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Political Activity

   It can be said that the majority of Czechs are Democrats, in spite of the fact that the Pokrok Zapadu, the pioneer and leading paper for many years, was republican. Saline County for a long time was republican by majority, but is not so now. As would be natural, Czechs hold many offices in counties heavily settled by them, but for our purpose a list of those who have filled state and county offices will suffice to show that they perform their duty as citizens. Of the minor offices it would be impossible to get a complete record. A list of appointive offices is also given, and we feel this is incomplete, for no concentrated records are available and so only the memory of the author must serve. However, it is something in that direction, at least. The records are not always clear as to whether the office-holder in question was a democrat or republican. We have recorded all as well as we could.


1887--Cenek Duras, Saline County, Republican.
1909 and 1911--Frank W. Bartos, Saline County, Democrat.
1911 and 1913--E. E. Placek, Saunders County, Democrat.
1913, 1915 and 1917--E. J. Spirk, Saline County, Republican.
1921--Louis Berka, Douglas County, Republican.
1923 and l927--Charles Smrha, Fillmore County, Democrat.
1923--Philip A. Tomek, Butler County, Democrat.
1925--Frank Dolezal, Saunders County, Democrat.
1927--Lad. V. Tesar, Douglas County, Democrat.

A group of Czech members of the Nebraska Sate legislature of 1911
Fr. Riha        J.D. Hasik         Fr. Dolezal        Josef Dostal
(Douglas Co.)   (Butler Co.)  (Saunders Co.)  (Butler Co.)
J.A. Hospodsky     Otto Kotouc     F.W. Bartos     E.E. Placek     J.B. Sindelar     Anton Sagl
(Saline Co.)    (Richardson Co.)    (Saline Co.)    (Saunders Co.)    (Colfax Co.)    (Saline Co.)
A group of Czech members of the Nebraska State legislature of 1911


1871--Edward Rosewater, Douglas County, Republican.
1875--Frank Folda, Colfax County, Democrat.
1879--Henry A. Fisher, Saunders County, Greenback.
1881--Stephen J. Herman, Saline County, Independent.
1883--Frank J. Sadilek, Saline County, Antimonopoly.
1885--Joseph Jindra, Saline County, Republican.
1887--Thomas Simanek, Saunders County, Democrat.
1889--William J. Bohacek, Saline County, Republican.
1891--Stephen J. Herman, Saline County, Independent.
1891--Thomas Capek, Douglas County, Democrat.
1895--James Havlik, Saunders County, People's Independent.
1899--Joseph G. Dobry, Colfax County, Fusionist.
l901--Vaclav Bures, Douglas County, Republican.
1903--J. J. Vlasak, Saunders County, Fusionist.
1903--Joseph G. Dobry, Colfax County, Fusionist.
1905--Frank J. Fitl, Douglas County, Republican.
1905--John J. Pospisil, Saunders County, Republican.
1907--Frank Rejcha, Lancaster County, Republican.
1907--Frank Vopalensky, Saunders County, People's Independent.
1909--Joseph P. Kraus, Douglas County, Democrat.
1909 and 1911--Frank Dolezal, Saunders County, People's Independent.
1909 and 1911--Joseph Dostal, Butler County, Democrat.
1909--John Chab, Saline County, Democrat.
1909 and 1911--John A. Hospodsky, Saline County, People's and Dem.
1909 and 1911--Otto Kotouc, Richardson County, Democrat.
1911, 1913, 1915 and 1917--J. B. Sindelar, Colfax County, Democrat.
1911 and 1913--John D. Hasik, Butler County, Republican.
1911--Anton Sagl, Saline County, Democrat and People's Independent.
1911--Frank J. Riha, Douglas County, Democrat.
1915--C. F. Hynek, Saline County, Democrat.
1917--J. J. Jelen, Douglas County, Democrat.
1919--Louis Berka, Douglas County, Republican.
1919 and 1923--Thomas Stibal, Colfax County.
1923--Charles Kautsky, Douglas County.
1923--C. V. Svoboda, Howard County, Democrat.
1925--Walter Korisko, Douglas County, Republican.
1925--Lad. V. Tesar, Douglas County, Democrat.
1927--Leo. L. Miskovsky, Douglas County, Republican.
1927--John J. Buresh, Douglas County, Republican.
1927--Jos. C. Wolf, Douglas County, Republican.


   C. V. Svoboda, Howard County; Joseph T. Votava, Douglas County; Frank Malicky, Gage County; E. A. Coufal, Butler County and E. J. Spirk, Saline County.


Boyd County


1925--1927--C. J. Tomek, County Treasurer.

Box Butte County

1905--1907--Frank Caha, County Commissioner.
1912--191 8--J. M. Wanek, County Commissioner.
1913--1919--John Jelinek, County Assessor.

Butler County

1896--1905--Louis Straka, Clerk of District Court.
1902--1906 and again 1915--1927--M. J. Bouse, County Clerk.
1902--1904--Anton Ptacek, County Treasurer.
1904--1909--Jos. C. Hruska, Superintendent of Public Instruction.
1907--1911--L. J. Coufal, County Treasurer.
1909--1915--Edward A. Coufal, County Judge.
1909--1915--F. A. Stech, Superintendent of Public Instruction.
1911--1921--Joseph C. Havel, Clerk of District Court.
1911--1915--Edward T. Rech, County Assessor.
1917--1923--Philip A. Tomek, County Treasurer.
1923--1927--F. H. Mizera, County Attorney.

   The following have served as members of the County Board: John Sonka, M. A. Masek, Joseph Dostal, Anton Proskovec, George Fleming (Kozisek), Fr. J. Maixner, L. J. Coufal, John Kriz, Thos. Duda, and Edward T. Rech.

Cass County

1916--1917--Frank Liebershal, County Clerk.

Cheyenne County

1925--Henry Pavlat, County Clerk.

Colfax County

1876--1880--Joseph Dvorak, County Clerk.
1880--1884--John Lapache (Lapacek), County Clerk.
1882--Thomas Vrba, County Commissioner.
1884--1888--John Lapache (Lapacek), County Treasurer.
1888--1892--John Novotny, County Treasurer.
1886--1890--Joseph Kudrna, County Sheriff.
1892--1896--M. F. Bednar, County Treasurer.
1894--1898--Frank W. Shonka, County Clerk and Reg. of Deeds.
1898--1899--Frank Hrubecky, County Commissioner.
1898--1902--Frank Cuba, County Judge.
1900--1908--Frank Sucha, Clerk of District Court.
1900--1904--Frank W. Shonka, County Treasurer.
1902--1906--James A. Fiala, County Sheriff.
1904--1908--John Chleboun, Superintendent of Schools.
1905--1907--J. B. Sindelar, County Assessor.
1905--R. B. Folda, County Commissioner.
1908--1912--R. B. Folda, County Commissioner.
1908--1912--M. F. Shonka, County Clerk.
1908--1926--F. J. Vogltance, Superintendent of Schools.
1910--J. E. Cerny (Cherney), County Judge.
1910--1924--Adolph Fiala, County Judge.
1910--1912--Anton Kaspar, County Sheriff.
1911--Vaclav Maly, County Commissioner.
1912--1917--M. F. Shonka, County Treasurer.
1912--1917--Ed. F. Vrzal, County Clerk and Register of Deeds.
1914--1916--Frank Prokes, County Commissioner.
1914--1919--Joseph Bartunek, County Sheriff.
1914--1918--F. K. Sindelar, County Commissioner.
1918--1922--Walter B. Sadilek, County Attorney.
1918--1926--John Moural, County Commissioner.
1919--1920--Ed. H. Vrana, County Surveyor.
1920--1924--A. C. Fajman, County Commissioner.
1922--1926--Joseph Sedlacek, County Treasurer.
1922--1926--Jerry E. Severyn, County Clerk.
1924--1926--Frank Houfek Jr., County Commissioner.

Cuming County

1869--Frank Klojda, County Assessor. (No politics recorded in those days.)
1873--Florian John Wiesner, County Coroner.
1875--Joseph Brezina Jr., County Coroner.
1879--Frank Wlna (Vlna) was elected Clerk of District Court, but did not serve, inasmuch as the court declared that the office was not separate from that of County Clerk in counties having less than the stipulated population.
1893--1897--Joseph F. Zajicek, County Treasurer.
1898--1903--A. F. Walla, County Clerk.
1898--1911--J. C. Pinkner, Clerk of District Court.
1906--Joseph Pekarek, County Commissioner.
1911--1915--Otto H. Zacek, County Commissioner.
1914--1926--Rudolph Brazda, County Clerk and Register of Deeds.

   All were Democrats, except Klojda.

Douglas County

   Charles H. Kubat was elected County Commissioner in 1922 and still serving. Mr. Kubat was born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, graduated from the Law Department of the University of Michigan in 1894 and came to Omaha, where he began to practice. In 1902 and 1903 he was Justice of the Peace and again in 1915 and 1916. In 1918--1922 he was Assistant County Attorney.

   John Briggs (Brich) became County Commissioner also in 1922 and is still serving. Formerly police captain in South Omaha.


   As stated elsewhere, Czechs in this county live altogether in Greater Omaha, therefore we give a list of their offices in that city, as a representation.

   It may be interesting to note that the very first officeholders were policemen. Matej Nerad was appointed in 1875, Frank Jelen in 1877, Frank Kaspar in 1878, Joseph Vanous in in 1880, Frank Maca in 1882 and Vaclav Kubec in 1883. Joseph Michal was appointed mail carrier in 1876, when Omaha had but eight. About that time Vaclav Jablecnik and Jiri (George) Hoffman also carried mail.

   Frank J. Kaspar, Republican, Councilman, 1885--1890, and Street Commissioner, 1892--1895.

   Anton Kment, Councilman, 1895--1897.

Louis Berka

   Louis Berka, born April 28, 1855, in Cetoraz, Pacov, Bohemia. He came to Milwaukee with his parents in 1862 and the next year moved to a farm in Genesee County, Michigan. In 1880 he entered Ann Arbor and after graduating came to Omaha, in 1883. During 1886 and part of 1887 he was Justice of the Peace, and Police Judge from May, 1887, to January, 1890, January, 1892, to January, 1896, and January, 1902, to January, 1906. In 1919 he was member of the House of Representatives, Councilman of Omaha 1909--1912, and State Senator in 1921.

   Jos. W. Koutsky was elected City Commissioner (said office superseding Councilman) in 1921 for three years, re-elected in 1924, and again in 1927. Has a very fine record as superintendent of public improvements.

   Frank A. Bandhauer served two terms as member of Board of Education, January, 1894, to December, 1899. Born in Florisant, Mo., August 15, 1855, died in Omaha, December 28, 1911.

   Emil Cermak was member of Board of Education from January, 1902, to December, 1904. Born in 1866 in Jimamrov, Moravia.

Jos. W. Koutsky

   R. V. Miskovsky was Police Commissioner (Republican) in 1901. Born in Kutna Hora, Bohemia, September 18, 1863.

   Dr. F. A. Sedlacek served in 1912 as a member of the Omaha Welfare Board. In June, 1914, he was appointed by Governor Moorhead a member of the Nebraska State Pardon Board, from which office he resigned in March, 1919, when he became a member of the Siberian Czechoslovak Commission of the American Red Cross. This Commission was comprised of twenty physicians, twenty nurses, twenty assistant nurses, four druggists, five dentists and several engineers, and was sent to aid the Czechoslovak soldiers in Siberia. The following Czech physicians participated: Drs. J. Rudis-Jicinsky, J. Cepelka, V. Anyz, and Dr. Georgia Dvorak-Theobald of Chicago and Dr. Sedlacek of Omaha. The Commission sailed March 25, 1919, from San Francisco for Honolulu, then via China, Korea, Manchuria and Japan to Vladivostok. In June, 1919, Dr. Sedlacek was one of a staff of physicians who accompanied 2,060 Czech invalids, officers and men, from San Diego, Cal., to Bohemia. For his services he received a medal from the Czechoslovak government. In August, 1921, Dr. Sedlacek was appointed Assistant City Physician of Omaha, which office he now holds. In 1922 he was made Captain of the Medical Reserve Corps of the U. S. Army. He is a member of San Mihiel Post, Veterans of Foreign Wars. Born September 26, 1865, in Vodnany, Bohemia, where he attended school, then in Prague and Mlada Boleslav. In 1890 he was associate editor of Hlas Naroda in Prague, in 1891 he assisted editor Heprik as reporter for the Parliament in Vienna. In 1892 he entered the medical faculty of the Vienna University and in 1894 came to Chicago, Ill. In 1897 he graduated from the medical school of the Illinois University. In April, 1897, he married Miss Anna Gertner and moved to Tyndall, South Dakota, where he practiced medicine until his removal to Omaha, in November, 1908.

   Charles Sadilek was nominated for governor of Nebraska in 1896, by the Socialist Party. Mr. Sadilek, brother of F. J. Sadilek of Wilber, was born September 11, 1857, in Ledec Czechoslovakia. As a nine-year-old boy he witnessed some horrors of military conflict, for the war between Austria and Prussia occurred in 1866 and much of the fighting was done in Czechoslovakia. Even as a small boy he rebelled against the settling of disputes by brutal force. In 1868 with his parents he emigrated to Chicago, Illinois, where for several years he attended public school. In 1873 he visited New York and later travelled through Michigan and Wisconsin, having in the meantime taken up the trade of house painting. In 1874 he came to Omaha, then a city of about 20,000 inhabitants. Later he went to Denver and then to California with an emigrant train, the trip lasting eight days. The time of year was February and when crossing the Sierras the heavy snow necessitated the use of three locomotives. On the third day after his arrival in San Francisco Mr. Sadilek had the misfortune to fall down three stories, but escaped with a broken arm and a bruised body. The sight of ships sailing in and out of the harbor impelled him to enlist in the U. S. navy and he was put aboard the U. S. S. Saranac, an old-style wooden ship carrying fifteen guns. The next day he sailed for La Pax, Mexico, where the vessel was to help protect mining interests of American capitalists. A month later the Saranac was sent to California, but at once ordered back to Acupulco, where natives had killed eleven Americans attending services in a Protestant church. Upon his return to San Francisco they were ordered to Alaska and the Aleutian Islands, to obtain natives and curios for the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia (1876). They sailed June 8, 1875, for Sitka through what is called the Inside Passage, a much shorter route than the open ocean, but also much more dangerous. Against the advice of the pilot the captain set out at a time when the "Seymour Narrows" would be reached at low tide and as a consequence the ship was wrecked on the rocks submerged in the channel. After four days spent in life boats, in a drizzling rain, they were rescued and brought to Victoria, Vancouver Island, and from there sent to the United States. Mr. Sadilek then returned to Chicago and later to Omaha, where he became a member of a surveying exposition that worked in the western country. Soon after that he married Miss Mary Sabata, daughter of a Saline County pioneer. Their union was blessed by a daughter, Mrs. Helen Sadilek Kyhl, who became a pianist and whose biography is given among those of other Nebraska artists. Mr. Sadilek always took a prominent part in labor affairs in Omaha, where he has lived for many years. He wrote a booklet "The Problem of Labor" and articles for magazines. In 1928 he visited his native land, after an absence of sixty years.

South Omaha

   Frank Koutsky, born in Saunders County of parents who were pioneers there, was Councilman, 1892--1894, City Treasurer, 1900--1902, and Mayor, 1902--1908, on the Republican ticket.

    J. J. Maly was City Clerk, Democrat, elected April 4, 1894.
    F. F. Fanferlik, Councilman, Democrat, 1898.
    F. J. Fitl, Councilman, Republican, 1899.
    Joseph Dvorak, Councilman, April 1, 1900.
    Frank Dvorak, Councilman, April 5, 1904, and again April 7, 1908.
    Joseph Vocasek, Councilman, April 3, 1906.
    John C. Riha, Councilman, elected 1910 and again 1912 and 1915.
    John Franek, Councilman, elected 1910.
    J. C. Vana, Councilman, Republican, elected April 2, 1912.
    F. G. Ficenec, Member of School Board, Democrat, 1899.
    J. L. Kubat, Member of School Board, Republican, 1901.
    Rudolph Yechout, Member of School Board, 1908--1912; President of the Board in 1910 and 1911.
    Bohumir Horacek, Member of School Board, 1908--1912.
    In 1912 South Omaha was made part of Omaha.
    Joseph Pivonka was Police Commissioner, Democrat, elected April 2, 1912.

Continued in next section.

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