Bosnian Americans of Chicagoland by Samira Puskar
I have been meaning to post this for quite some time and keep forgetting .. and this is really a bad thing since I was soooooo looking forward to this book. Samira is a cousin of mine (she is the cousin that met me at the AMAL event at Frank Lloyd Wright’s Unity Temple) .. she’s awesome! I also got to contribute some pics to the book and watched the book go from her computer monitor to bookstores – very cool! (and yes, it’s cool to have baby pics of me in an actual book)
One of my favorite photos in the book is the charter of the Muslim Benevolent Society, Dzemejitul Hajrije .. am I a dork or what? .. anyway, this is an explanation of the society from the encyclopedia of Chicago:
Bosnian Muslims were early leaders in the establishment of Chicago’s Muslim community. In 1906, they established Dzemijetul Hajrije (The Benevolent Society) of Illinois to preserve the community’s religious and national traditions as well as to provide mutual assistance for funerals and illness. The organization established chapters in Gary, Indiana, in 1913 and Butte, Montana, in 1916 and is the oldest existing Muslim organization in the United States.
This is a bit more about the book and about Samira from amazon:
The first Bosnians settled in Chicagoland in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, joining other immigrants seeking better opportunities and better lives. As the former Yugoslavia continued to find its identity as a nation over the last century, the people of Bosnia and Herzegovina sought stability and new beginnings in the city of Chicago—many intending to return to their homeland. Today as many as 70,000 Bosnians and their descendants live in the Chicago area, representing different faiths, backgrounds, and motivations for making America their new home. Bosnian Americans of Chicagoland examines the journey of this group, its legacy, and its traditions and customs that have lasted since the first immigrants arrived a century ago.
About the Author:
Samira Puskar grew up in Chicagoland, where her family first emigrated from northwest Bosnia-Herzegovina in the 1960s. As a journalist, she has reported from Chicago, The Hague, Sarajevo, and Washington, D.C. She earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in journalism from Northwestern University and currently resides in Rogers Park.
Anyway – Samira’s book is awesome – so go out and buy it.