News in English

April 11, 2016
At one time in the Lehigh Valley, many people spoke the Pennsylvania Dutch dialect. There were sections of the paper devoted to the dialect, and speakers gathered at Versommlings and Grundsau Lodsch to speak and sing in dialect. Today there are still groups in the region dedicated to preserving Pennsylvania Dutch culture. But the language is fading in the Lehigh Valley.
That’s not the case elsewhere in the state, in places like Berks and Lancaster counties, where the dialect is thriving and even growing, making it a surprise success for a minority language.
Mark Louden, in his new book “Pennsylvania Dutch: The Story of an American Language,” writes how the language continues to be spoken among the Amish and Mennonites in 33 states and three provinces of Canada. (Read full article: Allentown Morning Call).

February 26, 2015
A specialist in German linguistics and the publisher of the only existing Pennsylvania Dutch newspaper spoke at a recent meeting of the Oley Valley Dutch Club. Dr. Michael Werner, publisher of “Hiwwe wie Driwwe,” visited the club on Feb. 12 to talk about the shared connections between the Palatinate region of Germany and Berks County. (Read full article: Berks-Mont News)

April 2, 2013
Folklorist Patrick Donmoyer announced the Pennsylvania German Cultural Heritage Center at Kutztown University has taken over publication of the newsletter Hiwwe wie Driwwe. Founded in Germany in 1997, the newsletter is written in the dialect. Dr. Michael Werner, its founder, remains publisher and editor in chief in Germany. Donmoyer and Amanda Richardson have been named co-editors. (Read full article: Reading Eagle)

May 24, 2012
Kutztown is capital of Pennsylvania Dutch Country, says German dialect expert. Pennsylvania German dialect expert Dr. Michael Werner of Ober-Olm, Germany, gave a presentation at the Kutztown Borough Train Station to a packed house on Tuesday. (Read full article: Kutztown Patriot)

September 30, 2011
Kutztown. 11-year-olds Julia Mace and Emily Bubbenmoyer will be going to the Rheinhessen, Germany. They will be attending school in Nieder-Olm. Julia’s father, Derek Mace, explained how this exchange came to be.
“Many Berks County Pennsylvania Germans can trace their family roots to Rheinhessen and the areas around that part of Germany,” said Derek. Julia will be staying with host Michael Werner, his family and his 12-year-old daughter Pauline. (Read full article: Kutztown Patriot)

February 3, 2011
Pa. German version of classic available free. Heinrich Hoffmann’s children’s classic, “Der Struwwelpeter,” has been translated into the Pennsylvania German dialect by Earl C. Haag of Pottsville, Schuylkill
County. Haag, a retired instructor of German at Penn State Schuylkill Campus, undertook the translation in response to a call issued in Hiwwe wie Driwwe, a Pennsylvania German newsletter with wide circulation in Berks and surrounding counties. “This is an encouraging sign of a rebirth of interest in the language of our ancestors,” said Edward Quinter, who teaches Pennsylvania German at Kutztown University. “Der Struwwelpeter,” whose title refers to an unkempt and unpopular boy, is a compilation of 10 stories originally published in 1845.
The German-Pennsylvania Association, an organization in Germany that sponsored the translation, is offering 100 copies free of charge to members of the Association of Teachers of German. The book is also available through Masthof Bookstore in Morgantown and the Mennonite Historical Society Bookstore in Lancaster. (Source Reading Eagle)

February 2, 2011
First Initiatives To Give Political Voice to German-American Community. Have you noticed, how many German surnames appear in American politics? One can think of US Secretary of Treasurer Timothy F. Geithner and the recently elected new Speaker of the House John A. Boehner, as well as the countless German surnames among representatives and senators such as Heidepriem, Daschle, Ehrlich, Shuster and Gerlach. But do these politicians give the German-American community any political influence in the USA? So far, definitely not. But the times, they are a changing … (Read full article.)

January 27, 2011
Pennsylvania German writers! The Kutztown Folk Festival is sponsoring the Sixth Annual Pennsylvania German language writing festival. This festival is modeled on the regional dialect writing festivals held in Germany and France. We encourage participants to submit examples of Pennsylvania German writing to the festival. These submissions may include short stories, poems, skits, true events, histories or other short literary works in the Pennsylvania German (Deitsch) language. Some authors will be asked to present their submissions during a special literary session to be held on the Seminar Stage during the Kutztown Folk Festival, July 2-10. A few entries will be selected for publication in Michael Werner’s international journal, Hiwwe wie Driwwe.
Authors are encouraged to submit their writing using any system of spelling or orthography, although writers who are familiar with the Buffington-Barba conventions should use that system. Submissions should be sent in by May 15, 2011.

January 20, 2011
Kutztown University president Dr. Javier Cevallos says that KU has big plans for the Pennsylvania German Cultural Heritage Center. He said, language and culture are very important to him personally. (Read full article: Kutztown Patriot.)

January 17, 2011
Pennsburg (PA). A Tradition Continues. A Grundsau Lodsch fer Junge. A Groundhog Lodge for Youth. The Schwenkfelder Library & Heritage Center invites families to come to the first annual Groundhog Lodge for families and children on February 6, 2011, at 4:00 pm. A $5 donation to the Schwenkfelder Library & Heritage Center for each participant is requested. R.S.V.P, required, to Rebecca Lawrence, Museum Educator, 215–679–3103. Read full article.

January 14, 2011
Reading (PA). More people calling themselves Pennsylvania Dutch. The dialect may be dying out, but a growing number of people identify with the culture, census figures show. (Read full article: Reading Eagle)

October 29, 2007
Publisher in the dialect relishes Pennsylvania German tour. (Read full article: Reading Eagle)

October 5, 2007
Cultivating Pennsylvania German as a way to communicate with Germans. (Read full article: Lancaster New Era)

February 2, 2007
Bilingual signs as a way to preserve Pennsylvania Dutch heritage. (Read full article: Lancaster New Era)

November 1, 2005
Pennsylvania Dutch Ressources, from Internet sites to new college courses. (Read full article: Lancaster New Era)