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Profiles

  • František "Frank" Elznic (1865 - 1937)
    Born in Trtice, Nové Strašecí, Bohemia. His U.S. records give a birth year of 1863, but his Czech birth registry says 1865. Likewise, his U.S. records say his father was named Frank, but his Czech birt...
  • Frank Koca (1870 - d.)
    Immigrated to the U.S. in 1872. Was living in Milligan Village, Fillmore County, Nebraska in 1900.* MyHeritage: 1900 United States Federal Census for Frank Koca
  • Mary Elznic (1908 - 1996)
    Daughter of Mike Paroubek and Marie Korensky. Mary and her mother embarked on their transatlantic journey, to join Mary's father Mike who had previously emigrated, from Breman, Germany aboard the Loyd....
  • Mary J Pycha (1870 - 1949)
  • Charles W Pycha (1869 - 1955)

By percentage of population, Nebraska is one of the most Czech/Bohemian/Moravian States in the U.S. Several counties were founded by Czech settlers; there's even a Prague on the map.

I've been working on these families and thought that it would be nice to connect with others. To this project, I'm adding 1) Bohemian immigrants to Nebraska and 2) notable Nebraskans with Bohemian ancestry.

I hope you'll join me!

At right: Segment of a Czech newspaper ad promoting land in "Nebrasce."

Why Nebraska?

Per Wikipedia:

In the 1860s, many Czechs primarily from Bohemia and Moravia immigrated to Nebraska. Edward Rosewater and John Rosický, early Omaha newspaper editors originally from Bohemia, encouraged countrymen to come by extolling promises of free land in frontier Nebraska. By 1880 Czechs were the most concentrated ethnic group in Omaha. ...

Komenský Clubs were founded in Nebraska, including in Omaha, Lincoln and other cities where there were numerous Czech immigrants. When the Bohemian National Alliance was formed in 1914, its midwestern district was headquartered in Omaha. Czechs in the city helped promote Bohemian independence after World War I. The nation of Czechoslovakia was created in the break-up of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. By 1920 an estimated 3,500 immigrants lived in Omaha's Bohemian Town.

The majority of Bohemians (and Moravians) in Nebraska did not, however, live in the cities. Per Hrbkova:

While every county of Nebraska has Bohemian inhabitants, the largest numbers are in Douglas, Colfax, Saline, Saunders, and Butler. Cities and towns which have a generous percentage of Bohemians are Omaha, South Omaha, Wilber, Crete, Clarkson, Milligan, Schuyler, and Prague. In the main, however, Bohemians in Nebraska are settled on farms rather than in towns, in small communities rather than in cities, and in the eastern, rather than in the western part of the state.

A large majority of the Bohemians of this state are in agricultural pursuits; and as farmers are the real backbone of the great West, it may be said that the Bohemian farmers are the mainstay of the Czechs in Nebraska, despite the fact that business and the professions each year gain more accessions from them.

As of the 2000 U.S. Census, Czech-Americans living in Nebraska make up 5.5% of the state's population, the largest percentage of any state. 3,295 Nebraskans can speak the Czech language.

Religion

The vast majority of Bohemian immigrants to Nebraska were Roman Catholic, but there were substantial numbers of Protestants and Jews as well, especially in Omaha. The Protestants typically identified as Presbyterian or Brethren in the United States. They, like the Bohemian Jews, settled heavily in Omaha and other cities. The famous J.L. Brandeis & Sons department store chain in the Midwest was founded by Bohemian Jews in Omaha.

Notable Descendants

Some well-known folks are descendants of Nebraska's Bohemian immigrants. Please help us expand this list!

Resources

By percentage of population, Nebraska is one of the most Czech/Bohemian/Moravian States in the U.S. Several counties were founded by Czech settlers; there's even a Prague on the map.

I've been working on these families and thought that it would be nice to connect with others. To this project, I'm adding 1) Bohemian immigrants to Nebraska and 2) notable Nebraskans with Bohemian ancestry.

I hope you'll join me!

At right: Segment of a Czech newspaper ad promoting land in "Nebrasce.

Why Nebraska?

Per Wikipedia:

In the 1860s, many Czechs primarily from Bohemia and Moravia immigrated to Nebraska. Edward Rosewater and John Rosický, early Omaha newspaper editors originally from Bohemia, encouraged countrymen to come by extolling promises of free land in frontier Nebraska. By 1880 Czechs were the most concentrated ethnic group in Omaha. ...

Komenský Clubs were founded in Nebraska, including in Omaha, Lincoln and other cities where there were numerous Czech immigrants. When the Bohemian National Alliance was formed in 1914, its midwestern district was headquartered in Omaha. Czechs in the city helped promote Bohemian independence after World War I. The nation of Czechoslovakia was created in the break-up of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. By 1920 an estimated 3,500 immigrants lived in Omaha's Bohemian Town.

The majority of Bohemians (and Moravians) in Nebraska did not, however, live in the cities. Per Hrbkova:

While every county of Nebraska has Bohemian inhabitants, the largest numbers are in Douglas, Colfax, Saline, Saunders, and Butler. Cities and towns which have a generous percentage of Bohemians are Omaha, South Omaha, Wilber, Crete, Clarkson, Milligan, Schuyler, and Prague. In the main, however, Bohemians in Nebraska are settled on farms rather than in towns, in small communities rather than in cities, and in the eastern, rather than in the western part of the state.

A large majority of the Bohemians of this state are in agricultural pursuits; and as farmers are the real backbone of the great West, it may be said that the Bohemian farmers are the mainstay of the Czechs in Nebraska, despite the fact that business and the professions each year gain more accessions from them.

As of the 2000 U.S. Census, Czech-Americans living in Nebraska make up 5.5% of the state's population, the largest percentage of any state. 3,295 Nebraskans can speak the Czech language.

Religion

The vast majority of Bohemian immigrants to Nebraska were Roman Catholic, but there were substantial numbers of Protestants and Jews as well, especially in Omaha. The Protestants typically identified as Presbyterian or Brethren in the United States. They, like the Bohemian Jews, settled heavily in Omaha and other cities. The famous J.L. Brandeis & Sons department store chain in the Midwest was founded by Bohemian Jews in Omaha.

Resources