Mark Your Calendar: Casselman Historians Annual Meeting Dates Set for September 18 & 19, 2020

The annual historical meeting of the Casselman Historians is scheduled for Friday evening and Saturday, September 18 & 19, 2020, at Grantsville, Maryland. Specific place of meeting is to be announced.

This meeting will recognize 2020 as the centennial year of Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) and treat the involvement of the Casselman Valley Amish and Mennonite congregations in MCC programs in the decades that followed.

MCC was founded in 1920 in an effort toward Mennonite united effort and efficiency in relief ministries. MCC’s initial work was a response to needs in Russia related to World War I and, especially, the civil war in Russia known as the Bolshevik Revolution.

The ministries of MCC were vastly expanded in geography and scope throughout the twentieth century. A major category of involvement of the Casselman Valley people, in addition to monetary donations, was relief for war sufferers of World War II though the work of the sewing circles, meat and soup canning, and the Pax program of rebuilding in Europe.

Watch future issues of The Historian for information on topics, speakers, and place of meeting. In the meantime, mark your calendar for September 18 and 19.

MCC in 1920 and Alvin J. Miller

Alvin J. Miller

Casselman Historians Annual Meeting (Friday & Saturday, Sept. 20 & 21, 2019) This is a free public meeting—all are welcome!

Click the Next Meeting tab above for the schedule and beginning times.

Topic: One-hundred years ago, the Amish and Mennonite people of America responded to drastic international events. The aftermath of World War I called for relief and reconstruction in Europe. In Russia, the World War was followed by civil war and the Bolshevik Revolution with its social and economic upset, and severe famine. Mennonite organizations responded to those needs with programs of relief and reconstruction.

By 1920, Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) was founded in an effort toward Mennonite unified effort and efficiency. With the MCC centennial year approaching, the Casselman Historians are planning to recognize that milestone next year. But this is the year to note early Casselman Valley involvements in relief efforts that preceded MCC, that related to the founding of MCC and the earliest program of MCC in Russia

A significant contribution from the Casselman Valley to the international relief effort of the period was the involvement of one of its sons, Alvin J. Miller (1883-1981). He was overseas from 1919 to 1927, and that without home furlough. These eight years were an intense part of his ninety-seven years. His work included interaction with persons and communities in dire need, as well as negotiations with top government officials.  His organizational umbrellas included the Society of Friends (Quaker), Red Cross, and, most extensively after its founding, MCC.