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Category: German Americans

Four people play musical instruments outdoors in a meadow.

Homegrown Plus Premiere: Deitsch Folk Music from Germany

Posted by: Stephen Winick

We're excited to continue the Homegrown Plus Premiere series with a video concert by Deitsch, a traditional folk band from Germany. In 2023, Homegrown is presenting a combination of live concerts here at the Library of Congress and video premieres of prerecorded concerts from around the world. The prerecorded concerts premiere here on the blog, and videos of the live concerts will be placed here a few weeks after they happen. So subscribe to the blog for more great concerts all season! This is one of our prerecorded video concerts, shot on location in Germany and presented here for the first time. As is usual for the series, this blog post includes an embedded concert video, an interview video, and a set of related links to explore!

A groundhog

Groundhog Day: Ancient Origins of a Modern Celebration

Posted by: Stephen Winick

Most of us know the tradition: on February 2, our old friend the groundhog will emerge from hibernation, come out of his den, and predict whether winter will deliver more cold weather this year. If the groundhog sees his shadow, the story goes, cold weather will persist another few weeks. If not, warm weather is around the corner. If you like the folklore of holidays, you may be interested to know that Groundhog Day is related to two of the other holidays we have written about extensively on this blog: Halloween and Mayday. In this post, we'll look at the ancient origins of the Groundhog Day tradition in Celtic and Germanic culture. We'll also present two fun groundhog songs from AFC collections, and links to further reading and exploration of this seasonal observance.

A man playing a guitar and singing to a close crowd of a dozen or so men and women

Navigating AFC Collections Geographically: Great Plains

Posted by: Stephanie Hall

The following is a guest post by American Folklife Center head of reference, Judith Gray. Staff at the American Folklife Center continue to use new digital tools to support remote discovery and access for our resources by users of all kinds. Whether you are a community scholar, a teacher, an academic researcher, a creative artist, …

A man playing a guitar and singing to a close crowd of a dozen or so men and women

World War I Homecomings

Posted by: Lisa Taylor

The following is a guest post by Irene Lule, a Library of Congress Junior Fellow working with the Veterans History Project (VHP) this summer. In today’s highly visual world, a popular type of YouTube video is the “soldier coming home” video. These clips are fairly basic in their premise. Someone captures the moment a service …

A man playing a guitar and singing to a close crowd of a dozen or so men and women

Chicago Ethnic Arts Project Goes Online

Posted by: Stephen Winick

The following guest post by Ann Hoog is part of a series of blog posts about the 40th Anniversary Year of the American Folklife Center. Visit this link to see them all! The American Folklife Center is pleased to announce a new online presentation of the Chicago Ethnic Arts Project Collection.  The photos and audio …

A fairy-like goddess plays a long pipe. A hare sits next to her on a mushroom, and a cherub and three more hares listen to her tune.

Ostara and the Hare: Not Ancient, but Not As Modern As Some Skeptics Think

Posted by: Stephen Winick

If you’re curious about modern holiday beliefs and calendar customs, you might be reading or doing research about them online. Chances are, you come across some stories that the presenters claim are ancient, and reach into the pre-Christian past. One popular story you might have seen recently involves the origin of the Easter Bunny. Essentially, …