MKI News and Upcoming Events

Upcoming Events

Friends of the Max Kade Institute Annual Meeting
May 2, Saturday

University Club and Wisconsin Historical Society
Madison, Wisconsin

It has been ten years since the Friends held their annual meeting in Madison. We invite you to join us for a day of interesting programs and good food that will include a guided tour of the archives of the Wisconsin Historical Society, a visit to MKI’s new exhibit of books from Carl Schurz’ personal library, and a presentation by Mark Louden, Professor of German and Co-Director of the Max Kade Institute, on “Wisconsin’s German Heritage.” We will round out the day with a German-style dinner at the University Club.

1:30 Registration at Wisconsin Historical Society, 816 State Street, Madison 2:30–3:30 Guided tour of the Historical Society’s archives
4:00–5:00 Annual meeting at the University Club, 803 State Street, Madison 5:00–6:00 Schurz exhibit at MKI Library / Election of officers of Board of
6:00–7:00 Dinner at the University Club
7:00–8:00 Lecture: “Wisconsin’s German Heritage” by Mark Louden


Please fill out the registration form and choose one of three meal options.
Mail your registration with payment by April 17!
Cost $35 per person; $15 for students.
Bring a friend — Make a Friend!
Dinner purchase includes 2015 Friends of the MKI membership for new Friends.
For more information contact Antje Petty:


Theater Performance
May 4, 5, 6 at 7:30
UW–Madison Memorial Union Play Circle
Bekehrung vom Temperenzwahn/ Deliver Us from Temperance!
A German-American comedy about love, local politics
and drinking in 1853 Milwaukee.

Written in German and originally performed in Milwaukee 160 years ago,
Christian Essellen’s play offers an entertaining view of Wisconsin Germans around 1850
– and of issues that remain current today!

Performance by students of the UW–German Department. (in German.)
FREE. Reservations required. 
Registration information and program details can be found here:

The play will also be performed in Milwaukee
May 8 at 6pm at Nicolet High School
in the Community Room/Studio Theater (Room F-106)
6701 North Jean Nicolet Road, Glendale, WI 53217


Workshop: "German-American Genealogy and History" 
May 9, Saturday, 8:00am to 5:00pm, Memorial LIBRARY, Room 126

Immerse yourself for a day in German-American history and the experiences of your German-speaking ancestors.  This workshop will provide historical background information and research tips for family historians. Lunch is included!

Antje Petty, Assistant Director of the Max Kade Institute for German American Studies, and Lori Bessler, Reference Librarian at the Wisconsin Historical Society Library Archives. 
Registration required. Limited seating.

See the attached PDF for registration details.

$24 for members of the Friends of the Max Kade Institute, Wisconsin Historicial Society, or Wisconsin State Genealogical Society.
$30 for non-members
[lunch included]




In the twentieth century, over two million German-speaking immigrants came to America. Nearly 600,000 arrived in the 1950s alone, making up 23% of all immigrants in that decade. For the most part, the stories of these immigrants have not been documented, and very little research has been done on their experiences and their impact on American society.

Using the knowledge and resources of the University, the Max Kade Institute is reaching out to citizens across Wisconsin, the Midwest, and beyond, seeking to create a collection of nearly forgotten immigrant stories. We will preserve them in the Institute’s archives, make them available to scholars and for educational purposes, and allow them to be added to narratives of American and global history.

We are interviewing and recording first-generation immigrants from German-speaking regions in Europe who now live in the United States. We include individuals who speak German or lived in a German-speaking community in Europe, people who migrated directly to the United States or via another country, and individuals who came as adults or as children.

There are as many different experiences as there are people. The German Immigrant Oral History Project is a growing repository of personal accounts of emigration and new settlement, journeys near and far, triumphs and losses, assimilation and acculturation, and traditions and customs kept in a new world.

If you are a first-generation German immigrant and would like to contribute your story to this project,
please contact the Max Kade Institute.
For further information contact Antje Petty: or 608-262-7546
Max Kade Institute, 901 University Bay Drive, Madison, WI, 53705


New Publication!
Wisconsin Talk
Linguistic Diversity in the Badger State

Click here for more information

The MKI Library Project: A Capital Campaign

MKI's move to the University Club on the UW Library Mall
provides us with a unique opportunity to raise funds to:

1. Create a state-of-the-art library and archival facilities
(with environmental controls to protect irreplaceable or valuable materials);
2. Enable new acquisitions to be made that will augment our holdings
and fill some of the critical gaps in the collections; and
3.  Support a paid, regular library staff position.

Gifts can be made by check, made out to UW Foundation, with MKI Library Project in the memo line and mailed to Max Kade Institute, 901 University Bay Dr., Madison, WI 53705
online through the UW Foundation
(this form already designates the MKI Library Project in the special instructions box).

Thank you for your support in preserving our past and building our future!

Click HERE for additional information on the Library Project


Language Matters for Wisconsin
A Community-Based Initiative
addressing local and regional language-related
issues and concerns.

Click here for more information

The MKI Library is searchable on-line at:


New Library Acquisitions

Please Click Here


MKI Publications

Please Click Here

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