Updated: Mar 6
The Back Story
I wrote about my second great-aunt's 1902 wedding invitation recently. I noticed that not only was the wedding in the family apartment, but it was also held on a Wednesday. I thought the middle of the week was kind of funny but then started wondering if it was at all common to have weddings during the week.
From a postcard that Eliese Trede wrote her to aunt and uncle in Germany as well as their wedding certificate, we know that they wed on February 20, 1912. But what day of the week was it? Turns out it was a Tuesday. Now I'm beginning to wonder if it was more common than I'd realized to tie the knot during the week in the early 20th century.
So then I looked up my own grandparents' marriages - one was on a Sunday and one on a Thursday - just goes to show that it's good to challenge even my every-day assumption that weddings are typically on Saturday.
How to Figure Out Yesteryear's Days of the Week
Just a head's up for those looking up dates further back (generally prior or 1752) or from some other countries cultures: People used different calendars (such as Julian or Gregorian), so be careful with those old years. Also, if you’re looking at someone traveling, remember that journeys typically took much longer than today.
Use one of the many online date converters. This one from Harvard is my current favorite. Not only does it offer many converters for many cultures, it also has some nice history.
Hold on to or find old calendars, and use a repeating calendar (check out WhenCanIReuseThisCalendar.com for one reference). I just came across this 1985 tea towel calendar from Mittenwald, Germany. It turns out that it's the same as 2019!
Do you have any German, Danish, Dutch, Swedish or Norwegian documents you can't read? We can help. Find out more here.