Salzburg, Tuesday, June 1, 1909

Another month has passed and again we have to pack up to move on, but before going we decided that we must see that grand old stronghold of the Archbishops of long ago, the Hohen-Salzburg. A cable R.R. ascending at a gradient of 58% took us up and through the wall of the fortress by a tunnel to the courtyard.

A guide took us up the winding staircase to the Rockturn, where the barbarous instruments of torture and the criminal dungeons are to be seen and still higher to the View Tower, 560 feet above the town. From here, we had a fine view of the town, and we also heard the bells play and we then hastened into the old palace to hear the mechanical organ play.

From here we passed into the Furstenzimmer (Prince’s Rooms), which were once furnished in great splendor as the residence of the former sovereigns of the country. Traces of this splendor are still to be seen in the beautiful, delicate gilt carvings and also in the richly carved ceilings, but above all in the beautiful and unique Majolica stove, which is known as the most wonderful masterpiece of Gothic ceramic art made in the 15th century.

The Archbishop Leonhard, an energetic man of peasant origin, did most of the building. He carried a turnip in his armorial bearings. We hastened home and caught the train at 1 o’clock for Wien. We decided not to stop at Linz to go down the Donan as this would take another day, and Mama is anxious to see the mail which is waiting us at Wein, as she is homesick to hear from her boy. We had very pleasant company, especially a Catholic Priest who explained many interesting points of view and asked many questions about America.

I find that you win the hearts of the Germans by bowing to them as you enter the compartment and asking them question. We also had a “Commis voyageur” drummer with us and I found him like our boys, “Full of blow.”

We had checked our four suitcases as a trial, but it cost $1.20, and I lost instead of gaining by the transaction, and, at the depot in Wien, we had to wait until every piece of baggage had been carried out of the car before our porter would touch ours.

At the hotel, which is within two blocks of the “Invalidenhaus” where Tante Kinski lives, we found your two letters and card from Tante Dorette for Emily and letter from her for us, also letter from Mrs. Hunt and a card from Grace. We had lost each other, and somehow my mail does not reach her. I shall send your letter to her at Brussells.

This is a nice quiet hotel and we can eat across the street very good and very cheap. I must close with love from all the relatives, including Cousin Fritsch and her daughter Rosa, whom you missed to see. She is the widow of Joseph, oldest brother of the Fritsches.

Mama and Emily are well and happy, so is your Dad.

Editor’s note: Commis voyageur roughly translates to “traveling salesman.” And if you’re wondering why the Archbishop (Leonhard von Keutschach, ca 1442—1519) was so fond of turnips—legend has it that his uncle once hit him on the head with a turnip to “get some sense” into him. 

The Archbishop Leonhard von Keutschach’s coat of arms. (Image courtesy of the British Museum)

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