CROWN - Croatian World Network -
John Kraljic and his Croatian historical studies
By Prof.Dr. Darko Zubrinic
Published on 06/22/2010
John Kraljić was born in New York City of Croatian parents from the area of Rijeka. John is a member and an officer of the Croatian Academy of America and member the Croatian Studies Association, as well as a contributing editor of the Review of Croatian History, published by the Croatian Institute of History (Hrvatski povijesni institut). Mr. Kraljić is the President of the National Federation of Croatian Americans.

His studies on Croatian-American history and on the World War II era in Croatia


John Kraljic – Croatian Historical Studies 

John P. Kraljic was born in New York City of Croatian parents from the area of Rijeka.  He holds a Juris Doctorate from Georgetown University Law Center, a Bachelor’s degree from the C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University and a Master of Arts degree in history from the City University of New York. 

Mr. Kraljic is a member and an officer of the Croatian Academy of America and member the Croatian Studies Association.  He is also a contributing editor of the Review of Croatian History, published by the Croatian Institute of History (Hrvatski povijesni institut). 

He has served as President of the National Federation of Croatian Americans since 2001.

His scholarly interests include the study of the history of the region around Rijeka, Croatian-American history, the history of the Communist movement among Croats and the World War II era in Croatia and the former Yugoslavia. 

Published Works: 

    Translator of English portion of the work by Lujo Margetić, Vinodolski zakon [The Vinodol Law], Rijeka-Novi Vinodolski: Skupština općina Rijeka and others, 1989. 

    “The Early History of Vinodol and the Lord of Krk: Recent Works of Nada Klaić and Lujo Margetić,” in Journal of Croatian Studies, vol. 30 (1989), pp. 153-65. 

    “Povijest Ledenice do 1871. god.” [The History of Ledenice] in Dometi [publication of Matica Hrvatska-Rijeka], 1995, no. 1-6 (part 1), pp. 55-50, and Dometi, 1995, no. 7-12 (part 2), pp. 27-50. 

    “Emigration From Rijeka: An Introduction to the Legal Issues Involved and the Role of the American Consulate in Rijeka,” in Zbornik pravnog fakulteta - Sveučilište u Rijeci [Collected Papers of the Law College of the University of Rijeka], vol. 18, no. 2 (1997), pp. 507-51. 

    “American Perceptions of Rijeka Until the 1920s,” in Bernardin Nikola Škrivanić i njegevo vrijeme - Zbornik radova [Bernardin Nikola Škrivanić and His Time - A Collection of Papers], Rijeka: Matica Hrvatska orgranak Rijeke, 1997, pp. 95-112. 

    “Thomas A. Edison i Rijeka” [Thomas A. Edison and Rijeka], in Sušačka revija [Sušak Review], vol. 30-31 (2000), p. 112 (co-authored with Željko Bartulović). 

    “Jean Genet na Sušaku” [Jean Genet in Sušak], in Sušačka revija [Sušak Review], vol. 32 (2000), pp. 89-92 (co-authored with Željko Bartulović). 

    “Rijeka kao iseljenička luka” [Rijeka as an Emigration Port], in Riječka luka: povijest, izgradnja, promet [The Port of Rijeka: History, Construction, Transport], Rijeka: Muzej grada Rijeke, 2001, pp. 233-39, issued in connection with an exhibition of the same name 

    “Pregled povijesti istarskih iseljenika u Sjedinjenim Američkim Državama između dvaju svijetskih ratova” [An Introduction to the History of Istrian Emigrants in the United States of America Between the Two World Wars], in Talijanska uprava na Hrvatskom prostoru i egzodus Hrvata (1918-1943) - Zbornik radova s Međunarodnog znanstvena skupa [Italian Administration Over Croatian Lands and the Exodus of Croats (1918-1943) – Collection of Papers From an International Scholarly Conference], Zagreb: Hrvatski institut za povijest, 2001, pp. 179-200. 

    “Pula Under Anglo-American Administration,” in Journal of Croatian Studies, vol. 43 (2003). 

    Translator of the English summary of Željko Bartulović, Sušak 1919.-1947: državnopravni položaj grada [Sušak 1919.-1947: The Constitutional Status of the City], Rijeka: Adamić, Državni arhiv Rijeka and Pravni fakultet (2004). 

    (with Ervin Dubrović), “Comments Related to Maritime Ties Between the Eastern Adriatic and the Americas 1780-1840,” in Adamićevo doba : 1780.-1830. : riječki trgovac na početku europske modernizacij [Adamić’s Era: 1780-1830: A Rijeka Merchant at the Commencement of European Modernization], Rijeka: Muzej grada Rijeke (2005), issued in connection with an exhibition of the same name. 

    Contributor to Merika – Iseljavanje iz srednje Europe u Ameriku 1880 -1914 – Emigration from Central Europe to America 1880-1914, Rijeka: Muzej grada Rijeke (2008), issued in connection with an exhibition of the same name. 

    “The Croatian Section of the Communist Party of the United States and the ‘United Front’: 1934-1939,” in Review of Croatian History (Zagreb), no. 5 (2009), pp. 137-67. 

Book Reviews: 

    Review Article, Richard West, Tito and the Rise and Fall of Yugoslavia, in Journal of Croatian Studies, vol. 34-35 (1993-94), pp. 235-51. 

    Book Review, Vladimir Goss, Predromanicka arhitektura u Hrvatskoj - Pre-Romanesque Architecture in Croatia, in Journal of Croatian Studies, vol. 36-37 (1995-96), pp. 292-93. 

Symposia (does not include works subsequently published which are listed above): 

    “Ledenice u 13-og stoljeća,” [Ledenice in the 13th Century], delivered at the Scholarly Gathering in Honor of the 700th Anniversary of the Vinodol Law, the 600th Anniversary of the Statute of Senj and the 600th Anniversary of the Statute of Krk, September 1988, Novi Vinodolski, organized by the Yugoslav Academy of Arts and Sciences. 

    “The Evolution of Croatian Communist Newspapers in the United States and Canada,” delivered at the American Association for Advancement of Slavic Studies Conference, Boston, December, 2004. 

    “Ethnic Relations and Sovereignty in Istria 1941-1947,” delivered at the Association for the Study of Nationalities Annual Conference, Columbia University, New York, April 2005. 

    Speaker on a panel entitled: “European Diasporas in the United States: The Impact on U.S. Foreign Policy,” presented at The International Center for Migration, Ethnicity & Citizenship, New School University, New York, May, 2005. 

    “The Communist Part of Yugoslavia and King Aleksandar’s Dictatorship – The Tasks of the Party,” delivered at the American Association for Advancement of Slavic Studies Conference, Boston, November, 2009. 


    Member of the Editorial Board of vol. 34 of Krčki zbornik [Collected Papers of Krk Island], entitled Hrvatsko iseljeništvo u Sjedinjenim Američkim Državama i Krčani u New Yorku [Croatian Emigrants in the United States of America and People From Krk in New York], by Anton Bozanić, 1996. 

    “New Material on Vladimir Ćopić, Commander of the XVth Brigade,” in The Volunteer – Journal of the Veterans of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade, Fall 1999, pp. 8-9.

John Kraljic:  The people who saved aviators did so under tremendous personal risk, New York, 2005

John Peter Kraljic: Ethnic Croatians killed by Nazi and Fascist forces during World War II - a partial list


John Peter Kraljic of New York and Dr. Darko Zubrinić of Zagreb, have announced the release of the initial chapter of their joint project entitled "Ethnic Croatians Killed by Nazi and Fascist Forces During World War II." The initial chapter, which can be accessed at,

covers Primorsko-Goranska County, which centers on Rijeka and includes the Opatija Riviera, the coast to the area north of Senj, the mountainous Gorski kotar and the islands of Krk and Rab (information for Cres, Lošinj and their offshore islands have yet to be compiled).

Mr. Kraljic, who holds a master's degree in history and has published a number of studies related to Croatian history, notes that the roots of the project can be traced back over a decade ago. "I was curious to see how Croatians generally commemorated events which took place during World War II. Prior to 1990, the Communist state manipulated those events to suit its own purposes, specifically as a means to justify the takeover of power by the Communist Party following the War. Croatia's democratization led to the breaking of prior taboos related to the War, and various institutions and individuals began to memorialize the misdeeds of the Communist leadership." Mr. Kraljic goes on to note that he was "specifically interested in seeing that many so-called Partisan monuments remained intact" despite the traumas through which Croatia passed in the first half of the 1990s.

In his travels, Mr. Kraljic began taking photos of these monuments. "After having taken literally hundreds of photos, I realized that one could attempt to construct at least a partial list of victims killed by Nazi and Fascist forces during World War II." This is especially important in light of the continued attempts to paint Croatians as being pro-fascist during the War. "These monuments, most of them in predominately Croat inhabited areas, clearly show the level of suffering Croats as a whole suffered during the War, a level which is generally not appreciated by persons not from the area."

Mr. Kraljic decided to use the information he found on various monuments and in available published sources to begin to construct a list of Croatian Partisans killed during World War II as well as of Croatian victims of fascism. He contacted Dr. Zubrinić to assist him with preparing the photos and the text. "We decided it would be appropriate to publish 'Chapter 1,' covering Primorsko-Goranska County, rather than waiting any longer." Mr. Kraljic admits that this is a long term project. "The fact is that driving to various cities, towns and hamlets, exploring innumerable cemeteries and retrieving relevant published works is very time consuming, especially for someone who does not live in Croatia." Mr. Kraljic continues, "to be frank, we posted the results Primorsko-Goranska County first since I tend to spend most of my time in Croatia in that area and have been able to personally visit practically every settlement there." Mr. Kraljic and Dr. Zubrinić have already begun to work on the next chapter which will cover Istria.

Mr. Kraljic notes that, despite the title, the intent is not to exclude any ethnic group from the list. "Indeed, while Primorsko-Goranska County is predominately populated by Croats, there are a number of mostly Serb-populated settlements there, such as Moravice and hamlets around Vrbovsko which are included. Similarly, when we deal with Istria, we will include ethnic Italians in the lists. Clearly, as we get into more ethnically mixed areas, such a Lika, the lists will include many more Serb villages."

It is Mr. Kraljic's and Dr. Zubrinić's hope that their work will serve as a tool for researchers. "Our goal is to be as comprehensive as we possibly can be in preparing these lists, but we recognize that there will always be something overlooked in a project as wide-ranging as this one."

Formated for CROWN by prof.dr. Darko Žubrinić
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