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Cedar Rapids Gazette (Newspaper) - July 7, 1974, Cedar Rapids, Iowa By Judy Daubenmicr Ever since the first Czech people came to Cedar Rapids in 1854, the Czech language and heritage has been taught here and passed on from parent to child. In the early years, parents who spoke the language naturally passed it on to their children using Czech newspapers and family Bibles. The teaching of the language continues now for the first five weeks of the summer in Hayes elementary school. Mrs. Jerry Drahovzal and Mrs. Charles Kurka, teachers at the Czech school, believe the tradition, while it may have experienced lean years in the past, is experiencing a resurgence. “We don't really have a record of when they started teaching Czech,” Mrs. Drahovzal said. “But we are sure parents started teaching children from newspapers and Bibles soon after the first Czechs came here in 1854. “They did meet in church basements and store fronts to teach Czech. “The first record of a teacher being hired to teach Czech was in 1870.104 years ago.” “At that time, the parents knew how to speak Czech. When those children came home with lessons, they had help,” she said. By 1901, the women of the Czech community decided the number of Czech students warranted a school building. The Czech school, at Second street and Ninth avenue SW, was built that year, according to Mrs. Drahovzal, and it is believed to be the first building in the United States intended to be a Czech school. She has found old bills from the women'9 Parent-Teacher Assn. for purchasing soap at a nickel a bar and brooms for a quarter to clean the building. The structure later became unsafe and was converted to a meat market. Enrollment has varied from over 200 in some years to Judy Daubenmier VA Representative To Be I Assigned to Kirkwood Kirkwood Community college I “We think the program will here will be assigned one of the speed up benefit checks. 12 field representatives for Iowa iro.n out P™b!<™s f°r individual I veterans and provide answers j to many of their questions about I I the GI bill.” said Culberson. Culberson said one of the J worst problems for student vet- under the new “VA Men on Campus” program. Dean Culberson, coordinator of veterans affairs at Kirkwood, said the representatives will join I erans is late receipt of monthly the Kirkwood staff about Aug. benefits. The new VA represent- j I. The Veterans Administration ative at Kirkwood will have! is providing training for some access to a telephone system 1,300 veterans for the new pro- linked to VA Headquarters, gram this summer.    The    VA    is assigning represen- j The new VA program was or-1 tatives to all colleges and uni- j dered by the U.S. Office of Man-1 versifies with more than 500 agement and Budget. The prime veterans enrolled. Kirkwood’s1 purpose of the program is to enrollment of veterans was 809 locate trained VA agents on last spring, college campuses with high Culberson estimated that vet-, populations of ex-servicemen to J erans at Kirkwood received over assist the veterans with prob- $2 miiion in GI bill benefits lems. )    :    during the 1973-74 school year. • Dear Genie: Editor’s Note: “Dear Genie” is prepared under the auspices of the Linn County Heritage society. Questions should have an Iowa connection, must be kept to a 50-word limit and clearly printed or typed. They will be published on a space-available basis. They should be sent directly to Dear Genie. P.O. Box 175, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, 52406. Names and addresses must be included because readers who can help will send answers directly to the questioner. Dear Genie, Would like information on McCloud family burials in northeast Cedar Rapids. In early 1900s there were stones in an area bounded by Coldstream avenue on the north. J avenue on the south. Shaver park on the west and the Illinois Central railroad tracks on the east. Were these burials moved? Where to? Or what became of the stones. Mrs. H. R. Wennermark, 746 Old Marion road NE, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, 52402. * * * Arthur Wade Chapman born Sept. 6. 1866, in O’Brien county, Iowa; married Sarah Eilena Waterman on Feb. 28, 1887. Where? He died Feb. 24.1931, in Hewitt, Todd county, Minnesota. Mrs. Charles A. Russell, 1445 Queens Summit drive, West Covina. Calif., 91790. *    *    * We are trying to locate the burial site of one Adrian, Ad- ren or Andrew Dawes who died at Fairview, Iowa, July 31, 1881. His first wife, Amarilis Cogswell Keith Dawes, is buried at Quincy, Mich., where a daughter, Jane L. Freeman, lived. Second wife, Catharine C. Kirby, buried in the Marion, Iowa, cemetery. Have found land transactions for Adren (Andrew) and Catharine Dawes in Fairview around 1880, so know they lived there. James L. Watson, 11825 Wakely plaza Apt. 5, Omaha, Neb., 68154. *    *    * Seek information concerning parents, brothers and sisters of great-grandfather Benjamin Franklin Henson, born 1823 Harrison county, Kv. Died 1890 rn Warren county, Iowa. Lived somewhere in Illinois before coming to Iowa in 1853. Where? Mrs. R. L Mayes, 410 North First street, Greenfield, Iowa, 50849 * * * James, son of Samuel and Hannah Bowman of Eldora, Iowa, married Emma Stewart When and where? There was a son Clarence and a daughter Blanche who married a Mr. Ford and then a Mr. Conger. I believe the Fords had a child. Did these families remain in the Eldora area? Would welcome any help in locating descendants. Mrs. M E. Bowman, R.R. 5, Columbia City, Ind., 46725. ♦    *    * Wish information about John L. Lingel (LingleI and wife Rose A. Becher, both German. Sons: George Washington, Feb. 13. 1831, Hancock county, Iud , wife Susan Winebargee, 1836, North Carolina; William R , Feb. 7, 1854, in Illinois, wife Susan, May 2, 1853, in Maine. Daughter Emma, Oct. 26, 1381, Green Island. Iowa; husband James Ross Craig, May 22, 1876, Eldora, Iowa. II. J. Dobrowolski, 503 Gardenia, Cheyenne, Wyo., 82001. Big Eating for Gray Squirrels about 15 in others. This year, 63 children ages 7 to 14 attended. Seven students were graduated last week. Tuition is $t for the first child, 50 cents for additional one?. The school is run by the Czech school board, composed of delegates from the Western Fraternal Lodge, the Czech Society, Sokol. Catholic Workmen, and Damska Matice Skolska. The organizations also contribute financial support. The Cedar Rapids Community school district allows the school to use Hayes school rent-free. Teaching techniques have had to change over the years, according to Mr?. Drahovzal. who has taught at the school ! about seven years and recalls attending as a child. When she was a student at the Czech school, the teachers could simply speak to the children in Czech because many already had a good understanding of the language. “Now we have to translate everything,” she said. While those children had Czech newspapers and magazines to read, Mrs. Drahovzal said today’s Czech speaking people have only two newspapers and one magazine in the United States to choose from. “The problem is they can’t get typesetters who can set type in Czech,” she said. Emphasis is on the language’s vocabulary, and pronunciation on writing and translating it. History and heritage are worked in naturally with the language study. Czechoslovakian dolls, books, Christmas and Easter cards, and records are also used to stimulate interest. Mrs. Kurka is able to give the youngsters some firsthand information on Czechoslovakia since she visited there in 1938 with her mother for five months. She attended school there a short time. The 63 children who attended Czech school this year came from various backgrounds, including a girl who is a mixture of Japanese and Czech. Other youngsters had Scandinavian and German heritages. “Some with no Czech back ground did very well,” Mrs. Kurka said, who taught children from ages 7 to ll. “If they pay attention Czech is probably easier to learn than English.” “Czech is pronounced exactly as it is written,’’ Mrs. Drahovzal said, who taught the older children, “lf you learn the alphabet, you can never go wrong. There is one pronunciation for each letter. It only varies if it has a different type of mark over the letter.” Mrs. Kurka said study of the Czech language helps youngsters who plan to study other languages because they have become accustomed to the sound of a language other than English. “Once they’ve had another language, it’s just that much easier to grasp another language,’’ Mrs. Kurka said. “The youngsters had to listen carefully for the difference in words.” She often pronounced words which sound similar and had the children give the English meaning in order to train their ears. The parents, according to the teachers, are still interested in preserving the Czech language and heritage. “I think there’s a renewed interest in ethnic backgrounds. A few years ago there were no ‘hyphenated Americans’— Polish-Americans, Irish-Americans, Czech-Amerieans,” Mrs. Kurka said. “Now we’re back to being proud of it. Everyone has such a beautiful heritage.” Mrs. Drahovzal remembers times when youngsters wanted to hide their Czech heritage and divorce themselves from their parents’ language and customs in order to avoid ridicule from other youngsters. “We went through a time when we were called terrible names which I won’t repeat. You just didn’t admit to going to Czech school. When we walked to school, other children would yell, ‘They’re going to Bohemie school.’ “I really resented going to school the last couple years I went. Now I’m glad I went. I realize it all served a good purpose.” She said she just “kind of slipped into teaching at the Czech school. I never in my life dreamed I would be teaching in the Czech school, but I do enjoy it.” T e a c h e r s are becoming . harder to find. The school this year had only two classes, while in the past it has had three. SOME OF the students in this summer's Czech school are shown in these four pictures. Taking a look at the camera above is Chris-Ann Hikiji, 193 Seventeenth avenue SW. Below is Jeff Bean, 6016 Sharon lane NW. ELKINS, W. Va. (UPI)—Fifty pounds of peanuts will be delivered shortly to the West Virginia capitol in Charlestown to feed the “nut-cracking popcorn-fetching, peanut-beggmg” gray squirrel population. Three city councilmen have agreed to bankroll the cost of the resolution adopted by the state senate that urged the de partment of natural resources to “adequately house, water and feed” the squirrels. The resolution, sponsored by Sen. Richard Benson (D-Ran-dolph) said, “these nut-crack-ing, papcorn-fetchjng, peanut-oegging, furry frolickers have ! of late suffered from instances of neglect on the part of homo sapiens.” When you give a Keepsake, you make tho occasion doubly special, because there is no finer diamond ring. Keepsake’s famous Guarantee is your assurance of perfect clarity, fine white color and precise cut. luke Months to Buy, I sr Smulekoff’s Budget Account, Open Monday Night Yd () SMULEKOFF’S Jewelry Department, Main Hour YOUR AUTHORIZED KEEPSAKE JEWELER —Gazette Photos bv Tom Merryman Shery! Kokoska 1212 K street SW Persons who taught before have had to quit because of age or health problems. Mrs. Drahovzal said she is now grooming a 15-year-old girl who has graduated from the school and whose grandparents speak Czech to handle the youngest children next summer. Mrs, Kurka suggested interest in cultural heritage will increase as the country approaches its bicentennial celebration in 1976. The Czech school, she said, is not the only organization preserving the Czech heritage. She has volunteered to help in the Cedar Rapids Community school district's ethnic awareness program for third graders, Pictures in Our Mirids, which examines stereotypes of ethnic groups. Children in one Cedar Rapids school she visited were not familiar with Czechs, but “they all knew about ko-laches.” Kirkwood Community college's arts and sciences divi sion is applying for a $23,000 federal grant to develop a Czech heritage study program for grades seven through higher education. The College Community school district may participate in that program. The Czech school and the two public school projects not only preserve the heritage, but try to spread an appreciation or acceptance of the entire culture (not just ko-laehes) to those who do not have Czech blood in their veins. Lisa Drahos 2603 Brookland drive NE ULEKOFFS Open Monday 2Vt acres of everything for the home    /Niynr Drapery Dept., 2nd Floor    til    9 NOW! 20% off Made-to-Measure Draperies, Sheers and Toptreatments. Not only do you Save 20% on Custom Made-to-Measure Draperies and Sheers, but you Save 20% on elegant Toptreatments. such as swags, jabots, cascades & austrians. Rarely will you find such an incredible offer. Smulekoff's and Carole fabrics offers you made-to-measure draperies that are true custom made and not simply made to size. These are draperies that arevuperb in quality and workmanship. You'll find the answer to your window treatment problem in the impressive collection of fabric colors, patterns, and textures. But even more exciting, is the 20% savings on distinctive toptreatments that give your rooms and home a touch of elegance. Visit Smulekoff's this week and take advantage of the 20% savings on new draperies made to fit your windows with a ‘ special touch ", We ll gladly measure your windows for you and provide fabric ^^^^^^^ampJesjandGdleco^ School Aim: Preserving Czech Language, Heritage ;

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