From Carr Center's Kathryn Sikkink.
"When I was growing in St. Cloud in the 1960s and 1970s, I was already dimly aware that we were an immigrant community.
In particular, I knew the parents and grandparents of many of my schoolmates had come from Germany because I was always in the homeroom full of the kids with German last names — the Schmidts, Schneiders, and Schwartzs. A number of these students came from poor farms outside town. They had to be up very early in the morning before school to help on the farm, before the long bus trip to school, and they came to homeroom, the first class of the day, smelling like the barn.
If I could, I would apologize to those students today for my cruel remarks behind their backs; I, who had the luxury of spending too long every morning in the bathroom getting ready for school (according to my older brother).
Many of the immigrant families in St. Cloud were Catholic, not only from Germany, but from Poland and Ireland. To this day, Census figures show that well over half of the individuals in the St. Cloud metropolitan area trace their ancestry to those three countries."