I recently acquired this nice old Christmas postcard, addressed to Mr. Adam Dietrich, RR 2, Willshire, Ohio.
It has no stamp on it and was never postmarked. It was likely given to Adam Dietrich in person, perhaps with a Christmas present. The postcard dates roughly to 1910. A clue is that United States postcards did not have a divided back, a line separating the address area and the writing area, until 1907.
The postcard is addressed in English but the message is written in German, written in the old German script.
I do not know German but I can somewhat read the old German script and am fairly good at picking out names. The message is a Christmas and New Year greeting. I was able to pick out a couple words:
Merry Christmas (Froehlich Weihnachten) and year (Jahr).
And most importantly, Von Edna.
The postcard was from Edna.
Edna who? Just who was Edna? The Dietrichs and Schumms intermarried and I have a lot of genealogy information about the Schumms, but some about the Dietrichs .
The postcard was likely written to Johann “Adam” Dietrich (1828-1912), a German immigrant who would have spoken and read German for sure.
Adam Dietrich had a son Johann Adam (1860-1903). Since the son was deceased before 1907 (the divided card date), the card was likely written to the elder Dietrich.
Another of Adam Dietrich’s sons, Ernest George Dietrich (1864-1905) had a daughter Edna Magdalena (1901-1986). Edna probably went to one of the Lutheran parochial schools in the Schumm area, where they taught German and the old German Script. These parochial schools taught pupils to read and write German before WWI and the families probably spoke German at home. I remember that Velma Schumm (1914-2016) could read and write German. She once showed me one of her old schoolbooks, in which she practiced writing the old script.
This Christmas greeting could have been written by Edna Dietrich to her grandfather, Adam Dietrich. Edna would have been around 10 years old at the time, old enough to write the message.
That is my best guess.
If this is the correct Edna, her mother, Clara Rosina Schumm (1875-1936), was the daughter of River Henry Schumm and Rosina Schinnerer. Edna’s father Ernest George Dietrich died in 1905 and her mother Clara (Schumm) Dietrich married Carl Merkle (1869-1963).
Edna Dietrich went on to marry George Jacob Hofmann in 1925 and they had five children.
Whoever Edna was, she had very nice handwriting. I just wish I could read her whole message!