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Zgoda - Unity


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Title: Zgoda - Unity

City: Milwaukee, Wi. Chicago, Ill.

County: Cook

Available online: 4 January 1893 - 26 December 1901 (417 issues)

In 1881, Zgoda (“Harmony”) appeared as a weekly newspaper for the Polish community in the Chicago metropolitan area. It operated under the auspices of Zwiazek Narodowo Polski (ZNP) or the Polish National Alliance. The ZNP encouraged organizational unity among Polish immigrants. Throughout the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Zgoda faithfully reported on developments in Poland, encouraging Poles in the mother country to hold onto their traditions and identity amidst Russian occupation. Zgoda also featured a front-page spread dedicated to the labor movement. In 1908, this content was transferred to the ZNP’s daily publication, Dziennik ludowy (“People’s Daily”) [LCCN: sn83045093]. With this change, Zgoda began to focus primarily on news related to the ZNP.

Although Catholicism was a monumental part of Polish-American life, Zgoda tended to deviate from the teachings of the church. This set it apart from other Polish-American papers such as the Dziennik Chicagoski (“Chicago Daily News”) [LCCN: sn83045747], Dziennik Związkowy (“Polish Daily News”) [LCCN: sn94083572], and the Gazeta Polska Katolicka (“The Polish Catholic Gazette”) [LCCN: sn94054603]. An article in Zgoda titled “Precz ze Zdrajcami” (“Down with Traitors”) contended that priests and bishops that should not employ their “holiness” as a position of comfort, but rather that they should use their influence to enable the voice of the people. In 1900, Zgoda began publishing a special weekly issue called Zgoda: Wydania dla niewiast (“Harmony: Women’s edition”), for the purpose of bringing together women in the immigrant community. In the first issue, the editor expounded that a society without women would be short-lived and weak.

Zgoda: Wydania dla niewiast tended to be much less politically aggressive than Zgoda: Wydanie dla mężczyzn (“Harmony: Men’s Edition”), which was also launched in 1900. With many articles submitted by its female readers, Zgoda: Wydania dla niewiast reported on women’s rallies, included recipes, home remedies and health, childcare tips and tricks, and warned against dangers present in the developing cities of Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin. Conversely, Zgoda: Wydanie dla mężczyzn focused specifically on politics, ranging from local to international issues. An early issue of the new men’s edition headlined “Zasady w Polityce” (“Rules in Politics”). Other headlines included “Resurrecturi,” which compared spiritual laziness to politics, as well as “Zapowiesci nowej wojny” on the “Talk of a New War” in Africa. Other popular topics include updates on Congress, financial and economic news, and short biographies on famous politicians and war heroes, including Jezy (“George”) Washington.

In the 1920s, Zgoda began publishing some English-language articles in acknowledgment of the inevitable Americanization of Chicago’s Polish community. This process continued in succeeding decades. By 1977, half of its pages were published in English. Zgoda is still in publication today as the ZNP’s quarterly magazine.

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