WEEKLY VISIT TO THE MUSEUM
August 18, 2021
Creating an Alliance
By 1896, leaders in the various Lithuanian American communities recognized the need for unity and the power that unifying would provide. Thus, in Shenandoah, Pennsylvania on August 15, 1886, local Lithuanian societies came together to form the Alliance of All Lithuanians in America. The organization came to be known as the Lithuanian Alliance of America (SLA – Susivienijimas Lietuvių Amerikoje).
At its sixteenth convention, held in Wilkes Barre in 1901, the Alliance split into two factions, one Catholic the other secular. The Catholic faction re-named itself the Lithuanian Roman Catholic Alliance of America and began its existence with 784 members. By 1931 it had 20,000 members. Both factions continue to exist today. Between 1896 and 1972, the secular faction of the Alliance was to have paid $10,000,000 death and sick benefits to over 100,000 Lithuanian Americans.
This certificate attests to the membership of Kazys Šilkaitis in the Catholic alliance in 1904.
This virtual exhibit is supported in part by grants from the following:
The Balzekas Museum gratefully acknowledges these grantors as well as the members and private donors whose contributions support museum programs and activities.