From Chicago to Germany with Love


I looked at the colorful postcard written from Chicago over 100 years ago. It had that charming quality of so many old postcards, and raised my curiosity about what the author, my great-grandmother had inscribed on the back. At first I only knew that the card was from my great-grandmother in Chicago to her family back in Germany.

At first I could only make out a few words, my great-grandmother's name, (Eliese) Germany, Chicago, Hans Bruhn (my great-grandfather) Then I got the translation.

I could hardly believe what a wonderful postcard I had in my hands. My great-grandmother was announcing her upcoming marriage to her Schatz (treasure), my great-grandfather, Hans. With this postcard, I know their planned wedding date: February 20, 1912, that Hans came from Flensburg and that he'd been in the US about 10 years.

There's something remarkably powerful about holding the postcard in my hands, realizing that my ancestor had written on it and was sharing such wonderful news. It's an experience I hope to share with others.

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