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Separated 99 Years, part 1

Finding Herbert Harschnek

a little saga of 99 years parted, part 1

starting with Alois Harschnek...

When a smart, ambitious lad from a backwoods, provincial village in Silesia (then a part of Germany in the 1890’s) wants to make it big and see the world, where does he go? Off to Berlin, then on to one of the German colonies of Africa, and how does he get there? Apparently, by way of the Columbian Exposition of 1893. It seems likely that it was in Berlin, not his sleepy village, that he became a flaming atheist and, his son later suspected, a socialist - actually a bit more than that.

Columbian Exposition of 1893: Chicago

We don’t know where in Africa Great-Grandfather Alois Harschnek was intending to go, nor what a skilled painter for the homes of the wealthy and later the extravagantly gilt-ornamented theaters planned to do once he arrived. We just know that he never got there. After working at the fabulous