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.

Filter by Date

  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- January 08, 1861
    The Union Meeting in Bryan Hall (Editorial)

    Many Republicans believed that a demonstration should be held for the Union and for the enforcement of the law, and in order to make this demonstration very impressive, they called all Chicago citizens, irrespective of party affiliation, to a meeting at Bryan Hall. The proposed resolutions were to be presented to the world as the sentiments of all the people in Chicago. There was nothing objectionable about that. However, the Republicans committed the error of making concessions to the Democrats in the interest of unity. Of course the Committee on Resolutions would not admit this, but the statement made by Democratic Chairman S. S. Hayes shortly before the vote was taken, to the effect that the words "great concessions" must be retained if he and the other Democrats were to approve of the resolutions, proves conclusively that the objectionable expression was merely to serve as a loophole by which the Democrats intended to evade "enforcing the law at any price, and 2by the entire power of the nation".

    We admit that the words of the last resolution to the effect that the men of all political parties in both sections of the country should be ready to make great concessions in order to restore harmony between the various sections of the country are, to say the least, ambiguous, and can easily be misinterpreted.

    J. N. Arnold, who was elected a member of Congress from this district, took note of the strong Republican opposition to the above passage, and he advised that the objectionable part be omitted.

    However, he was not insistent enough, and the President was careful not to regard Mr. Arnold's advice as an amendment, or to inquire whether this advice was meant to be an attempt to improve upon the report of the Committee.

    The result was that the desired unanimity was not attained, and that the report of the Committee was adopted by a small majority. There is some doubt 3that a majority really voted in favor of adoption, but the President insisted upon exercising his authority and declared that the proposed resolutions had been accepted.

    The report of the Committee was written by C. C. Learned, a well-known Republican, and it was good in every respect except that it was too long. But in Learned's original draft it was provided that only such concessions should be made which did not involve the sacrifice of a principle. The Committee did not think that these last words were definite enough, and they were deleted; but this deletion merely served to make the resolution in question even more indefinite, and a contradiction was inserted into the otherwise definte wording. Thus, by attempting to be fair, by trying to please the Democrats and obtain their approval, the votes of the true Republican were lost. Through the attempt to "cover the whole ground" the mistake of saying too much and of including opposite opinions was made, and thus the effect was weakened. Everyone will adhere to the resolutions which he favors, and while the Republicans may justly point to the definite language of most the resolutions, the Democrats 4will cling to the expression "great concessions," and will justify their reluctance to approve "the enforcement of the law" by saying that the Republicans are too slow in making "great concessions".

    We believe that those present at this meeting who advocated a more definite wording of the resolution in question would have won, if Forrest had not permitted the "hand of Wentworth to be visible," and thus changed the whole matter into a fight between various factions to make political capital.

    The proposals of Forrest, Bradely, and Swift could have been a bit more moderate and should have included "the exhaustion of peaceful means".

    The conduct of the President obstructed the endeavors of those who advocated the insertion of the above phrase. His introduction of the proposals was correct from the viewpoint of parliamentary law, it is true, but the majority of those who were present at the meeting did not always understand the import of the proposals; and finally, he permitted men like "Edgar" and the 5Kentuckian, Waller, to speak, although the public voiced strenuous opposition. Only a few supported Waller's recommendations, which included the Crittenden Compromise.

    Thus much time was lost, and at eleven o'clock the crowd demanded that the vote be taken, although the resolutions had not been thoroughly discussed, and, accordingly, were not fully understood.

    In general, it is difficult to conduct these meetings" without respect to party," and, generally, the results are not satisfactory. This is evident from the so-called "currency meeting". The party system has made people one-sided. They are so accustomed to being led by publications and speakers that they attend the meetings somewhat like nonparticipating spectators, and do such little thinking that they are not able to make independent decisions. They take their directions from "prominent persons," vote for those whom they like personally, and are offended by the opinions of the opposing party. This is less true of Republicans than of Democrats, and we even admit that the leading 6Republicans of the Committee were well aware of the danger to which they were exposing themselves by being too obliging to the Democrats. But they were bent on a unanimous decision for Chicago, and in their zeal to insure it, they went too far. We are convinced that they could have attained unanimity without the insertion of the expression "great concessions".

    Finally, it must be observed that the local organs of Democracy, the German as well as the American, do not regard themselves or their party as bound by the adopted resolutions, and, as the Times points out, the majority of the members of the Democratic party refused to participate because they looked upon the meeting as a means of trapping the Democrats. Thus the Republican Committee members who yearned for unanimity wasted their endeavors and their "concessions" upon ingrates, and are offended because the uncompromising Republicans accuse them of being "poor diplomats," while the Democratic newspapers are happy on account of the victory of the "Conservatives" in the Republican party. Of course there is really no reason for their joy, but during trying times like the present even appearances are sufficient to 7decrease the effect of otherwise definite resolutions.

    Saturday's meeting was a failure because it was poorly organized and because the "great concessions" resolution was passed. Anyone who wishes to rejoice may do so in view of the fact that the Democrats indorsed resolutions to preserve the Union and enforce the laws, but we did not think that Northern Democrats would be so low as to side openly with the Rebels. The point in question was the declaration of the Republicans that they would abide by their previous stand, and that although they were willing to exercise patience, they could not relinquish any of their principles, since all arguments had been exhausted during the presidential campaign, and the verdict of the people had placed the stamp of approval and authority upon the Republican interpretation of the Constitution.

    Since a meeting of German Republicans will be held this evening at the German House, and since they will express their opinion, we consider it unnecessary to repeat either the long resolutions of the Committee or the brief proposals 8of Bradely, Forrest, and Swift. The difference between the two is simply this: The proposals of Bradely, Forrest, and Swift are opposed to any compromise or concessions, while the adopted resolutions refer at least to "great concessions," even though the Committee gave assurances that only such "concessions" were meant which would not involve the relinquishment of a principle. In these turbulent times ambiguity is the death of effectiveness.

    Many Republicans believed that a demonstration should be held for the Union and for the enforcement of the law, and in order to make this demonstration very impressive, they called ...

    German
    I G, I J
  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- January 08, 1861
    Great Massmeeting of German Republicans to Be Held in the Hall of the German House

    All German Republicans, who, in these times of intended compromise and "great concessions," still adhere to the principles of the Republican party as embodied in the Chicago platform, are requested to meet Tuesday, January 8, the anniversary of the Battle of New Orleans, in the hall of the German House. This meeting is being held in order to give the German Republicans an opportunity to express their opinions on the present national crisis.

    Caspar Butz, Anthony C. Hesing, Ernst Pruessing....

    All German Republicans, who, in these times of intended compromise and "great concessions," still adhere to the principles of the Republican party as embodied in the Chicago platform, are requested ...

    German
    I F 2, I J
  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- January 08, 1861
    The Nationalen's Knowledge of History (Editorial)

    Anyone who wishes to ascertain how well the Nationalen, a German Democratic publication, is edited, may read the following bold but, unfortunately, untrue statement which appeared in the Saturday issue: "The Missouri Compromise was not mentioned in the bill which provided that the people themselves should have the power to decide the slavery question."

    The Nebraska-Kansas Bill is the one referred to. Now compare the above statement with Section 14 of the bill: "All laws of the United States which are not applicable locally shall be in force in the Territory of Nebraska, with the exception of Section 8, which preceded the admission of Missouri into the Union, and which was passed March 6, 1820." It is generally known that this act was the Missouri Compromise.

    One need not wonder at the short memory of the Nationalen, considering that 2Douglas, too, now suffers from the malady. For, six years ago this "statesman" claimed that the Missouri Compromise was unconstitutional, that it would lead to the formation of geographical and sectional factions, that he had discovered a "higher principle," according to which the slavery question could be finally settled, that the sovereignty of the people is, in fact, "Supreme Court" sovereignty. For six years he has been telling the nation that this "new principle" is the pride of his life, and that he would devote his whole life to its enforcement against the two existing "extremes"; but now he chews his words again, swallows his "great principle" as a magician swallows his "fire," and recommends the restoration of the same Missouri Compromise which for six years he has denounced as an unconstitutional and inadequate measure. Under no circumstances should such a proposal have come from Douglas, but since it does, it merely proves that his cowardice is just as great as the inconsistency which has marked his entire career.

    Anyone who wishes to ascertain how well the Nationalen, a German Democratic publication, is edited, may read the following bold but, unfortunately, untrue statement which appeared in the Saturday issue: ...

    German
    I J, I G
  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- January 09, 1861
    Great Massmeeting at the German House

    The following men were appointed members of a committee to formulate resolutions expressing the decisions of the German Republicans of Chicago: Hermann Butz, Jacob Lauer, Joseph Pollock, and Albert Dietsch.

    While the Committee was in conference, Mr. H. C. Schlaeger made a long address, pointing out that loyal and steadfast adherence to Republican principles is the prune requisite for the preservation of the Union during these critical times. With his closing words he called attention to the fact that state bonds had risen in value, as an indication that the fear of dismemberment of the Union had not adversely affected the securities market in New York, but that, on the contrary, there is ever-increasing confidence in the survival of order and the Union.

    2

    Thereupon the Committee submitted the following resolutions:

    "Resolutions of the German Republicans of Chicago

    "Since it is the duty of every citizen to take a stand on the important issues before the nation in these critical times, we American citizens of German descent and members of the Republican Party, assembled in orderly public meeting, do solemnly declare:

    "That when we were naturalized we forever renounced allegiance to every foreign state and potentate, and obligated ourselves to uphold the Constitution of the United States;

    "That, in our opinion, the people merely exercised their constitutional right in the recent presidential election, and that the act of the people in electing the chief executive of the Republic, if the election is carried out as prescribed in the Constitution, is a constitutional decision from which there is no 3appeal, neither by any constituted authority, nor by treachery, nor rebellion;

    "That, to quote the words of Daniel Webster, "the Constitution of the United States is not a union, nor a confederation, nor a treaty of the people of the United States in their sovereign character, but a government as such, based on its acceptance by the people, and establishing immediate relations between itself and the individual";

    "That no authority in the state has the power to disrupt this relation; that only revolution can disrupt it, and that therefore no secession is possible without revolution, and, hence, that it is the duty of the National Government to enforce all constitutional laws in every part of the country, under all conditions, and at any price, and that we obligate ourselves to assist the Government in executing these laws;

    "That we fully recognize the home-rule rights of the citizens of the South with reference to slavery wherever slavery is protected by local laws, and 4that no federal authorities have a right to interfere;

    "That the principles of the Republican party, as they are presented in the Chicago platform, are in agreement with the Constitution of the United States, that we steadfastly adhere to this platform which conceded to the Southern States all the rights which the Constitution guarantees, and that we need make no further concessions;

    "That Major Anderson of Fort Sumpter deserves commendation for abiding by his constitutional oath and doing his duty as a soldier and patriot;

    "That we will never believe that the first great attempt of a free people to exercise self-government on a wide scale has failed, and that we fervently hope and trust that the blessings of the American Union will be preserved for our children and children's children."

    These resolutions were translated into and read in the English language at 5the request of some of the Republicans who were present, and then they were unanimously adopted.

    A standing committee was appointed by the chairman to arrange further meetings, if necessary. The members of this committee are: C. Butz, C. Schlaeger, and C. Pruessing.

    The following men were appointed members of a committee to formulate resolutions expressing the decisions of the German Republicans of Chicago: Hermann Butz, Jacob Lauer, Joseph Pollock, and Albert Dietsch. ...

    German
    III B 1, I G
  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- January 18, 1861
    Changes in the City's Charter (Editorial)

    We have already published a survey of the proposed changes in the charter of Chicago which have been made by certain interests. We cannot but wish that this agitation were more general in character, and that the bills which we published in outline, could be printed in full and submitted to the public, so that public opinion, the deciding judge, could have opportunity for expression.

    In the final analysis the people of Chicago are the ones who are most interested in the nature of the changes, and no alterations should be made without their express consent. Such a procedure would make it clear that the changes were undertaken for the benefit of the whole city, rather than only in the interest of certain individuals.

    We have already published a survey of the proposed changes in the charter of Chicago which have been made by certain interests. We cannot but wish that this agitation were ...

    German
    I H
  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- January 18, 1861
    Polytechnical School (Editorial)

    About two years ago a member of our editorial staff, who at that time was also Mechanic's Institute, advocated the erection of a polytechnical school in Illinois. The Institute adopted the detailed recommendation, and in 1859 Representative C. Butz introduced a proposal to the state legislature to investigate the suitability of a Chicago site. The proposal was referred to a committee, and owing to the confusion of that session (a result of a Democratic majority in the legislature) nothing more was heard of it. Mechanic's Institute has again taken up this matter, and has sent its president to Springfield to urge in person the acceptance of a bill recommending that polytechnical school be established in Chicago. The necessary money could be raised by selling part of the ground appropriated for a college; the most valuable part of this property lies in Cook County. The interest yielded by the sum realized through the sale of this land would be sufficient to defray the cost of operating such an institution. The importance of a poly 2technical school has been explained previously. It would be a school to provide higher training for mechanics, machinists, contractors, engineers, and farmers, and it would have a beneficial effect on the agriculture and industry of the entire country.

    Furthermore, it would relieve the overcrowding of professions (medicine, law, etc.) by the children of farmers and tradesmen, inasmuch as it would create a new social class which would be sufficiently educated to maintain an equal position in society with college educated people--although it had no such education--and would also serve to counterbalance the abstract and one-sided education which is now in vogue.

    About two years ago a member of our editorial staff, who at that time was also Mechanic's Institute, advocated the erection of a polytechnical school in Illinois. The Institute adopted ...

    German
    I A 1 a, II A 1
  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- January 18, 1861
    Reducing the Salary of County Employees (Editorial)

    We hope that the Republican delegation [Translator's note: The author evidently refers to the elected members of the State Legislature.] will not forget that before election the Republican party promised to reduce the salaries of certain county employees who have been receiving their wages in the form of fees.

    In former times, when there were not many court cases, the amount they realized was not too great; but under present conditions these fees represent a sum which is far in excess of the value of the services which the respective workers render. we believe that a special law should be enacted to regulate the salaries of the Cook County employees to the extent that whenever it is possible, a fixed sum should be established as their pay, and when this is not possible, as for instance in case the fees are not paid in advance, the fees be reduced to such an extent that the resulting income would not be as large as it is now; then there Will not be as much dishonest competition among the aspirants to these 2offices. Since the present incumbents declared before they were elected last November that they would willingly submit to a reduction of pay, it is the duty of the Legislature, especially the delegation from Cook County, to take them at their word, and put an and to the ridiculously high salaries which have long been a cause of offense.

    We hope that the Republican delegation [Translator's note: The author evidently refers to the elected members of the State Legislature.] will not forget that before election the Republican party promised ...

    German
    I F 6
  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- January 18, 1861
    Their Eyes Are Being Opened (Editorial)

    The Louisiana Staats-Zeitung of New Orleans is having swooning spells because "forced loans" are being considered. It envisages a tenfold or even a twenty-fold increase in state taxes, which are already very burdensome. The newspaper makes special reference to South Carolina and declares:

    "We have been informed by telegram that a tax has been imposed on all citizens of South Carolina, in order to defray the enormous expenditures which have been made necessary by the new situation, and which the citizens must shoulder if they do not want to be looked upon as malcontents. And this is done, although there is no prospect of war and although the total number of Government troops is not even three hundred."

    This forced loan by a state is the result of a precipitous act, South Carolina 2having assumed the functions of a whole nation; and now the state is obliged to establish and maintain its own army and navy, and its own postal service; but only a united South can raise the necessary funds. It is certain that Louisiana alone cannot do so in these hard times.

    Citizens, are you ready to fight for a cause which may subject your property to a "forced loan"?

    The Louisiana Staats-Zeitung of New Orleans is having swooning spells because "forced loans" are being considered. It envisages a tenfold or even a twenty-fold increase in state taxes, which are ...

    German
    I G
  • Illinois Staats-Zeitung -- January 18, 1861
    Changes in the City's Charter (Editorial)

    We have already published a survey of the proposed changes in the charter of Chicago which have been made by certain interests. We cannot but wish that this agitation were more general in character, and that the bills which we published in outline, could be printed in full and submitted to the public, so that public opinion, the deciding judge, could have opportunity for expression.

    In the final analysis the people of Chicago are the ones who are most interested in the nature of the changes, and no alterations should be made without their express consent. Such a procedure would make it clear that the changes were undertaken for the benefit of the whole city, rather than only in the interest of certain individuals.

    We have already published a survey of the proposed changes in the charter of Chicago which have been made by certain interests. We cannot but wish that this agitation were ...

    German
    I H
  • 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
    I F 2, I J, I F 3