Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Pennsylvania German Friends Meeting

Pennsilfaanisch Deitsch Freind

Pennsylvania German Friends

Monthly Meeting

The next monthly meeting will be held on Thursday, June 17 at 7 p.m. in Allentown. We will discuss various topics as a group, then break for conversation and refreshments. A business meeting follows.

Meetings are held at St. Peter's Lutheran Church, 1933 Hanover Avenue, Allentown. All are welcome and the meetings are free.

The Pennsylvania German Friends organization meets the third Thursday of each month at the church, with the exception of
May, and the summer months, July and August. Parking is available in lot across Tacoma Street; use ground floor “Office” entrance.

See previous blogs posts below for more details.
For further information, call 610-264-2979.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Pennsylvania German Friends invite Public to Two Upcoming Events

The Pennsylvania German Friends will host two events featuring presentations by experts in local “Dutch” culture. On Thursday, April 15, Will Hahn, an auctioneer from the Bath area, will give a presentation in the Pennsylvania German or “Dutch” dialect at the regular monthly meeting. Saturday, April 17, is the deadline for purchasing tickets for the second event, the group’s 19th Annual Fersammling to be held on May 1st this year.

The April 15th meeting, free to the public, will be held at 7 pm at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church, 1933 Hanover Avenue, Allentown. Will Hahn will discuss some aspect of the “Dutch” dialect or traditions at that time. He spend his early years on a farm in the Nazareth area where the dialect was spoken by his family on a daily basis. After completing his education, he assumed a professorship at the Graduate School of East Stroudsburg University. Upon retirement from teaching, he started an auctioneer company, which he continues to this day. He is also the Haaptmann of Nummer Tzae Groundhog Lodge.

On Saturday, May 1, at 1 pm, the Pennsylvania German Friends will host their Annual Fersammling, also at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church. The Fersammling is a banquet, featuring traditional Pennsylvania German fare and an address in the dialect. Speaking “Dutch” is not a requirement to attend and enjoy the event. The cost is $18.00 per person. Please call 610-264-2979 by Saturday, April 17th for tickets.

Mr. Richard Miller, who teaches a Pennsylvania German course at The Institute for Learning in Retirement at Cedar Crest College, will be the guest speaker at the Fersammling. He grew up in the New Tripoli area at a time when most residents spoke the dialect on a regular basis. After completing his schooling which included undergraduate and graduate degrees in the German Language, he chaired the foreign language department at Allen High and later became a German Professor at Kutztown University. To help preserve the dialect and culture, he served as Unnerhaaptmann for Groundhog Lodge Nummer Aens for several years and has spoken before many other groups in the dialect.

The Pennsylvania German Friends organization meets the third Thursday of each month at the church, with the exception of May, and the summer months, July and August. Parking available in lot across Tacoma Street; use ground floor “Office” entrance. For further information, call 610-264-2979.

Friday, March 26, 2010

The Twentieth Century in the Lehigh Valley

The Twentieth Century brought profound changes for all peoples in the Lehigh Valley, but more so for the rural Pennsylvania German communities. The following, written in the dialect, “die Mudderschprooch,” is an explanation of those changes.

Die Zeide henn ge-ennert

“Alles dutt sich ennere do,
Nix bleibt immer so wie nau;
Was em Freht macht, bleibt net so,
Watt gaar arrig ball hatt un rau.”

Der herrnhuter Lehrer Emanuel Rondthaler hot sell im Yaahr 1835 in seim Gedicht “Maryets un Owets” gschriwwe. Verleicht kann mir en Dischbedaat fer die letschde zwee Zeile hawwe, awwer fer die Aerschde iss es die ganz Waahret fer die deitsche Leit vum Lechaa Daal im 20 Yohrhunnert.

Der Emanuel waar vun Naazrett im Lechaa Daal un mei Eldre un ich aa sin gebore un sin uffgwaxe in de Gegende, as um selli gleeni Schtadt rumgelegge henn. Wann ebber im Busch rumfaahre deet im Yaahre wann mei Eldre am Uffwaxe waare, un zume Greitzweg keemt wu er links, recht odder darrich em faahre kennt; kennt er’s uffs Graadwohl nemme un er deet die menscht Zeit Bauereie sehne. Heitesdaags sehne mir viele Heiser wu eemols Felder vumme Bauerei waare, odder druff selli iss en Factory gebaut warre. Un wann mir Felder mit Frucht sehne, iss es gwehnlich net en Familyebauerei, awwer Land as en Gsellschaft eegent.

Mei Eldre henn allebeed deitsche Eldre ghatt un sin uff en Familyebauereie uffgwaxe, wu sie deheem un mit ihre Nochbere die Deitsch gschwetzt henn. Mei Mudder hot mich verzehlt as ihre Daadi als gsaagt hett, wann en Kind fimf Yaahr alt waer, “ Neegscht Yaahr muss du am Schul geh, nau iss es Zeit fer die Englisch lanne.” Weil ee Onkel die Englisch net gut glannt hot, hot er viel Druwwel im Schul ghatt. Weeich sellem henn mei Eldre immer Englisch zu mir un meine Gschwischder gschwetzt. “Siss en englischi Welt nau,” hot mei Mudder gsaat un ich hab net zu vieli Deitsch aus ihrem Maul gheert. Awwer mei Daadi hot als die Deitsch mit seine Freinde un annre Freindschaft gschwetzt.

In mein Daadi seim Familye henn sie Deitsch un Englisch geyuust; awwer die menschdi, Deitsch. Un sie henn aa es alt deitsch Baueres uffghalde. Wann Naazrett ihre 200 Yaehrlichfescht im Yaahr 1940 ghatt hot; hot mei Grossdaadi en Esel un Weggli zum Fairgrounds genumme un hot die Schtadtleit en Reid um em Racetrack rum gewwe. Er hot immer mit Geil gschaft; er hot net ken Tractor gebraucht. Die Geil waare gut genunk fer sei Voreldre un sie waare gut genunk fer ihn. Verleicht hot er aa gsaagt, “Loss uns Deitsche was mir sin!”

Ya, alles hot ge-ennert do. Mir sehne net Familyebauereie all iwwer die Busch un mir heere net unser deitschi Schprooch wann mir schtoppe un mit de Bauere schwetze. Siss en englischi Welt nau. Awwer Deel vun uns eldere Deitsche browiere die Mudderschprooch lanne un mir leese es alt deitsch Schreiwes un die Gedichde un schwetze die Deitsch en bissel fer unser Mudderschprooch un Kultur in Ehr uffzuhalde. Un sell iss net “arrig ball hatt un rau.” Sell is siess! “Was du vun deine Eldre ge-erbt hoscht, verdien es, fer es besitze.” (von Goethe).

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Easter on the Farm - Saturday, March 27, in Kutztown

Dear Friends,

Below I have pasted a copy of a message I received from John Barker, a member of the Pennsilfaanisch Deitsch Freind organization. He is telling us about an event to take place this Saturday, March 27, on the grounds of the Pennsylvania German Cultural Heritage Center at Kutztown University. Our great friends Paul and Doris Kunkel will be participating. We enjoyed seeing them at our last meeting, and appreciated Paul's presentation, along with member Gloria's simultaneous translation into English.

Here is John's message:

You might want to pass this along to our club members. Paul & Doris Kunkel will be there demonstrating how the PA Germans used to dye eggs using onion skins. There will be lots of other interesting things as well. I will probably be there for the kids Easter Egg Hunt. Had a lot of fun last year.

Easter on the Farm

Be sure to visit us on March 27th, 2010 from 10am-4pm for Easter on the Farm. There will be activities for children such as an Easter Egg Hunt which will be ongoing throughout the day, and some Spring Time Games. There will be plenty of farm life demonstrations as well! Don't miss out on your chance to win a delicious basket of candy in our Easter Basket Raffle! The Old Time Plow Boys will have their tractors on site for your viewing pleasure. Vendors and crafters will be on site selling their wares. Food will be available for purchase. So, stop by for a day of family-friendly fun!

22 Luckenbill Road, Kutztown PA, 19530.

Here is a link to the Pennsylvania German Cultural Heritage Center at Kutztown University: