Straz – The Guard

The Guard is one of the oldest Polonia newspapers to be published, dating back to April 17, 1897 when it was established by Rev. Francis Hodur in Scranton, Pennsylvania.

The Guard has served as the communication tool for Rev. Francis Hodur as he expounded his national, social and religious programs through its pages, specifically to the many forming Polish independent parishes and to the American Polonia in general.

At the first Synod of what was to evolve into the Polish National Catholic Church [Polski Narodowy Katolicki Kosciol], held in Scranton, Pennsylvania, during September 1904,The Guard was designated as the official organ of the church.

As the need arose for the Polish National Catholics to establish its own fraternal organization, the Polish National Union of America [Polsko Narodowa Spā€”jnia] was incorporated in 1908 and jointly with the church used The Guard as its official organ.

As the Polish National Catholic Church grew, it became necessary to establish its own official organ and in 1923 publication of God’s Field [Rola Boza] was initiated and The Guard became exclusively the official organ of the Polish National Union of America.

The following issues (originals or on microfilms) of The Guard [Straz] are in possession of the Polish National Union of America:

Year Availability
1897 Complete
1898 Missing No. 2, 3, 4, 5, 50, 51
1899 Missing
1900 Missing No. 6, 36, 48, 53
1901 Missing No. 30, 49, 50, 51
1902 Complete
1903 Complete
1904 Complete
1905 Complete
1906 Complete
1907 Missing No. 1, 2, 3
1908 Missing
1909 We have only No. 1 & 44
1910 Complete
1911 Missing
1912 Missing
1913 Missing No. 2, 4, 36, 44, 51
1914 Missing No. 1-30, 37, 39, 41, 43-45, 49
1915 Missing No. 16

Online publication is courtesy of the author, Casimir J. Gotnik