Slovak National Uprising: 75th Anniversary

August 29 – October 28, 1944

What happened 75 years ago, and why it matters.

75th Anniversary

The Slovak National Uprising

Memorial Weekend

Twin Cities, Minnesota, United States
August 24-25, 2019
An International Conference and Remembrance


  • Hear experts and historians from museums in Slovakia and Washington

  • Learn from Uprising survivors and families

  • See The Final Mission, about Slovaks’ rescue of U.S. Army Air Corps crews


Attendee pre-registration preferred

Registration ends August 22, 2019.

Post-secondary students: Scholarships available. E-mail for details.

Conference Sponsors


Czech and Slovak Cultural Center of Minnesota
Czechoslovak Genealogical Society International
Czech and Slovak Sokol Minnesota
The John and Helen Timo Foundation with the support of the Rusin Association of Minnesota
Consulate General of the Slovak Republic in New York
National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library
Honorary Consul of the Czech Republic in Minneapolis, MN

Event Program

Download program as PDF

Reception and Documentary Film, Saturday, August 24
Mississippi Room, Minnesota Genealogy Society Conference Center, Mendota Heights
2:00pm Introductory remarks and welcome

2:10pm A viewing of a Dušan Hudec documentary about the Slovak National Uprising

4:10pm Slovaks & Poles – Rising Together Two 1944 Uprising Stories

4:30pm Informal light reception and refreshments for members of sponsoring groups

International Conference Sunday August 25
C.S.P.S. Hall, St. Paul
7:30am Registration, Coffee & Koláče

8:15am National Anthems United States of America and The Slovak Republic
Tamara Mecum, trumpeter

8:30am Opening and Introduction of Sponsors Mark Dillon, First Vice President, CGSI

  • Ladislava Begec̹, Consul General of the Slovak Republic in New York
  • Kevin Hurbanis, President, Czechoslovak Genealogical Society International (CGSI)
  • Cecilia Rokusek, President and CEO, National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library
  • David Stepan, President, Czech and Slovak Sokol Minnesota
  • Renata Ticha, President, Czech and Slovak Cultural Center of Minnesota
  • Karen Varian, President, Rusin Association of Minnesota

8:45am Setting the Historical Context – How the Slovak State (Slovenský Štát) Came to Be and Why It Provoked an Uprising Dr. John Palka, Professor Emeritus, University of Washington,
grandson of Milan Hodža, Prime Minister of Czechoslovakia

9:15am Nationalism, National Identity and the Slovak National Uprising
Dr. Nadya Nedelsky, Chair, International Studies Department, Macalester College

9:45am to 10am Break

10:00am First Keynote Address: The Importance of The Uprising After 75 Years Juraj Lepiš Historian and Researcher, Museum of Slovak National Uprising, Banská Bystrica, Slovakia

11:00am Presentation of the 15th Annual Prize of Milan Hodža – Learn more about this prize

11:15am Lunch Served in C.S.P.S. Hall Dining Area

12:15pm Showing of The Final Mission  By Slovak Film Director Dušan Hudec
Between 1943 and 1945, 46 U.S. bombers and eight fighter aircraft crashed in Slovakia. Eighty-eight airmen were killed and 380 captured as prisoners of war after parachuting or landing. Some crews escaped with the help of Slovak villagers and partisans.

1:15pm The Story Behind the Film and the 15th and 8th U.S. Air Force Fliers
Cecilia Rokusek, President and CFO, National Czech & Slovak Museum and Library

1:45pm Lipový čaj a Káva (Linden Tea & Coffee Break)

2:00pm The Resistance Movement Among the Carpatho-Rusins
Karen Varian, President, Rusin Association of Minnesota

2:30pm When the Uprising Came to My Farm in Becherov
An eyewitness account of Demeter Kokosh

3:15pm Recalling Family Stories of Survival
Dr. John Palka and Robin Selvig

3:30pm Second Keynote Speech – Meaning and Learnings from the Uprising
Luke Ryder, historian, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, Washington, D.C.

4:30pm Closing remarks and audience discussion
Dr. John Palka


Conference Registration is now closed

We would like to thank our sponsors for this event!
(Click on the sponsor’s image to learn more about them)

Rusin Assocation