Collection: Benecke Family Collection

Author: Josephine Amerlan (Benecke)

Description: Letter from Josephine Benecke to her daughter, Lucia Zillman, June 29, 1907, sent during her trip to Germany in 1907. This trip was Josephine Benecke's first trip back to her homeland in many decades. Among the family members mentioned in the letter are Josephine Benecke's daughter Theodora ("Dora") and her husband Frederick ("Fritz") Sasse; Lucia's son Theodore Zillman ("Teddy") and her husband Christian C. H. Zillman ("C.C."); and Josephine Benecke's sister Frieda ("Friedchen").

Josephine Benecke to Lucia Zillman, June 29, 1907

English Text

My beloved Lucia!

Our letters, which are also intended for you, have informed you of our events and told you how much we enjoy ourselves. – The only thing that only disturbs me in my cheerfulness is the impossibility to return at the beginning of September, as we intended. – You can think of how I’ll be worried about you and wish I could be there to have Teddy with me. I hope you move in with Dora and Fritz. They both love him so much that he is better off there than with the best servant; and you can take care of yourself and get to know the little one happily and happily. – Since Dora and Alma were with you recently, they have renewed his acquaintance and he is too young to get homesick. - Bravely face

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everything that comes. The second is not quite as bad as the first. God be with you, my child! - We really have a wonderful time, the Harz is wonderful, I had no idea that it was so beautiful and interesting. Drifting through the old castles, carved from stone and fields, is a great pleasure, and then it is sublime to look down from the height of the tower to see millions of trees and forests, valleys and cliffs. And the forest air full of summer scent is so pleasant. We also hike miles every day and enjoy what we have to offer. I’m not longing for Italy or Paris, it’s too beautiful here. I just wish I could have you all here.


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Aunt Friedchen and I sit in the garden and write, Sofie reads "Den Raubgrafen" by Julius Wolf, who lives in the area. Aunt is dear as always and we melt into memories of our youth: - I have our letters from home, Dora never writes long and in detail for which I am grateful to her, of course I can not answer some things, since everyone reads my answers, tell her how much I enjoy it and that she should stay with it. I hope to hear from you soon and hopefully only good things. Did Teddy get Aunt Friedchen’s card?


Farewell, my heart. Stay healthy and brave. Hopefully the weather is as pleasant with you as here. Hug and kiss Teddy for me. [illegible] often talks about his little heroic deeds and Aunt F. regrets that she doesn’t know his Theodore.

With greetings from Sofie u. Aunt F. for you and C. C. and kisses from Mama.

Original text