Traveling to Germany? Brush up on your German before you go! The German American Heritage Center will be offering German language classes starting in May. Join instructor Kathi Hofmann for a "German for Travelers" language series! The class will feature travel tips, food, hotel, touring basics and typical signage as encountered by the average American tourist.

The classes consist of four 90-minute sessions on May 3rd, 10th, 17th and 24th from 5:30-7pm and the cost is $50, payable by check to GAHC at 712 W 2nd St. Davenport, IA 52802. Register by April 23rd by calling Ruth at 563-322-8844 or emailing

The German American Heritage Center is offering German Language Classes to be held on twelve consecutive Thursdays beginning September 1 through November 17.


The Level l Beginning Class will be 5:00 - 6:30

The Level ll Advanced Class will be 7:00 - 8:30


The course is $95.00 for non GAHC members and$75.00 for GAHC members plus $20 for the textbook (members receive a 10% discount off books purchased at the GAHC.) 


Registrations are due by phone at (563)322-8844 or by email at by August 26.

The German American Heritage Center is offering German Language Classes to be held on twelve consecutive Thursdays beginning September 1 through November 17.


The Level l Beginning Class will be 5:00 - 6:30

The Level ll Advanced Class will be 7:00 - 8:30

The course is $95.00 for non GAHC members and$75.00 for GAHC members plus $20 for the textbook (members receive a 10% discount off books purchased at the GAHC.) 



Registrations are due by phone at (563)322-8844 or by email at by August 26.

The German American Heritage Center is offering German Language Classes to be held on twelve consecutive Thursdays beginning September 1 through November 17.


The Level l Beginning Class will be 5:00 - 6:30

The Level ll Advanced Class will be 7:00 - 8:30


The course is $95.00 for non GAHC members and$75.00 for GAHC members plus $20 for the textbook.


Registrations are due by phone at (563)322-8844 or by email at by August 26.

DAVENPORT, IOWA (February 18, 2010) Registrations are now being accepted for several new offerings at the German American Heritage Center & Museum in Davenport, Iowa. Staring this March, the museum will offer a 12-week German language classes, both for beginners and advanced learners. The cost is only $75 for members and $95 for nonmembers; and $20 for the language manual. The course begins March 23 and runs through June 15, meeting Tuesdays. German Level I meets from 5 - 6:30 p.m. and German Level II meets from 7 - 8:30 p.m.

The museum is also offering an in depth 4-week Scherenschnitte:German Art of Paper Cutting Workshop in May. The workshop meets every Saturday from 2 - 4 p.m. starting May 1 and ending May 22. This class is perfect for any experience level. The cost is $40 for museum members or $55 for nonmembers. The workshop supply cost is $10. Germans settling in Pennsylvania created paper cuttings which were used for marriage and birth certificates, Christmas ornaments, home decoration, or simply for the joy of creating art. Many other groups have cutting styles unique to their regions: Jewish, Polish, Dutch, Chinese, Mexican and Japanese paper cutting. The workshop will be conducted by Cynthia Deitch who has been paper cutting for several years.

Also, the museum is hosting a bus trip and tour to historic Kalona, Iowa on Monday, May 3 1800's when you visit the Historical Village with its 13 authentically restored buildings. As you leave behind the stress of today's world, expect to be refreshed and invigorated with many insights into the deeply abiding family values, work and unpretentious lifestyles. Throughout the day the group will travel the scenic back-roads and experience Amish way of life. Participants will explore Kalona Historic Village and Quilt & Textile Museum and enjoy a visit to the bakery, shops and general store. During the trip, participants will also have an opportunity to watch a live horse auction as well. Also view some magnificent, hand-stitched Amish quilts and watch demonstrations such as noodle making and cheese making, and traditional crafts including woodworking. Lunch will be in a farm house and served family style. Lunch will include roast beef, noodles, mashed potatoes and gravy, bread, relish, pies and ice tea or coffee. To reserve your spot for the trip, call 563-322-8844 before April 26.

Additional bus trips are planned throughout the year including a trip to German Fest in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on July 24, a trip to Mustard Museum in Middleton, Wisconsin on October 16, and a trip to the Christmas Market in Chicago, Illinois in December.

Several additional programs and events are also scheduled for the spring and are free to museum members or free with paid admission. The programs and events can be viewed at The German American Heritage Center & Museum is located at 712 West 2nd Street in Davenport, Iowa.

The Mission of the German American Heritage Center & Museum is to preserve and enrich for present and future generations knowledge of the German immigrant experience and its impact on the American Culture. The museum also focuses on cultural programs and immigrant contributions and partnerships with other heritage groups. They seek to reach out to other cultural groups and demonstrate the contributions immigrants from many countries and from varied backgrounds have made to the ethnic palette which is the United States. 


Volksmarch and VW Auto Show


Saturday, 2 May 2009

At the German American Heritage Center

Hosted By:

The German American Heritage Center &

The Greater Des Moines Volkssports Association

Featuring the Davenport Farmer's Market & The Bi-State Volkswagon Club Classic Auto Show

Volksmarch Information:

5K (3.1 Mile) & 10 K (6.2 Mile)

Non-Competitive Walk

Start/Finish Point: German American Heritage Center,712 W. 2nd Street,Davenport, Iowa 52802

Start Times: 8:00 AM to Noon. Finish: by 4:00 PM.

Trail Rating: The trail is rated a "1+". The route will follow city sidewalks and the paved bike path along the Mississippi River. This year the walk features a classic VW Car Show on the GAHC grounds and the Davenport Farmer's Market! The market closes at noon, so be there early!

Pets: Pets must be leashed and under control at all times.  Pets are not allowed inside buildings.

Award: A GAHC "B" Award will be available.

Refreshments/Restrooms: Water will be available at the start/finish location. In warm weather, it is always a good idea to carry water.  Restrooms are available at the turn-around point.

Eligibility: This event is open to everyone and family participation is encouraged.  All events are noncompetitive.  You participate at your own pace.  Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult.

Registration: Registration for this event takes place at the GAHC start location beginning at 8:00 a.m.  The fee for participants seeking only walk credit is $3.00.  A "B" award is available from the GAHC gift shop for $6. Those who desire neither award nor credit may walk for $2.00.  Every person must register and begin with a walk card. The event will be held regardless of the weather and there will be no refunds in case of bad weather.

Stipulations: With registration for this event the participants accept the guidelines for AVA Volkssports events and agree to observe the principles of good sportsmanship.  All walkers must sign a Waiver and Release of Liability.

Contact: Michael Hustedde

c/o GAHC

712 W. Second Street

Davenport, Iowa  52802



VW Auto Show Information:

The Bi-State Volkswagen Club is based in the Quad Cities area on the border of Illinois and Iowa.  We are a non-profit club formed to encourage and promote VW driving, restoration, and all around Volkswagen FUN.  Whatever your STYLE, be it stock, custom, or race-radical you will find others who know where you are coming from (or where to find the parts to get you there).  Ownership is NOT essential; ENTHUSIASM IS.  Club membership is open to anyone interested in VWs and is reasonably priced at $10.00 per year for a family membership.  Membership includes a monthly newsletter, a club window sticker, and discounted auto parts through FOREIGN CAR PARTS.  Club meetings are normally held on the second Sunday of each month.   Times and meeting places vary depending on the planned activity.  Everyone is welcome and encouraged to participate at any and all meetings, events,functions, and activities.


Bi-State VW Club
Attn: Phil Vernon
237 W. 46th Street
Davenport, IA 52806

Oberammergau Passion Play and the Bavarian Alps: A look into the 375 year old play and its region,19 April 2009 at 2:00 p.m. at the German American Heritage Center, 712 W 2nd Street, Davenport, IA.

On Sunday, April 19, 2009 at 2:00 p.m. the German American Heritage Center will host a program on the Oberammergau Passion Play and the Bavarian Alps, with guest speaker Werner Schafer-Junger.

The history of the Oberammergau Passion Play began when the people of Oberammergau, a village located in Bavaria, Germany, made an oath in 1633 to perform the play every ten years. The oath came about after months of suffering and death in the middle of the Thirty Years War, one of the most destructive conflicts in European history, while the worst pandemic in human history, the "Black Death" plague, was running its course. In 1633, the village of Oberammergau, swore that they would perform the "Play of the Suffering, Death and Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ" every ten years if they were spared from the plague. At Pentecost 1634, the villagers kept their promise for the first time on a stage built over the fresh graves of the plague victims. In the year 2010 the Oberammergau Passion Play will once more be performed by more than 2,000 Oberammergauers, lasting six hours.

Do not miss the chance to learn about the extraordinary Oberammergau Passion Play and its regional history at the German American Heritage Center, April 19 at 2:00 p.m.

Native born German woman to give talk at the German American Heritage Center.

Don't miss this eye opening program on the history, politics, and emotions behind the Berlin Wall by a native born German, Anette Isaacs, and her work with Elderhostels on Sunday,April 26th at 1:00 p.m.

This year marks the 20th Anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Hear an exciting lecture that presents a historical and political overview of this very painful, but also miraculous period in Berlin's captivating history. Also find out about the world's largest non-profit educational travel organization for adults, Elderhostels.

Instructor: German born and raised, Anette Isaacs did her graduate work at Emory University, Georgia, the University of Vienna and at the Free University in Berlin. She holds a Master´s Degree in American Studies, Political Science, and History. Her vast knowledge about her native country's history, culture, society, and politics will undoubtedly be insightful for anyone interested in Germany.

Are You Interesting In Researching Your Family History But Don't Know Where To Start?


Come to the German American Heritage Center's Beginning Genealogy Classes starting this Thursday, April 2nd at 6:30 p.m. to begin the journey to your family's past!


The following topics will be covered during the six weeks of class:

  • Beginning Your Research? - Importance of Record Keeping
  • Documenting Your Research:  Primary & Secondary Sources
  • Finding Information by Contacting Relatives
  • Library Research:  Determining What Library - What to Look for and How to Get it
  • Census Records: What They Are, What They Contain & Their Importance to My Research
  • Court House Records:  Types of Records & Where to Find Them

Instructor Scharlott Goettsch Blevins has taught genealogy classes for over 30 years, is past president of the Federation of Genealogical Societies, past president of the Iowa Genealogical Society, and member of many other organizations locally and nationally.  She has traveled throughout the country, England and Germany on extensive genealogical research trips.

ALL ETHIC GROUPS COVERED!  Beginning Genealogy Classes Thursdays:  April 2 - May 7   6:30 p.m.

Cost:  $50/person Non GAHC member - $45/person GAHC member; minimum 10 participants  - registration required.

Offered at the German American Heritage Center,712 West 2nd Street Davenport, IA 52802.

Contact (563) 322-8844 for more information

The German American Heritage Center will open an historical exhibit with a regional focus. By focusing on a forgotten institution of the mid-19th century,the German Free School, this exhibit will explore a forgotten idea.  The migrating Germans of the 1850s took their ideas with them, and opened Free German Schools in Austin, Texas, Madison, Wisconsin, and Davenport, Iowa.  But only in eastern Iowa did the school continue in its original form until the 1880s, and enjoyed an attempted revival and an influence until 1910.                       

"This exhibit tells us many things about the original German settlers of eastern Iowa, and their unique ideas about education which impacted public education of today," said Schar Blevins of the Center.

The exhibit traces the powerful ideas of the 1848er generation who moved to America, and Midwestern leaders such as Theodore Guelich who supported the founding of a German Free School in Davenport, in 1853.  Attention is placed on the early teachers who helped make the school a success by the early 1870s, and the interesting interaction of ideas on Iowa's public schools.  The final attempts by Emil Geisler to revive this concept in the 1890s are traced for the first time.

"This is the first time that the whole story has been described, with an analysis of historical forces invovled and the results," said Prof. William Roba, Scott Community College and Executive Director, Roba consulting.  He will be presenting an interpretive talk about the exhibit on April 5, 2009, at 2 P.M. at the German American Heritage Center.

Roba added, "this has been a fascinating project to research and develop, and our staff has done outstanding work with Glen Trute providing imaginative graphics, and student interns making this a truly interactive exhibit."  The GAHC has staged permanent exhibits on historical subjects, but this is the first one to travel to other museums in the Midwest.