Max Kade Institute

for German-American Studies
University of Wisconsin-Madison


For more than three centuries immigrants from German-speaking lands have come to America, settled in rural and urban communities, and established German-language churches, schools, and businesses. They introduced social customs, traditions, and organizations that have shaped and been shaped by the American way of life.  

Join us in examining America’s diverse heritage through the lens of immigration.

  • Sample of old German handwriting
  • Biere at UW-Madison Rathskeller


Mark Louden wins prestigious Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm Prize

We are delighted to announce that MKI Director Mark Louden has been awarded this year’s prestigious Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm Prize by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) for his work on German-American languages. The award comes with €10,000  and a one month research stay in Germany.  

The 2016 Grimm Sponsorship Award for Young Scholars was given to Tanja Škerlavaj, a German-language scholar at the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia.

German Spoken in Wisconsin

UW-Madison graduate students in Germanic linguistics continue to interview and record German heritage speakers in Wisconsin.  These Wisconsinites speak the language of their ancestors at least one generation removed from immigration.  Check out the project's new Wisconsin German Facebook Page, find more information on a new Wisconsin German Wikipedia Page, and listen to recordings from the MKI sound archive (with translations) on the