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Curriculum - 11th Grade Standards - Kansas History Standards - 1877-1930 (Kansas_Benchmark 1) - German Americans (Indicator 7) - Discrimination

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A. J. Dyck to Arthur Capper

A. J. Dyck to Arthur Capper
Creator: Kansas. Governor (1915-1919: Capper)
Date: April 23, 1918
Reverend A. J. Dyck of the Hoffnungsau Mennonite Church, Inman, Kansas, wrote this letter to Governor Arthur Capper of Topeka, Kansas, concerning the Third Liberty Loan drive and its impact on the German American community. Dyck explains that the members of his church have bought more than the amount of Liberty Loans required by the established quota in order to prove their loyalty and avoid harassment by "mobs." In addition, Dyck asks Capper if it would be acceptable for members of his church to donate to the Red Cross rather than providing money to support the war effort.


Aged German is given 48 hours to leave city!

Aged German is given 48 hours to leave city!
Creator: Topeka Journal
Date: February 19, 1918
This article published in the Topeka Journal covers the story of Daniel Klege. Klege, a 75 year old resident of Topeka, Kansas, and veteran of the Civil War, was ordered to leave Topeka until the end of the war with Germany because he had never registered to become a naturalized U.S. citizen.


Alien enemies' wives are loyal

Alien enemies' wives are loyal
Creator: Topeka Capital
Date: January 1, 1918
This article printed in the Topeka Capital details an incident involving Charles H. Johnson and Joseph Fisckale, both of whom expressed sympathies for the Germany and Austria. Turned in by their American-born wives, Johnson and Fisckale were "sent to a place of safe keeping until after the war."


All alien enemies liable to arrest

All alien enemies liable to arrest
Creator: Topeka Capital
Date: June 19, 1917
This article, published in the June 19, 1917, edition of the Topeka Capital addresses the law prohibiting German immigrants who were not naturalized U.S. citizens from entering the Topeka Business District without a special permit from the U.S. Marshall Office. Anyone violating the law could be placed in jail without trial until the end of the war.


Bank president is removed for unloyal conduct

Bank president is removed for unloyal conduct
Creator: Topeka Capital
Date: June 5, 1918
This article, published in the June 5, 1918, edition of the Topeka Capital, details the removal of Wamego State Bank president and director Loius B. Leach due to "slackerism." Specifically, Leach refused to buy Liberty Loans, would not donate to the Red Cross, and encouraged his son-in-law to evade the draft. In adddition to his removal, Leach was the target of mobs who painted his vehicle yellow and demanded that he fly the America flag.


Disloyalists are warned

Disloyalists are warned
Creator: Inman Review
Date: April 26, 1918
This article, published in the Inman Review, covers the Barton County Night Riders. The Night Riders, a vigilante group of self-proclaimed loyalists, claimed that their mission was to "clean up the country of German spies, German sympathizers and dirty slackers." In addition, the Night Riders threatened to take care of disloyalty in communities "largely populated by people either of German birth or decent."


German School Question

German School Question
Creator: Marion Record
Date: September 13, 1917
This article, published in the Marion Record, responds to charges that Marion County schools taught German and advocated support for the Kaiser and Germany.


Henry Cooprider interview

Henry Cooprider interview
Creator: Bethany College (Lindsborg, Kan.)
Date: 1970s
This oral history interview, conducted by Don Holsinger and Sondra Bandy of Bethany College, Lindsborg, Kansas, details the experiences of Henry Cooprider. Cooprider, a resident of Inman, Kansas, recalls his experience growing up in Kansas and the treatment he endured while the U.S. was at war with Germany during World War I. On one occasion, Henry's brother George was tarred and feathered by a mob in response to their father's earlier refusal to buy Liberty Bonds. Shortly after the incident, Henry was sent to Camp Funston as a Conscientious Objector.


Hun subjects cannot hold office in Kansas

Hun subjects cannot hold office in Kansas
Creator: Topeka Journal
Date: December 1, 1918
This article, published December 1, 1917 in the Topeka Journal, covers the ruling by the Kansas Attorney General, S.M. Brewster, that German Americans who had not yet naturalized could not hold constitutional or statutory offices in Kansas. In addition, the article mentions that the Attorney General's office contended that un-naturalized German citizens would not be allowed to vote as long as the U.S. and Germany remained hostile enemies.


Lutheran Church protests correspondence

Lutheran Church protests correspondence
Creator: Kansas. Governor (1915-1919: Capper)
Date: 1918
This correspondence is the result of, and in reaction to, accusations that Lutheran Churches in the U.S. were loyal to the Kaiser (German Emperor) because most of their congregation consists of German Americans. In one piece of the correspondence, Pastor W.T.Vogel of Humboldt, Kansas, writes to Governor Arthur Capper of Topeka, and requests that Capper pass his letter and accompanying newspaper clipping to the Topeka newspapers for distribution. Governor Capper responds by assuring Vogel that he does not doubt the loyalty of members of the Lutheran Church.


Man in Germany wants his property in Salina

Man in Germany wants his property in Salina
Creator: Topeka Capital
Date: November 9, 1918
This article, published in the Topeka Capital, details the efforts of Gustav C. Kothe to retain his property in Salina, Kansas. Kothe, an American consular agent in Germany, failed to return to the U.S. after the U.S. declared war on Germany. As a result, the U.S. government listed Kothe as an alien enemy and confiscated his property.


Mennonite persecution now a forgotten chapter in state history

Mennonite persecution now a forgotten chapter in state history
Creator: Hutchinson News
Date: August 31, 1975
This article published in the Hutchinson News, details the difficulties German Americans, especially Mennonites, faced in Kansas during World War I.


Mennonites loyal

Mennonites loyal
Creator: Topeka Journal
Date: September 12, 1917
This article, published in the Topeka Journal, argues against claims that Mennonites support Germany and the Kaiser because they do not support violence of any type.


Must not shift burden in fighting kaiserism

Must not shift burden in fighting kaiserism
Creator: Topeka Capital
Date: January 13, 1918
This article published in the Topeka Capital addresses the decision by the Kansas State Board of Agriculture to deny Kansas Mennonites status as Conscientious Objector exempting them from service in World War I. Included in the article is arguments by C. B. Schmidt who supports the granting of Conscientious Objector status to Mennonites.


Objectors will be kept at Leavenworth

Objectors will be kept at Leavenworth
Creator: Topeka Capital
Date: June 6, 1917
This article printed in the Topeka Capital covers the decision to house around 600 conscientious objectors at Fort Leavenworth for the duration of World War I. The purpose of sending the objectors to Ft. Leavenworth was to segregate the men from the rest of the U.S. Army.


On the trail of disloyalty

On the trail of disloyalty
Creator: Kansas City Star
Date: June 9, 1918
This article published in the Kansas City Star claims that Pottawatomie County is the most disloyal county in Kansas. The article claims that the reason for such widespread disloyalty is the fact that the majority of the residents of Pottawatomie County are Germans or of German descent. In addition, the article details the actions, both legal and illegal, taken to try and make any disloyalists comply.


Religious views not a valid exemption claim

Religious views not a valid exemption claim
Creator: Topeka Capital
Date: November 27, 1917
This article from the Topeka Capital details the efforts of Mennonites to receive an exemption from wartime service during World War I due to their religious views.


Robert Heike to Arthur Capper

Robert Heike to Arthur Capper
Creator: Heike, Robert J.
Date: May 4, 1918
This letter from Robert Heike, Jr., pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, Lydia, Kansas, to Kansas Governor Arthur Capper of Topeka, addresses the use of the German language during church services. Heike explains that the local War Committee has asked that church services conducted in German be stopped, and he would like to know if a federal law exists prohibiting services in languages other than English.


To register all

To register all
Creator: Topeka Journal
Date: January 3, 1918
This article published in the Topeka Journal covers the decision to register all non-naturalized German Americans in cities with a population of over 5,000.


U.S. commissioner drops Schrag case

U.S. commissioner drops Schrag case
Creator: Newton Evening Kansan-Republica
Date: December 27, 1918
This article, published in the the Newton Evening Kansan-Republican, covers the case of Burton, Kansas, resident John Schrag. Schrag, a wealthy farmer of German ancestry, was accused of violating the Espionage Act because he refused to salute the American flag.


Use tar and feathers

Use tar and feathers
Creator: McPherson Daily Republican
Date: April 23, 1918
This article published in the McPherson Daily Republican details the tarring and feathering of D.A. Diener and George Cooprider. Diener and Cooprider, both German Americans, were accused of disloyal speech. As a result, a mob traveled to the Cooprider home in Groveland Township, and tarred and feathered Cooprider after his father refused to buy Liberty Bonds unless the government forced him to. Following the assault on Cooprider, the mob traveled to Diener's home in Spring Valley and applied "the same treatment" to him after he admitted to removing an American flag from the church he attended.


Von Hindenburg, U.S.A., would fight relative

Von Hindenburg, U.S.A., would fight relative
Creator: Topeka Capital
Date: June 1, 1918
This article published in the Topeka Capital details the difficulties of Paul Frederick von Hindenburg, nephew of German Field Marshall Paul von Hindenburg. Hindenburg's request for naturalization was denied by the U.S. Army largely because of his family ties to Field Marshall von Hindenburg, as well as his service in the German Army prior to coming to the U.S.


W.J.Rumold to the Adjutant General of Kansas

W.J.Rumold to the Adjutant General of Kansas
Creator: Kansas. Governor (1915-1919: Capper)
Date: March 11, 1918
Letter from W. J. Rumold to the Adjutant General of Kansas. Rumold, Captain of the Hope State Guards, is writing in regards to newspaper reports that indicated that the U.S. government had asked Kansas Governor Arthur Capper to look into the activities of the Nonpartisan League (NPL). The Nonpartisan League, a socialist group active throughout the mid-west from 1915 to 1956, was primarily supported by small farmers. In the letter, Rumold contends that the NPL has gained a great deal of support from German Americans in his area. Consequently, he states that "a thorough investigation of the Non Partisan League in this community [Hope, Kansas] should be had."


Watch alien women. Must stay away from all restricted zones

Watch alien women. Must stay away from all restricted zones
Creator: Topeka Capital
Date: September 19, 1918
This article published in the Topeka Capital covers the decision to restrict the movement of non-naturalized German American women in Topeka, Kansas, as long as the U.S. was at war with Germany. Non-naturalized women living in, or near, restricted zones were required to obtain a permit from the U.S. Marshall's office in order to continue to reside or conduct business in the restricted zones.


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