Germantown History Events Planned at Garrison School Oct 23-24

The Hill Family of Walter, Russia, c.1902 in Walla Walla.

The Hill Family of Walter, Russia, c.1902 in Walla Walla.

“A Salute to the Heritage of Walla Walla’s Germans from Russia”

Editor’s Note: Click here to review the Walla Walla 2020 Germantown History Website

Friday, Oct. 23

1:00 Set up Germantown and Garrison School displays and memorabilia in the school cafeteria

2:00 Introductory talk on the Germans from Russia who settled around Garrison School from 1882-1920, many of whose descendants attended Garrison

2:45 Dedication of Germantown Sign at Garrison Creek Bridge

3:00 Historical Walking Tour of the Germantown Neighborhood

4:00 Garrison:  Introductions and Reminiscences—Honoring Members of the Classes of 1956-1960, Teachers, and Administrators

5:00 Displays & Dancing

6:00-9:00 Dinner & Party at Mill Creek Brew Pub (no-host)

Saturday, Oct 24

11:30 am to 5:00 pm Free Seminar on the History and Resources for Research on Walla Walla’s Germans from Russia

Noted Northwest genealogist Doris Eckhardt Evans of Almira, WA and the Big Bend chapter of AHSGR will be available during the day to assist researchers.

Free Seminar on the History and Resources for Research on Walla Walla’s Germans from Russia. Noted Northwest genealogist Doris Eckhardt Evans of Almira, WA and the Big Bend chapter of AHSGR will be available during the day to assist researchers.

11:30 am WELCOME and Introduction of Speakers and Guests

Charles Saranto of Walla Walla’s Blue Mountain Chapter of the American Historical Society of Germans from Russia (AHSGR) and on the National AHSGR Board.

11:45 pm “Catherine the Great’s Call to the Germans”   KEYNOTE

The “Germans from Russia” are a unique ethic group from Germany that sought freedom from oppressive rulers and an opportunity of self-determination by accepting the invitations to become colonists in tsarist Russia in the 18th century. These invitations included numerous special privileges as inducements. As the privileges were rescinded a century later – many immigrated to North and South America and the Pacific Northwest.

Speaker: Dr. Richard D. Scheuerman of Spanaway, Washington – Professor from Seattle Pacific University in Seattle and noted Northwest author from the Palouse whose ancestors came from the Volga village of Jagodnaja Polyana

1:00 pm “Stories of the Germans from Russia in Walla Walla’s Russaecke”

Life in this immigrant ethnic community – 1st and 2nd generation interviews

Historian Jean A. Roth – President, Greater Seattle Chapter of AHSGR and Director of Education for the Seattle Genealogical Society and Library. Jean’s father was born in “Russaecke” in 1907 and her grandparents came from the Volga villages of Walter and Frank.

2:00 pm FAMILY HISTORY RESOURCES for the GERMANS FROM RUSSIA

An update on the genealogical resources now available for researchers – especially since the fall of the Soviet Union nearly 25 years ago. These include the American Historical Society of Germans from Russia (AHSGR) Origins Project and Village Coordinators and The Center for Volga German Studies (CVGS) – Concordia University of Portland, Oregon. The new Center for Volga German Studies supports research into and the preservation of the heritage, history, traditions and accomplishments of the Volga Germans. This repository has many records now available from Russia. Speaker: Dr. Brent Mai formerly of Purdue University – Current Director of the CVGS. Historian, Author, and records acquisitions.

3:15  pm Family Search: Obituaries of the Germans from Russia (former SOAR project) and the website “FindaGrave

Two important free on-line research tools for the Germans from Russia

Speaker:  Sue Schessler Ramey of Burlington, Washington – Director of the Mt. Vernon LDS Family History Center. Sue’s grandfather was born in the village of Walter, Russia and her grandmother was born in “Russaecke” in 1904.

3:45 pm. “From Germany to Russia and then to Walla Walla:  One family’s Journey”

Speakers: Michael Frank of Vancouver, Washington and the Oregon Chapter of AHSGR and Larry Frank of Walla Walla’s Blue Mountain Chapter. Their family came from Kautz, Russia and settled in Walla Walla.