"The swastika is an ancient symbol that has been used for over 3,000 years. (That even predates the ancient Egyptian symbol, the Ankh). Artifacts such as pottery and coins from ancient Troy show that the swastika was a commonly used symbol as far back as 1000 BCE.During the following thousand years, the image of the swastika was used by many cultures around the world, including in China, Japan, India, and southern Europe. By the Middle Ages , the swastika was a well known, if not commonly used, symbol but was called by many different names: China called it the wan, England called it fylfot, in Germany it was Hakenkreuz, Greece called it tetraskelion or gammadion, and in India, the swastika. Though it is not known for exactly how long, Native Americans also have long used the symbol of the swastika". (About.com)From things I'd read over the years, and from asking elder German people I know, the "common people" thought of that symbol as brotherhood, solidarity, and friendship...certainly nothing bad (until the Nazis began using it).
Yesterday, cousin Deborah (Sand) in Alaska emailed because her dentist is from Minnesota, and his wife is from St Cloud. (We all chat-up a dentist before an appointment, right? ☺) She'd mentioned a church in St Cloud that actually had swastikas on it...and did I know what she meant?
Yes there was a scandal about it when a Jewish professor at SCSU noticed them in the 1970s and insisted they be removed. It's good they're gone, but it's sad because they were never meant to be hurtful to anyone, just a memory of the old country.
See where they were? Not at all obvious, right under the lower roof line, at the junction of the gray trim and the vertical ridges. The medallions were removed and replaced with carvings of the mysteries of the rosary. Hmm...the pic on the left might be the new carving? Below is the old.
THANKS FOR ASKING, DEBORAH!