"Mardi Gras in Germany = Karnival / Fasching / Fastnacht" with Kathlyn Hofmann on Sunday, January 29, 2012 at 2pm at the German American Heritage Center, 712 W. 2nd St. Davenport, IA, 52802, for more information call 563-322-8844 or visit www.gahc.org. Free with admission.

Everyone has heard of Carnival in Rio and Mardi Gras in New Orleans, but unless you've been in Germany in February, you probably didn't know that many regions have traditions, celebrations, and parades every year leading up to the beginning of Lent. This slide and video presentation will acquaint you with Karnival in Cologne on the Rhine and Fastnacht in the Black Forest. Kathlyn lived in Germany for 27 years teaching German and ESL for the DoDEA School System. Since 2009, she has taught several beginning and intermediate German language classes at the GAHC.


Easter Traditions in Germany presented by Kathlyn Hofmann.
Sunday February 26, 2012 at 2pm at the German American Heritage Center, 712 W. 2nd St., Davenport, IA 52802.

This presentation will acquaint you with German Easter traditions - some similar - some different from the way Easter is celebrated in the USA. Special highlight is a series of slides: "Osterbrunnen," elaborately decorated wells and fountains found in the Franconia area of northern Bavaria. Kathlyn lived in Germany for 27 years teaching German and ESL for the DoDEA School System. Since 2009, she has taught several beginning and intermediate German language classes at the GAHC. Free with admission.

Davenport- Beginning Sunday January 8th 2012, the German American Heritage Center, 712 West Second Street, Davenport, Iowa, will be featuring the exhibit "The White Rose." The exhibit explores one of Germany's most famous civilian resistance groups, formed by a small group of university students in Munich during 1941-42. The leaders were brother and sister Hans and Sophie Scholl and friends. Using only their ingenuity and youthful fearlessness, they outwitted the Nazis to issue several leaflets that urged their fellow students and citizens of Munich to resist Nazi tyranny. These leaflets were the first to print accusations that the Nazis were systematically
exterminating Jews and other minorities. Nearly all of the original White Rose students and their professor Kurt Huber were captured after a furious Gestapo manhunt, given a sham trial, and then brutally executed. After the war the Scholl's sister, Inge, worked diligently to tell the story of the sacrifice made by the group. Sophie Scholl has been voted the "most admired woman in German history" in  numerous public polls for decades.

This record of civil and personal courage is one of the brightest spots during a very dark time; you will be heartened and astonished to learn how it unfolded. This exhibit comes to GAHC on a national tour from the White Rose Foundation in Munich. GAHC's partner in this exhibit and companion programming is the Jewish Federation of the Quad Cities.

"An Iowa Christmas Story" with Michael Zahs, Sunday November 20th, 2011 starting at 2p.m. at the German American Heritage Center, 712 West Second St. Davenport, IA 52802 563-322-8844, www.gahc.org. Free with admission.

Celebrate "An Iowa Christmas Story" with Michael Zahs at the German American Heritage Center. Michael is a two time winner of the "Iowa Teacher of the Year" Award and enjoys using stories and artifacts to bring the past to life. He does this so well that in 2010 the NEA named him one of the top 38 teachers in the country! Using his collection of over 30 holiday items, some from his personal 200 year family history in Iowa, you will learn how Christmas has been celebrated in our state since 1808, and how our state has grown and benefitted from its ethnic richness.
Milena Oda from the International Writers Program at the University of Iowa will talk about her work and experiences both in Germany and in Iowa on Sunday, October 16, starting at 2:00 p.m. at the German American Heritage Center, 712 W. 2nd St., Davenport, Iowa.

This program is free for members and free for nonmembers with a paid museum admission.

Milena Oda was born in Czechoslovakia and now works in Berlin as an editor, translator and journalist for Radio WDR, Der Freitag, Prager Zeitung, Literární noviny, and others. Her play Mehr als Meer was staged at the Central European Theatre Festival and at the 2009 Forum of Independent Theatre Groups in Alexandria.  Oda is the recipient of the 2007 Marguerite d'Or in Vienna, and was nominated for the 2007 Ingeborg-Bachmann award.

Her work, in German, Czech, and English, has been featured in the Top-22 Anthology, Ostragehege, Labyrint Revue, Lauter Niemand, Volltext, and Contact.  In 2010 she published her first novel, Ich heisse Diener [Call Me Servant]. She participates in the International Writers Program courtesy of the Max Kade Foundation.

Find out more about her at www.milenaoda.com.


Sunday, September 25, 2011, starting at 1:00 p.m. at the German American Heritage Center, 712 W. 2nd Street, Davenport, Iowa,


This program presents an overview of German influence in the Davenport area schools, as well as a look at what resources are available to the public at the Davenport School Museum.  The presentation provides a look at some of the people with German heritage who made contributions to the development of education in this area and how settlement patterns influenced the development of the school system.  Not only was Davenport the site of Iowa's first kindergarten in the late 1860s, but the Davenport schools' introduction of drawing, physical education, and music classes in the mid- to late 1800s and the offering of "modern" foreign language (German) in 1867 were cutting-edge concepts in Midwestern schools and were all influenced by German Americans.  This presentation will include educators, students, and members of the public who have played a role in education in the Davenport area.  In addition to the program there will be a display featuring people of German ancestry who were important in the development ofDavenport area schools, some school artifacts, early student work, the history of the Kuhnen Medal, and some records of earlyDavenport schools that can help you trace some family history.  Jim Schebler personally found records for his father, aunts, and uncles at Polk School in the early 1900s.  He hadn't known that they attended that school at 8th and Marquette, along with many other students of German ancestry in that area of Davenport.  Who knows what you might find in the old school records?

Jim and Maureen Schebler have had a lifelong interest in history, especially local and regional history.  Maureen graduated from Marycrest College in Davenport with majors in social studies and secondary education.  Jim graduated from St. AmbroseCollege with majors in political science and secondary education.

In high school and college Maureen was employed in a variety of positions in the Davenport Public Library.  After spending time as a stay-at-home mom in the early years of their marriage, Maureen was employed by the Davenport Public Schools as a para-educator in media.

Jim was employed by the Rock Island Public Schools for 39 years as a teacher of social studies.  After his retirement, he was employed as a part-time instructor in the Education Department at Augustana College in Rock Island for 10 years.  He taught the secondary social studies methods course and also worked with the supervision of student teachers.  Several articles that he has co-authored have been published in the Illinois History Teacher magazine.

Today Jim and Maureen are volunteers at the Davenport School Museum and have been working on digitalizing items in the collection of the Museum and preparing presentations based on these collections.

Red apples and yellow pencils will be given out at the beginning of this program while supplies last.

Davenport, IA?Award-winning filmmakers Tammy and Kelly Rundle will appear with their documentary film Country School: One Room - One Nation at the German American Heritage Center, 712 West Second Street, Davenport, Iowa on Sunday, September 25, 2011 at 1:00 p.m. The program will feature a special presentation on German influences in Davenport schools by Jim Schebler from the Davenport Community Schools Museum followed at 2:00 p.m. by the documentary film and Q&A with the filmmakers. Apples and pencils will be given out on a first-come basis to attendees. This program is free for members and free with admission to the GAHC museum for non-members.

From immigration issues in early schools to the controversial demise of their widespread use in the 1950s and 1960s, Country School: One Room - One Nation combines visually stunning images of a myriad of restored and decaying buildings?including one designed by Frank Lloyd Wright?with surprising, humorous, and heartwarming stories from former teachers and students. More than just nostalgia, Country School also delves into the dark side of the one-room school experience and dispels the myths behind the revered institution that helped bind a young nation together.

Quad City Times film critic Linda Cook gave the film 4-out-of-4 stars and wrote: "Another documentary gem...vivid and fascinating."

Film reviewer Mike Schulz of the River Cities Reader wrote, "Country School emerges as a definitive portrait of education in a one-room environment, a work that's every bit as informative, engaging and impassioned as those telling its tales."

Country School: One Room - One Nation premiered at the State Historical Building in Des Moines in November 2010 and has been screening throughout the U.S. ever since. The DVD was released regionally in March and a national DVD release is scheduled in the fall through the Passion River Films. Midwestern PBS broadcasts are planned for Country School in 2012.

The filmmakers previously produced the award-winning documentaries Lost Nation: The Ioway and Villisca: Living with a Mystery. They are currently in production on the documentaries Movie Star: The Secret Lives of Jean Seberg and the sequel Lost Nation: The Ioway 2 & 3.

Country School: One Room - One Nation was funded in part by Humanities Iowa, the Kansas Humanities Council, the Wisconsin Humanities Council, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and Silos and Smokestacks National Heritage Area.