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Valentine L. Braun Papers, 1949-2000

Manuscript Collection No. 793

Introduction

Abstract

This collection covers Valentine Braun’s life from 1949, the year she and her parents moved to Newton, Kan., until 2000. While most of the collection focuses on certain time periods, such as recollections of her World War II experiences and her classes at Bethel College (North Newton, Kan.), daily journals fill in a great deal about her everyday life.

Dates

1949-2000

Quantity

1 ft. (3 boxes)

Creator

Braun, Valentine L. (Valentine Lange0, 1929-2002.

Title

Valentine L. Braun papers

Portion of title: Papers

Identification

Ms. collection no. 793

Language

Text in English, Russian, and German. English translations of Russian items.

Notes

This finding aid describes materials held by the Kansas State Historical Society. Materials may be used in the Research Room in the society’s Center for Historical Research during regular research hours. Support for telephone, mail, and online reference and research is limited.

In a continuing effort to improve the completeness and accuracy of finding aids, revisions are made as more or new information becomes available. Consequently finding aids in paper format, on microfilm, and on the Society’s web site may differ slightly.

Repository

Kansas State Historical Society (Topeka)

Biography

Valentine Petra Lange was born in Temesorara, Romania, on 30 January 1929 to Peter Zaitzev and Helen Talpa Lange. During World War II she and her parents were forced to flee in 1944 as the Soviet front line pushed into her country and forced the abdication of King Michael. They moved frequently for fear of being overtaken by the Red Army and sent to the Soviet Union. By the end of the war she was living in a Displaced Persons (DP) camp in Bavaria as her family awaited permission to emigrate to the United States. They moved to North Newton, Kansas, in 1949, with support from the Mennonite Central Committee. On 29 April 1951 she married Alexander Braun, another DP she met in camp but who had been relocated to Canada on a work visa. Val and her parents moved to Topeka, Kansas, in 1952, and Al received his United States citizenship and was allowed to join them in 1953. The Brauns remained in Topeka from that time. They had a daughter, Nancy Diana, who died 30 January 1955.

Val earned a bachelor’s degree from Washburn University (Topeka, Kansas) with honors in 1978, majoring in education, history, and foreign languages. She earned a master’s degree with honors in political science from the University of Kansas (Lawrence) in 1972. She held a teaching certificate in foreign languages and history. She worked as an accountant and editor for the Kansas Medical Society for 35 years and, at the time of her retirement in January of 1994, was associate executive director.

Val was a member of the American Medical Writers Association, American Public Health Association, American Association of Medical Society Executives, and Kansas Advocates for the Improvement of Health Care in Nursing Homes. She was an honorary life member of the Kansas Medical Society and Pi Sigma Alpha, the national political science honor society.

She received a governor’s certificate in recognition of her contributions in developing “talking books.” She was also a founding member of Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church in Topeka.

She died 23 October 2000 in Topeka.

Scope and Contents

This collection contains correspondence primarily between Valentine and Alexander, which typically falls between 1949 and 1953. Much of this correspondence is in German. The collection also contains Val’s diaries, which cover her daily life from 1960 through 1998, with some years missing. It encompasses notebooks she used to jot down her thoughts on politics and faith and ledgers she used to track her mother’s health and medical treatment when she began to suffer from Alzheimer’s Disease. Also included in the collection are numerous papers Val wrote as a student at Bethel College (North Newton, Kansas), and several of these papers are also in German. Several letters, essays, and notebooks are written in Russian, and these are accompanied by translations or summaries in English. The collection also consists of biographical information, mostly in the form of speeches she gave about her wartime experiences, and photographs of her life in America.

Contents List

Organization of the Papers

Organized into three series by box and arranged by type of material.

Container Summary

Box 1. Biographical information ; correspondence ; Kansas Medical Society material ; speeches and essays ; notebooks and ledgers — box 2. Daily journals, 1945, 1960-1969, 1971-1978, 1994-1998 — box 3. Undergraduate and graduate school papers.

Box List

Box 1

Ser. 1

Folder 1

BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION (Biographical narratives, speeches & interview)

 

 

 
 
 
 

Box 1

Ser. 2

 

CORRESPONDENCE

1949 - 1979

Box 1

Ser. 2

Folder 2

Correspondence with Al

1949

Box 1

Ser. 2

Folder 3

Correspondence with Al

1950

Box 1

Ser. 2

Folder 4

Correspondence with Al

1951

Box 1

Ser. 2

Folder 5

Correspondence with Al

1952

Box 1

Ser. 2

Folder 6

Correspondence with Al

1953

Box 1

Ser. 2

Folder 7

Letters to Mennonite Central Committee

1949

Box 1

Ser. 2

Folder 8

Correspondence re: publication of fair taxation article

1976 June 2 - 7

Box 1

Ser. 2

Folder 9

Letters re: student - teacher semester

1970 Oct. 22

Box 1

Ser. 2

Folder 10

Misc. letters & postcards (mostly opinions on current events / politics)

1958 - 1979

 

 
 
 
 

Box 1

Ser. 3

 

KANSAS MEDICAL SOCIETY MATERIAL

1961 - 2000

Box 1

Ser. 3

Folder 11

Kansas Medical Society correspondence

1961 - 2000

Box 1

Ser. 3

Folder 12

Materials relating to the Kansas Medical Society

1975 - 1992

 

 
 
 
 

Box 1

Ser. 4

 

SPEECHES AND ESSAYS

1949 - 1999

Box 1

Ser. 4

Folder 13

Speech to church re: European World War II refugees

June 26, 1949

Box 1

Ser. 4

Folder 14

Bethel College: Women’s Association speech

[n.d.]

Box 1

Ser. 4

Folder 15

Emigration & citizenship letters & thoughts

1949 - 1999

Box 1

Ser. 4

Folder 16

Newspaper clippings

1951 - 1975

Box 1

Ser. 4

Folder 17

Political humor

1963 - 1985

Box 1

Ser. 4

Folder 18

Russian language letters & writings (with translations)

1993 Aug. 3

 

 
 
 
 

Box 1

Ser. 5

 

NOTEBOOKS AND LEDGERS

1949 - [not before 2000]

Box 1

Ser. 5

Folder 19

Account book & 6 - ring notebook (both in Russian with translations)

1949 - [not before 2000]

Box 1

Ser. 5

Folder 20

Notebooks on politics & religion

 

Box 1

Ser. 5

Folder 21

Mother’s health records

1985 - 1987

 

 
 
 
 

Box 2

Ser. 6

 

DAILY JOURNALS

 

Box 2

Ser. 6

Folder 1

Diary: transcription

Mar. 27 - May 3, 1945

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 1

Daily journal

1960

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 2

Daily journal

1961

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 3

Daily journal

1962

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 4

Daily journal

1963

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 5

Daily journal

1964

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 6

Daily journal

1965

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 7

Daily journal

1966

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 8

Daily journal

1967

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 9

Daily journal

1968

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 10

Daily journal

1969

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 11

Daily journal

1971

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 12

Daily journal

1972

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 13

Daily journal

1973

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 14

Daily journal

1974

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 15

Daily journal

1975

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 16

Daily journal

1976

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 17

Daily journal

1977

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 18

Daily journal

1978

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 19

Daily journal

1994

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 20

Daily journal

1995

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 21

Daily journal

Jan. - May 1996

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 22

Daily journal

May 1996 - May 1997

Box 2

Ser. 6

Vol. 23

Daily journal

1998

 

 

 

 

 

Box 3

Ser. 7

 

GRADUATE AND UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH PAPERS

1949 - 1977

Box 3

Ser. 7

Folder 1

Materials re: master’s in public administration

1974 - 1977

Box 3

Ser. 7

Folder 2

Political science & public administration papers

 

Box 3

Ser. 7

Folder 3

English & speech class papers & notes

Sept. - Nov. 1949

Box 3

Ser. 7

Folder 4

History & German philosophy papers

 

Box 3

Ser. 7

Folder 5

Social work papers, English proficiency test

 

Box 3

Ser. 7

Folder 6

Russian grammar paper, US vs. Russian education bibliography

Mar. 15, 1970

Box 3

Ser. 7

Folder 7

Book review papers

 

Box 3

Ser. 7

Folder 8

German language papers

[n.d.]

 

Related Records or Collections

Separated Material

Photographs: Removed and transferred to the Kansas State Historical Society’s photograph collection.

Other Finding Aids

Finding aid available in the Kansas State Historical Society’s Reference Room and on the Internet: http://www.kshs.org

Other Collections

Eula Gentzler papers, ms. collection no. 131

Edgar Langsdorf misc. ms. collection

Military history ms. collection, no. 617

Joe Nickell papers, ms. collection no. 98

Bob Raymond. A personal detour into the war, 1941-1945, microfilm roll MS 927, available through interlibrary loan

Holly Marks Reichart papers, ms. collection no. 220

Wint Smith letters to Lacy Haynes, 1944-1946, ms. collection no. 57

Harry T. Stephens papers, ms. collection no. 103

Neil Baird Thompson papers, ms. collection no. 752

Index Terms

Individuals

Braun, Valentine L. (Valentine Lange), 1929-2002.

Braun, Alexander. (co-creator)

Corporate Names

Bethel College (North Newton, Kan.)

Kansas Medical Society (subject and co-creator)

Geographic Names

North Newton (Kan.)

Topeka (Kan.)

Subjects

Immigrants - Kansas.

Immigrants - United States.

Immigrants - United States - Diaries.

Immigrants’ writings, American - Kansas.

Mennonites - Education - Kansas.

World War, 1939-1945 - Personal narratives, Romanian.

World War, 1939-1945—Refugees—Kansas.

Additional Information for Researchers

Restrictions on Access

None

Restrictions on Use

This material may be protected by copyright law (Title 17, U.S. Code). Copyright was transferred to the Kansas State Historical Society upon donation.

Preferred Citation

Braun, Valentine L., Papers, 1949 – 2000, ms. collection 793, Library and Archives Division, Kansas State Historical Society.

Source of Acquisition

Gift: Alexander Braun, 2004; accession no. 2003-258.01.

Processing Information

Preliminary organization and translation of some German letters done by Kathleen Kennedy, volunteer, 2003. Final processing and Russian translations by Ashley Dosien, Lela Barnes intern, 2005. Administrative costs paid by the Kansas State Historical Society; staff costs paid by the Kansas State Historical Society, Inc.

 Accruals

Future additions to this collection are possible but unexpected at this time.