First German Baptist Church Records Finding Aid Now Available

The Constitution of the Synzygus Verein of the First German Baptist Church, which appears to have been adopted prior to 1915.
The Constitution of the Synzygus Verein of the First German Baptist Church, which appears to have been adopted prior to 1915.

The records of the First German Baptist Church or Deutsche Baptisten-Kirche of Cincinnati have been fully processed and a finding aid is now available on the OhioLINK Finding Aid Repository.  The collection holds various records for the church between 1880 and 1991 including church meeting minutes, financial records, and Sunday school attendance sheets.  The material in the collection prior to the 1930s is primarily in German.

The records of the First German Baptist Church illustrate a small, but significant religious movement among Cincinnati Germans in the late nineteenth century.  The First German Baptist Church was founded in Cincinnati in 1857, with the assistance of the Ninth Street Baptist Church, whose congregation saw the need for a Baptist missionary movement among German immigrants.  Continue reading First German Baptist Church Records Finding Aid Now Available

ARB Celebrates Ohio Archives Month

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Since 1993 the Society of Ohio Archivists has been promoting awareness of the state’s archives and archival material through a week-long, later to become a month-long, celebration of Ohio’s historic and cultural resources. Archives throughout Ohio are invited to contribute to the promotion of Archives Month by mounting theme-related exhibits, displaying posters, and publicizing the month’s events through local government and organizations. This year’s theme is “Documenting the Path to Freedom: Abolition and Anti-Slavery in Ohio.” Continue reading ARB Celebrates Ohio Archives Month

UC Libraries Awarded a LSTA Grant to Digitize Cincinnati Birth and Death Records

One of the many filing cabinets filled with birth and death records.
One of the many filing cabinets filled with birth and death records.

Genealogists, social historians, epidemiologists, and public health historians will soon have a new extensive, online resource to assist them in learning about birth and deaths in the City of Cincinnati. The University of Cincinnati Libraries have been awarded a $140,437 Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant from the State Library of Ohio to digitize 340,000 birth and death records of the City of Cincinnati prior 1908.  The records will be available on OhioLINK’s Digital Resource Commons beginning in August of 2010. Continue reading UC Libraries Awarded a LSTA Grant to Digitize Cincinnati Birth and Death Records

A Glimpse at a German-American Family: The Helmecke Family Collections at the Archives and Rare Books Library

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Carl Helmecke with his wife Mildred and daughter Roberta in Philadelphia in 1919.

The German-Americana Collection at the University of Cincinnati Archives and Rare Books Library holds a wealth of materials on German immigration to the United States and the experiences of these immigrants once they were here. Two collections that document the experiences of one of these families are of the Helmecke family.  These collections span from the father’s immigration to Cincinnati in 1902 to the beginning of his son’s academic career in Colorado in the 1930s.

In 1902, Stephen Helmecke of Braunschweig, Germany came to the United States to work for the Globe Wernicke Company, a library furniture company located in Cincinnati. Stephen’s wife, Marie (Engel), and his two children, Carl Albert and Marie Gertrud, followed him to the United States in 1903. The family lived in Cincinnati for five years before moving to Grand Rapids, Michigan where both Carl and Gertrud attended the University of Michigan. Carl eventually received his Ph.D in German and taught at Western State College in Gunnison, Colorado. Gertrud became an osteopathic physician, and was the first woman elected president of the Ohio Osteopathic Association.

Continue reading A Glimpse at a German-American Family: The Helmecke Family Collections at the Archives and Rare Books Library

Major Urban Reference Collection Now Available in the Archives & Rare Books Library

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In 2004, after 90 years, the City of Cincinnati’s Municipal Reference Library was about to come to an ignominious end, consigned to the dumpster. With the active involvement of city planner Skip Forwood and UC history professor Judith Spraul-Schmidt, the bulk of this valuable collection of urban resource materials was rescued and given a home in the Archives & Rare Books Library’s Urban Studies Collection. Now, it is catalogued and available once more for research.

Photo: “The Flying Squad, Co. No. 4” from the 1913 Annual Report of the Cincinnati Fire Department, one of the many resources of the Muncipal Reference Library

The Municipal Reference Library was created in 1913 under the Municipal Code of Cincinnati, which detailed the purpose of the library, and the Administrative Code, which stated that it would be maintained by the city’s planning department. Consisting primarily of city records, periodicals, reports, ordinances, news clippings, and studies, the MRL historically had been open to the public, but primarily used by city employees. Continue reading Major Urban Reference Collection Now Available in the Archives & Rare Books Library