International Students at UNI; 1941 article

"Melting Pot" Americans Laugh and Dine Together

The roots of their family trees are to be found in the far corners of the earth. Their ancestral kin are at war, one with another, and greed and hatred are ravaging the countries of their forefathers. 

But the two Joes and Emigdio, Charlotte and Woody laughed and wise-cracked with Vernetta, Lillian, Marvel, Luana, Marie and Russell. There wasn't even a shadow of tragedy present Monday evening when these descendants of warring races and nationalities met for a pot luck supper in Mrs. Horace Kienzle's apartment. 

English Marvel Joens was born in America three months after the arrival of her parents. Those parents were both killed in an auto accident when Marvel was three. She doesn't remember them. But she is thankful they came to America when they did. 

Joe Dolerich comes from down in Iowa's coal mining region. His parents came from Czechoslovakia when they were children, and he's glad they did. 

The other Joe was born in Czechoslovakia and lived there until 1928. The Valenta's, his parents' farm south of Hudson.

Vernetta Cook and Luana Franklin are members of the black race, but that doesn't prevent them from being two typically merry coeds. Lauana's infectious humor added much to the fun Monday night. Her parents came to Waterloo from Kansas City, but Vernetta's hail from the deep south, Mississippi. 

Charlotte Matsuda and Lillian Watanabi are Americans of Japanese parentage. Their parents live in Hawaii and the girls have been much happier since they received a telegram Sunday informing them of the safety of their families. 

Woody Christiansen, like many of his Danish relatives, is nursing an injury. But Woody got his foot broken playing football, and prefers that to war maneuvers.

Mrs. Marie Kienzle is of German descent, while her husband has both German and English grandparents. Mrs. Kienzle and her son Russell are both Teachers College students, and like all good American citizens of emigrant descent, they are glad their forefathers had the desire and the courage to come to America when they did.

Micky Urias was born in Juarez, Mexico, and lived later in Sinaloa, Mexico. In typical Mexican Cabillero fashion, Micky volunteered to act as dish washer after the party, and like the typical American male, he had to leave when dishwashing time came.

The gaiety which characterized the entire evening is a true example of what normal free individuals will do if given half a chance, and that is, have fun.

And since having fun has long been considered a major activity with Americans, these young Americans are typical of their nation, even though their origin is as varied as the usual ingredients of a melting pot.


College Eye article, December 19, 1941, page 1; transcription by Student Assistant Ashley Thronson, March 27, 2015; last updated, March 27, 2015 (GP).

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