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Czechs in Professional, Artistic, Banking and Other Careers

School Teachers

Fr. Znamenacek

   The first public-school teacher of Czech birth, of whom we have record, and he undoubtedly is the first, is Frank Znamenacek, a pioneer of Saline County, still living in Crete. He was born in Macovice, Benesov, Tabor, and came to Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1862, attending school there a short time. During 1863 and 1864 he was employed by the government as baker, baking bread and crackers for the soldiers. He came to Saline County in 1869. In 1867, as noted elsewhere, the Czechs in Saline County, at Joseph Jindra's instigation, formed a Reading Society. Later a little log building was erected on Joseph Jelinek's farm, 14x16x6, with three windows and a door. It was built by the settlers in two days. Seats and a table of boards were provided and Jindra taught in Czech. The Reading Society met there also. In 1869 Znamenacek began to teach in English, although he taught during the first three months without text books; they were that long in coming. At that time the school belonged to District No. 3, which was organized October 6, 1868, and covered a large territory, twenty-six sections of land. Later it was subdivided, and a better building, still standing in Big Blue Precinct, was erected.

   Some of Mr. Znamenacek's pupils, and he thinks the list covers nearly all, were: Stephen, son of Frank Jelinek; Frank, Joseph and Adolph, sons of Joseph Jelinek; Vratislav and Miloslav, sons of Matej Kovarik; Vaclav J., son of Vaclav Sestak; Joseph, son of Jacob Srajhans; Joseph, Vaclav, sons of Mr. Plachy, Rose and John, daughter and son of Joseph Znamenacek and a child of Mr. Svoboda. Mr. Znamenacek was succeeded by Miss Mary Nedela (later Mrs. Kubicek), Mrs. E. F. Stephens, Mr. E. F. Stephens (for many years a prominent nurseryman in that vicinity), Vinc. Dvorak, and others. The women received $25.00 salary per month, the men $40.00.

   Vincent J. Stedry, whose biography is given in the history of Custer County, taught in Saline County in 1879, near Wilber, when Bohemian settlers were many, but the children knew little or no English. He had to translate the text books for them and wrote the words of songs in both Czech and English on large sheets of paper. These he tacked on the wall and then played the melody on his violin. Both the children and parents were so pleased with his methods that the school could not hold all the pupils.

   After Fr. Znamenacek the next pioneer teacher of whom we have record is Joseph W. Zerzan of Schuyler, who taught in Butler County, near Nimburg, in 1874. Louis Straka was another. He began teaching near Abie in 1883 and continued for many years following.

   Co-eval with Zerzan was John F. Sobota of Praha, Colfax County, who taught in District 17 of that county in 1874 and 1875. Later he taught in Butler and Saunders counties. Other pioneer teachers in Colfax County were: Joseph W. Zerzan of Schuyler, who taught in 1876 and John Novotny, who in 1876 taught in a small building on John Folda's land, now District No. 47. Novotny also taught in Butler County later. The course lasted three or four months in the winter and the salary was $30.00 per month.

   Miss Anna Zajicek (living in West Point) taught in Cuming County in 1876 and some years thereafter. Somewhat later the Misses M. Dvorak and Kath. Langer taught.

   John F. Sobota taught in Saunders County prior to 1880, in Vanek's school, two and a half miles southwest of Prague. He was succeeded by John Peleska of St. Louis, Missouri, who was also organist in the Plasi church.

   Frank Lundak taught in Knox County in 1882, in District No. 6, during three months of the year. For many years now a lawyer in Gregory, South Dakota.

   Joseph Walter Jr., taught in Dodge County in 1883.

   There were undoubtedly others in this vanguard of the army of men and women engaged in the noble work of teaching, but the records are lost. It was the intention to list all the teachers of the present time, but that record also is not available. The best that can be done is to give names of teachers in our State University; those in high schools and principals of ward and high schools, and the rural teachers. Of the latter, lists have been obtained from all but the following counties: Banner, Greeley, Keya Paha, Loup, Nemaha, Richardson, Rock, Sarpy, Thomas and Thurston. Aside from Richardson, it is very likely that scarcely any Czech names would be found, so we are able to give almost all. There is quite a number of those who are active in responsible teaching positions in other states, but the records again are not available.


   Frank Ernest Henzlik, Professor of School Administration; Fred R. Nohavec, Tractor Testing Engineer; Dr. Alfred Schalek, Professor of Dermatology and Syphilology; Orin Stepanek, Professor of Czech, Russian, English Literature, Modern Prose and Literature of the Eighteenth Century; Dr. Charles H. Breuer, Materia Medica; August Molzer, Professor of Music; Rud. Skarda, Superintendent of Anatomy Division, Medical College, Omaha.


   Libbie Kukral, Superintendent, Arcadia; Helen S. Vancura, High School, Arcadia; Helen Zahradnicek, High School, Atkinson; Lillian Benda, Supervisor, Barneston; Ruth Ptacek, Supervisor, Bayard; Ed. A. Liska, Superintendent, Bee; Rose Wanek, High School, Bertrand; L. J. Bouchal, Superintendent, Blue Springs; Bessie M. Svoboda, High School, Broken Bow; Hedvika Koci, High School, Cedar Rapids; E. L. Novotny, Superintendent, Central City; Marie Sobota, High School, Clarkson; Helen M. Krejci, High School, Columbus; Gertrude Vrtiska, High School, Cook; Paul Sala, High School, Crawford; Mrs. Mabel Stysek, Normal Training, Crete; V. J. Shebl, Manual Training, Crete; Mrs. Otilie Elias, Ward Principal, Crete; J. Stech, Orchestra, Daykin; Marie Kastl, High School, Dodge; Angeline Simecek, High School, Doniphan; James J. Liska Jr., Superintendent, Dwight; Mary Coufal, Superintendent, Emmet; Charles J. Prochazka, Superintendent, Ericson; May Ptacek, High School, Farnam; A. H. Panek, High School, Fullerton; Mildred Kolar, High School, Hardy; John A. Straka, High School, Havelock; Mildred Cerny, High School, Hemingford; Mrs. F. J. Kotlar, Supervisor, Hooper; Jerome V. Srb, Superintendent, Howell; John J. Koliha, Ella Benesh, Theodore Kubik, High School, Howell; Robert F. Prokop, Superintendent, Huntley; Lucile Hrubesky, High School, Kearney; Helen Cherny, Supervisor, Kearney; Rose Shonka, Supervisor, Lincoln; Emil Vlasak, High School, Linwood; C. A. Ostrovec, Band, Meadow Grove; J. W. Nerud, Superintendent, Melbeta; E. W. Matejovsky, Ann J. Soulek, High School, Merna; J. A. Kovanda, Eleanor Kudrna, High School, Milligan; Otto Hasik, Smith-Hughes School, Milligan; Bess Rose Fitl, Superintendent, Nickerson; Helen Kubicek, Edward M. Sevcik, High School, Ord; Estella Krejci, High School, Papillion; Clarence Triska, High School, Paxton; Marie Prochazka, High School, Pender; Elmer E. Zavodsky, Superintendent, Petersburg; Evelyn Bartunek, Phylis Krahulik, High School, Polk; Anna Sakryt, High School, Red Cloud; A. J. Havlovic, High School, St. Paul; Hattie M. Prochazka, Elizabeth Castek, Irene Sonka, High School, Schuyler; Eleanor Cech, Ward Principal, Schuyler; Mary Vybiral, School Nurse, Schuyler; Win. H. Storkan, High School, Sidney; Jos. K. Sukovaty, High School, Swanton; Wm. H. Kotas, Superintendent, Verona; Jaroslav Mulac, Supervisor of Music, Wausa; Ruth Doudna, Supervisor, Wayne; Sylvia Kunc, High School, Wilber; Ernest Hubka, High School, York.


   Adams County--Mrs. Jas. B. Pavelka, District 19.

   Antelope County--Emily K. Simanek, Dist. 9; Olga Novotny, Dist. 11.

   Boone County--District not given. Agnes Novacek, Wilma Kotab, Mary Novacek, Ethel Oliverius.

   Boyd County--Joseh Mashek, Anoka; Grace E. Vesely, Anoka; Libby Sedlacek, Bristow; Olga Wondra, Monowi; Frances Hambek, Helen Basta Tilton, Annie Sedlacek, Libbie Uhlir, Elsie Pucelik, Emma Pucelik, Bessie A. Prokop, Spencer; Augusta Pokorny, Marie Nemec, Martha Sedlacek, Martha Jedlicka, Lynch.

   Box Butte County--Gladys Caha, Dist. 81.

   Brown County--Miss Carol Vlastnik. Dist. not given.

   Buffalo County--Dist. not given. Libbie Prochazka, Frances Benisek, Sylvia Novy, Helen Mrkvicka, Anna Bauer, Fred Pokorny.

   Butler County--E. J. Vlasak, Dist. 2; Clara Tichacek, Dist. 2; Albin Kriz, Dist. 6; Helen Holesovsky, Dist. 8; Tillie Svoboda, Dist. 10; J. J. Liska, William Walla, Marie Drahota, Emily Kotab, Mary Slosar, all Dist. 12; Beatrice Polak, Dist. 19; Ludmila Hausner, Dist. 20; Anna Koutnik, Dist. 25; Mary Vanek, Dist. 27; Edith Markitan, Dist. 28; Sylvia Vopalensky, Dist. 34; Ed. Peltz, Stanley Drasky, Dist. 38; Julian Koskan, Dist. 39; Alba Rehak, Dist. 46; Helen Stava, Dist. 48; Rose Koza, Dist. 53; Dorothy Hasik, Dist. 59; Ed. Rech, Dist. 61; Lucille Hamsa, Dist. 66; Agnes Jambor, Dist. 69; Lillian Placek, Olga Pelikan, Dist. 72; Florence Kalina, Dist. 73; George Kadlecek, Dist. 74; Pauline Jirovsky, Dist. 78; Christina Trousil, Dist. 79; Ed. Vondra, Dist. 83; Anna Bily, Mary Tomek, Agnes Slosar, Dist. 86; Helena Rolenc, Dist. 90; Adolph Liska, Dist. 91; Ray Sabata, Dist. 92; Lottie Kalina, Dist. 94; Ludmila Klein; Olga Klein.

   Cass County--Anna Rys, Marie Svoboda, Rose Prochazka, Henrietta Toman, all in Plattsmouth.

   Cedar County--Julius Stejskal, Hartington.

   Chase County--Martha Bukacek, Dist. 3.

   Cherry County--Dolley L. Krasomil, Dist. 1; Katherine Brinda, Dist. 20; Agnes Hora, Dist. 179; Elsie Burian, Dist. 181.

   Cheyenne County--Wm. H. Storkan, Principal, Sidney, Dist. 1; Irene Pavlat, Dist. 5; Angeline Jenik, Dist. 12; Frank Barta, Dist. 51; Avid Mrkvicka, Dist. 86.

   Clay County--Dist. not given. Clara Soucek, Edward Wolfe, Agnes Wolfe.

   Colfax County--Anna Stastny, Dist. 1; Anna Sulc, Dist. 5; Julia Tyburec, Dist. 6; Jessie Teply, Dist. 8; Chas. V. Jonas, Dist. 11; Josephine Sterba, Dist. 14; Mary O. Krula, Dist. 15; Tillie Pokorny, Dist. 17; Mamie Krcma, Dist. 19; Bessie Havrda, Dist. 22; Agnes Jura, Dist. 23; Mayme Skala, Dist. 24; Sylvia Tyburec, Dist. 25; Vlasta Ulichrach, Dist. 28; Anna M. Karel, Dist. 29; Anna M. Hajek, Dist. 30; Olga Indra, Dist. 31; Lillian Novak, Dist. 32; Josephine Svoboda, Dist. 34; Gilbert Prucha, Dist. 35; Elinor Rysavy, Dist. 37; Rose Prazak, Dist. 38; Olga A. Severa, Dist. 42; Rose Slama, Dist. 44; Frances Cerny, Dist. 47; Tillie L. Karel, Dist. 48; Emma Tresnak, Dist. 51; Elsie E. Petr, Dist. 53; Emily Fayman, Dist. 54; Bertha Hudec, Dist. 56; Ethel Petr, Dist. 57; Josephine Fillipi, Martha Bukacek, Dist. 58; Jos. F. Blazek, Clara Kovar, Dist. 59; Helen Mares, Dist. 60; Adelaide Kovar, Dist. 61; Adela Urbanek, Dist. 62.

   Cuming County--District not given. Helen Nebuda, Adeline Severa, Lucy Svoboda, Anna Studnicka, Irene Kubik, Esther Fillipi; Blanche Miklas, Helen Jirovec.

   Custer County--Marvelle Z. Kriz, Broken Bow; Eleanor R. Kasper, Table; Mary Dobesh, Anselmo; Edna E. Klanecky, Sargent.

   Dawes County--Nellie M. Masek, Dist. 113; Elizabeth Jelinek, Crawford.

   Dawson County--Mary Sladky. Dist. not given.

   Dodge County--Bess R. Fitle, Dist. 19; Millie Cherney, Dist. 26; Libbie Sic, Dist. 28; Anna Kocour, Dist. 39; Elsie Dlouhy, Dist. 45; J. M. Ostry, Marie Kastl, Dist 46; Christina Kocour, Dist. 57; Tillie Fiala, Dist. 58; Alice Vosacek, Dist. 61.

   Douglas County--Elsie Chizek, Dist. 4.

   Omaha--Mary Bookmeyer, Household Arts, North High School; Charles E. Severyn, Mathematics, North High School; Josephine Duras, English, South High School; Emily Houska, Social Science, Technical High School; Marie Houska Sweeney, English, Technical High School; Anna Mach Borglum, Rose Fiala, Emma Frohner, Mary Novacek Hrdlicka, Helen Kuncl, Marie Masek, Mayme Pecha, Blanche Riha, Zdenka Sedlacek, Anna Svacina, Angeline Tauchen, Irene Tauchen. Ida Dusatko Turk, Irene Zika, all in grade schools.

   In this connection it may be proper to make mention of Miss Emma Rosicky, daughter of John Rosicky. She has been thus far the only principal of Czech ancestry of an Omaha school (City of Omaha), and when appointed was the youngest principal of her time. Miss Anna Fitl was principal of a South Omaha school prior to that and co-eval with Miss Rosicky, Miss Julia Krisl was principal in the Florence school. Miss Rosicky was born in Omaha, January 22, 1879, and died there November 27, 1918, during the great influenza epidemic. She taught in the Omaha schools for thirteen years and then for seven years was principal, first of Sherman and then of Bancroft schools. Her sister Rose, in loving memory, established in her name the Emma Rosicky Scholarship Fund, in the Omaha Technical High School, to aid needy pupils.

   Fillmore County--District not given. Lillian Sluka, Mayme Loukota, Mae Cudly, Hazel Lapcheska, Mamie Steinochr, Anna Hamouz, Helen Matejka, Alice Laun, Alice M. Svec, Mildred Kuska, Jesse A. Kovanda, Clara Zumpfe, Clara Kolar, the last three in Milligan.

   Frontier County--Daisy Novotny, District 115.

   Furnas County--Vlasta Humlicek, District 103.

   Gage County--Helen Shimonek, Dist. 48; Helen Sagl, Dist. 68; Elsie Bednar, Dist. 79; Rose Beran, Dist. 86; Estella M. Kostal, Dist. 87; Ruby M. Fiala, Dist. 88; Mary H. Hajek, Dist. 94; Anna S. Kostal, Dist. 112; Christina E. Kostal, Dist. 130; Elsie M. Beran, Dist. 134; Eveline Cerny, Dist. 159; Lillie Vitek, Dist. 164; Lillian Benda, Dist. 165.

   Garden County--Emma Mishek. District not given.

   Hall County--Julia Klapal, Dist. 8; Angeline F. Simecek, Dist. 26.

   Harlan County--Robert F. Prokop, Superintendent, Sylvia Skocpol, both in Huntley.

   Holt County--Mary G. Horskey, Dist. 7; Mary Coufal, Dist. 20; Helen Zahradnicek, Dist. 21; Henry Zahradnicek, Dist. 74; Anna Coufal, Dist. 77; Stasia Sedlacek, Dist. 82; Lillian Jelinek, Dist. 134; Marcella Bouska, Dist. 143; Bessie Prusa, Dist. 188; Anna Bouska, Dist. 205; Mildred Mlinar, Dist. 218.

   Howard County--Leo Krause, S. E. Holley (Holy), Christina Moravec, P. Panek, Alice Gruber, Rose Blazek, Emma Zvolanek--all in St. Paul; Josie Tuma, Cotesfield; Lillian Zvaticka, Elba; Hilda Bartunek, Wolbach.

   Jefferson County--Rose Zednik, Dist. 42; Rose Pavlicek, Dist. 79; Irene Shanek, Dist. 88.

   Johnson County--Verna Penkava, Dist. 58.

   Knox County--Adella Brozovsky, Dist. 3; Frank Somer, Dist. 6; Martha Prokop, Dist. 27; Lillian Valvoda, Dist. 40; Lydia Vonasek, Dist. 46; Clara Mlady, Dist. 51; Vlasta Kubik, Dist. 53; Frank Jerman, Dist. 61; Mamie Pospisil, Dist. 80; Elsie Holan, Dist. 88; Helen Tikalsky, Dist. 93; Lucy Zahradnicek, Dist. 100; Mary Tuch, Dist. 105; Viola Stanek, Niobrara; Vlasta Kolar, Helen Nejedly, Creighton; Anna Tikalsky, Emily Markytan, Mable Stanek, Verdigre; Win. Zahradnicek, Crofton.

   Lancaster County--Lillie Drevo, Dist. 45; Blanche Prachar, Dist. 74; Irma Warta, Dist. 82; Irene Warta, Dist. 109; Louise Spatz, Dist. 115; Anna Bobolik, Dist. 117; John A. Straka, Dist. 137; Arnold Broz, Dist. 141.

   Lincoln County--Bessie Sebek, Dist. 79; Katherine Vondra, Dist. 85; Lucile C. Vencill, Dist. 122.

   Madison County--Mildred Tomsik, Dist. 6; Julia Ondracek, Madison (Dist. 1); Frances Simonek, Dist. 12.

   McPherson County--District not given. Arnold Prokop, Martha Wolf.

   Merrick County--Esther Lahovec, Palmer.

   Nuckolls County--Lillie Aksamit, Dist. 21; Frank Stichka, Dist. 56; Leo. Karmazin, Dist. 57; Bohuslav Mazour, Dist. 58; Charles Votypka, Dist. 64; Jan Tenopir, Dist. 64.

   Otoe County--Mildred Mlinar, Dist. 20.

   Pawnee County--May Stanek, Dist. 1; Lillian Peterka, Dist. 5; Steven Stastny, Dist. 10; Emma Fritz, Dist. 16; Nellie Vrtiska, Dist. 26; Emily Hubka, Dist. 31; Minnie Tenk, Dist. 32; Julia Blaha, Dist. 33; Anthony Zelenka, Dist. 35; Emma Vrtiska, Dist. 49; Marie Stanek, Dist. 51; Helen Stanek, Dist. 65; Jennie Langer, Dist. 70; Angeline Kudlak, Dist. 62.

   Pierce County--Emma Mastalir, Dist. 2.

   Platte County--John Kozisek, Dist. 7.

   Saline County--Helda Nemec, Dist. 1; Hermina Sobotka, Dist. 3; Alma Vosika, Dist. 4; Ida Wanek, Dist. 7; Alice Richtarik, Dist. 8; Mary Vesely, Dist. 9; Libbie Prokop, Dist. 10; Helen M. Blaha, Dist. 15; Irene Nohavec, Dist. 17; Emma Chrastil, Dist. 19; H. Sylvia Baxa, Dist. 21; Helen M. Prokop, Dist. 22; Leone Cecrle, Dist. 28; Agnes Lorenz, Dist. 31; Josephine Barta, Dist. 32; Sylvia Kasl, Dist. 34; Rose Bednar, Dist. 42; Mathilda Hynek, Dist. 45; Emily Bouse, Dist. 48; Helen Micka, Dist. 49; Ida Vosika, Dist. 51; Jos. Janas, Dist. 55; Mamie Krupicka, Dist. 57; Emily Hamouz, Dist. 59; Bessie Sefrna, Dist. 60; Edward Prokop, Dist. 64; Stella Kral, Dist. 65; Rose Dunder, Dist. 66; Emily Rezabek, Dist. 76; Inez Kumpost, Dist. 77; Bertha Drda, Dist. 78; Olga Zlab, Dist. 79; Elsie Tachovsky, Dist. 80; Julia Elias, Dist. 83; Lillie Tysher, Dist. 84; Hattie Kupka, Dist. 87; Rose Becvar, Dist. 89; Anna Hamouz, Dist. 96; Sylvia Vosika, Dist. 97; Hattie Prachar, Dist. 98; Helen M. Baxa, Dist. 100; Abie Musil, Dist. 104; Marie Buzek, Dist. 120; Clara Belohlavy, Dist. 5.

   Saunders County--Victoria Suchanek, Dist. 1, Ashland; Alice Bunda, Dist 14; Lydia Shavlik, Adele Lodl, Morse Bluff; Edward Roh, Dist. 15; Martha Chmelka, Dist. 17; Helen M. Wondra, Dist. 19; Hattie Sudik, Dist. 25; Anna Machovec, Dist. 26; Libbie Novak, Dist. 51; Frances L; Vybiral, Dist. 53; Christine Jerabek, Dist. 54; Mrs. Rose Wojta, Dist. 68; Ludmila Paroulek, Dist. 71; Victor Stuchlik, Dist. 74; Bessie Malousek, Dist. 76; Clara Havelka, Dist. 77; F. A. Kavan, Dist. 78; Judith Kaspar, Dist. 80; Frances Machovec, Dist. 83; Kristina Hajek, Dist. 84; Barbara Vrana, Dist. 85; Clara Novak, Dist. 86; Emily Hajek, Dist. 90; Rose Vavra, Dist. 92; Mary L. Franta, Dist. 94; Marie Pavlik, Dist. 98; Mary E. Bouc, Dist. 99; Marie Svantner, Principal Prague school, Dist. 104; Ernest Texl, Mildred Kastl, Elsie Pavel, same school; Emily Marik, Dist 106; Gerald Urban, Dist. 111; Edward Cejka, Dist. 113; Rose Bouc, Dist. 118.

   Scottsbluff County--Lillian Sindelar, Dist. 17; James Nerud, Augusta Hanish, Dist. 81.

   Seward County--Julia Radinsky, Dist. 9; Irene Kalcik, Dist. 19; Fred E. Kadlecek, Dist. 33; Helen Severin, Dist. 60; Adolph Liska, Dist. 91; Gabriela Maixner, Dist. 93.

   Sherman County--Eva Macek, Dist. 20.

   Sioux County--Bertha G. Justa, Dist. 7; Amelia Chalupa, Dist. 29.

   Stanton County--District not given. Vlasta M. Krofta, Julia Prazak, Helen Jirovec, Emma Konvalin, Marie Vesely, Anna Sperl.

   Thayer County--Alice Houser, Dist. 4; Mildred Maulik, Dist. 72; Amy Babka, Dist. 78; Elsie Vostrez, Dist. 85.

   Valley County--Helen Kubicek, Dist. 5; Lucy Roubal, Mabel Misko, Dist. 5; Clarence Kucera, Dist. 23; Anna Holoun, Dist. 29; Clara Kokes, Dist. 30; Marie Kokes, Dist. 32; Lillie Cilek, Dist. 34; Elizabeth Lukes, Dist. 35; Lena Kokes, Dist. 44; Minnie Adamek, Dist. 49; Agnes Cadek, Dist. 56; Adeline Kosmata, Dist. 67; Emily Beranek, Dist. 73.

   Wayne County--Molly Vlastnik, Junior High School, Wayne; Rose M. Bartak, Dist. 80.

   Webster County--Anis Dvoracek, Dist. 13.

   Wheeler County--C. Prochazka, Superintendent, Ericson.

   York County--Ludmila Radil, Dist. 102.

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