Shaping the Circle


About This Project

| Exhibit | Explore | Examine | Other |
| Copyright | Selection Process | Technical Notes | Credits


The "Shaping the Circle" EXHIBIT is a five-part narrative with accompanying images and links to primary materials. Move through the Exhibit as it is presented or choose a particular section of interest from the Exhibit page. The Exhibit begins with a look at why people left Germany and settled in Indianapolis. It then discusses the influence of German-Americans on three areas of Indianapolis culture: music, architecture, and physical education. Finally, it explores the cultural conflict that German-Americans experienced and the steps they took to become acculturated. This Exhibit has been created for K-12 and the academic, research communities.

At the top and bottom of each Exhibit page is a navigational text line which allows the user to move through other elements of the project, such as EXPLORE, EXAMINE, OTHER, SEARCH, and HOME. Arrows are also placed on the pages to let the user "flip" to the previous and next pages of the Exhibit.

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Use the EXPLORE feature to learn more about the People, Time, and Topics discussed in the Exhibit (these categories are explained on the EXPLORE page and can be linked from there). Explore: People offers simple descriptions of some of Indianapolis' most noteworthy German-American people and groups. Explore: Time provides a time line of major events in Indianapolis and United States history and shows how German-Americans fit into them. Explore: Topics presents a list of interesting and unusual topics that are contained in the Exhibit. All three Explore sections provide connections to the Exhibit itself. The Explore feature is recommended for upper-elementary and secondary-school students.

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By choosing the EXAMINE feature, you may take a closer look at the primary materials from the Ruth Lilly Special Collections and Archives that were used to create this exhibit. These materials include photographs, sheet music, concert programs, architectural plans, and organization minutes. Each item in the Examine section is accompanied by a descriptive caption and offers links to the Exhibit.

For users who are just interested in the primary images and texts and don't want to follow the narrative, there is an EXAMINE feature. Items are presented in the order in which they appear in the text and can be linked to and from an EXAMINE list. Each item has its own page and a caption that briefly explains what the item is. The item page also contains necessary cataloging information about the item.

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The OTHER RESOURCES feature provides resources for teachers and ideas for incorporating German-American history into the curriculum. It also gives links to other Internet sites related to German-Americana.

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Copyrights to these images are held by Indiana University Board of Trustees. Permission is hereby granted to reproduce and distribute copies of these images for nonprofit educational and nonprofit library purposes, provided that copies are distributed at or below cost, and that the reproduction includes this notice: "Copyright held by Indiana University." This permission is in addition to rights granted under Sections 107, 108, and other provisions of the U.S . Copyright Act. For inclusion on an Internet site, please link to For other uses and for more information about these images, please contact the University Archivist, IUPUI University Library, Ruth Lilly Special Collections and Archives, 755 West Michigan Street, Indianapolis, IN 46202. For more information, please visit the Special Collections Copyright Information and the Indiana University Copyright Management Center.

Special permission was authorized by Giles R. Hoyt, Associate Dean and Professor of German, Office of International Affairs, IUPUI, for use of the Freethinker Minutes (both the German and English translations) as he acts as project leader and editor for the Indiana German Heritage Society which holds any copyright.

Special permission was authorized by Giles R. Hoyt, Associate Dean and Professor of German, Office of International Affairs, IUPUI, for use of Theodore Stempfel's Fifty Years of Unrelenting German Aspirations in Indianapolis: 1848-1898, originally published 1898, as he acted as co-editor for the 1991 publication by the Indiana German Heritage Society which holds any copyright.

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The following document was prepared by Gregory Hunter Mobley, Archives Assistant, who selected the materials for this project.

Because the Historical Digital Imaging Project is heavily based on the writings of Theodore Stempfel and George Probst, I concentrated on finding items which relate to or complement the text. I used the finding aids for the German-American collections as well as my own knowledge of the collections to identify possible items for use. Texts such as the Encyclopedia of Indianapolis provided additional information on many topics, which in turn brought to mind other possible items for the project.

My first objective was to locate items that connected directly with a passage of text from Stempfel or Probst. Examples of such items include photographs of people or structures (e.g., photographs of Bernard Vonnegut and the Herron Art Museum Building), programs for events (the Chimes of Normandy program), or realia (the 1908 Saengerfest ribbon).

A second objective was to locate items that were themselves not specifically mentioned in the text but were related to topics that were mentioned. Examples include the photograph of the Morris-Butler House (designed by Diedrich Bohlen but not mentioned by Stempfel or Probst) and programs for various Maennerchor events. This step was important for those cases where items that could connect directly with a passage of text were not available. One example of this is using the image of the 1948 Turner commemorative stamp in connection with a discussion of Turnvereins.

A third objective was to locate items that illustrated the larger themes in Stempfel and Probst's texts. Examples of such items include the John Bermont letter to Philip Sachs (why Germans immigrated to the United States), the photograph of Athenaeum men drinking wine (cultural conflict over the use of alcoholic beverages), and newspaper articles relating to Das Deutsche Haus becoming the Athenaeum in 1918 (cultural conflict during World War I, especially concerning the use of German). These items provided concrete examples of the themes.

Finding appropriate items sometimes meant looking in other sources besides the Athenaeum Turners records, the American Turners records, or the Maennerchor records. For example, a picture of Friedrich Ludwig Jahn, the founder of the Turner movement, was found in a book on important figures in physical education. When using published sources like these, it was necessary to locate those published before 1920 to avoid copyright problems.

Once possible items had been selected, they were brought to the HDIP committee for discussion and final selection. The committee identified areas in the project that still needed images, and additional items located, using the criteria listed above.

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The images used in this site were scanned and resized by Zoya Golban, student employee; images were placed by Scott Lauman, student employee, who also produced all preliminary mark-up using HTML (Hypertext Mark-up Language). A Hewlett Packard, ScanJet 4C, was used to scan the photographs and documents. Thumbnail images were scanned at a spatial resolution of 200 x 150 pixels (est.), GIF (Graphics Interchange Format) image file formatting. These thumbnail images are placed within the digital exhibit and linked to their respective reference image. In this way, we decrease the download time of the Web page. Black and white materials were scanned as grayscale images; tonal resolution at 8 bits-per-pixel; pallets optimized for each image (adaptive palletes); not sharpened, uncompressed. The reference images were scanned at their actual size using JPEG (Joint Photographic Experts Group) image file formatting. Black and white materials were scanned as grayscale images; spatial resolution on the average of 700 x 450 pixels; tonal resolution at 8 bits-per-pixel; palettes optimized for each image (adaptive palettes); not sharpened, uncompressed. Individual Web pages were not created for the reference images, the user will need to know how to use the Back feature in their browser. Because staffing and time were an issue, it was therefore decided not to provide a Web page for each reference image.

Overall graphics design, management of digital conversion, and page layout conducted by Allison R. Kopczynski, Digital Projects Editor, Digital Libraries Team, IUPUI University Library.

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The following individuals make up the team of knowledgeable individuals who were involved in this project. These persons are experts with one or all of the following: the German-American collections at IUPUI University Libraries' Ruth Lilly Special Collections and Archives, cataloging, processing and selecting archival materials, management and control of library and archival materials, interface design, editing, and project management.

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Updated: 29 April 2004, RKB

Copyright 1998-2004 - The Trustees of Indiana University 
Ruth Lilly Special Collections and Archives
IUPUI University Library
755 W. Michigan St.
Indianapolis, IN 46202
(317) 274-0464