On Jan. 23, 1943, my uncle, Frank Ebner Gartz, (photo in uniform, above) reported to the draft board in Chicago to start his training for WWII. So began the correspondence between him and family & friends, comprising almost 300 letters going both ways. I’m posting many of these World War II letters, each on or near the 70th anniversary of its writing. To start with his induction, click HERE.

This blog began in Nov., 2010, when I posted a century-old love note from Josef Gärtz, my paternal grandfather, to Lisi (Elisabetha) Ebner, my paternal grandmother, and follows their bold decision to strike out for America.

My mom and dad were writers too, recording their lives in diaries and letters from the 1920s-the 1990s. Historical, sweet, joyful, and sad, all that life promises-- and takes away--are recorded here as it happened. It's an ongoing saga of the 20th century. To start at the very beginning, please click HERE.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Celebrating 100 Years in America 9/26/1911-9/26/2011

"This is my ship which brought me to America in the year 1911.
Landing in NY- Disembarked  7:00 pm 26th September " written on the
back of this post card by Elisabetha Ebner
A century ago this evening, at approximately 7:00 p.m., Elisabetha Ebner, aka Lisi or Eliess, my grandmother, disembarked from her ship, Kaiser Wilhelm II, in New York and started her life in America.

I can see her searching for the train station to make her way to Cleveland, Ohio, where she would meet up with her step sister and brother-in-law before going on to marry Josef in Chicago. 

I love to think of these dates in cosmological terms. Just rewind the earth's orbit around the sun 100 times, and there she is: stepping off onto Ellis Island, submitting to the probing and eye-lid lifting health inspections, mailing a postcard of Central Park to her sweetheart, my grandfather, Josef Gartz, to let him know she's arrived safely.

Welcome to America, Grandma!

To learn more about this well-documented immigrant journey, arrival, and the process experienced by immigrants entering in New York, check out the following posts: 
You can follow her diary entries of her 5,000 mile trip from Hungary to New York, see:


Claudia said...

They were still examining and prodding in 1926. That was the year my grandparents and mother came from Germany.

My mother said she was coughing and her mother said "Don't cough, they will send up back!"

They were admitted and proceeded to Duquesne, PA where my grandmothers brother had a job lined up for my grandfather.

Susan Clark said...

Surely a day to celebrate and remember. I'd not thought of marking arrival day in my calendar. Something to examine...

Linda Gartz said...

Claudia, so many diseases, easily controllable today, were viewed with downright fear -- much like when we see a movie like Contagion. Check out my post in two weeks on October 4th, and you'll see how these restrictions affected my family personally. Susan, I forgot to mark it too! Suddenly I looked at the date and thought, "My God! This is the day Lisi came!" and whipped together the post. I've stared at the postcard so often and thought of her arrival, I had to mark it somehow.

Alice Keesey Mecoy said...

A family treasure to be sure. What a special day in your family history. I agree with Susan, arrival days should be noted. Thanks for sharing

Linda Gartz said...

Thanks so much for your comment, Alice!

Lisa / Smallest Leaf said...

Hello, Linda! Of course, I just had to comment on your post about your family's 100 years in America. ;)

You have such a wonderful treasure trove of letters, diaries, etc. within your care, and I'm so glad to see that you are sharing them so beautifully here on this blog. I look forward to continuing along with you throughout your family's saga here at Family Archaeologist for many more years to come!