UP Notable Book Club: the Crystal Falls Community District Library in partnership with the U.P. Publishers & Authors Association (UPPAA) has scheduled author events with winners of the UP Notable Book List. The 14th event is with Jane Kopecky whose groundbreaking history of the lives of conscientious objectors who were confined in a remote camp in Germfask, Michigan was previously untold. The events are open to all U.P. residents free of charge. Read Deborah K. Frontiera’s review of Kopecky’s book at The U.P. Book Review. Her book was also featured on the front page of the Detroit Free Press.
When: Thursday, February 10th, 2021 at 7pm Eastern / 6pm Central
Where: on the Zoom platform — please contact Evelyn Gathu in advance by email: firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone (906) 875-3344. We recommend you borrow a copy of these books from your local library or purchase from your local bookseller in advance to get the most out of these events.
JANE KOPECKY is a graduate of Manistique High School – BS, MA, and reading specialist degrees from Northern Michigan University. She has taught in the Utica Public School System, Minneapolis Public School System, Tahquamenon Area Schools and retired from Manistique Area Schools. Jane is a history buff who belongs to the Michigan Historical Society, the Newton Township Historical Society (Mackinac County), and is curator of the Schoolcraft County Historical Society in Manistique. Her interest in conscientious objectors spurred her to apply for a position on the Selective Service Board. She served on that board for twenty years, the maximum time allowed. She is also the author of Huntspur and Along the Tracks, the history of a small Upper Michigan community whose past comes to life through interviews with local residents and countless historical photographs. Lives in Manistique. You can reach Jane at email@example.com
“Here Jane Kopecky reveals the nearly-forgotten story of Camp Germfask, where some of the most ardent war-resisters among World War II conscientious objectors were held for 13 months in 1944 and 1945. Opponents of the war and conscription on a variety of religious, pacifist, or political grounds, these recalcitrant dissenters dared imprisonment as they refused to cooperate with rules of Selective Service. Instead of jail, they ended up in what some men called the Alcatraz of CO camps and their sympathizers elsewhere in the country called “American’s Siberia.” In interview transcripts, memoirs, and documents collected by Jane Kopecky, their lives and their relationships with their Germfask and other Upper Peninsula neighbors come alive. This book is a great read and a great service to historical understanding.”
Howard Brick, Louis Evans Professor of History, University of Michigan.
- Historical Society of Michigan — State History Award 2020
- Upper Peninsula Publishers & Authors Association — U.P. Notable Book Award 2020
“Another issue the author spends a good deal of time on was prejudice and violence toward these men. While I understand that under the conditions of World War II, with so many men leaving their families to take up arms, people would have angry and negative feelings against those who chose not to fight, and prejudice was extreme. Kopecky relates several instances recorded in newspapers and in the statements of those men. Leonard Lewis, one of the COs, said, “After they got to know us, they liked us.” To me, this speaks volumes—all over again in today’s world. The author also documents instances of false reporting in news media at that time. It is no wonder that the author received an award from the Historical Society of Michigan for her book. I am proud to have added it to my personal collection.”
–Deborah K. Frontiera, author of Superior Tapestry: Weaving the Threads of Upper Michigan History
More information about the U.P. Notable Book list, U.P. Book Review, and UPPAA can be found on www.UPNotable.com
About the Upper Peninsula Publishers and Authors Association (UPPAA)
Established in 1998 to support authors and publishers who live in or write about Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, UPPAA is a Michigan nonprofit association with more than 100 members, many of whose books are featured on the organization’s website at www.uppaa.org. UPPAA welcomes membership and participation from anyone with a UP connection who is interested in writing.