our German populace may be confidentially placed in his hands. We have often heard that the people do not want to have anything to do with politicians, and we are happy to note that the men who propose nominations chose a business-man. In accepting an office which he did not ask for but which was offered to him, Mr. Muehlke will prove that Germans are not as much bent on obtaining offices, as on preserving their rights and that there are business-men among them who are willing to sacrifice time and money, when the interests of their countrymen demand it.

    Judge Eustace rejected the nomination of a delegate to the Constitutional Convention because the man was not eligible. The nomination was then offered to Caspar Butz. When he declined the ...

    German
    I F 3, I F 4, I F 1
  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- November 05, 1861
    To the Voters of the 57th District by Johann Heinrich Muehlke

    Although I did not seek the honorable position of delegate to the Constitutional Convention, I deem it my duty to accept the candidacy, since, to my knowledge, no other German has been placed in nomination in any part of this state, and I consider it necessary that the Germans be represented in this all important body which is to establish the fundamental principles of the new constitution.

    With reference to the position which I shall assume, I would like to say that I consider gold and silver to be the best and only reliable mediums of exchange; that I am convinced that too high salaries paid to public officials and too long terms of office are the basic causes of corruption; that the office of County Clerk should be separate from the office of Clerk of Probate Court, and the office of Recorder separate from the office of Clerk of the 2Circuit Court; that the authority to force local laws upon the people of a city should be taken from the state legislature; and that the so-called "Black Laws" should be deleted from the statutes.

    If I am elected, I shall endeavor to embody these principles in the contemplated new constitution, and to protect the civil and political rights of all citizens by adoption.

    Although I did not seek the honorable position of delegate to the Constitutional Convention, I deem it my duty to accept the candidacy, since, to my knowledge, no other German ...

    German
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  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- November 05, 1861
    The Resolutions of the Union Meeting (Editorial)

    Even though the union meeting held at Bryan's Hall has been productive of no good whatever, every freedom-loving German is honor-bound to subscribe to the resolutions which were passed. These resolutions contain the principles that General John Fremont laid down in his proclamation. They have caused proslavery people much pain, and the Democratic committee has publicly denounced them and declared that no Democrat is obligated to support candidates who do not openly disavow these resolutions.

    These pro-slavers are led by W. C. Goudy, a candidate for the constitutional convention, and he did everything he possibly could to prevent the adoption of these resolutions. What liberal-minded German will vote for a pro-slavery man while our soldiers are shedding their blood and dying on the battlefields to overthrow the accursed slave barons? Not one.

    2

    Therefore, we call upon all citizens of German descent to vote for Johann Heinrich Muehlke and Elliott Anthony:

    Even though the union meeting held at Bryan's Hall has been productive of no good whatever, every freedom-loving German is honor-bound to subscribe to the resolutions which were passed. These ...

    German
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  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- January 14, 1862
    [Can't Germans Read?]

    By a single vote the proposal to publish the proceedings of the Constitutional Convention in the German language was rejected.

    Mr. Muehlke, a Chicago delegate, proposed that the minutes of the Convention be published also in the German language, and recommended that the Illinois Staats-Zeitung be used as the medium of publication.

    Mr. Kopfli, Democratic delegate from Highland, supported the efforts of Mr. Muehlke, and the proposal would have been adopted, if several delegates who favored it had not been absent when the vote was taken. Mr. Fuller, also a Chicago delegate supported the proposal.

    It would not have been more than right to give German citizens an opportunity to read the proceedings of the Convention in the German language, for then they would be able to vote more intelligently when the new Constitution is 2submitted to the people for acceptance or rejection. No doubt Mr. Muehlke was very much encouraged when his first endeavors in behalf of a cause which normally would be frustrated by the predjudice of native Americans, were so nearly successful; and it is a great credit to those Democrats who cast aside all party differences and voted in favor of so strong an opposition organ as the Illinois Staats-Zeitung; although they were probably influenced by the fact that this paper has the largest circulation of any German newspaper in the City.

    By a single vote the proposal to publish the proceedings of the Constitutional Convention in the German language was rejected. Mr. Muehlke, a Chicago delegate, proposed that the minutes of ...

    German
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  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- February 10, 1862
    The Rights of Immigrants at the Constiutional Convention (Editorial)

    During the last campaign we insisted that the Germans be represented in the Constitutional Convention of the State of Illinois; we emphasized that our need for recognition was the only reason for our recommendation for a suitable candidate to be present at the meeting at Kingsbury Hall, and we stated that we were not in the least interested in conferring a well-paying county office to a mere political job chaser. It was our intention to protect our rights to vote, for a change in the Constitution might involve a restriction or an expansion of this right. And we note from the official report on the proceedings of the Convention (January 29) that our German delegate, Mr. John Henry Muehlke, made the following proposal, which was adopted:

    Resolved, That the Committee on Elections and Franchise consider the feasibility of granting the right to vote to all foreign-born residents of this state who volunteered to serve in the army or navy during the present Rebellion and who 2have been honorably discharged, or who will serve in the armed forces of the Union during this War and receive an honorable dismissal, if such persons are not disqualified for any reason save that they are not citizens of the United States.

    From the very beginning of the campaign we did not hesitate to give Mr. Muehlke our full support; and as far as we have been able to follow his activity to date, we do not doubt that not only the Germans of Chicago, but also of the whole state will look upon their choice with great satisfaction.

    During the last campaign we insisted that the Germans be represented in the Constitutional Convention of the State of Illinois; we emphasized that our need for recognition was the only ...

    German
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  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- March 06, 1862
    Major General Franz Sigel! (Editorial)

    Since the Tuesday afternoon dispatches did not confirm the news that Franz Sigel had been appointed Major General, we sent the following telegram to our Congressman, Isaac N. Arnold:

    "We published your dispatch about the appointment of Franz Sigel as Major General in an extra edition. The dispatches of the Journal do not confirm the report. Please advise us."

    In answer to the above we received the following telegram from Mr. Arnold:

    "Sigel was appointed Major General and the Senate confirmed the appointment."

    And yesterday we received the following letter which Mr. Arnold wrote on 2Monday:

    "I have just sent you a telegram stating that your favorite, heroic Franz Sigel, is now Major General Sigel. No appointment could give me more pleasure than this one. Sigel certainly deserved it as recognition of his services. Our Germans have also merited this recognition of their patriotic and noble devotion to the cause of the Union. I congratulate you!

    "Yourstruly,

    "Isaac N. Arnold."

    So Sigel is really a Major General; however it required many a hard struggle to obtain this well earned distinction for him. His deeds and those of his fellow Americans of German descent were his best and most effective intercessors. On the other hand, powerful and influential persons rose up against him.

    3

    The nativists, especially the military nativists, seem to have actually conspired against him to prevent his appointment. No ways and means were to low nor too infamous for their purposes, and even a few days before his promotion they circulated unfavorable reports about him in Government circles at Washington. We cite this one for example: In order to deprive him of his good reputation as a European General, they spread the rumor that the General Sigel who led the Bavarian Revolutionary Army is not the Sigel who is now in America, but an uncle of the latter. This is but one of many false rumors which were disseminated. And the tactlessness of some of Sigel's friends, who published confidential private conversations and private letters of the Major General, in which he frankly voiced his opinion of his superiors, even the President, played into the hands of his enemies.

    These obstacles never would have been removed by resolutions of German mass meetings or through the efforts of German deputations. There was only one way to fight these enemies successfully, only one way to enforce Sigel's claims to promotion: by having liberal minded and fair minded congressmen 4exert their influence upon the President.

    The entire course of the Sigel matter shows that the procedure followed by the Illinois Staats-Zeitung was the only correct one. Representatives I.N. Arnold, Washburne, and Lovejoy of Illinois, and Representative Ashley of Ohio very willingly complied with our request that they intercede with the President in Sigel's behalf. Mr. Arnold was in constant correspondence with us in order to obtain the necessary information to refute the charges which were made against Sigel in Washington. These Representatives deserve the eternal gratitude of all German-Americans. The President, too, has earned our thanks for not permitting himself to be misled by nativistic misrepresentations, and for being just to the Germans and to their heroic champion.

    And since it was so difficult to win this triumph of Sigel, it must be considered a great and enduring triumph of Germanism over Nativism. It will create a very favorable impression in Germany; and the Homestead Act and the repeal of the Massachussetts Amendment will prove to the Germans in 5the old country that the great principle of equality which was embodied in the Chicago Platform on demand of the Germans of this city, is a living and vitalizing principle, and that it will be strengthened and expanded by the present War, no matter whether hostilities continue for a long time, or whether they are terminated in a short while.

    Since the Tuesday afternoon dispatches did not confirm the news that Franz Sigel had been appointed Major General, we sent the following telegram to our Congressman, Isaac N. Arnold: "We ...

    German
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