1125 West Turnpike Avenue
Bismarck, ND 58501

(701) 223-6167
Fax: (701) 223-4421

Monday-Friday Central Time

Office Manager
Rachel Schmidt
rachel @

Letter Archive

Letters from the Homeland and Sons of the Homeland

Personal letters offer a tremendous insight into family relationships, political stresses, and economic conditions that are difficult to obtain elsewhere. The Letters Archive is a collection of over 9,500 letters written in the first half of the 1900's; most letters are translated from German language newspapers published in North Dakota and South Dakota. We have letters written by people who emigrated to North America and South America as well as letters written by people who still lived in the homeland of either Germany or South Russia. Many letters request information on a lost relative and also have many greetings to family and friends long not seen. Economic conditions as well as everyday conditions are talked about in these letters. Each letter is translated by volunteers and donated to GRHS to give our members a better knowledge of the lives of our ancestors.

In earlier years some letters were published in the GRHS Heritage Review and Stammbaum publications. GRHS members continue to work to locate and to translate additional letters, and we are fortunate to be able to make these letters available to GRHS members as they are made available to us. Please note that all of these letters are viewable by GRHS members only (i.e. a GRHS user name and password is required to view letters). GRHS membership information is available at this link.

How you can contribute to our efforts.

We encourage members, especially those who know German and have facility with Frakturschrift to join in this effort. A possible source of over 25,000 letters that have been indexed can be viewed at Newspaper Archive. The majority have not been translated.

The Letter Archive

Letters with a tag displayed in 'Bold' have been added to the Letter Archive since January 1, 2013. If you find a letter with a broken link or some other problem, please send a message to Letters email graphic. Please include the letter tag.

To view a letter select the region/country/state/province you are interested in. Once you reach the surname pages you will find all letters are grouped by the writer's surname and links to all the letters referencing that surname. Each letter tag will be linked to a letter containing that surname.

Canada Alberta
British Columbia
Europe All
Russia Beresan District
Cherson/Odessa A-G
Cherson/Odessa H-R
Cherson/Odessa S-Z
Other Areas
Central/South America All
United States
Alabama Arizona Arkansas
California Colorado Connecticut
Delaware Florida Georgia
Idaho Illinois Indiana
Iowa Kansas Kentucky
Louisiana Maine Maryland
Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota
Mississippi Missouri Montana
Nebraska Nevada New Hampshire
New Jersey New Mexico New York
North Carolina North Dakota A-D North Dakota E-H
North Dakota I-L North Dakota M-R North Dakota S
North Dakota T-Z Ohio Oklahoma
Oregon Pennsylvania Rhode Island
South Carolina South Dakota Tennessee
Texas Utah Vermont
Virginia Washington West Virginia
Wisconsin Wyoming