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.

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  • Svornost -- January 23, 1883
    The Speaker of - Svobodne Obce - (Independent Society) Is Authorized to Perform the Marriage Ceremony.

    The county circuit clerk in Chicago, Mr. Ryan, was persuaded by somebody that it would not be conforming with the law, if the speaker of "Svobodne Obce" a Bohemian independent society, incorporated as "Congregation of Bohemian Free-thinkers" can possess the right to perform the marriage ceremony like other ministers of the Gospel, who have the right to do it according to state laws.

    Mr. Ryan invited the speaker, Mr. Frank B. Zdrubek, last Saturday and expressed to him his doubts, requesting him at the same time, to visit the district attorney, Mr. Blisse and find out from him what the law says about it, to be sure of the legality of the situation.

    Conforming with Mr. Ryan's request, the speaker Mr. Zdrubka, explained the whole matter to the district attorney, who found the proper law and the decisions of the supreme court in similar questions, and sent his opinion in writing to the circuit clerk.

    2

    It stated that as long as the speaker of the "Svobodne Obce" acts lawfully, he is considered by the law as a "minister" like every preacher, Jewish, Mormon or Christian, and has the legal right to perform this ceremony. The speaker of the "Svobodne Obce" started to perform the marriage ceremonies in April, 1878, after consulting a prominent lawyer, Mr. H. Rubens, and the district attorney praised Mr. Rubens, stating that he was right in reference to this question and his advice was legal.

    The county circuit clerk in Chicago, Mr. Ryan, was persuaded by somebody that it would not be conforming with the law, if the speaker of "Svobodne Obce" a Bohemian independent ...

    Bohemian
    I B 4, I C, IV
  • Svornost -- September 16, 1884
    How the Americans Care for Chicago's Bohemians. We Are Infamous Heathens According to an American Missionary Society.

    EDITORIAL: There exists in our city an American missionary society. It published, not long ago, its first annual statement called, "First annual report of the Chicago City Missionary Society." This booklet has twenty pages with, at least, twenty infamous lies and calumnies about the Bohemians in Chicago. We do not like this kind of slander, and so much the less when it comes from the mouth of Ecclasiastical zealots, who boast that they are fighting evil with truth. We hope, anyhow, that the local public will be informed how our nationality has been unjustly offended, and what kind of crooked calumnies are spread among the religious masses about us. We must assert that their efforts are connected rather 2with the devil, than with God.

    On page 6 of this annual report, is given, by the superintendent of the missionary society, J. C. Armstrong, the first report on the Bohemians.

    "In the Lumbermen's Miesion, founded for workers of lumber-yards, a new field is opened for our society. This mission is located at the corner of 19th and Center Streets. In this district the religious services are held in French, German, Norwegian and English. One day in a week should be devoted to the Bohemians. A large number of Bohemians separated from the Catholic church have built in the neighborhood a beautiful infidel temple. This is the same spot where, in 1876, occured the revolt, and there have been, until now, elements there which played with dynamite. Those are the men, who are not afraid of God and do not care for the rights of other fellow human beings. It will be much cheaper, wiser and safer to go among them with the gospel, than to let them come to us with sword and fire. Our problem is to save them from eternal damnation, these desperate individuals who are connected with the vice of our city. This sacred mission is given to us, 3and what will be the answer to Him, who has sent us?"

    All that has been cited above is an infamous lie and malicious slander of the whole Bohemian community in this district and of the National Hall of the C.S.P.S. (Czechoslovak Benevolent Society), and of all the workingmen, who feed and fatten the churchmen. They lie when they say that the revolt of the workingmen, in 1877, started in National Hall and that National Hall is a seat of the so much feared dynamite throwers.

    It is further an absolute lie that Bohemians frequenting this hall, have no fear of God or consideration for their fellow human beings. All those societies, which have meetings in this hall, have the same mutual problems of encouraging fraternity amongst humans and of furnishing financial help to the needy. They are not, as the missionary report says, a bunch of desperados, connected with the city's worst element, whose sole purpose is crime. It is incredible how a superintendent of a 4missionary society is able to release such infamous lies from his devilish throat. His mouth anointed with sacred oils, Christ's blood and prayers, should be clean and veracious. How can he dare to bring the Gospel to these defamed and slandered Bohemian people, to preach his American morality with all this Pharisaism, thievery and knavery and to wish to convert them to his faith, a faith that has originated from the devil, himself.

    This superintendent's devilish mouth should not spread lies about his fellow-men, whom he does not know, and never has associated with. He believes only in spreading vile calumnies. He mixes christianity in his devilish saliva and believes that no one will know the difference. In this way he strives to poison our people and corrupt them to his level.

    The Chairman of the missionary society, Mr. C. F. Gates, a missionary himself, expresses a still worse opinion on the Bohemians living in this district. He writes on page 10, 5as follows: "You have heard about the committee organized by us for the purpose of establishing a McLeane Mission, called the "Lumbermen's Mission, at 683 Centre Ave. The committee's task was to find out the best ways to win for salvation the Bohemians, who are populating this district very densely. There is nothing done. We can see swarms of children running wild in the streets. We can see crowds of men leaving their dwellings and going to the meetings, to listen to the instigative speeches of the communistic and socialistic leaders. The only things that they learn at these meetings is to fight against God and the Church, against the law of possession, against the family's rules and social connections. When we consider, that their votes in the elections have the same worth as ours, we will understand the big value of our undertaking to penetrate those crowds with the light of the Holy Gospel.

    If we wish to be saved ourselves, we must try to save our children and in the name of our Master, under whose banner we are marching. We must walk through all 6the side streets of our city seeking for the lost ones, to save them with God's help.

    Brothers, why does God allow all those people from Bohemia, Italy, Germany, Holland, Norway, Denemark, England, Ireland, Holland, China and Japan to come independently, instead of delivering them straight into our hands so that we can show them the value and power of the Christian faith, as a developer of their body, morals and soul? It is a very expensive problem to send the missionaries to the remote countries, but when God is sending those pagans to our own door, we should seize the work in our own hands and we will not regret this at the day of judgment.

    As compensation for our missionary work we will have flocks of devoted men and women, who will go everywhere and distribute the bread of life and God's teaching. We need money for this purpose, we need money to change saloons into churches, and to decrease crime. If we had money to do this we would not need a big police force 7to keep order and we would save much money in this way.

    From these few words it is easy to see that the Chairman of the missionary society looks at the Bohemians of the 6th ward as heathens and abases them before the entire religious community. The whole prestige of the Bohemians being destroyed, the missionaries in their devilish hypocrisy will show their mercy and, collecting money from the rich Americans, will start to convert those uncultured, ignorant Bohemians from paganism. They would make out of us sly thieves and impostors, of the type that are always recruited from American clergymen. We read, almost every day in the newspapers, that they hang themselves, cut their throats, that some of them are put in jails, and some of them run away with their spoils to Canada, stolen money, collected through their people's faith in the Holy Gospel. Should the Bohemians be the same kind of pious Christians, should they deprive themselves of their honesty, good hearts, good name and model themselves after the American brothers.

    8

    You Pharisaic creatures come among these so called pagan Bohemians and they will teach you honesty, Christian love, toleration, humanity morality, temperance, and justice. You do not need to teach Bohemians these virtues, but rather you can learn these virtues from them, because all that you know now is the vices of crime, shame and infamy - even if you pray and stay in churches. We have recognized your infamy and this deterred us from attending your churches and services, which allow such thieves, impostors and libertines to be seen and honored as holy men; holy men that despise poor, honest workingmen; holy men, who, nevertheless, are willing to save these workingmen from paganism.

    You American Pharisees, who are hiding your vice and knavery in places that are meant for prayers, go among the Bohemians and learn how to pray simply but sincerely. If there was a country, which has had religion and may be too much of it, such a country was Bohemia, and starting with the middle ages Bohemia has been floded with religious teachings, religious practices, religious propaganda, and bloodshed for religion. The Bohemians have outgrown all that 9foolishness and they are not so low as to let themselves be the victims of your religion that attempts to implant devilishness into the hearts of our people. The Bohemians are outspoken. They will tell you all that they have in their hearts. Through the experience of many centuries the Bohemians have abandoned your type of religious practices, and even if you had whole regiments of missionaries sent into their midst these missionaries would not be able to change their human morals and doctrine of truth. These Bohemians would stand firm, like a wall that was once formed centuries ago by the Hussites, armed with clubs similar to those which were used to split the heads of the black monks, who came to Bohemia to preach hypocrisy, dishonesty and immorality, ready to do the same to these modern black monks of the missions.

    If these missionaries will come to the Bohemians to learn from them religion, morality and honesty, they will be welcome, but should they come with the intention to destroy the prosperity of our people, to insult us, to humiliate us unjustly, and then to rehabilitate us later, their enterprise would not pay at all.

    10

    I propose to the members of the missionary society, who intend to ensnare these ignorant Bohemians for the Methodist church on 19th Street that they explain and interpret to their representatives, how the Bohemians feel about it.

    They should enlighten their American representatives on how to talk with Bohemians. It is their duty to reprimand those Pharisaic slanders, and to revolk these wicked chairmen and superintendents of the mission, all of whom have thrown calumnies at us.

    In the future they should not write about the Bohemians, before they mingle with the Bohemians, and become acquainted with them. Further, they should never lie so unpardonably, and offend people that endeavor to build noble projects for the future.

    We are happy that Dr. Adam will visit Chicago in the near future. He knows 11us, loves us, protects us, and he will certainly take care, that all these slanders thrown on Bohemians by the religious fanatics be revoked and the good name of the Bohemians restored. The offended morality and feelings of the good and organized Bohemians in Chicago may instigate, unnecessarily, a justifiable revenge.

    The action of the Chicago Missionary Society, and of all those rascals who throw different calumnies on Bohemians in Chicago, is decidedly criminal in nature.

    EDITORIAL: There exists in our city an American missionary society. It published, not long ago, its first annual statement called, "First annual report of the Chicago City Missionary Society." This ...

    Bohemian
    I C, III C, I B 4, II D 6, II B 2 d 2
  • Svornost -- March 16, 1892
    Alarm Among Catholic Knights.

    Whenever there appears among the free-thinking people some swindler who absconds with money entrusted to him, our Catholic citizens raise a hue and cry and almost tear themselves to pieces pointing out what scoundrels people are who do not want to believe in the Heavenly Kingdom and how dangerous it is for a poor man if he has himself insured by such unbelieving societies. These gentlemen do not like to admit that there are scoundrels among the Catholics as well as among the free-thinkers. Yet it is proved that there are among the Catholics more people who perpetrate all sorts of fraud and who have the idea that by confessing all everything is well again.

    The incident which we mention here is proof that Catholic gentlemen see the faults of others but are unable to see their own.

    There is an organization of Catholic Knights in America which is directly under the control of the priests. All officers from the chairman down to 2the last clerk are under the supervision of the gentlemen in the Capoches (priest's garment). The devoted lambs believed that every penny which they deposited into the central treasury was well protected. However, in the month of October of last year, the board of trustees examined the books and announced to the much surprised Knights that there was some trifling shortage. Little attention was given to it in the beginning, for how could anything irregular occur in a society which was managed by such Godly servants of the Lord?

    A somewhat more serious attitude was taken toward the whole affair when it became known, after a thorough examination of the books, that the trifling shortage would amount to $71,000, and that there was a possibility that it might be much greater, probably as much as $200,000.

    And where is this money? Catholic Knights have a membership of about 25,000, and they all pay dues into a central treasury for insurance in the event of death. According to their laws, the treasurer is required to pay the death benefits of the deceased within sixty days after the announcement 3of death.

    Under these circumstances, the treasurer was able, being hand in hand with the reverend fathers, to profit thereby. Recently, people have been dying more numerously than heretofore and Mr. Treasurer seemed to think it the best time to provide for his future. The more money that accumulated in his hands, the greater was his love for it. When there had accumulated in the treasury almost $200,000 he was completely enraptured. He knew, to be sure, that this money belonged to poor forsaken widows and orphans. He knew that he would commit a great sin if he were to steal this money - but the money seemed to promise him a nice, comfortable life on earth, so why wait for the blessed life after death? Therefore he kept the money and the reverend fathers are now trying to find a way to arrange it so that they will not be forced to take Mr. Treasurer before the courts.

    Whenever there appears among the free-thinking people some swindler who absconds with money entrusted to him, our Catholic citizens raise a hue and cry and almost tear themselves to pieces ...

    Bohemian
    I C, I B 4
  • Svornost -- May 08, 1896
    Against the Bible in Schools

    The Bohemian Liberal Community decided at its last meeting on Sunday, to ask the Chicago Board of Education to make a decision to eliminate from the Chicago schools the reading of the Bible. The petition was as follows:

    Honorable Board of Education:- The Bohemian Liberal Community in Chicago made a unanimous decision at its last meeting, May 3rd, 1896, which is hereby brought to the attention of the Board:

    Whereas - many Christian sects have introduced to the public schools the Bible, with the purpose of having it read by the school pupils, it is decided to present this honest and reasonable petition. Your educational body should have as its main problem the protection of our present free schools, which are an inheritance of a free nation, against any misinterpretations and misunderstandings, and consequently it should be prohibited from reading the Bible, for or by the children in the schools. We are sure the Bible reading would spoil the young hearts of our children, would deprive them of pity for humanity, good fellowship and tolerance to others, of morals, liberty, and education. Examples from the past are proving this.

    2

    Our children should be taught in the schools equality, fraternity, freedom for all peoples, justice and the duties of good citizenship, without the Bible, no matter whether Jewish, Christian, Mohammedan, or Mormon. - F. B. Zdrusek - President, F. Nadherny - Secretary.

    The Bohemian Liberal Community decided at its last meeting on Sunday, to ask the Chicago Board of Education to make a decision to eliminate from the Chicago schools the reading ...

    Bohemian
    I A 2 a, I B 4, III C
  • Svornost -- September 14, 1898
    The Old Catholic Religion Among Bohemians

    The people on all sides are beginning to understand and assert themselves, because the scholastic culture of the last generation has been markedly improved, opinions of the world and man's task thereof have been promoted among peoples and the spiritual serfdom such as the churches forced on their believers during the middle ages has left only those of the preceding generation - the old men and old women whose minds are not capable of comprehending the new spirit in which the world moves. We see improvements of this kind going on in all churches, both Catholic and Protestant.

    Here we want to refer to the movement being carried on toward the reform of relations of the people toward the Roman Catholic church, which began in Germany, was carried over to the Poles in America and is beginning to work among the Bohemians, not only in America, but in the land of their ancestors as well.

    2

    The Germans called this reform movement old Catholicism. They had a bishop consecrated as an old-Catholic for the purpose of acquiring apostolic succession from the Orthodox Bishops, and this old-Catholic Bishop now ordains priests and bishops with the same right of apostolic succession as the Roman Catholics do.

    Old Catholicism has for its aim the retention of old time Catholic teachings with all the rituals, sacraments and religious dogmas as observed by the old Catholic church, but it does not accept the newer perverted versions, appendages, superstitions, evil orders and nuisances which in the course of time came into practice in the church and by which the people were spoiled or the more intelligent were driven away from religion.

    The people on all sides are beginning to understand and assert themselves, because the scholastic culture of the last generation has been markedly improved, opinions of the world and man's ...

    Bohemian
    I B 4
  • Svornost -- March 04, 1900
    Lenten Lectures.

    The liberal community Svobodna Obec is arranging this year, as in previous years, their special lectures in the hall of the Bohemian-English school. These lectures will be held every Lenten Sunday for the followers of free-thinking ideas, for the purpose of strengthening their consciousness that blind faith in erroneous public worship and oral prayers is only treachery and poison to the heart; that the real God is a sense, the known laws, the truth and the love of humanity.

    We suppose the welfare of humanity is more dependent upon good sense than upon errors, upon light rather than darkness, and that should be sufficient motive for everyone who has not yet joined, to join one of our lodges now, which are always open to progress and education.

    The speaker of the liberal community Mr. Frank B. Zdrubek chose this year a very interesting theme, "Saviors of the Nation," which he will develop very accurately, as always.

    2

    The community Svobodna Obec is working not for profit, but for recognition, and its only objective is to spread the light before these people who are still blindfolded.

    The liberal community Svobodna Obec is arranging this year, as in previous years, their special lectures in the hall of the Bohemian-English school. These lectures will be held every Lenten ...

    Bohemian
    I B 4, II B 2 g, III C, IV
  • Denní Hlasatel -- September 03, 1902
    Minutes of Meeting of the Combined Committees of the Bohemian-American Society for the Cremation of the Dead and the Bohemian-National Cemetery, Held in the Bohemian-English Liberal School, on Aug. 22, 1902.

    The meeting was called to order by Mr. Jan. A. Mraz, the president of the Bohemian-American Society for the Cremation of the Dead, in the presence of the officers of that society, who are authorized to perform any committee work which may come up between meetings. The president requested the secretary, to read the communication which was sent to the representative of the Bohemian-National Cemetery, on the 6th of August of this year, in which the question of what could be done toward the building of a Bohemian crematorium on the grounds of the Bohemian National Cemetery was broached.

    Then there was introduced and read a letter from the representatives of the Bohemian National Cemetery in answer to the above which read as follows:

    2

    "Bohemian National Cemetery Association" Chicago, Aug.9, 1902-- to the honored "Bohemian-American Society for the Cremation of the Dead." In reference to the letter of August 6th from your Society, I am informing you that the Bohemian National Cemetery Association has given your communication consideration and has decided to elect a committee of three which is authorized to represent the Bohemian-National Cemetery Association in the matter of arranging for a Bohemian crematorium.

    When it was found after due consideration that the purposes of both committees were identical, Mr. Egermayer, moved that they be united in one body, and in order to promote more rapid progress it was recognized as beneficial to elect a chairman and secretary from their midst. This viewpoint prevailed and Mr. Fr. J. Pechota was elected chairman.

    3

    A motion was made that the Bohemian National Cemetery Association be furnished with an estimate as to the outlay required to build a crematorium. After a somewhat lengthy debate it was decided to wait and see what decision is made in the matter by the above mentioned association. Following this Mr. Max Kirchman proposed the following resolution, which was adopted and confirmed by the signatures of the committee.

    "Whereas, the modern era has discovered a more suitable method of interring the dead, namely, the burning of the remains in a suitable crematorium, which is not as injurious to the health of the living as the prevailing method of burying in the ground, where the human body is exposed to the tender mercies of insects and many years of decay and from which results the fouling of air and water, thereby threatening the health of the people to a considerable degree.

    4

    "Whereas, this modern method of interment (cremation) is highly recommended by famous doctors and scholars of the whole civilized world, as proven in our own mother-country by the Society for the Cremation of the Dead, which is composed of representatives of all enlightened classes,

    "Whereas, in our own Bohemian-American communities there has been advanced the thought that we ought to build a Bohemian-American Crematorium, for many a deceased countryman would have given preference to it rather than to the ordinary burial, but the opportunity was lacking therefore Be it resolved: that the representatives of the Bohemian-National Cemetery Association, which is certainly made up of enlightened men, whose minds are not filled with fear, by death, satisfy the general demand and already necessary need, and build a crematorium on the grounds of the Bohemian-National Cemetery.

    5

    "Resolved, that the crematorium he built along side of the mausoleum, and advantage be taken of the chapel now standing for the most necessary funeral rites, and in conclusion,

    "Resolved, that in the building choice should be made not of the most luxurious, but of the most modern method of building a crematorium, so that the Bohemian-American Crematorium to a certain extent will excell the old methods, which can easily be accomplished since the existing and previously mentioned chapel will reduce the required outlay by half."

    Also discussed was the objection that because of the cremation, the Bohemian-National Cemetery would suffer on the sale of lots. All those present were convinced that this is a clear mistake, for thus far, of the small number of countrymen cremated after death, nearly all were buried in the Bohemian-National Cemetery and this example will be followed in the future, for how satisfying must be the consolation, that it is possible for us to bury the deceased, rapidly changed to ashes, on a cemetery lot where nothing can disturb them in their ever-lasting peace."

    The meeting was called to order by Mr. Jan. A. Mraz, the president of the Bohemian-American Society for the Cremation of the Dead, in the presence of the officers of ...

    Bohemian
    III C, II D 1, I B 4
  • Denní Hlasatel -- June 12, 1905
    School for St. Agnes's Church Completed

    P.1--A beautiful school-building has been erected on Central Park Avenue beside St. Agnes's Church, a testimony to the pride which Bohemian Catholics take in their schools. Yesterday the foundation of the school was celebrated, and a large number of societies, some in uniform, took part in the ceremony. The church, the school, and the adjacent streets were lavishly decorated with flags. A passageway embowered with green branches led to the entrance of the school, and along this the procession passed, headed by Father Molitor, archiepiscopal counsellor, who performed the rite of consecration. After the official celebration those in attendance removed to the near-by garden, where an entertainment was presented.

    P.1--A beautiful school-building has been erected on Central Park Avenue beside St. Agnes's Church, a testimony to the pride which Bohemian Catholics take in their schools. Yesterday the foundation of ...

    Bohemian
    I A 2 a, II B 1 c 3, I B 4, III C
  • Denní Hlasatel -- July 31, 1910
    5th Bohemian National Pilgrimage Held in the Parish of the Blessed Agnes

    P.1, Col.4--The 5th Bohemian National Pilgrimage, is being held, in the Parish of the Blessed Agnes on West 27th St., and Central Park Ave.

    The hundreds that will participate in this Pilgrimage, will feel, as though they were in their homeland.

    Gingerbread cookie booths, shooting gallery, wheels of fortune, hot dog stands, photo-gallery, post office, and in fact, everything expected at a pilgrimage, will be at the disposal of the participants.

    The affair is held inside and is more interesting than those of past years. For the oldest male and female settlers, splendid prizes will be awarded.

    There is no reason, why this pilgrimage of the Blessed Agnes, should not be successfully attended.

    P.1, Col.4--The 5th Bohemian National Pilgrimage, is being held, in the Parish of the Blessed Agnes on West 27th St., and Central Park Ave. The hundreds that will participate in ...

    Bohemian
    I B 4, III B 2, III C
  • Denní Hlasatel -- May 22, 1911
    The Bohemian-American Cremation Society

    The Bohemian-American Cremation Society celebrated the tenth anniversary of its existence with a fine celebration recently. The purpose and significance of the society was explained to the listeners by capable speakers, in both the Bohemian and English language. The chairman of the arrangements committee, Mr. John Hejno, welcomed the visitors, and turned the supervision of the celebration over to the president of the society, Mr. Joseph W. Egermayer.

    Following a beautiful rendition of two musical numbers by Miss A. Cada, Mr. Egermayer gave a brief summary of the history of the society.

    In a private home more than ten years ago, four men and a woman met to give an impulse to the founding of a society for the advancement of a more rationalistic method of burying human bodies than had been, until 2then, generally customary among Bohemians. From this insignificant number of founders, the number of members grew to the present 464, and the hope is warranted that it will now grow much faster then heretofore. The society has a fund, amounting to $619.84, devoted exclusively to covering the expenses in connection with the burial of members. The fund for current expenses amounts to $181.91.

    After the discourse by the president, the Bohemian Workingmen's Singing Society rendered the song"O vlasti Ma" (O! My Fatherland). Dr. J. F. Pecival, who spoke in English, gave the reason for the cremation of bodies, and called attention to the trifling objections raised against it. He explained that from a scientific standpoint the same process occurs during both methods of interment. The body, composed of a few gases, three-fourths of the weight of the body being water, composed of oxygen and hydrogen, 3disintegrates into its constituent parts during cremation, quickly and cleanly, but while mouldering in the ground, it requires a long period of time. From the standpoint of ethics and health, it is impossible to do otherwise than condemn the practice of burying bodies in the ground, and take up the practice of cremation as is being done by the more enlightened people. In the same sense, Dr. Fr. Iska spoke, and disproved the objections to cremation which are raised chiefly by the Catholic Church.

    This significant celebration was brought to a close by Mr. Egermayer, thanking everybody who aided in its success by their attendance. The society was deserving of a much greater visitation, even if we take into consideration the uncertain weather conditions of yesterday.

    The society gave beautiful souvenirs of the occasion, which contained among other things, the names of all members.

    The Bohemian-American Cremation Society celebrated the tenth anniversary of its existence with a fine celebration recently. The purpose and significance of the society was explained to the listeners by capable ...

    Bohemian
    III B 4, II B 1 a, I B 4