History-1900+

How a Lithuanian-American Son Lost in World War II Unites Multiple Generations of His Family.

Two Brothers Went to War, Only One Came Home Neither Is Forgotten Sandy Baksys. Some 80 years ago, Julius and George Sneckus went to fight for their parents’ adopted homeland in World War II. The only children of first-wave Lithuanian immigrants Petronele (Nellie) Matukaite and Jurgis (George) Charles Snieckus, the …

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Pains and Rewards along the Path to Freedom

Victor Nakas. In a verdant village grew three sons Three sons – solid oaks Off they went to defend us against the enemy Sacrificing bravely for our homeland One died at Radviliškis, a second at Širvintos A third on the amber seashore. This is an excerpt from a mournful Lithuanian …

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Emanuelis Zingeris. An Eyewitness Recalls – 31 Years of Independence and Counting

Linas Jegelevičius. Statesman Emanuelis Zingeris, a signatory of the March 11, 1990 Act of the Restoration of Lithuania’s Independence, is serving his seventh term as a Member of Parliament, the Seimas. Zingeris is also vice-chairman of the Human Rights and Legal Affairs Committee in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council …

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Thirty Years Ago, Lithuania Faced Its Moment of Truth

Victor Nakas. Imagine a world in which your local university offers a course in modern Lithuanian history. Of course you’ve enrolled and now it’s time for your final exam.  Your first essay question reads “What were the five most important milestones in 20th century Lithuanian history? Why?” How would you …

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Chicago’s Lithuanian Opera is Preserved for the Ages. Digital technology helps archive a major Lithuanian cultural achievement

Dr. Darius Kučinskas. To mark the upcoming centennial of Lithuanian opera, the Martynas Mažvydas National Library in Vilnius, in cooperation with the Balzekas Museum of Lithuanian Culture, has initiated a project to digitize the videotapes of Chicago’s Lithuanian opera productions. Cameraman and photographer Aleksandras Plenys undertook the original videotaping from …

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Bestselling author Gediminas Kulikauskas: Publishing is like a lottery

Linas Jegelevičius, Representing Draugas News in Lithuania. There are books that are so riveting that you just can’t put them down. Two books by Gediminas Kulikauskas, Contraband of Oranges and The Lithuanian Code, both bestsellers, are among my favorite reads. Their author, who also wrote, Electricity Boycott and The Republic …

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Shtetl Love Song

Vin Katilius-Boydstun.     There is no universally agreed-on definition of a shtetel. According to professor of Jewish history, Yohannan Petrovsky-Shtern, what became known in Yiddish as the shtetel grew out of the “Polish private town,” the property of Polish magnates during the time of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, continuing as such …

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Viktoras Petravičius: Master of the Monoprint

By Izida Petravičiūtė von Braun In 1978, in the journal Lituanus, Professor Stasys Goštautas of Boston University, wrote about Petravičius and his art as follows: “Never since the delightful graphic art of the primitive and anonymous artists of the eighteenth century, has Lithuanian art exhibited such a pure and candid …

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The Kurnėnai School and Laurent Radziukynas

By Gediminas Indreika. West of Alytus, between the Aniškis forest and Luksnėnu lake, lies the village of Kurnėnai. In the 1880s Laurynas (Laurent) Radziukynas trekked 8 kilometers daily to the nearest school in Miroslavas, a hardship that would leave an indelible impression in the boy’s mind. In 1934, as a …

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WHEN THE MOUSE REALLY ROARED. Remembering the 30th anniversary of the beginning of the end of the USSR

Victor Nakas. Walk to the White House As we approached the northwest gate of the White House, we expected that our Lincoln sedan would just drive through. Instead, the guards told us to get out and walk through the pedestrian entrance. There they checked our IDs and riffled through the …

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