DAY 34.

I start my day at Finnish-American Heritage Centre and immediately get caught in an interesting discussion with the director James Kurtti. He has wast knowledge about the history and culture of the area. He tells about division in conservative, religious groups and more liberal, leftist groups in Finnish-American community. Supposedly this polarisation still remain in US. Regardless of the disagreements of the history, Jim thinks it is important to have Finnish-American identity. United States is a big country with many people and cultures. You have to have something for yourself, something to identify to. Finnish-American are more talkative and open than Finnish people, but more quiet compared to the rest of US.

One very interesting detail is that FBI started a Klux Klux Klan amongst Finnish-American people. The main idea was to scare the leftists.

We have a very emotional interview with Beth, her mother Joan and Joan’s cousin Evie in the evening. It is sometimes hard to remember all the old family stories. But it is probably easier to tell them to a more or less stranger like me. We visit Joan’s old school and her other cousin’s Jane’s house. Jane passed away recently.

Leave a Reply