DCHS features Polish-Americans, 1918 fire and WWII in history seriesAfter a December break for all of us to focus on the holiday season, the Douglas County Historical Society will bring you three more History Sundays during the winter season.
By: By Kathy Laakso, Superior Telegram
After a December break for all of us to focus on the holiday season, the Douglas County Historical Society will bring you three more History Sundays during the winter season.
On Sunday, Teddie Meronek explores, in words and pictures, the history of the Polish-Americans in northwestern Wisconsin from the late 1800s through the years of the two Catholic parishes, St. Adalbert’s and St. Stanislaus, which anchored the large and vibrant Polish-American community. “Finding a Home: Polish-Americans in Superior, Wisconsin” begins at 2 p.m.
Feb. 14th’s History Sunday celebrates the important role Superior played in the lives of survivors of the Great 1918 Fire. Len Schmidt, of the Moose Lake Historical Society, talks about the now almost-forgotten kindnesses of Superior’s people and City Council in sheltering fire survivors – including Len’s mother – and providing financing to restart lives when survivors returned to their burned out homes and fields.
The Moose Lake Historical Society, which holds an annual commemoration of the fire, last year brought this role to the attention of Superior’s City Council by an official certificate of appreciation. Joining Len and his wife Maryls will be Superior firefighter Dave Johnson, who has developed an extensive collection of articles about the fires, which swept this region.
In March, Women’s History Month, I present “Our Mothers’ Legacy,” about the impact of World War II on five women who lived in Bayfield and Douglas counties. Four out of five of these women worked in Superior’s Butler Shipyard while their husbands, brothers and friends fought on the world’s fronts. Based on my research and personal interviews, I’ll talk about the role of these “home front soldiers,” who not only held down wartime jobs but also stepped into civilian work that kept everyday life moving then and blazed a trail for those of us yet to come.
All History Sundays begin at 2 p.m., with a $3 admission fee for nonmembers. E-mail us at dchs@douglashistory. org or call us at 392-8449 to ask how you can become a member and enjoy free History Sundays as well as other benefits.