Max Kade Institute

for German-American Studies
University of Wisconsin-Madison

"German in America: Words, Sounds, and Images" - The Society for German-American Studies 43rd Annual Symposium, April 11-13, 2019

The Max Kade Institute is delighted to co-host the 43rd Annual Symposiun of the Society for German-American Studies in Madison, April 11-13!

We look forward to.. 

  • two days of over 50 presentations and panel discussions on a variety of topics that span the spectrum of the German-American experience, including art, music, language, literature, media and publications, history, folklore, heritage, religion, immigration, and much more;
  • tour of the German-American holdings of the Wisconsin Historical Society;
  • tour of the Max Kade Institute and exhibit on "The Wisconsin German Experience;"
  • the SGAS Banquet.
More information about the Symposium, including program, venues, hotel information, and directions, can be found at  

NEW: MKI Newsletter - Fall 2018

The latest Friends of Max Kade Institute Newsletter is here!
Personal German-American stories and documents are the focus of this issue. Read more about...
- "The Greatest Christmas Ever": A German-American Pastor's Service on December 25, 1918
- The Autobiography of Christian Pauli of Winterkraut
- The Otto Schroeder Recordings
- From Rural Germany to the 19th-century Midwest
- The Thiel Family Immigration Story.

If you have not already received your newsletter, join the Friends of the Max Kade Institute and get a copy in the mail or as a PDF!

German-American Dialects Online!

The Max Kade Institute's German-American and American English Dialects page is new and improved and back online! Go to, click on the tabs and explore "The German Language in America," listen to "German-American Dialect Recordings," and read "Essays" to learn more about facts and myths regarding German in America.

Max Kade Institute Newsletter

Just in time for spring, here comes the MKI Newsletter Winter 2017-2018 issue. Read about "German Immigrants, Silver Fox, and Ginseng: The Colorful History of Hamburg and Berlin, Wisconsin" (this is were the Friends of MKI annual meeting will be held on May 5!); "Restoring The Speaker’s House, Home of the first Speaker of the U.S.House of Representatives, Frederick Muhlenberg; "A Thank You to all Donors of the MKI Library Project Campaign; Book review: "A Crowded Hour: Milwaukee During the Great War, 1917-1918"

Join the Friends and receive your own copy:

REGISTRATION CLOSED: Friends of MKI Annual Meeting, Marathon County, May 5

This year the Friends of the Max Kade Institute will step back to the early days of the twentieth century by visiting the historic Fromm Brothers Fur and Ginseng Farm in the Town of Hamburg, Marathon County. We will learn how four brothers, whose family immigrated to Wisconsin from Germany in the 1800s, built a multi-million dollar business empire by raising silver fox for the fashion industry and ginseng for the Asian market.


Our hosts will be the Fromm Brothers Historical Preservation Society and the Pommerscher Verein Central Wisconsin. The day will conclude with a dinner at the Town of Berlin Center (catered by 2510 Restaurant of Wausau) and a lecture by William Thiel (Eau Claire) on “Why They Left: Transitions from Rural Germany to the Midwest in the 19th Century.” For more details and to register online, click HERE!

Enjoy the latest issue of the MKI NEWSLETTER!

In this issue read about:
-- "The Germans from Russia Settlement Locations Project"
-- MKI Upcoming Events
-- "Where in Europe Is My Ancestor's Hometown? Finding Aids for Genealogists"
-- "Two Total Solar Eclipses"
-- "Mapping the Germans" (book review)

Become a member of the Friends of the Max Kade Institute and receive your own copy three times a year:

Friends of MKI OKTOBER FEST, October 13

Join us for a fun evening with great food, beer, and entertainment!  Once again, Bull Falls Brewery (Wausau),  Clasen’s European Bakery (Middleton), the Freiburg Gastropub (Madison), and the University Club Restaurant sponsor our Fest by providing their delicious beer and food. Enjoy accordion music with Bill Niederberger, German songs with members of the Madison Maennerchor, a lecture on “Humor in the Stacks: Curiosities from the MKI Archives,” and a silent auction and raffle. Proceeds benefit the Max Kade Institute.

For more details, including registration information, go to

“Deciphering Old German Script” Workshop in Milwaukee, Saturday, September 30, 2017

Are you a historian trying to decipher old German handwritten documents? A genealogist researching your German-speaking ancestors?  In this workshop, Mark Louden will introduce you to the basics of reading German handwritten materials, with a special focus on those from the 19th century. Antje Petty will give suggestions on how to work with German-language genealogical records. The workshop combines presentations with practical exercises. You are welcome to bring your own documents to work on. Though a reading knowledge of German is helpful, it is not required.

Join the Friends for this fun workshop on September 30, 2017, in Milwaukee.  For more details, including registration information, click go to

MKI Spring 2017 Newsletter

Check out the latest Friends Newsletter! Become a member, if you have not received your issue in the mail.  You will find the following articles:
–Report on the MKI Symposium “People of Faith, Voices of Tradition”
–Friends Annual Meeting 2017: An Exploration of Milwaukee’s German Art
–Welcome to Three New Members on the Friends Board of Directors
–Mark Twain’s “Magnanimous-Incident” Hero and Berthold Brecht’s “The Good Person of Szechwan”

Explore German Art in Milwaukee with the Friends of the Max Kade Institute - Annual Meeting, May 7

This year’s Friends of the Max Kade Institute Annual Meeting will take us to Milwaukee, where we will learn about the magnificent German art treasures that have been collected in the city for well over 150 years. We will begin with a private, guided tour of the German art collection at the Milwaukee Art Museum (MAM), where, after major renovations, a thousand works of art have been added to the galleries. Our day will continue with the annual meeting and a dinner at the Envoy Restaurant in the historic Ambassador Inn Hotel, an Art Deco icon. We will conclude the evening with a lecture entitled “German Art, American City: The Fishman Collection in Milwaukee’s Museums” by Curtis L. Carter, Professor of Philosophy and Aesthetics at Marquette University.

2:00 – 3:00      Tour of German Art Collection at the Milwaukee Art Museum (700 N. Art Museum Drive)  Please arrive 15 minutes early, and use the museum group entrance!
3:00 – 4:00      Opportunity to explore the museum on your own; drive to Envoy Restaurant
4:00 – 5:00      Business Meeting at the Envoy Restaurant (Ambassador Hotel, 2308 W Wisconsin) 
5:00 – 5:30      Socializing
5:30 – 6:30      Dinner
6:30 – 7:30      Lecture: Curtis L. Carter, Marquette University

Tour of the Milwaukee Art Museum: $12 per person (includes museum admission for the day)
Three-Course Dinner: $35 per person

To register, fill out the attached form or register online at

Further information, including directions and parking info, can also be found online:


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