Collection: Sosnowski Family Letters

Description: Letter from Karoline Schlemmer to her sister, Sophie Sosnowski, September 3, 1855.

Karoline Schlemmer to Sophie Sosnowski, September 3, 1855

English Text

Karlsruhe, Sept. 3, 1855.

Dear sister:

Your letter with the news of your being well has pleased me very much. At the same time, Sophie and August and I thank you very much for the proof of your dear sympathy by enclosing a check. For a long time already, I have been worried about you on account of the bad news from America, and I thank God that he has granted you and your children his fatherly protection in protecting you from illness. May furthermore the almighty love of our Father be with us. 

About my illness, dear sister, it is long plain that I suffer from dropsy. Although I had to consult the doctor for the time, there has been no improvement up to now. You can imagine to what a large degree Sophie, August and I have to suffer under these doubly unfortunate circumstances, and how much we have reason to be angry with those who brought us these sufferings. 

Your help by sending a check has frequently saved me from a lot of troubles. Especially as it came at a time when another payment was due. Because everything one needs for living is very expensive, the means I have for my support are not sufficient. As I wrote you, Theodor lives quite separate from us; his aversion to Schlemer is so strong that he does not come visit us. Our brother is still paying us a part of the house rent, but his attitude is so reserved and stubborn that, if I were to ask for more, he would stop the rest of it too. We have cause too to be thankful for it, for how should we live if we should miss the support for the house-rent? 

As our Sophie is so concerned, she does not enjoy this beautiful gift of nature: a good voice, with the help of which so many women have secured their outcome. Sophie has learned as much as the opportunities could offer her. How sordid it is that this friendly, loveable being has lost the spring of its life through the fault of her father. 

August has finished his apprenticeship and works for the time being as an unsalaried clerk. Paid jobs for young businessmen are rare in this town, due to the general depression in commerce. August could have gotten a job in Pforzheim, but the pay was too little and I would have had to support him; therefore, we are going to look around in some other places for a job. If there should be a better job in Pforzheim for August, we would not be able to accompany him there on account of Schlemmer’s attitude. I cannot decide anything in my unfortunate position, and I have to leave it to God and the future what I shall be able to do. 

Besides myself, August and Sophie say many thanks for the help you send us, and pray to God for your future fortune. Kindest regards from us to all of you,

Your affectionate sister.

P.S. About the war one hears at the moment only bad news. But many people don’t believe in the possibility of a war in Germany. It would be terrible if this whip should spread so far. The letter did not cost any postage this time— it has, however, according to the stamp, made its way through the Netherlands.