Stopped cold in amazement! While casually searching on line for the archives of Männerchöre that were established at about the same time as our own, I came across the Indianapolis Männerchor Archives that are housed by the Indiana University-Purdue University Ruth Lilly Collections and Archives.
What a treasure trove of historical documents, ranging from the by-laws of the Athenaeum Turnverein to correspondence, meeting notes, photographs, and many of the meeting and operational documents. The actual documents are not on line, but the references to them are.
Some other references appear on the site:
Emmerich, C.E., Festschrift zur Feier des Vierzigjaehrigen Stiftungsfestes des Indianapolis Maennerchor. Indianapolis, 1894.
Keller, Josef, Festschrift zur feier des Fuenfzigjahrigen Stiftungsfest des Indianapolis Maennerchor. Indianapolis, 1904.
Probst, George Theodore. The Germans in Indianapolis: 1840-1918. Revised and illustrated edition by Eberhard Reichman. Indianapolis, IN: German-American Center, IUPUI & Indiana German Heritage Society, 1989.
Snyder, Suzanne Gail. The Männerchor tradition in the United States: A historical analysis of its contribution to the American musical culture. University of Iowa PhD thesis: 1991.
Snyder, Suzanne Gail. “The Indianapolis Männerchor : contributions to a new musicality in midwestern life” in Music and culture in America, 1861-1918. Edited by Michael Saffle, New York : Garland Pub., 1998. Pp. 111-140.
I liked the Ruth Lilly Collection site’s reference to the failed European Revolutions of 1848 as being a major cause of this incredible migration to the US. Similarly, Wagner, himself, had been an enthusiast for the 1848 revolutions and had been an active participant in the Dresden Revolution of 1849, as a consequence of which he was forced to live for many years in exile from Germany. [Wikipedia] In his Die Kunst und die Revolution Wagner explained his ideals in the context of the failed 1848 revolutions. Wagner envisioned a society that was like his concept of ancient Greece. However, shortly after the Dresden Revolution, Wagner fled to avoid imprisonment.
Getting back to the Collections web site, do visit it and get an idea of the various documents in the collections.