Section Ten of the Genealogy and History Translation for Czech and Bohemia
Pages 136 to 150)
At this meeting it was ruled to publish a contact name for the convenience of Czech visitors that needed help in Prague’s national papers <Proper noun?>.
A meeting on April 11, 1893, voted to purchase an album, in which to collect portraits of Czech women authors and scholars. A special committee was set up to purchase such an album. <
The album was to include a printed inscription: “Dedicated to Czech women authors by Cleveland’s Czech women on May 1, 1893”, in both Czech and English.
A meeting on June 7 of the same year voted to invite honorable Czech men’s clubs to also take part and to send their representatives to the next meeting, held on June 19, 1893.
The male representatives attended this meeting and helped with overall suggestions. A financial report was also submitted during this meeting and it was agreed to publish it in the local Czech papers. Another committee, made up of the following members was formed to arrange accommodation for our Czech guests:
Karolina Rychlíková, Marie Hájková and Františka Franke to take care of accommodation around Croton Street and in the eastern part of town.
Antonie Mallý and Antonie Heroldavá to take care of the southern part of town, meaning ward 24.
Josefa Bejčková and Terezie Čermáková to take care of the western part of town.
Any news on arriving guests or other arrangements was to be published in local papers as soon as it was known.
But it turned out to be quite a daunting task to determine when exactly our guests would arrive in Cleveland once they got off the boat in New York.
For a start, three letters were sent to New York, once it was known that some Czech guests had already arrived. When no reply was received, two telegrams were sent, and when no response was made to those either, the welcoming committee sent Tomáš Woelfl to Buffalo on the morning of Saturday, August 5. This trip was also unsuccessful.
But finally, on Saturday, August 5 <same date? In which case a better start would be, “However, that very same day…”> a telegram was received from the secretary of the Central Committee of J.Č.D. in New York, Anna Machovská, informing us that our Czech guests would arrive in Cleveland on the Monday morning.
The following made up the welcoming program for our dear guests:
Czech Sokol (Sokolové Čech) and New Homeland (Nová Vlast) shall appear in their uniforms and the Sokol band together with the Sokol entourage – Reneta Tyršková and the welcoming committee. Guests will be addressed by the committee’s chairwoman, A. Heroldová, and escorted in carriages to the Rychlík hall, after which they will be taken to their hosts following a short break. A banquet will be organized on Monday evening at the Halnoth’s garden, where all the local Czech bands and the Lumír and Jablonský choirs will perform.<Caption next page:>
University in the Southern Part of Cleveland, Ohio
When the first group of Czechs were ready to travel our way they expressed the following request:
“Our first task is to offer our Czech brothers in America a proper Czech greeting, on behalf of the entire nation, and to thank them again for their endless sacrifices. We would like to return the favor of their last visit back home by travelling to this land of freedom.
“Our entire nation is delighted that we can treat you this way.
“We will eagerly watch the news of your travels and hope that the coming together of our compatriots will bring fruits of solidarity and mutual love for our homeland, and that this meeting will lead to greater success for our nation.
“We sincerely wish that the expedition leader will remember his mission fondly, and look forward to hearing that our brothers’ first impression on landing was a joyful one, congratulating them in advance on the success of their overseas journey.”
You can imagine how impatiently they waited for news of the group’s arrival to New York, but there was disappointment. The “Czech New York” <unclear what this is. Another club that was hosting the visitors? Why’s it in quote marks?> broke up into two factions at last minute, which meant that the welcome of the arriving Czechs lacked honesty and warmth. It is disappointing that the “Czech New York” could not put their differences to one side, especially for such an important event. <If it’s not a club, then perhaps phrase this “Upon their arrival in New York our visitors discover that the Czech community had descended into infighting and factionalism, and that their welcome lacked honesty and warmth. It is disappointing that the New York Czechs could not put their …”>
We in Cleveland had been so looking forward to heading out, making all the necessary preparations to prove “that which links us in our hearts is strong despite the ocean between us”. Thirty thousand of us here in Cleveland had been struggling since January to make this all happen and invite our brothers from back home with open arms – we were certainly disappointed, but fortunately only partially!
We thank all those who were not disheartened by misfortune and managed to make it to our city. Be certain that our guests will be greeted with a sincere handshake – albeit a work-calloused one. We are all ecstatic with the thought of meeting you with true, open Czech hearts.
On August 7 of 1893, at seven in the morning, our Czech entourage finally arrived at the station under the viaduct, where the Sokol club, representatives of the Č.S.P.S. and Č.S.B.P.J, female representatives from J.Č.D. and members of the welcoming committee were waiting, greeting them with open arms on arrival.
Our visitors were then taken by carriage to the Rychlík hall, adorned for the occasion by Czech and American banners. The facade itself displayed the message: “Welcome dear guests!” and the hall was decorated by an obliging Václav Chrášťanský, with many tables laid out in the hall’s center to feed our valued guests. Czech cake was certainly not lacking!
A. Heroldová, the committee’s chairwoman, welcomed the guests with a brief but heartfelt speech, emblems were presented to them and the gathering was instructed to be seated. Sokol members and all the local Czechs heartily greeted our comrades, the occasion entirely electrifying. All the hosts waited eagerly to learn of the guests assigned to them, one such tale being as follows:
Mr. F. Hrubecký from East Cleveland was assigned a young woman whose name is not important here. As Hrubecký invited her to depart with him, the woman hesitated, blushed and then asked: “Would it be possible to bring along this gentleman as well?” Hrubecký immediately assured her it would be no problem, and then asked, “Is he a friend of yours?” “He’s my husband. We just got married in New York, where our mother lives.” <“Our” mother?! His mother? Her mother?>
So it happened that, although more than 100 guests failed to arrive, Mr. Hrubecký had three guests of his own, and was very happy for it. As for the guests, their journey to America became a honeymoon.
Dinner and Concert in the Haltnorth Garden
on the evening of August 7, 1893
The evening celebrations organized in the Haltnorth garden in honor of our Czech guests will be long remembered, mostly because the atmosphere was entirely Czech: harmonious and undivided by politics, where the entire gathering radiated as a unified whole.
The band, made up of a mix of the best local musicians and directed by J. W. Mudra, as well as the Lumír and Jablonský choirs, directed by Alfred Wiesenberger, exhilarated the Czech ensemble and went as far as impressing the city dignitaries there present, including Mayor Blee, Directors Lawrence and Thompson, Sherriff Ryan, Detective Jan Vaněk, County Commissioner Jan Vevera and others.
The presence of such city and county dignitaries was made sweeter by the fact that it was so rare.
By seven the guests began entering the garden, lit with beautiful, green electric lamps over carefully prepared water fountains, the atmosphere and mood vibrant as the various bands, choirs and the united Cleveland Czechs gathered. Could we have asked for anything more?
The welcoming committee chairwoman kicked off the celebrations with a fine speech, after which, on behalf of all the local Czechs, she gave a golden ring with the inscription “Cleveland” to two children of our Czech guests.
During the dinner, leading figures of the city gave their own speeches, the lead speaker, Václav Šnajdr, delivering a beautiful greeting, after which one of the visitors gave a response. After that many others spoke.
It is also worth mentioning that the Czech Mandolin Club performed twice during the evening, which only goes to show how obliging everyone was to make the evening a smashing success.
The following Czech guests were present:
Jindřich Čuhl, Jos. Strnad, Fr. Cmíral, Karel Duneš with wife and child, Bohumil Červinka, Fr. Červinka, Jan Poláček, Mr. Fišer, Vil. Karchuta, Mr. Vrána, Mr. Křivánek, Miss Inemanová, Mr. Flek, Mr. Pícha, Mr. Jan Černý with son, Mr. Ludvík, Mr. Kutílek, Mr. Horáček with two women, Mrs. V. Bubeníček, Mr. Mihulka with wife, Miss Marie Pačinková, Mr. V. Rek, Miss Fr. Daněk, Mr. Mojmír Urbánek and Miss Alžbeta Zvelebil. A few days later Mr. F. Herites arrived with his wife and two daughters, and Miss. F. Martanová.
Sightseeing around the City
On invitation from Major Blee our guests gathered at 11am in front of the county hall for a tour. Commissioner Vevera, the secretary, Vaněk, ex-alderman Pták, Sokol chairman Woelfel and others were all present.
After the tour the group was taken by carriage to the local hospital to be welcomed by its director as a representative of the mayor and, once the tour was complete the guests were invited for lunch.
In spite of the hospital’s regulations, a casket of Czech malt liquor was cracked open, with the help of the director and host, who then handed out fine cigars.
After a short break the guests were taken to a second city establishment, a sweatshop <robotárna – sweatshop can’t be right – has very negative connotations of slave labour. Factory? Workshop?> , where they were welcomed by the city mayor, the charity department director and the supervisor, who also served as the tour guide.
The group then went to the Lake View cemetery, in particular to the Gargield monument, after which the guests were driven along Euclid to be shown some of the city’s prominent landmarks.
Reports in Non-Czech Local Papers
Concerning our Celebration and Dinner
The Leader published more than half a column under the title: “A Royal Welcome – Czech guests treated like royalty by their local compatriots. – Joyous celebrations at Haltnorth’s garden. – Orations by Major Blee and others. – Music, song and dinner.” From the detailed description it was clear that the city had not witnessed a more successful event.
The Plain Dealer also allocated half a column for us, under the title: “Beautiful Bohemia – The guests of local Czechs were treated like royalty in Haltnorth’s garden. – List of guests.” The column included a longer report on the romantic wedding between Mr. Horáček and Miss Oswald, ending with a quotation from the groom: “This is a large country and in many respects is better than Bohemia, where it takes three weeks to find a priest and get married. Here it only took a few minutes!”
Among other matters, the Cleveland World wrote: “Czech visitors were truly treated like royalty when they were hosted by their local compatriots.”
The Press mentioned: “The welcoming of Czech guests from Prague was a delightful event. The dinner could not have gone better.”
The Cleveland Anzeiger & Deutsche Presse wrote: “The Czech community in Cleveland showed its finest qualities during this occasion and were illustrious in every respect. What other nationality in Cleveland could compile a band of such caliber from within its own ranks? Not only bands but fine choirs too, and the women and youngsters who helped bring it all together. The dinner speeches were by turns both moving and humorous, and the beer flowed freely until midnight among a very joyous crowd.
The Waechter wrote: “Another great Czech garden gathering.”
Our Guests at the World Fair
Our guests, Sokol members and others intending to visit the Czech Days <českému dni > at the World Fair met on the evening of August 9 at the Sokol gymnasium, while members of the Catholic Reading Group with others met in the hall on Douse Street.
<< file 98, page 172
By 9pm the Sokol band showed up at the Sokol gymnasium in full attendance to play a few songs, after which the entire ensemble boarded an electric < train, to which another carriage had to be added due to the sheer numbers.
The band continued to play until the arrival at the station, and the Czech passengers would shout out “Na zdar!” (Greetings!) whenever the train passed through a Czech neighborhood.
Once the special train, adorned with Czech signs, arrived at the station, those continuing on expressed their heartfelt gratitude and the entire occasion was very emotional. Roughly 12 Czech Clevelanders <tito měli co průvodce skoro na půl čtvrta sta Clevelanďanů> had accompanied the entourage and waved them farewell as they headed home to Cleveland, to the sound of Czech songs and a boisterous “Na zdar!” and “Happy returns!” (Šťastný návrat!).<Maybe “Travel safely!”? “Many happy returns” is a birthday wish so it sounds a bit strange>
Guest Appearance of Mr. Šmaha
Director of Prague’s National Theater
It was reported that Mr. Šmaha was to help Cleveland’s amateur actors at the Jacobs Cleveland Theater on August 27 for the play Jan Hrobčický of Hrobčic, in the role of farmer Vrba. All the preparations had been made, but due to a misunderstanding it turned out that Mr. Šmaha was to perform in New York on the same day, which caused a bit of mayhem in Cleveland, where they had no other option than to choose another day to perform. But that itself was difficult as the Nová Vlast Sokol (New Homeland Sokol) had already arranged to unveil its new banner the week before, forcing the actors to choose an even later date to maximize the play’s success. Mr. Šmaha announced that he could not possibly make this new date. However as Cleveland’s Czechs had so looked forward to seeing him, he finally decided to head out to our city on September 2. What with all the unfortunate circumstances our local compatriots began to doubt whether he would manage to come, and the local paper D.N. expressing the same doubt, significantly agitating our honored guest and greatly reducing the prospect of his arrival.
But on the Friday morning of August 29 Mr. Šmaha did indeed arrive at our train station from New York where a welcoming committee was waiting for him. Our guest was then taken to be accommodated by V. Rychlík.
On September 3 of 1893, Volnost wrote the following of the great performer:
Mr. Šmaha’s Performance
The performance was a fabulous success. There was a large audience (although it could have been larger), our jovial and hard-working compatriots filling the Rychlík hall on Saturday and Jacob’s hall yesterday. And it’s no wonder, as this year has had more than its share of flamboyant celebrations. We have worn ourselves out from the busy schedule and preparatory work, and as the cold of winter begins to knock on our door it is time to put the summer to rest as a sweet memory. Even so, the attendance was impressive.
On Saturday evening Mr. Šmaha recited Blacksmiths on Strike (Stávku kovářů) in Rychlík’s hall, where he also performed in the main role of the dramatic study Gypsy (Cikán). The Germans, who usually adamantly criticize anything produced by our compatriots, were forced to acknowledge that Mr. Šmaha was certainly one of the best orators of Europe. He simply hypnotized the entire audience.
This was best shown once he stepped off the stage. As he slipped behind the curtain, the audience became aware of reality again, and the entire hall burst into a tumultuous applause, the like of which rarely remembered in these parts, demanding of the master a full four encores! His role as Peti in Gypsy was unparalleled, bringing to life all his virtues and vices: revealing his conniving behavior, thieving ways and big-headedness but also his compassion for others, his faithfulness to his word, his carefree life of leisure and his burning passion for his violin. The way Peti expressed his love for the return of his violin cannot be matched by even a mother expressing her love at the return of her only son.
Mr. Šmaha was handed a large bouquet of red roses, while other notable performances were made by Mr. F. Mára, Mr. Vlna, Mr. Princ and Miss A. Hájkova.
Václav Hrobčický of Hrobčic by Stroupež played last night in Jacob’s theater, where Mr. Šmaha played farmer Vrba, one of his satirical roles, which he performed with compelling magnificence. The audience were entranced by his performance, with four beautiful bouquets handed to our famous guests almost every time he was called to the stage. The Kyselas were performed heroically and the same can be said for Jiří (Mr. Šícha), Father Zeman (Mr. Rychlík) and Strakoš (Mr. F. Ledinský). <not sure of a lot of the names.. > Mr. Bartůnek played the forester, Mr. Kužel the agent, Mr. Skalák the administrator and B. Šácha laddie Josífek <?>, contributing to a very successful evening. Of the women, Mrs. Hájková played Verunka, and Mrs. Vrbova played a memorable part in the event and also receiving her deserved recognition. Kolenicová was superbly played by Mrs. Kuželová, although at some points delivered with a somewhat weak voice, which was regrettable. The orchestra, directed by Mr. Mudra, also deserves full recognition.
After Sunday’s performance the actors were invited to a dinner party, organized by the Rychlík’s in honor of Mr. Šmaha, only the best selection of food and drinks were chosen. Mr. Šmaha praised our drama club, assuring us that we outperformed our Chicago and New York counterparts. The praise was certainly well received; let’s just hope it leads to inspiration and not to inflated egos. Mr. Šmaha departed from us last night to Buffalo, where he plans to visit the Niagara Falls, return to New York and then move on to Prague, the city of a thousand spires. Before leaving though he was careful to stress that his visit to Cleveland was a truly rewarding experience.
Summary of the Most Opulent Czech Celebrations
The greatest of these was the christening of Slovanská Lípa’s banner on July 4, 1866 in the church on Woodland Ave (previously named Kinsman).
The second was the outing in celebration of Slovanská Lípa joining together with the Táborita club and which took place in the western part of the city on July 4, 1868.
The opening of the new Perun hall on Croton Street in August of 1870.
The unveiling of the Lumír choir’s banner in the hall of František Novák on the corner of Orange and Belmont Streets on May 1 of 1871.
The opening of the new Slovanská Lípa hall on the corner of Croton Street and Case Avenue on May 29, 1871.
The Jan Hus commemoration organized by the Perun club, complete with a large procession through the city followed by an outing to the Liedov’s < garden in 1872.
The Circle of Czech Peoples Federation convention (Jednota “Kruh Českého Lidu” – or K.Č.L. for short) held at Liedov’s garden in 1872.
The memorial of Czech historian František Palacký organized by the Czechs of Cleveland on the property of the Perun hall.
The Cleveland Sokol ceremony held on the western part of town in the Vacín’s garden.
The christening of the banners of several orders of Č.S.P.S.
The Č.S.P.S. convention held in June of 1878.
The Federation of Czech Women convention held in June of the following year.
The Sokol Federation convention festivities held in 1881.
The outing of the Czech Cultural Hall Patrons held on July 3 of 1891 in Beyerles Park.
The celebrated opening of the new Czech Sokol hall on Smith Street on January 1 of 1893.
The welcoming of Czech visitors to the Columbian World Fair in Chicago held in the Halnorth’s garden on August 7, 1893.
The opening of the Sokol New Homeland (Sokol Nová Vlast) hall on the west side, November 20, 1893.
It is also worth mentioning that the founding of the various clubs or order of different federations has always been celebrated in one flamboyant manner or another.
The Czech media: what a significant force in our cultural and social lives! Where would we be without the inspiring, inquisitive and instructive voice of our Czech press? Any investigation into the Czech press would yield the same conclusion as to their significance in our cultural and social existence. From their very founding at the time of the first arrival of Bohemian immigrants, Czech periodicals have nurtured our love of our homeland and the beautiful Czech language, have stung the lethargic into charitable action, energetically defended the honor of our community, instructed our compatriots of their individual rights and increased awareness of true spiritual freedom, advancement and enlightenment. Without these publications such awareness would not exist among us and without the vigorous and hard work of Czech journalists and writers our people would not have climbed to the cultural standing we now enjoy in this new country of ours.
This primarily applies to the efforts of Czech journalists of the 1860s and 70s, as accurately described by Mr. Lev Palda in his following memorandum:
“What these periodicals meant to us – which we firmly placed our faith in and always looked forward to the next issue − can be best testified by matters surrounding the support of Pokrok, whose regular earnings fell short of costs, whereby significant funds were collected in the Cleveland area. I remember cases where individuals contributed an entire $5 donation in one shot. Why? Certainly not for recognition in the papers, but because of a sincere desire to elevate our people through free thinking. Freedom of thought was not about comfort or freedom from obligations to help our own, as many might conclude nowadays, but instead served exactly those obligations and acted as a virtuous challenge to fulfill them. All of us knew in our hearts that the road ahead would be a long one, but firmly believed in what lay at the end of it, its ideals beautiful, its achievement most certain. And one aspiration burns in the hearts of all those who have been awakened: for us to stand firmly on this new soil to become a free, successful and contented people. None of us perceived any obstacles or barriers to our goals and all of us were glad to take part in any cultural pursuit.”
It was the work of these Czech journalists and a few awakened and sacrificing souls who brought our people to this awareness.
And it was these sacrificing individuals who worked the hardest to establish Czech publications in the city of Cleveland, understanding that only through these means could the concept of free thought be spread the widest.
After many meetings a company was finally formed and headed by M. Krejčí and J. V. Sýkora.
It was a good time to buy out the journal Pokrok of Cedar Rapids, Iowa and edited by F. B. Zdrůbek. The paper was not making ends meet, so the company Czech Printers (České Tiskárny) acquired it and moved it to Cleveland, offering Zdrůbek the opportunity to continue in his role, which he accepted.
This took place on February 9, 1871. But shortly thereafter Zdrůbek surrendered his position and was replaced by J. V. Čapek, who had been born and educated in Bohemia (where he was a well-known humorist and poet), but he too quit, after a year, to start his own independent weekly comic strip The Pixie (Diblík), which he later changed into the political weekly National Newspapers (Národní Noviny). However, neither of these were successful either, and Mr. Čapek moved to New York where he agreed to work as an editor for The New York Papers (New Yorských Listů).
On Mr. Čapek’s departure, Václav Šnajdr took over as editor of Progress (Pokrok) <(.. , at a time when he was already respected as a Czech journalist and poet. He radicalized the paper even more than it was during the days of Fr. B. Zdrůbek. But survival was tough in an ocean of anger and ignorance, and the number of sincere and sacrificing free-thinkers was very few. No wonder then that this unfair battle led to the paper’s demise, although from its ashes immediately arose The New Age Daily (Dennice Novověku), published by the former Grand Order of the Č.S.P.S. Even this paper, published and edited by V. Šnajdr, had its own hurdles in the beginning, but because it was well managed it grew stronger every year and established firm roots in fertile soil.
Since this federation was the largest and strongest of the free-thinking in America, survival of this paper was secured, drawing to it more free thinkers. The New Age Daily today stands as a leader of all the free-thinking papers in America, a position gained by relentless endurance, firm foundations and the tireless diligence of its publisher and editor.
Concerning The Workman’s Paper (Dělnický Listy), founded at the start of 1875, Lev J. Palda writes the following:
“In May of 1875, with fellow compatriot F. Škarda, I published the first issue of The Workman’s Paper from the Plain Dealer building on Seneca Street. Škarda took care of the commercial end while I handled editing. We published this weekly paper for more than two years to the best of our abilities without any sort of remuneration, in the process of which I lost everything I had saved up from my cigar business <co jsem si při doutnikářství zahospodařil> . I’m not saying this to win any praise but simply as a point of fact … <
Škarda and I survived frugally from our savings, Škarda later from the earnings of his wife, a teacher at an elementary school, several times drawing from her income to cover wages or other costs. Those were tough times indeed! And once the number of our subscribers had increased, mostly by decreasing subscription fees from three to two dollars annually, overall revenues had not increased enough to offer us anything resembling a decent living. We were banging our heads against a wall. I can only attribute the way we carried the burden with such light hearts to our enthusiasm for what was tormenting us and to the worriless nature of youth. But it is true there were times when we were close to losing all hope and suffered utter distress. We are, after all, only human, driven by a desire to attain a content, affluent, comfortable and safe existence.
To a large degree we founded The Workman’s Paper because of the abundance of blue collar laborers, not only in the Cleveland area but Czech communities elsewhere, where I was often invited to give lectures on blue collar matters or where I was often active in labor unions at every opportunity. By 1876 Czech unions and social labor parties had arose in Cleveland and other areas, in what were considered “worker’s quarters”.
This paints a true picture of the conditions we had to endure and most certainly few Czech journalists or writers in America were rewarded with a better fate for all their hard toil. The people can be very ungrateful, throwing a rock instead of offering even a slice of bread to those who sacrifice their lives for the spiritual revival of the many!”
By Hugo Chotek.
It is natural that the worker’s movement became fashionable, even to an exaggerated degree. There are no rich folks among our Czech communities, the affluent are scant, so we are made up of a mixture of laborers. Because the word “capital” has been seen as “the enemy” for many years, it is no wonder that the Czech working class saw its employers as oppressors, reacting with strikes which mostly ended to the detriment of the laborer. Fanaticism was feared by some of our more prominent citizens, including several Czech veterans of Cleveland, led by brothers Eduard and Karel Vopalecký and Jan Veverka. < These three
resolved to publish a newspaper to level the playing field and to explain that workers have their sacred rights while capital has its limitations, and that the benefit of all requires that capital and the labor force meet half way. K. F. Tůma, the former editor of the Chicago Gazette (Chicagský Věstník), was chosen as editor for the new publication.
The gazette was published once a week at 112 Croton Street and was named Liberty (Volnost), the first issue going to press on Saturday, August 28, 1880. Any paper’s beginnings are tough, but the beginnings of Liberty were the worst of all Czech-American publications. The gazette was received quite negatively by the population, which was made only worse by the lack of capital, workers, and too much agitation. It seemed the whole world was against that little magazine. By the end of the first year it was boycotted, but came back from the dead somewhat with the Newburg Ironworks strike. Liberty <zrážela ze strajku> pointed out the fact that the strikers were not organized, meaning that the owners, who are millionaires, are at an advantage. The strike failed, the wages of subjugated workers decreased, and many of our compatriots were dismissed, beaten by policemen or fined by the courts, and so the paper was boycotted as a result. Over a period of three years we were boycotted three times by the very people we were trying to defend! No wonder Jan Veverka had enough of publishing after only half a year, quitting the company. Shortly afterwards the printer was moved to the property of Eduard Vopalecký on 127 Humboldt and 11 Perun Street (close to the corner of Písek (Sand) Street), where it has remained up until today. Liberty stood its ground, and once it managed to cast the proletarian concept in its natural limelight, it began to organize labor unions – it educated our good-natured compatriots, setting the precedent for what the magazine is today. Within two and three quarters of a year it had changed from a weekly to a thrice-weekly publication, which expanded in content and, since August 14 of 1892, is now published on a daily basis (with the exception of Sundays). In May of the same year the daily was acquired by a company of 43 shareholders made up a mixture of compatriots and the plant was incorporated by the Columbus Secretary of State with a basic capital of $10,000. The executive board members of this new company are: František Březina as chairman, Fr. Sprostý as deputy, Ed. Vopalecký as secretary, treasurer and sales director, while the company’s management is made up of Karel Frič, Theodor B. Melzer, Vác. Rybák, Tomáš Šanda and Antonín Spurný. The plant itself employs nine typesetters, one pressman, one machine operator, ten delivery personnel, two editors and one permanent reporter.
Besides the daily a weekly is also published on Wednesdays and which was recommended <jest zvolen> by the Č.S.P.S.”
By K. F. Tůma.
When the Czech population had climbed to 30,000 by the end of the 1880s, many suggested the printing of a permanent daily newspaper, and so J. V. Luňák and several friends decided to have a go at it. However, the daily was not established on a firm footing and lacked the necessary funds to overcome initial friction and to maintain the printers, so it demised after only three months of a trying existence.
The Cleveland Papers (Clevelandské Listy), founded < by J. S. Čada, purely served the proletariat class and, with the abilities and exhaustive efforts of Mr. Čada, the paper would have not only survived but could have served workers and the free-thinking community well, if it were not for the spiteful resentment of the competition. This is one of the sadder chapters of the story of Czech journalism in America and better spoken of minimally.
Our Catholic compatriots also made several attempts at publishing purely Catholic oriented papers, but without significant success. The very well managed and excellent beginnings of The Wake-Up Signal (Budíček) quietly faded away after many battles, after which this community lost interest in making any further endeavors. Two years ago the rumor went around that a Catholic publication would be issued three times a week, but nothing came of it.
A new fiction magazine, Entertainment Magazine (Zábavné Listy), came out in October of 1895, its publishers and owners B. Příchoda et al, its location on 35 Burwel <Burwell?> Street. It was well made, its reading material carefully chosen and its illustrations were appealing. In all there are now four Czech publishing companies in our city: The New Age Daily (Dennice Novověku), Liberty (Volnosti), Mr. J. V. Čapek and the Catholic publication of J. Svoboda.
By Hugo Chotek
Patronage of the Czech Cultural Hall
In the past attempts to maintain the local Czech cultural buildings by free-thinking Czechs, through their various events and activities, were unsuccessful, and over time these attempts waned significantly. New interest has appeared over the past few years, and so we find ourselves with greater resolve to build a respectable Czech Cultural Hall.
The main reason for doing this is that, at the start of 1889, the Cleveland School Council disallowed the use of its space by Czech Sunday schools because they determined that some of the wards had been charging a fee, which was in conflict with the state’s regulations.
The Czech school committees in the 24th and 25th wards, which had mostly been affected by this prohibition, gathered together to discuss an alternative solution and came to the conclusion that the best approach would be to build their own school in the middle of those wards. They then announced this decision to all the Czech organizations based in those wards and invited them to send their representatives for further consultation concerning these matters, to meet at the hall of Mr. Rybák on Finn Street, where the school committee generally held its meetings. Míchal Albl was selected as the temporary chairman of this meeting, Václav Vaněk as its secretary.
After exchanging several ideas the meeting decided to build a stately hall, which satisfied all the Czech organizations.
It was then decided to send the proposal to all local Czech organizations and ask them for their participation.
The meeting also voted in the following line-up of committee members: M. Albl as chairman, Václav Vaněk as secretary, Jan Burda as accountant, and Karel Herold, Anton Šácha and E. Fingulin as treasurers.
A subsequent meeting, attended by representatives sent from most of the local Czech organizations, set up the following committees: for establishing the rules or statutes for handling incorporation; and for organizing events and related activities under the title of Patronage of the Czech Cultural Hall (Patronát Česko Národní Síně).
The committee has been tasked with requesting various organizations and individuals to purchase <rozebrání akcií> shares or offer some other form of loan.
To help with financing it was also decided to organize one large, combined outing a year and, during the winter, a grand patronage ball.
The local drama clubs were also asked to occasionally organize a performance in benefit of the hall.
A later meeting elected a committee to seek out a suitable property for the hall and several locations or sites were proposed. Until that was resolved the various Czech clubs began to organize events and request for donations for the hall’s construction, after which significant funds were collected for the property’s purchase.
Finally, a meeting held on March 31 of 1889 made the decision to acquire property on the corner of Broadway and Mead Ave, existing number 112 <jsoucí a sice 112 při 150 stop.,> for a sum of $6,700.
Now the real work began, as every organization did all it could to help the hall’s construction by organizing events or collecting donations, each aspiring to outperform the other. Even the female clubs competed against the men’s, such that not only was the property paid for in a short period of time, but a significant amount of cash was left over and deposited onto a bank account.
Later on, exhibitions and fairs were organized on the 16th, 17th and 18th of May, 1890, in the Roller Ring on Broadway, and on the 19th and 20th of May of the same year in the Perun Hall on Croton Street, during which the bands of V. Mudry, the Zámečník brothers and Hronek played free of charge. This enterprise pulled in net profits of $650.16.
A band made up of young musicians directed by Mr. Polák organized a nice ball on the east side of town and submitted the net proceeds to the patronage.
Alongside this, net proceeds from theatrical performances, amateur acting performances and other special events organized by male and female clubs alike were occasionally added to the increasing cash deposit of the Czech National Hall.
One of the most flamboyant local Czech celebrations of recent times was the outing organized by the Patronage to the Czech National Hall on July 5, 1891 to Beyer Park.
This grand procession, drawn from all the Czech organizations in the Cleveland area, complete with their beautiful banners and club emblems, impressed and fascinated even uninvolved bystanders. In particular once the entire gathering had moved the grounds of the future hall, with our bands proudly blaring the songs of our heritage, then to Beyer Park </do Beyerlova parku> , and along the streets, where our residences were adorned with our cultural banners and other decorations and where we were greeted with proper, heartfelt bohemian cordiality.
After a few hours the Lumír Mixed Choir [Smíšený Pěvecký Sbor Lumír] sang, speeches were made by Mr. Šnajdr and J. Sprostý received with thunderous applause by the crowd, after which the bands let rip and the Sokol members displayed their skills. In the park different games were organized, one of which included the Mermaid [Mořská panna] <should you say what this is? I’ve never heard of it>, which turned out to be an excellent and profitable idea.
The crowd was tickled pink with excitement and the entire event pulled in net proceeds of $2,500.
The next year’s outing, in 1892, also attracted a large crowd, but financial difficulties then only pulled in net proceeds of $1,200. Later outings and organized balls were also successful and likewise contributed respectable proceeds to the Czech Cultural Hall [Česko Národní síň].
In spite of the difficult conditions the hall’s assets continue to grow, such that the property’s value of $6,700 has now been fully paid for and its cash assets have surpassed $10,000.
Because the building’s construction, according to the accepted designs of Ond. M. Mitermiler and J. Hrádka, is estimated at $60,000, the committee has decided to begin with construction only once a greater sum has been saved.
In 1895 the Patronage’s presiding <[elected] members were as follows: F. Hrubecký as chairman, J. E. Vorel as vice-chairman, Alois Žák as secretary, J. Burda as accountant, and Tom. Šídlo, Ant. Petráš, and F. Vlach as the treasurers.
The Cleveland Sokol was founded at the start of 1895 in the East end of town and presently has enough members to ensure its secure survival into the future. F. Hanuš is its head trainer.
Besides this physical education organization, Cleveland is endowed with other social and support clubs, but since we are not aware of their details we cannot include them here.
We do at least know that there are Czech worker clubs, a union of Czech carpenters and bakers, amateur drama clubs in the East and West parts of the city, the Slapnička Firing Club in the 24th ward, and many others, who share their members with other clubs or orders.
Cleveland’s Czechs are looking forward to the arrival of renowned traveler E. St. Vráze, who intends to provide some lectures here.
In addition, the famous violinist, F. Ondříček, is also supposed to visit.
Grand Prokop Lodge, No. 708 of I.O.O.F.
This abbreviation stands for the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, a secretive club founded in England that spread throughout the world, and is currently the strongest in number after the Free Masons. Its first America-based lodge was established in Washington in 1802, by Thomas Wildey in Baltimore who had summoned a meeting at the Seven Stars [U sedmi hvězd]. By 1819 there were only six lodges independent of England. A meeting in Baltimore concluded that it was not dignified of an American to receive orders from England. As the only alternative would be to become completely independent of the colonial ruler, lodges were established in four states the following year. Since it announced independence the federation has flourished in America, under its new slogan “Friendship, Love and Truth”. It clearly holds true to its motto since the federation is second only to the Free Masons in terms of elevating humanity, reducing suffering and undertaking charitable acts. Its latest reports evidence that support of $1,000,000 went the sick last year alone, almost $600,000 to orphans and much more in the form of other charitable support. The order provides extensive and continued support to orphanages, shelters, the motherland <domoviny>, libraries and study halls.
The Grand Prokop Lodge [Prokop Veliký Lože] was accepted into this federation on Saturday, November 19, 1881 and was founded by F. Kysela, Vác. Rychlík, V. Kaucký, F. Payer, V. Klipec, K. F. Tůma, T. Mužík, V. Zmína, Q. Kuliš, Jos. Kocian, J. A. Hospodský, J. Forejt, A. Páv, J. Jiřile and Er. Křemel. Its first master (chairman) was V. Rychlík, its first secretary K. F. Tůma. The latest report indicates the lodge has 24 members and controls capital amounting to $1,035.51, of which $205.59 has been set aside to support widows and orphans.
Its existing presiding members are Grand Master Tomáš Mužík, Deputy Grand Master Albert Zíma </check out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Masonic_Lodge_Officers >, Alb. J. Klečka as secretary, Vác. Sanda as accountant and J. Forejt as accountant.
By K. F. Tůma
Karel Havlíček Borovský Educational Club
In May of 1885, when most of Cleveland’s Czechs lived in the 14th (now 24th) Ward, several support clubs and orders had cropped up practically at the same time. So in order for an educational club to be included among these to represent the goals of Free-Thinking Czechs, several more educated and aware Czechs decided to gather at Mr. Noska’s on Warren Street to discuss the matter.
The proposal to form a club whose primary goal would be to educate young people and lend out worthy publications for the purpose of their enlightenment was received with enthusiasm, the meeting voting to name the new club Karel Havlíček Borovský.
The clubs founders were Fr. Sakryd, A. Nosek, F. Motl, Fr. Mareš, V. Nosek, Jan Kubaň, Jos. Vícha, V. Procházka and Fr. Jankovský, later joined by others.
After a year the club moved to Broadway Hall, where it put together a good collection of books for its library from funds collected from organized events, to which it continued to contribute to over time.
Because the group was comprised predominantly of younger members, it flourished rapidly and won great favor among the local Czech population.
An outing organized by the club to Bayerl Park contributed major funding for the library’s expansion. The Karel Havlíček Borovský Club has recently been meeting at the Sokol gymnasium on Smith Ave. The library contains volumes worth over $600, including publications from the best Czech authors.
The club is always happy to partake in such public events and celebrations, organizing some of them on its own, or at other times partnering with the Jan Žižka Czech worker’s education club to organize grand events.
Czech Slavic Brotherhood Support Federation
This Federation was established in Cleveland, Ohio in 1885, with orders now numbering 52 with a total membership of 2,173 and Federation assets of $5,076.95.
The following orders are based in Cleveland: Josef No. 1, Vít No. 2, Ryt.Václav II No. 3, Václav I No. 5, Jan Křtitel No. 6, Čechoslovan No. 7, Čelakovský No. 8, Věrní Bratří No. 9, Zvíkov No. 10, Vlastimil No. 11, Stanislav No. 12, Blaník No. 13, Cleveland No. 26, Žižkov No. 27, Sokol Zlatá Praha No. 28, Soběslav No. 35, Táborité No. 40, Jeroným Pražský [Prague Jeroný < ] No. 43, Dalibor No. 49 and Prokop Velký No. 51.
The presiding members of the National Main Order are as follows:
Jakub Hájek as chairman, Fr. Koslík as vice-chairman, F. Vlach as secretary, F. Lokájíček as accountant, J. A. Pintner as treasurer, Josef Koňas and František Kozlík as the acting accounting committee.
Czech Roman Catholic Organizations
Many of the oldest Czech organizations in Cleveland, which often have a large Czech membership, belong to the first and second Czech Roman Catholic Central Federation [České Římsko Katolické Ústřední Jednota], which in themselves together have a large membership of local Czechs.
Because these organizations have already published their histories and have not provided us with more detailed news, we will only mention their names as we are able.
The following are among the men’s clubs: St. Cyrilla and Methoděje, Svornost Katolická, St. Jana Nep., St. Jiří, St.Vojtěcha, Ryt St. Ludvíka, St. Štěpána, St. Petra and Pavla [Saint Peter and Paul], St. Josefa No. 2., St. Ignáce, St. Václava, Petra No. 1, St.