After seven months abroad, Herman, Jennie, and Emily returned to their home in St. Louis at 3000 Shenandoah. Although they never returned, as a family, to Europe, they traveled yearly to summer in South Haven, Michigan, as many St. Louisans did to escape the summer heat.

Hermann continued to travel on business for Jacoby Art Glass Company. In 1914, on his way to Bremen, Germany, Hermann visited an “Automatic Restaurant” in New York, where he found the food—and its cost—to his liking.

Jennie and Hermann lived to see their son, Charles, marry Edme Halteman, a schoolteacher, and to see their three grandchildren, Robert Herman, Charles Richard, and Dorothy Elizabeth (my mother).

Hermann died in 1919 at age 68. In 1926, a cottage at the Central Wesleyan Orphan Home in Warrenton was named for him in honor of his 30 years’ service as trustee and treasurer for the orphanage.

After Hermann’s death, Jennie and Emily lived together at 3612 Connecticut until Jennie’s death at 72 in 1927 from complications of the kidney disease that had caused her blindness.

Emily stayed in the Connecticut apartment the rest of her life, joined by her good friend, Nettie Niemann. The two were much loved as great-aunts by Sally (daughter of Robert), Rick (son of Charles), and Laura (daughter of Dorothy). An overnight visit with Emily and Nettie usually meant a walk to the shops on Grand Avenue—Emily loved to shop, as Hermann observed. Emily died in 1959, a year after Nettie had passed.

Among Emily’s things were the transcribed collection of Hermann’s letters as well as two albums of postcards from the 1909 European trip. Without those treasured mementoes, this blog would not have existed, and I never would have met Hermann, whom I have come to love dearly. My travels in Europe with Hermann, Jennie, and Emily will forever remain a favorite time in my life. I hope you have enjoyed their adventures as well.

Hermann, Jennie, Emily, and a young friend enjoying Lake Michigan surf at South Haven, Michigan.


Barbarossa, October 28, 1909

Weather fair, but cold. By noon, we had covered 344 miles. At 2 o’clock, we passed Fire Island, U.S.A. This will bring us to the pier about 7 o’clock.


Harbor and Battery Park, New York.

From the editor: The entry above and the postcard to Miss Hunt, both written on a Thursday, are the last written messages recounting Hermann’s seven-month trip.

Based on evidence provided by several other postcards in the collection, the Jacobys may have taken the 20th Century Limited train  to Chicago.

The New York Central’s 20th Century Limited in the Hudson Highlands.

Arriving in Chicago about 24 hours later, they may have opted to enjoy a meal—or, perhaps an overnight stay—at the Hotel Kaiserhof (320–328 Clark Street), just across the river from Union Station, about a 10-minute walk, nothing for those intrepid mountain-climbing Jacobys.

Kaiserhof Hotel, Chicago.
Ladies’ Cafe and Farmers’ Parlor [a room decorated in a rustic style].

Italian Garden.
Kaiserhof Hotel, Chicago, Ill.

After a quick visit to the Windy City, they could have caught any one of several trains that ran daily between Chicago and St. Louis, crossing the Mississippi on the Eads Bridge and arriving in Union Station on Saturday, October 30—back home after a little more than seven months of travel.

The Eads Bridge.

Union Station.
St. Louis, Mo.

Barbarossa, October 27, 1909

The sun is shining, the sea is smooth, and everybody is happy. By noon, we had covered 287 miles, and it is very doubtful that we will land in time to pass the custom house examination on Thursday evening.

In the afternoon, we had a concert in the Dining Salon and, in the evening, after Dinner, the young people danced on the promenade deck, which had been decorated with flags and closed off by tarpaulins.

The dinner was quite an affair as it was what they call the “Captain’s Dinner.” The dining room was beautifully decorated and we had 11 courses. Might as well have made it twelve.

We all went to bed late.

Barbarossa, October 26, 1909

At about 5 o’clock we were awakened by a crash and a jingling noise. A large wave has dashed into the bottle washing room and played havoc with the empties. The night has been very stormy, and I do not think that we have made much headway.

No promenading today. Everybody seems glued to the chair, and time passes slowly. The waves are very high and the ocean looks grand. As our boat rises and sinks upon the waves, we have a fine view in the rear of the turbulent foamy waters. When it strikes a wave, there is a great rush of waters over the front deck, and the steerage passengers have to stay below deck.

At noon, we had covered 264 miles, and we have 725 to make by Thursday noon, which I think is not probable although it is possible. I hope to land by Thursday 3 o’clock anyhow.

We had a nice time after dinner with some of the young folks, and we did not retire before 11 o’clock which is unusually late for us.

Barbarossa, October 25, 1909

We awoke after a very quiet and restful night. The ship has hardly any motion, and everything seems to be well again.

I generally arise first and take a promenade around deck, lasting half an hour, during which time Mama and Emily dress. We enjoy our 1/2 a Grapefruit (Panipelmuse) [sic] each, before breakfast, also the breakfast.

It is still foggy, but not enough to slacken the speed or blow the foghorn. We are making good progress and, by noon, we had covered 352 miles. We are now within two degrees (latitude) of Cape Race, Newfoundland.

The sun tries hard to penetrate the fog and succeeds now and then. It is not as cold as it was yesterday, but the air is damp, and the deck has not dried. We enjoyed our stay on the promenade deck and brought a good appetite to lunch. People are beginning to be more social, and everybody knows everyone else by this time.

North German Lloyd. Bremen.
Mail steamer Barbarossa, 4 April 1909.

Barbarossa, October 24, 1909

At 5 o’clock, we were awakened by the blowing of the Foghorn. This is a world of changes. It took about a 1/4 hour before I became accustomed to the new noise introduced into our accustomed number of noises, and I then fell asleep again to be awakened at 7:30 by the brass band playing a choral and “Nearer My God To Thee.”

No use to be in a hurry, for this is Sunday, and we are not in a hurry to get outside and see and feel the fog. We had no service on board, but we three read together. We enjoyed an excellent lunch, equal to our regular Sunday dinner. It was not very pleasant on deck, but we sat there all the same. The ladies dressed for dinner, which lasted an hour and a quarter, and, after that, we sit in the Ladies Salon.

To bed at 10 o’clock. Mileage covered up to noon, 320.

Barbarossa, October 23, 1909

This has been a glorious day, and the sick have arisen. The sea is still rough, but the sun shining puts a bright aspect on things all around. The young people are playing games, and everybody takes a walk on the promenade deck. Even the solitary young man, who has been sitting all day in his chair and who has had his meals brought to him on deck, arose today and showed up at dinner. By noon, we had covered 303 miles, which is 100 better than yesterday.

In the afternoon, the sea became so quiet that you could hardly feel any motion of the ship. We enjoyed our dinner very much, and all three of us had changed clothes and dressed for the occasion. After dinner it, it grew cold and windy, so we stayed indoors.

The young people dressed for a masquerade without masks. Two young men dressed in girls’ clothes. Miss Worth, our Cleveland acquaintance, dressed as a Japanese girl. There was a card girl, her dress covered with playing cards, a brigand, etc. They appeared in the Salon, Smoking Room and at Marconis [sic].

The captain showed us a number of wireless messages from New York received by way of two steamers bound for Europe, which passed us this afternoon. We made out our list for the customhouse and handed it to the stewart. Elizabeth passed some hours with us. Emily’s foot is improving, but she still is anchored to the chair. You see I am quite nautical by expressions.

To bed at 10 o’clock.

North German Lloyd. Bremen.
Duchess Cecilie, a school ship.

Barbarossa, October 22, 1909

Sea quiet when we arose, and sun trying his best to come out and cheer us, but gave it up for a bad job. By noon, we had covered 201 miles only. In the afternoon, rain set in, and things looked wet and gloomy. Called on Elizabeth and brought her upstairs for a change as the Herr Ober had given me permission.

The Hamburg steamer, Blucher, over took and passed us. It is a faster boat than ours. We do not put on any extra style for dinner as we sit outside as much as possible, and we go in and down when the last bugle calls. We sit at table for one and a quarter hour and let those of the courses pass by for which we have no appetite. In the meanwhile, the band discourse is sweet music, and we sit and talk.

We occupy the same table at which we sat on our last trip, and we people it with former occupants. Miss Moran and Grace, Mr. and Mrs. Wegman, and his father Professor Golding, and we three enjoyed many an hour together on our last trip. By sitting at this table all to ourselves, we enjoy many advantages. We did not venture out after dinner and went to bed at a comparatively early hour.


Barbarossa, October 21, 1909

Up at 8 o’clock. Raining, sea very rough so that we could not walk around, waves dashing over the side of the ship and drenching the second cabin passengers. Steerage are kept penned up; must be dreadful for them as it is bad enough for us. No change, by noon we had covered 253 miles.

Worse in the evening, so that we could not go down to dinner, but, as we have a table to ourselves and a waiter for us, he set that table upstairs and served us there. Things kept sliding off the table, and we had a hard time eating.

Mama is well and in good spirits, Papa never felt better, feels like a duck in water and smokes his three cigars a day with enjoyment, ditto meals. Emily still under the weather and wishes to see the next station as soon as possible.

Early to bed. As our cabin is quiet, very little of the motion is felt there, and we work so hard during the day that we welcome night to rest and sleep and forget.

Barbarossa, Tuesday, October 19, 1909

Up and at breakfast by 10 o’clock. Weather bad, raining and white caps on the waves. All we can do is to sit in our steamer chairs and think of home. Emily feels blue, and her toe is not improving as fast as she wishes. By noon we had covered 327 miles.

I called on Elizabeth Junker who is in the second class. She is a very pretty, nice young lady. The voyage does not agree with her, and she cannot eat anything. I am sorry for her and will try to get her all the comfort which she can expect in the second class, but they are very crowded, and the stewarts [sic] are kept very busy.

Cherbourg, October 18, 1909

Up at 4:30 a.m., a hasty breakfast, a ride in the hotel bus, and we leave terra firma, not to stand upon it for some days to come. The tug took us to the Barbarossa, and we were glad to see so many familiar faces and our old cabin.

No flowers this time except a bouquet of violets and a button hole bouquet for Emily, around which we tied the same ribbons which you had on the one given us when we left New York, seven months ago. What a long time to stay away from home and how short it seems now when we have come to the end of our pleasure trip.

Dock by the Warehouse.

We got underway about 7 o’clock and, by noon, we had made 57 miles. The weather was fair, and we fell into the old way of spending our time without much trouble. There are not many passengers in the first, only about 50, but there are nearly 300 in the second, and they are very crowded.

Toward evening, we counted some 14 steamers on the horizon line, and we saw the last of the coast of England. Had a fine sunset.



Cherbourg, October 17, 1909

We left Paris at 11 o’clock this morning in the Lloyds Special in a compartment all to ourselves. There were only eight passengers beside us in the car. We had a very comfortable ride but devoid of interest, and we landed in Cherbourg according to schedule at 5 p.m. Here we were taken to the wharf and had our luggage brought into the cabin of the tug boat.

We were on time, but the Barbarossa was not. She was reported to come at 11 o’clock, and we were told that we would be entertained at Lloyd’s expense at the Casino Hotel. So we marched up there but took our satchel along as I suspected the Barbarossa would not be in until 5:45 tomorrow morning. We selected our rooms and went to dinner.

There is a pretty terrace in the rear of the hotel, which faces the harbor, and here we walked up and down for a short time. To bed in good time.

The Terrace at the Casino

Paris, October 16, 2019

Dear Boy:

I guess this letter will reach you before we do, and so I send it ahead with the hope that we will follow it in person and catch up with it, if possible. Well, Mama and I have enough of Paris, but Emily is anxious for more. We started early this morning and went to the N.G. Lloyd to get our tickets and arrange for our trip to Cherbourg. We will leave tomorrow morning on the Lloyd Extra. A compartment in the 1st class has been reserved for us.

It will take 7 hours to get there, which is more than I expected. I had to change some of my French money into greenbacks, and I will have enough to pay my R.R. fare. The two went shopping again, and it took a little more than I calculated, but it will be alright in the end.

We drove to the Dome des Invalides, and, as it was not open, we went into a nearby Restaurant, not the aristocratic kind, but we had a fine roast beef, potatoes and a big bottle of white wine for $.30 a person, which isn’t bad for Paris. Of course, we cannot manage a bottle between us, and I often wonder who gets the rest left in the bottle.

The Dome, which is an addition to the church of St. Louis, was originally intended to serve for the grand festivities which took place when the king attended the services of the Invalides. It has a beautiful gilded dome. The interior is grand and impressive.


Paris. Tomb of the Emperor at Invalides.

Below the center dome, which is supported by four immense pillars, is the burial vault of Napoleon 1st. It is 36 feet in diameter and 20 feet in depth and surrounded above the floor by a marble balustrade, thus affording an opportunity to see the large sarcophagus in which the bones of the great emperor rest. This sarcophagus is made of a block of Siberian Porphyr of reddish brown color, which weighs 135,000 pounds. I guess no one will try to get at his bones (ashes) without permission to do so.


Paris. The Invalides. Tomb of Napoleon I.

Around the sarcophagus there is a floor mosaic representing a wreath of laurel and the names of battles which he won. On the surrounding wall, there are 12 goddesses of victory in marble and, in back of these, some allegorical reliefs, all in marble. The side chapels, which are circular, contain sarcophagi and monuments of the marshals of Louis XIV, also of some relatives of Napoleon, among them Jerome Bonaparte, the immer lustik King of Westphalia.

From here we drove to Sainte Chapelle, the royal chapel of Louis the Holy in 1245, erected to hold the relics brought by him from the Holyland. It is a genuine treasure box, in its architecture, a precious work of Gothic and contains the richest and best old stained glass windows which it has been my privilege to see in Europe. They are just wonderful, nearly the entire walls are taken up by windows, those on the sides being 14 feet wide by about 50 feet high. In the choir niche, they are not as wide, but just as high.


Paris. The Holy Chapel.

Standing at the entrance and looking into the open room not without any furniture, you have the impression of looking into a large treasure box with a scroll work and beautiful glass of a deep rich coloring in an harmonious and graceful setting. It is wonderful, and I am glad that I was permitted to see this wonderful work of ART.


The Holy Chapel. The Reliquary.

By permission of the keeper, we could step from the balcony, which is in front of the entrance (the church has a lower room through which we had come) into the Galerie Marchande of the Palace of Justice, where we had an opportunity of seeing the lawyers, in their gowns and caps, walking and sitting around with their clients.

Passing through the great court, we hailed a cab which took us to the Café de la Paix where we each indulged in a cup of excellent coffee and thought of you and your experience here a year ago.

We now walked the streets of Paris for a while, which, as you know is no fun for a single person, much less for a pair and one, as it is an art to dodge the vehicles when crossing almost any side street, not to mention boulevards. A Taxameter is good enough for me when you can ride a long distance for 25 to 35 cts. for three of us.

Home all tired out and glad to sit down and rest from our labors. “Finis” sight seeing. Farewell Europe, but Au Revoir some other day, the Lord permitting.



Paris. The Holy Chapel. Detail of the Loggia, the construction of the Noah’s Ark.


Paris, October 15, 1909

Shopping was the password today, and all attempts failed to get the two anywhere else before they had seen the shops. We took a taxa [sic] and rode through town and across the bridge to the “Bon Marche,” a large department store, and here we spent a few hours looking and buying. The prices are all affixed to the articles, and most of them are within reach, so that you can see and feel them and call for your salesman when you are ready to buy.

There is a constant flow of people, and they have goods for sale on the sidewalk, too, just like on Franklin Avenue. After we got down here, it was time to lunch, and we entered a restaurant, Duval, but were met at the door by the cheerful news, “No Room,” so we went to another restaurant, where we ate à la cart and very reasonable, too.

After lunch we took a “Taxa” and rode to Notre Dame, the cathedral of the archbishop of Paris. It is a majestic structure, and, at the same time, pleasing to the eye. The large open space in front of the principal façade affords an opportunity to procure a good view of the building and the sculptures.

Notre-Dame Cathedral. The Transept.

There are three large portals all adorned with sculpture. The interior is immense, 75 large round pillars support the vaulting. Above the front portals and in the transept are immense rose windows with fine stained glass with purple color predominating, and it is the best of the old glass that I have seen. The colors are harmonious and pleasing to the eye. The heavy stone tracery helps to bring out the color effect, which is the principal part of the windows, as you lose sight of the details at the great distance from which you view them.

The Church Of Our Lady.

Some fine statuary in the side chapels, monuments of Parisian archbishops, among them, “The arising of a corpse from the coffin,” the 23 bas reliefs from the life of Christ in the rear of the choir loft, and the fine pulpit are some of the things which impressed themselves upon my mind.

From here, we drove to the Louvre, the most important building in Paris, not only on account of the rich collections which it contains, but also on account of its architectural execution. It is useless for me to go into detail of what I saw in the collections. They are so large and so varied that it would take weeks to see them all. I just mention here that I saw some well-known sculptures, among them, the Borghesian Fighter, Artemus or Diana á la Biche, and the modern Diana by Goujon, not to forget the Venus of Milo.

Place du Carrousel and general view of the Louvre.

A run through the picture galleries where I spent some time to look at Murillo’s Immaculate Conception and his Holy Family, Reni’s “Ecce Homo” and “Magdalene,” Millet’s Aehrenfeleserin (gathering of the sheaves) and Scheffer’s St. Augustin and his mother Monica. Teniers has some very comical features in his paintings, which I cannot very well describe here. The rooms with the furniture of Louis are fine, and it is a pity that we had to hurry on.

The Magdalene.
Guido Reni.

[from back]
The Gleaners

We next went to the Magazine de Louvre, another big department store, and, after that, home, and we were hungry, very hungry, and tired. We went to bed early, and I guess I will close this, probably my last epistle which I can mail to you from this side of the ocean with the words of the Psalmist “Oh Lord, how wonderful are thy works.”

We have seen them in so many different kinds that we stand and marvel at the immensity of varieties. Good night.

Paris. Notre-Dame.
Chimeras (Two-Headed Dog and Bull).

Paris, October 14, 1909

General view of the Castle, the Park and the City.

My dear boy:

This, you know, is my birthday and Mama thought it no more than proper that I should treat ourselves to a ride and guide to Versailles.

We had a nice park wagon with two horses, and there were six more in our party and the guide. We started at 9:30 and took our way along some of the grand boulevards and passed the Tuileries and the imposing Arc de Triomphe de L’Etoile, also the Palisade L’Elysees, the present residence of the President of the Republic, then through the Bois de Boulogne, a beautiful park with oak trees, the favorite promenade of the Patrician. On to Versailles, where we arrived after a ride of about an hour and a half. It was a beautiful drive and we all enjoyed it very much.

The Castle. The Facade.

I shall not attempt to give a description of what we saw at Versailles. There is so much to be seen there, and we were compelled to go through the buildings and the grounds in such a hurry that it seems like a dream to me now, with but indistinct recollections of some of the main features.

Historically, the place is of great interest. The erection of the palace and the surrounding park has cost more than a hundred million dollars, and it is said that 36,000 men and 6000 horses were employed to work on the gardens, park, etc. It cost $2 1/2 million annually to keep it up, and costs now more than $100,000 annually.

Both Louis XIV & XV died in the palace; Louis XVI, who was guillotined in 1793, was forcibly carried away from this place in 1789. In 1795, it served as a manufactory of arms and, in 1815, the Prussians helped themselves to what they wanted out of the palace. After the fall of Napoleon, it was occupied, in succession, by Louis XVIII, Charles X and Louis Philippe.

Bedroom of Louis XIV

In 1855, Victoria was received here by Napoleon III and, in 1871, the palace was occupied by Prussian forces. In the same year, on the 18th of January, King William was here proclaimed Emperor of Germany. After the departure of the German forces, it became the seat of the government of France under the presidency of Mr. Thiers and continued so until 1880 when the government was removed to France. The final destiny of the Palace was fixed by Louis Philippe, who appropriated to it enormous sums and made a great Museum of it. It has been a museum of French history under all its aspects.

An equestrian statue of Louis XIV marks the entrance to the Court Royal. Passing through a large corridor filled with casts of pieces of sculpture of the middle ages, we entered, in succession, rooms containing immense pictures recalling the principal historic deeds of the French nation, the history of the crusades of the 11th and 13th, the victories in Algiers, the expedition into the Crimea, the retreat from Russia, etc. The Hercules room, which served as the great court ball room in the 18th century, has a fine ceiling fresco, the largest in existence. It is 59 x 55 feet and represents the Apotheosis of Hercules.

Then follows the Room of Plenty with a ceiling painted to represent “Plenty” of Royal Magnificence, then follows the Rooms of Venus, Diana, Mars, Mercury, Apollo, that of War and the Great Glass Gallery in which the ceiling has thirty scenes from the history of Louis XIV, each picture being enclosed in a sculptured border, richly gilt.

Versailles. The Castle.
Gallery of Mirrors [Great Glass Gallery]

This gallery, 244 feet long and 34 feet broad by 42 feet high. Each of the 17 windows, overlooking the magnificent gardens, has a corresponding arch decorated with mirrors joined with wrought copper. When the wonderful furniture of olden times filled this gallery, this splendid decoration must have procured a striking affect. As it is now, it looks empty and faded. The one at Chiemensee made more of an impression on me is it still glitters and looks fresh.

But try to recall this hall covered with two immense carpets, the windows with curtains of white damask brocade with gold, and distribute to the longer room silver sconces, high stands, consoles, stools, and silver boxes holding orange trees, bowls and vases fashioned by the most skilled workmen, wonderful chandeliers suspended from the ceiling, and you have a room unique in its execution and fairy like in its appearance.

The rooms of Louis XV, his dining hall, cabinet, antechamber, Louis XVI library, billiard and bathroom, Marie Antoinette’s neat and plain little rooms as well as the great rooms of the state approved of great interest.

We visited the old Opera Hall, which is now used for the meetings of the senate, also the room which is now used as the Chamber of the Deputies, where the President of the Republic is elected, and then stepped out to get a view of the gardens.

Standing at the edge of a large staircase, we had, below us, the Latona basin, then the ground garden of Latona, at the end of which opened a long perspective formed by a beautiful green lawn, another basin and the grand Canal.

The Basin of Latona, a day of Grand Waters.

We walked through the gardens and groves. The Grove the Bath of Apollo. In an artificial rock is a fine group in white marble representing 6 nymphs in attendance on Apollo, presenting him perfumes. His horses are at rest at the foot of the rock. All this surrounded by green shrubbery and trees produces a striking effect.

I am sorry that we are too late to see the great fountains play, but it costs the city several thousand dollars every time they spurt. You may know that they save water as much as they can. The visit to the Great Trianon was a regular farce. The keeper who took us through it fairly raced along, and our guy did hard work to keep up with him and sling out some explanations in German while, at the same time, the keeper was jabbering away in French.

It was a sort of resting place for Louis XIV, and all that I can remember of it is that we had no time to rest while we were inside of it. The dining room is fine, and the floors are all slippery. But, in the carriage house, we had a good chance to admire the fine state coaches, sedan chairs and sledges. There is a coronation coach built in 1825 for Charles X and used for the baptism of the son of Napoleon III in 1854. The old thing weighs 15,432 lbs, and isn’t half as good as our Auto, I bet.

The little Trianon has a fine winding staircase with a railing of wrought and gilded iron with the initials of Marie Antoinette. Louis XVI gave this palace to her and she often stayed there with some friends. Here she led a country life in the simplicity she so loved, away from the pomp and trying etiquette of the court. On October 5th, 1789, the news of the arrival of the Parisian mob made her leave, in haste, the dear place which she never saw again.

Le Petit Trianon, the front.

The place is interesting on account of the many souvenirs of this unfortunate queen. We took a walk in the gardens of the Little Trianon and the Hamlet of Marie-Antoinette, a cluster of rustic houses, a mill, henhouse, dairy, etc., and took our seats in the park wagon pretty well tired out from our long tramp.

Versailles. Le Petit Trianon.
Hamlet of Marie-Antoinette. The House of the Lord.

We rode home passing through Severs, where the famous Manufactory of Porcelain is situated and saw the Eiffel Tower. The most interesting part, however, was the throng of autos, carriages, wagons, cabs, double deck cars and people in the principal detail streets through which we passed. It was so very exciting that it was hard to keep Emily in her seat, and I was glad to get them all home safe and sound. All tired out and ready to eat our dinner.

More to-morrow.

Paris, October 13, 1909

View of the Seine from the Concorde Bridge.

We left at 10 o’clock this morning for Paris. We traveled second class and had a room all to ourselves up to about 2 o’clock when two French soldiers with red trousers and red caps came in. I guess they were sorry that they came, for I tried my French on them and bombarded them with questions which they were unable to answer because they probably couldn’t understand my “Refined French.”

The country through which we passed was uninteresting, and the only interesting part of our trip was our lunch

At the French border, a French gentleman entered and asked “Anything to declare?” whereupon I answered in my most selected French “Non monsieur.” He seemed impressed for he didn’t even look at our luggage. In Paris, at the depot, I had my four other pieces on the counter, and the officer pointed to the very one which had absolutely nothing liable to duty. I opened it, he dug in a very gentle manner into it and passed us on.

Avenue des Champs Elysees, around the Place de la Concorde.

I am satisfied with this hotel, and we happened to get two rooms on the first floor. No more mail from yours truly until I reach New York. Goodbye, God bless you and keep you in good health until we meet.


Panorama of the Eiffel Tower.

Basel, October 12, 1909

Our train for Basel left at 11 o’clock, and we felt pretty bad to know that we had to say good bye to Tante Lenchen. She has been such a comfort to us during the past month. As we ran in and out of her home, making our excursions into Switzerland, we always felt that we were welcome and that her only regret was that she could not offer us a home such as she had when Uncle Wilhelm was still alive.

We spent many a pleasant hour together, and we all have been brought closer to each other. Surely it is hard to part from those you love and the question always arises “When will we meet again?” Will we meet again here on earth? Thanks be to God our father that we know we will meet again in the life to come.

Just after taking leave, and while we waited for the train to start and carry us off, Miss Gertie Knecht, the intimate friend of Tante Lenchen, came to meet her, and I know she helped her over the first grief of saying farewell, which I thought very sweet and considerate of Miss Gertie.

We landed in Basel at 1:15 P.M. and parted from Alfred at the depot and went to the Schweizerhof Hotel. Emily has torn the nail on the big toe of her foot, and so she stayed at home to nurse it while I went sight seeing by “My lonely.”

Basel. The Cathedral.

I took the electric down town and went in the Cloisters of the Münster. In front of these, stands quite an ancient statue of Johannes Cecolampadius, the Reformer. If I had a name like that, I believe the good citizens of St. Louis would erect a statue to my memory just on account of the name.

[from back]
Basel. Johannes Oecolampadius.

The cloisters are very pretty, and the walls are covered with Memorial slabs of old Basel families who were buried here up to 1850. Walking through them and stepping out of a side door, I entered a terrace called the Pfalz, which is some 60 feet above the Rhine. It is planted with chestnuts and afforded me a fine view of the [illegible] river with its bridges and the hills of the Black Forest.

I then went around the old church and admired its architecture. It is a very picturesque edifice built of red sandstone and has a brilliantly colored roof and two pretty slender towers. The inside is very imposing. It has some very good modern stained glass windows and a fine font (1465) and many old monuments. There is also a very old relief with the martyrdom of Saint Vincent. On the outside are some fine old sculptures, among them one of St. George (very old) and Saint Martin.

[from back]
Basel. Knight St. George and Monster.

In looking up the [Basel] museum, I had a chance to lose myself in some of the narrow and crooked street to this old town, and I was impressed with the aristocratic and “buttoned up and locked” appearance of the old residences. Also with the quiet and loneliness of this of the streets and places in this vicinity—either everybody was asleep or else they had died.

[from back]
Old Basel, upper Heuberg

The museum itself is located in one of those dead streets, and, if it had not been for a little sign on the door, I would have passed it. I had to knock for admission, and I do not think that there were more than a dozen visitors inside. But it contains a fine, if small, collection of pictures, among which some paintings and drawings by Hans Holbein the Younger, who lived here for about 15 years, and Arnold Boecklin a native of Basel. Right on the staircase, I had occasion to admire the frescoes by Boecklin, representing Gaea, Flora and Apollo, also three medallions of heads, representing the different kinds of critics.

The Ernest Stuckelberg rooms had some very fine works of art by this, another Basel painter. From here I went to the Markt Platz and saw the old Rathaus erected in 1508, but thoroughly restored a few years ago.

Basel, Townhall.

I regretted that our time did not allow me to see more of this very interesting old city.

[from back]
Old Basel, Tower of St. Alban

Remismuhle, October 11, 1909

Packing day. Our duds have been scattered all over the three rooms, and so we had to gather them in and divide and subdivide, in short, do all those things which are necessary when you wish to get much into a small space.

We took leave of Maja as Tante Lenchen is going along, and Alfred is to leave on the same train with us tomorrow bound for Karlsruhe, where he will continue his studies.

We all attended a rehearsal of the great Symphony Concert. The large hall of the Tonhalle was filled with lovers of music, and the numbers were given just the same as they will be rendered tomorrow. Admission is almost as high, too. It is really “The Concert,” too, for the demand for seats is so great that it could not be filled in one performance.

The hall itself is a very fine one decorated in white and gold with an even floor and a gallery on each side and one in the rear. The musicians are seated on an elevated platform, some 158 of them, similar to Thomas’ Orchester. The music rendered was excellent, and we all enjoyed it. We stop at the Pelican Hotel, a pretty nice place.


Editor’s note: I can’t know for sure, but I wonder if this small flower pressed into the album pages at the end of the Remismuhle postcard section came from Maja, who was fond of gathering blossoms.

Lugano and Remismuhle, October 10, 1909

Lake Lugano and the town of Melide

We decided to go home. We are becoming restless and Remismuhle seems nearer home. Again the sun was shining and, at 11 o’clock, we took the train. We passed through groves of Walnut and Chestnut trees loaded with nuts. Stone seems to be cheaper than wood here for the fences are made of stone slabs which serve in the place of wooden planks.

After leaving Bellinzon, a pretty town, we traversed beautiful scenery richly wooded with walnut and chestnut trees, and, from the cliffs opposite to us, we could see several cascades, one of which, the veil like fall of the Critiasca, was especially fine.

Near Rodi we came to one of the most curious parts on the line. The Platifer mountain here juts into the valley and descends into a series of falls through a wild gorge to a lower region of the valley.

At Airolo, we entered the St. Gotthard tunnel and, after passing through it, we came to Goeschenen thence the scenery became familiar to us.

Reached Zürich at 5:10, took supper at the depot and by the next train to Remismuhle where we arrived at eight, welcomed at the station by Tante Lenchen and Alfred. You may rest assured that we were glad to be home again

Lugano, October 9, 1909

This has been a glorious day. Last night we heard it rain, and, when we awoke this morning, we looked out upon a perfect blue sky without a cloud in it, and, at our feet, was reflected in a clear lake the surface of which was perfectly smooth.

We decided to ascend the San Salvatore by a cabled Railway so we took a car to Paradiso and were pulled up some 2100 feet. It took half an hour before we reached the summit on which there is a pilgrimage chapel, and I must say that the Catholics make it a pretty hard job for a good churchman to go to church when it takes him two hours climbing to get there.

San Salvatore Mountain.

We thoroughly enjoyed the view—the lake of Lugano, the mountain and their wooded slopes and the beautiful villas and gardens above Lugano. Away in the west, we could plainly see the grand snow covered Monte Rosa chain and a piece of the Matterhorn and other Valaisian Alps. Mountains all around, it was a grand panorama.

Monte S. Salvatore Santuario.

In the afternoon we took a steamboat ride on the lake to Ponte Tresa. The weather was fine, and we enjoyed the beautiful scenery which surrounded us all the way. We had a good view of the San Salvatore, which we had ascended in the morning and also of the pretty little towns which we touch on our way going and coming.

At Melide, I admired a fine old church which is surrounded by a cemetery in which there are some fine monuments and chapels, also Morcote, with its arcaded houses, and picturesquely overlooked by the lofty church of Madonna del Sasso and a ruined castle.

In the evening, we took a stroll though the streets of Lugano, which are very Italian in character, but clean. A broad Quay extends along the lake. In the interior of the town, we had a chance to admire the old houses with their arcades, the workshops and stores in the open air and all the Italian characteristics.

Pessina Way.

By chance we stepped into a church where we attended a service and listened to the sweet singing of children. At the same time, we admired the fresco of the “Passio” by Bernardino Luini, painted in 1529, also the “Last Supper” by the same artist, both were interesting.

Lugano Lake.

Lugano, October 8, 1909

We left Remismuhle this morning at 10 o’clock and walked around in Zürich in the rain until train time, 3:15 PM. We then passed over the St. Gotthard railway, which I have described in a former letter, as far as Goeschenen.

Here we entered the celebrated tunnel which is 9 1/4 miles in length and cost more than 11 million dollars. It is 3 miles shorter than the Simplon tunnel, but long enough to suit us for it took us 15 minutes to pass through it.

When we emerged on the other side, it was pitch dark, but sky clear, and we promised ourself good weather for tomorrow. We took the bus to our hotel, the “International Au Lac,” on the lake, and it is pretty situated.

More in my next.

Your Dad


Remismuhle, October 7, 1909

Municipal Theatre.

We took our chance and left for Zürich this morning together with Tante Lenchen and Alfred. We could not see much of the lake and the mountains surrounding Zürich, but we transacted our business, cashing a check which had come at such an opportune time and took our lunch at the Metropolitan Restaurant. After that we took a ride on the cars and on a cable road up the hill were Aunt Lenchen at formerly lived. It is a beautiful spot, and I can understand how hard it was for her to leave it.

We enjoyed but a limited view, and so we returned to the city and called on Miss Gertie Knecht, one of Lenchen’s oldest and most intimate friends. We found her to be a very nice and amiable lady who speaks good English as well as German, and, of course, Emily was delighted to find someone to whom she could chatter away in English.

Miss Knecht lives in a house owned by an old lady together with several others, and she has surrounded these different and separate houses with a beautiful garden, or rather Park, and here, in the heart of the city, you can imagine yourself “Out in the woods.”

Of course there are pretty spots from where you can enjoy the view of the lake in the mountains, and here we sat and chatted with a fine view of the new? Church. Home at 8 o’clock.


Zürich, October 5, 1909

Zürich and the Alps.

Emily and I started for Zürich this morning and were met at the depot by Alfred. Together we went shopping, and I then met an old friend and companion of the days when I worked in the printing office in Bremen. He is a preacher now, his name is Jacob Sporri and he was pleased to see me. We then went to the Swiss National Museum which, although only open some 10 years ago, is the most important collection of the kind in Switzerland.

Zürich. Swiss National Museum.

It contains historical and art industrial objects from prehistoric days down to the 19th century. The collection of Stained Glass, distributed throughout the various rooms, is the best I have seen, and it is considered the best in the world. It is the first time that we have taken time to go through a museum at leisure, stopping whenever and wherever we pleased. Up to now it was always “Hurry on” we haven’t the time to look at everything.

The collection of prehistoric antiquities, containing remains from caves and lake dwellings, also graves from the bronze and iron periods, is very large and interesting, and many of them have been found in and around Zürich, proving that this site was occupied in prehistoric times. Fifty eight years before Christ, it, together with the other towns of the Helvetii, fell under the sway of the Romans, and the collection of Roman vases, ornaments, bronze statues, utensils, stone monuments found in Switzerland is very large. The painted ceiling with scenes from the New Testament, a copy of the one now in the Church of Zillis and dating from the 13th century attracted our attention.

So did a series of rooms set it up with medieval and Renaissance furniture; some of them, as, for instance, the room from the Dominican nunnery of Oestenbach (1521) and the one from the Casa Pestalozzi at Chiavenna, the stateroom from the Seidenhof at Zürich with its beautiful tile stove, and the baroque room from the Lochmann house at Zürich are originals removed to the museum and fit it up with their original furniture.

Switzerland, Swiss National Museum, Zurich.
Room from the Casa Pestalozzi (Chiavenna, 1585)

In these, the wonderful carved woodwork of the walls and the ceilings invited our admiration, and we sat down upon the wooden box seats surrounding the room and thought of the many who have sat here before us.

The treasury contains some fine specimens of the goldsmith’s art, among which the chain of Burgomaster Waldmann, who lived in the 15th century. Also fine goblets.

The kitchen, filled old time utensils and a large open hearth, with pots hanging from long, heavy iron chains, proved of great interest to Emily. There is an especially fine and large piece of gold Gobelin tapestry in their large collection of tapestries representing the Treaty of Alliance between Louis XVI and the deputies of the Swiss Federation in 1663.

Switzerland, National Swiss Museum in Zürich.

We could not stop to look at the collection of glass, porcelain and faience, nor at that of Ceramics such as stove tiles, majolica, plaques, and vessels of the 16th and 17th century, but we did give considerable time to the really fine collection of costumes and, I want to tell you right now, it’s a good thing that the ladies nowadays do not wear such elaborate dresses. But then again I do not think that fashions changed two or three times a year at that time.

We gave a glance at the Armory, a fine hall with an extensive and well arranged collection of weapons which form a good illustration of the martial prowess of this little Republic in the 16th century. Here we saw the arms of Zwingli, the great reformer, who made his home in Zürich from 1519 to 1531. Besides him, the schools of this city have for centuries sent forth men of distinction, Lavatera, Pestalozzi, Bodmer and many others. But I must come to a close.

We took a peep in the court where there are two good mosaics, one representing Wilhelm Tell refusing to do homage to Gessler’s hat, the other a hunting scene with a big bear being brought in on a litter. At the Industrial Museum, we took a glance at the exhibition of modern furniture, but it looked [illegible] of what we had seen, and so we took a car and rode to the Munster erected in the 11th century.

Zürich, the Grossmünster.

The upper stories of the two towers of this old cathedral are Gothic and, in 1799, they were crowned with helmet shaped tops with gilded flowers, very peculiar and so different from any church steeples which I have seen so far. On one of the towers is enthroned Charlemagne with gilded crown and sword in recognition of his donations to the church. Alfred says that, when a boy, he was told that when the clock strikes 12 and you whistle, the old fellow throws down apples, but he never saw any of them. Zwingli was pastor of this church.

We walked through the old and narrow, but clean and well paved, streets of old Zürich, past the Rathaus, a massive, but small building of 1698 and reached the station in time for our train. We came home in the rain. A good supper, a pleasant chat and to bed.

View from the Mill Bridge

Inauguration of the Memorial to the Foundation of the Universal Postal Union.

Editor’s note: “Hebe,” the daughter of Zeus and Hera, is the goddess of youth. 

Remismuhle, October 3, 1909

We passed a very quiet morning at home, which was not very long as we arose rather late. After a good dinner, we started for a walk up the hill at about 3 o’clock and were rewarded for our climb by the sight of the Sentis, the Kurfirsten, the Rigi, Pilatus and, in short, the entire chain of Alps as seen from this part of the country with 9 balloons of the Gordon Bennett Balloon Rave (following each other in succession) thrown in for good measure.

For supper we had Brook Trout, which grow out here in the pretty little river Toss. Doesn’t that make your mouth water? And now, my dear boy, I must close this letter. We are hesitating about our future movements. Only one week with Tante Lenchen remains, and we dislike very much to shorten it by another excursion, and still the mountains keep beckoning for us to come and seem to draw us by their magnetic power. I am in love with them.

To climb one of them in order to obtain a good view of other and larger ones is a pleasure, and, as you walk along and climb upwards, the constantly changing scenery makes you forget yourself, and you do not feel any fatigue from the exertion until you reach home again. It is fascinating and lifts you higher and brings you nearer to your God.

A week from to-morrow we start for Basel where we will spend one day. Thence to Paris and, on Sunday morning the 17th, we will climb on board the Barbarossa, and each day will bring us nearer to you and home sweet home.

Auf Baldiges Wiedersehn. [To Meet Again Soon]

[Mountain Goat]
Ludwig Fromme

Remismuhle, October 2, 1909

Dear Chas:

We are home again and glad of it, too. We left St. Moritz this morning early. We had to get up at quarter to 5, as our train left at 6 o’clock. We did not like this very much especially as it was raining.

Our route took us partly over the ground covered in coming here [illegible] as far as Filisur from where we took the new railroad, through the Landwasser Valley to Davos, a health resort filled with big hotels. The waiting room of the station smelled of disinfectants, and we did not stay in it but took a walk up the street to buy some fruit. We had to wait an hour for our train and we were glad when it came in sight.

We could not see much of the scenery, but what we saw kept us busy. We passed through the Pratigan (meadow valley), a long narrow valley with fine pastures and nice orchards and watered by the mountain river, Landquart. We passed through a country with which Alfred was very familiar as he had made a foot tour through it not long ago, and so we could learn from him the names of the different peaks as they came into view now and then.

The Landquart Railway Bridge.

At Klosters, a pleasant looking village in a broad valley enclosed by lofty mountains, the train reversed its direction, and we kept on, descending rapidly, crossing ravines with waterfalls, with a view occasionally of the valley, and then again passing through a grand rocky and wooded gorge following the river in tis course.

At Fidervis, I saw the prettiest station which I have ever seen anywhere, and we regretted that we did not have time enough to take a picture of it. It is built in the Swiss style, and, on the lower balcony, it has a sort of heavy moss growing on and hanging over the low balustrade. In the rear of this green border is a profusion of flowers varied in coloring, interwoven by the Virginia Creeper with its autumn coloring. Underneath this, on a trellis and around the supporting columns of the balcony, vines and flowers are intertwined forming a pretty curtain. All the stations [illegible] on this line are built like Swiss chalets, and each one differs in the arrangement of the flowers and vines.

Schivers, a pretty village near Landquart, has a little history of its own. In 1622, the villages successfully defended the churchyard against the Austrians and, as the women contributed to the victory, they have since enjoyed the privilege of first receiving the sacrament.

We passed the ruins of several old castles and, entering the Klaus, a narrow gorge at the entrance of the Pratigan, we wound our way along the river and emerged upon a plain in which is situated the village of Landquart, where we had to change trains. We enjoyed a plate of soup at the station hotel and, after an hour’s wait, we continued our journey.


At Sargans, we saw a very pretty restored chateau on the outside of which are the Coat of Arms of the original 7 Cantons, as they were united in the 16th century. There are 22 of them now and, in this, the history of this little Republic is similar to ours.

By this time, the train became rather crowded for a good deal of the country folks were going to Zurich to see the balloons fly. They have a balloon exhibition at Zurich lasting three days, but I am afraid there will be no ascension today as it continues pouring down. We passed along the Wallensee, which is about 10 miles long and not much over a mile wide and has, on its north bank, immense steep rocks 2 to 3 thousand feet high, and only two little hamlets have found a site on this side of the lake.

On our side, too, the rocks are very precipitous at places, and we passed through 9 tunnels before we reached Weesen, the end of the lake. As we passed through these tunnels, we would, between them, obtain glimpses of the lake and the waterfalls on the opposite steep bank.

Crossing the river, we came to the Zuricher See at Lachen, a considerable village with a pretty church in the Rococo style and, winding our way along this lake, passing through vineyards and orchards, we reached Zurich at 5 o’clock. At the station there was a big crowd, and Alfred and I hurried through it to do some shopping before our train started for Remismuhle and home.

The girls awaited us at the Waiting Room and, together, we stood in the crowd for 10 or 15 minutes, waiting for the chain to be lowered, and when this came down at last, we rushed with the mob and secured a good seat together. Alfred stayed at Zurich to spend the Sunday with friends.

At Winterthur, we had to change cars again, and, at last, we reached home. Emily carrying the Rucksack on her back in true tourist style, and Daddy grunting and growling, wishing for a dry spot. Of course, the folks at home, Mama and Tante Lenchen, were astonished to see us. A cup of tea was quickly prepared and, surrounding the pleasant tea table, we related our adventures.


St. Moritz, October 1, 1909

At 2:30 this morning, I woke and went to the window. The sky was clear, and the full moon shed her soft light over the snow covered mountains. In the valley below us, a white mist like a cloud lay over the lake. It was a beautiful sight, and I could not help it, I had to awake Alfred in order that he might enjoy it with me. He’s so very fond of the mountains and never tires of looking at them.

We both regretted our inability of staying up to look at this wonderful spectacle, but we knew that we had a big day’s work before us, so we crept into bed again.

Arose at 7:30, took the train for Celerina at 9:05 and arrived there at 9:15. We walked through the village, which has some old and pretty houses. We crossed the Inn and passed the picturesque chapel of San Gian with one tower partly in ruins. A half hour’s walk to the foot of the Muattus Muraigl, from the summit of which we were promised to have a delightful view of the surrounding mountains.

Upper Engadine lakes of Muottas Muraigl.

It meant a three hours climb for us, but we tackled the job in good spirits and with a goodwill. Alfred marched sedately ahead, I followed in his footsteps, and the girls brought up the rear, Maja picking plants and flowers as she went along. Alfred was looking about and enjoying the scenery as he walked onward and upward, but I had all I could do to keep my eyes on my feet, especially for about 3/4 hours when the road was very rocky. We started at a height of 5685 feet, and I was astonished to see the heather grow up at this site, Erika, they call it here.

Oh yes! I forgot to tell you that on the road from Celerina, a farmer had left his cow and loaded wagon (the cows pull the wagons here) on the road to have a chat, and the cow took a notion to eat some grass on the near by pasture and, as the road was higher than the meadow, the wagon upset and threw the cow. You ought to have seen the man’s face. He thought that we had scared the cow and it ran off the road.

As we climbed higher, the larch and the Swiss Stone Pine, which is sometimes called the “Cedar of the Alps,” became scarcer, and the view of the snow covered mountains grander and clearer. The sun shone down upon us from a clear sky, and I was soon perspiring freely. We had a fine view of the Piz Palu, 12835 feet, and its glacier, conspicuous for the beauty of its form and the purity of it snow.

After an hour’s climb, we reached an Alpine hut, occupied in Summer by the Senner (herder) while the cows are kept around him in the open. The doors were closed, but we found a seat, and Alfred took a picture of us with the mountains as a background. He also ran down to the rushing mountain stream to get us some fresh snow water and slipped on a stone and got a wetting.

We had climbed about half the way by this time, some 1200 feet, and, passing along a stretch of stones (what we call Geroll), we heard the piping of the “Murmeltier” (?English?) [ground hog] giving warning to his companions of the approaching of danger in the shape of man.

By 12:15, after 2 1/2 hours climb, we reached another Alpine hut built in an open square consisting of three buildings with a bench in front of one of them from where we could enjoy the grand scenery and eat our lunch at the same time.

We had brought bread etc., yesterday and the remains tasted fine up here. Fifteen minutes more and, presto, here is a restaurant. They had Pea Soup hot and I guess it was prepared of the celebrated “Erbswurst” (condensed ingredients for Pea Soup) but it tasted fine. No bread, they said, for the cable road had not made a run today, so we fished out of the inexhaustible Rucksack the remaining part of a loaf and, after a short rest, we started on our way home down.

I cannot possibly describe the sight which we enjoyed from this height of 8100 feet above the sea level and 2400 feet above the Maraigl Valley. At our feet, the green Upper Engadin with St. Moritz and the beautiful lakes, also the Rose Valley with the Piz Morteratsch (where we were yesterday) and the Piz Bernina, and, in front of us, the mountain chain from the Piz Lunghuns near the Maloja to the Pitz Vertsch north of the Albula pass.

Muottas Muraigl
[overlooking the Engadine, between the towns of Samedan, St. Moritz and Pontresina].

Oh, it was grand and worth the climb. We made the descent in a skip and a jump in two hours, not because we wanted to be in a hurry, but because we had to be owing to the steepness of the declining road. Talk about the road, it zigzags up the mountain and is at least 3 or 4 feet wide, but as you walk along and look down the bare rocky sides, you involuntarily take to hugging the inside of the road, and I must confess that it gave me a sort of peculiar creepy feeling whenever I looked down to where we had come from.

The sun had meanwhile disappeared, and it was blowing rather fresh so that I kept my overcoat buttoned tight up to the throat in spite of the exertion of trotting downward for two solid hours. But, oh, my shins and knees!! Still I would do it again tomorrow. It is grand. The joke of it is that Tante Lenchen said you need not take your canes along. There will not be any climbing or walking on this trip.

Well more tomorrow.

Good night, Dad.

Hotel Muottas-Kulm