"German Milwaukee: The World of the Brumders"--Audio

Cover of Germania Heimathsklänge. Published by George Brumder, c. 1883.Writer and historian John Gurda presented "German Milwaukee: The World of the Brumders" on July 30, 2009 in the American Geographical Society Library.

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Brumder, a nineteenth century immigrant to Wisconsin, had become by 1910 the nation’s leading publisher of German-language literature. As such, Brumder was also instrumental in holding together the city’s German-American population.

Gurda is the author of 18 books including The Making of Milwaukee, which was the basis for an Emmy Award-winning documentary of the same name. He also writes a column on local history for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

In conjunction with the talk, the UWM Libraries’ Special Collections Department exhibited materials drawn from its Brumder Collection.

Numbering more than 160 volumes, the collection—supported by an endowment created by 35 Brumder family members from across the country—includes a wide variety of books and related materials: bibles, dictionaries, self-help books, fiction, biographies, children’s books, cookbooks, and newspapers.

The collection also contains works by other Milwaukee German-language publishers.  As a whole, the collection documents Milwaukee as a prominent center for German-language publishing in the United States from the 1860's into the 1920's.

The presentation was co-sponsored by the William G. Brumder family and the UWM Libraries.

Image above: Cover of Germania Heimathsklänge. Published by George Brumder, c. 1883.