This is a blog about music, photography, history, and culture.
These are photographs from my collection that tell a story about lost time and forgotten music.

Mike Brubaker
{ Click on the image to expand the photo }

Four Stylish Violinists

30 May 2014

Concert dress is a common phrase on a musician's contract. For generations of men this uniform description has translated into either white tie and tails or black tie and tuxedo. Women musicians however, have always enjoyed more variety in fashion. This young lady is a violinist from either Niles or Buchanan, Michigan - two small towns separated by a bow in the St. Joseph River. Her hair is short and set in neat waves, possibly pinned at the back. She also wears pendant earrings which in today's musicians union contracts would be forbidden as too distracting. Her puff sleeves and wide collar suggest a fashion from around 1895. 

The photography studio marked on this cabinet card says Elson – Niles/Buchanan, Mich. which stands for Elon J. Elson who was a photographer in Buchanan from 1896 to 1905. His wife ran a millinery shop and he later opened a jewelry store, so he must have known something about women's taste in fashion.


This second young woman played the violin at about the same time as the Michigan violinist, but she lived some distance away in London, England. Like the other woman, her wavy hair is cut short which would be a practical hair style for a violinist. The photo's sepia tone makes her dress appear black but it could be another dark color too. The sleeve style is reversed with tight shoulders and blousy wrists, and would not be out of place on a concert stage today.

The back of this cabinet card photo has an nice Art Nouveau design with a woman gazing at a painting or photograph of another woman and the name of the studio – Nye & Co. Photographers of 116 Walworth Road, London S.E. which is in south London below the Elephant & Castle underground station. The address was used first by Hanover Studio operated by Richard Roberts Willson from about 1883 to 1895; then Thomas John Nye took over from 1895 until 1906; and then he was succeeded by Henry Brown in 1907. So a date for the photo of 1900 would seem reasonable.

Hemlines gradually rose higher in the 20th century, and this young violinist wears a more modern dress that reveals her ankles in a way the previous two women might have thought very adventurous if not scandalous. Her hair style is short and would not be out of place in our time. The dress has a color I think and is not black. It has different fabrics including a transparent effect at the shoulders, but the best part is the line of small pompons sewn to her sleeve that would accentuate the movement of her bow arm. It makes me think she was a professional violin soloist. My guess for this fashion would be 1917 to probably post-WW1 1925. 

In the lower right corner of this postcard photo is an embossed logo for the photographer that I nearly missed until I scanned and enlarged the postcard photo. It says Rodway Gardner, Enfield which is the only clue that this violinist is most likely English. Enfield is about 14 miles north of central London in Middlesex, England.

The Middlesex Gazette
Dec. 26, 1908

Mr. Rodway Gardner was born in 1861 and died in 1945 and was a professional photographer in Enfield from at least 1902, possibly much earlier, to after 1912. He managed to regularly get his name mentioned in the Middlesex Gazette newspaper. Usually as a photographer, but more often as a singer, a tenor to be specific. His name appears in several reviews of amateur or semi-professional concerts and in advertisements like this one for a variety show from November 20, 1909.

The Middlesex Gazette
Nov. 20, 1909

Perhaps the young lady is Miss Nettie Carpenter the featured violin soloist. In any case she  must surely be a musical colleague of Mr. Gardner.

I believe that this last violinist is also English as the photo came from a dealer in the UK. Her short hair style has a definite 1920's look, maybe even 1930s. Her dress line is higher with short sleeves that show her bare arms which again would direct the eyes to the motion of a violinist's bow. What is interesting is that she stands not in front of a photographer's studio backdrop but in a drawing room in front of a small spinet, a type of harpsichord. 

English Spinet
Source:  Edinburgh University Collection of Historic Musical Instruments

The spinet was a keyboard instrument played from around 1600 to 1800 and designed for quiet chamber music in a household. Like all harpsichords it disappeared from the music of the late 18th and 19th centuries in favor of the piano. The music of the Renaissance and Baroque eras had a resurgence in the 20th century with the start of what is called the Early Music movement in Britain. The placement of this unusual instrument in the photo leads me to believe this violinist was an accomplished solo musician who performed this kind of novel antique music and that she may even hold a Baroque style violin.     

The photo was mounted on thin paper and the photographer's penciled signature is too artistic to be readable.  Perhaps J_Tasil ?  

Maybe one day I will come across another photograph and recognize either the woman's face or the signature and then be able to identify her. What do you suppose she kept in her dress pockets? Gum?

This is my contribution to Sepia Saturday
where other women are letting their hair down.

Don't This Dazzle Your Eyes!

23 May 2014

There's something very odd about this band's photo. Despite their proper posture the 49 musicians of the Ladies' Concert Band, Iowa State Normal, of Cedar Falls, Iowa appear to be sliding off the stage. There's also something peculiar about the big bone girls of the low brass section at the back who must tower over their petite companions in the woodwinds.

It's another early Photoshop fail, but say don't this dazzle your eyes?

That's what C.C. wrote to his/her friend A. M. Perry in Waterloo, Iowa on August 29, 1907. The band was one of the musical ensembles of the Iowa State Normal School which was the first name of the institution now known as the University of Northern Iowa. It was established in Cedar Falls in 1876 as a training school for public school teachers. Iowa was very progressive in offering equal education opportunities for both men and women, when in 1855 it became the first state to establish a coeducational public college system.

This second postcard view shows the Iowa State Normal School Ladies Band playing on a more level platform. The band is smaller with only 31 musicians and beneath the conductor's feet is a caption. I.S.N.S. 1906 and a message, perhaps for the spring break: Easter Greetings from Abbie.

An alternate photo was made into another postcard in 1906. This time the young ladies have their instruments down in their laps and the conductor stands in the shadows at the back of the band. The message reads:

Mar. 21 - 06 Cedar Falls Ia.
I arrived safely, didn't play "snap" but
tried to satisfy myself thinking it
would be a nice day tomorrow
I'll write soon. Your true friend Anna

Was Anna a member of the band? If so she did not provide her friend, Miss Mella Long of Kalona, Iowa with an X over her position in the photo. 

The band has the full assortment of brass, woodwind, and percussion instruments that would be typical of a concert band. The one man standing at the back is Professor Frank A. FitzGerald who was the director of an orchestra and two bands at the Iowa State Normal School – one for men and the other for young ladies. FitzGerald introduced a ladies band shortly after joining the Normal School as a music instructor in 1896 but his credentials, despite his title of Professor, were not like the other academics at the college. This short bio comes from Illustrated Iowa (page 81) published in 1898 by the Iowa State Teachers College.

Mr. Fitzgerald's education was obtained in the old school of musical study or that of experience under various masters from whom he took private lessons before the day of well-equipped conservatories. He was four years with Gilmore's Band, six years in charge of the Illinois Watch Company's Band at Rockford, Illinois, and for sometime was assistant director of the Apollo Club, of Chicago. Mr. Fitzgerald, besides his work at the Normal, instructs and leads the famous Cedar Falls A. O. U. W. Band, the organization that had the honor of accompanying the Iowa G.A.R. to both the Louisville and Buffalo National Encampments as official band, and also lead the Methodist church choir and gives lessons in vocal and instrumental music to many private pupils in the city.

Covina CA Argus
May 25, 1907

In 1907, F. A. FitzGerald retired from his teaching position in Iowa and moved to Covina, California where he owned an orange orchard. The Covina Argus which was clearly proud to have this talented musician move to the area, published a very flattering report on him and his distinguished musical career. He was described as teaching both band and string instruments at the Iowa State Normal School and giving the school a wide reputation for meritorious musical production and ... the Normal Ladies' Band, the largest band equipped wholly with women. 

The hyperbole, if not the unfortunate phrasing, was understandable in this era when female musicians were restricted from performing with traditional all-male bands and orchestras. Surely Professor FitzGerald was very proud of his talented young women, and maybe he even considered them better musicians than those in the boy's student band. 

Certainly one of his students in the cornet/trumpet section was a special source of pride. When she graduated from the Iowa State Normal School she was offered a music teaching position in Correctionville, Iowa as the new high school band director. Her name was Miss Edna B. Straw and the news of a female band leader merited a picture in the paper.

Sioux Valley News (Correctionville, Iowa)
August 13 and October 15, 1908

The first report in August 1908 tells how the superintendent of  Correctionville schools went to Cedar Falls to inquire about suitable teachers and Miss Edna Straw was given an enthusiastic endorsement by the faculty. By October, she had organized a band of 24 musicians for the high school – all boys.

The newspaper states that Edna had played first cornet for three years in Cedar Falls, but in the second article on the Correctionville band she is singled out as the solo trumpet with seven boys listed as playing cornets. Looking at the three images of the Ladies Concert Band, I believe she is the woman seated far right in the second rank, and that she is playing a trumpet and not a cornet. The difference is very subtle and not completely clear, but her instrument has a long slender shape compared to the short round cornet seen in the first ranks. If Edna's instrument was in fact a trumpet and not a cornet, she was on the cutting edge of how brass bands were evolving in the new 20th century. For decades prior, the cornet had been the principal solo band instrument but it lacked the brilliant tone color of the trumpet. By the 1940s the trumpet would takeover the lead position in bands of all kinds and today the cornet is played only rarely in wind ensembles, the one exception being the British Brass Band tradition. 

In 1908 Edna Straw was no doubt paid much less than a male teacher. And there was probably a clause in her contract that terminated her employment if she were to marry. Yet in the 1909 Alumni Registry for the Iowa State Normal School, Edna B. Straw was listed as Third Assistant Principal and Music Teacher for Correctionville.

That kind of success would dazzle the eyes too.

This is my contribution to Sepia Saturday.
Click the link to find out what other College Girls are up to.

Three Boys in Sailor Suits

16 May 2014

This closeup photo of a dark haired boy with his violin has a modern look but his sailor suit dates him to an earlier time when such uniforms were the standard fashion for a boy violin soloist. His name is Andreas Weißgerber and he is 13 years old. We know this because this postcard provides his name, birthday and birthplace on the back.

The card was posted on 30.3.13 ~ 30 March 1913 and is captioned

Andreas Weißgerber
geb. 10 Januar 1900 in Athen

Andreas Weissgerber
born 10 January 1900 in Athens

At age 13, young Andreas Weißgerber was already an accomplished violinist and would go on to a successful solo career. As a boy he once performed for the Ottoman court in Istanbul, where Sultan Abdul Hamid II was so impressed that he rewarded Andreas with a gift of five parrots. In 1913 Andreas' nationality was identified with the Austrian-Hungarian Empire but like many violin prodigies of this time he studied in several places. First in Athens, then Budapest, Vienna, and finally Berlin.  

He made several recordings and this one dates from 1921. It is the famous gypsy melody Zigeunerweisen by Pablo de Sarasate.

Andreas Weißgerber was also Jewish and in the 1930s like many other musicians in Germany, he was subject to the cruel race laws enacted by Hitler and the Nazi party. Fortunately in 1936 he managed to escape Germany with his brother, a cellist, and become a founding member of the Palestine Symphony Orchestra. This orchestra was organized by Bronisław Huberman (1882 - 1947), a Polish violin soloist (and also once a child prodigy) who recognized that the rise of the Nazi regime would lead to a great catastrophe for the Jewish people in Europe. Huberman's inspiration was to create an orchestra in Palestine of Jewish musicians from around Europe. The inaugural concert was conducted by Arturo Toscanini in Tel Aviv on December 26, 1936. Today the Palestine Symphony Orchestra is known as the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra.

Weißgerber was one of those courageous musicians who helped to preserve the musical heritage of the Jewish people in Palestine. Sadly he died of a heart attack in Tel Aviv exactly 5 years after that concert on December 26, 1941.

>> <<

We have met this next boy violin soloist before on this blog, but these are new postcards to add to his history. His name is Arpad Kun or in Hungarian - Kun Arpad, and he was born in Budapest, Hungary then part of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire. This postcard is another copy of the one featured in Arpad Kun's first story, but this card has a postmark. It was mailed on 10.4.02 ~ 10 April 1902 to Herrn Th. Müller, Kammermusiker or chamber musician of Braunschweig, Germany. The card notes that Kun was only 7 years old but because of the postmark this makes him older than Weißgerber, with a birth year of 1894.

Chicago Daily Tribune
July 12, 1903

Beginning in 1901 this Hungarian "boy wonder" violinist was frequently mentioned in newspapers all across America. Even small town papers in Pennsylvania, Kansas, and Utah ran reports of his phenomenal talent. In 1903 at age 9, Arpad embarked on a tour of the United States which was to start with an engagement in New York City at Madison Square Garden. It did not go well.

I won't repeat Kun Arpad's complete story here, but his widowed mother did not see her son make the grand debut that had been promised by their music agent. New York and other major US cities were under increasing pressure to prevent children from being exploited in theatrical entertainments. Kun Arpad's premiere became entangled in the politics and he was unable to perform concerts as expected. The Chicago Daily Tribune ran a promotion with his picture, but I don't believe Arpad ever made the grand American tour. By February 1904 he was back in Paris playing for French society soirees.

The following snarky review appeared in the September 1903 edition of Everybody's Magazine, published by The Ridgway-Thayer Company of New York City. It seems some people were a bit tired of incessant sensational reports of child musicians.

Mayor  Low of New York, did a real service to musical art recently when he refused to allow the ten-year-old Hungarian violinist, Kun Arpad. to play in public. The little chap had been heralded as another "musical prodigy."  He was said to have had an endorsement from Jean de Reszke, and Heaven knows who else, among European musicians of eminence. He played once and showed himself to be in truth a child fiddler in tone, technique, and intelligence. We have had an overdose of this sauce of "unripe fruit" of late years, and it is about time for rational music lovers to set their faces against further repetitions. Musical "prodigies" of this sort, if they must exhibit,  should be relegated to circus side shows and freak museums. They injure the cause of art and give false ideas to the uncultivated. Their performances do not justify the admission fees, and their exploitation during years of immaturity in nearly every case prevents their healthy development. The world, doubtless, has lost many an excellent artist because money-loving parent or guardian foisted him a patient public as a "wonder child." The solution of the problem is to refuse patronage to "musical prodigy" concerts. 

Back in Europe where he could be appreciated and allowed to play, Arpad's postcards now displayed a more romantic image of a solo violinist,  though he still wears a sailor suit. On some of the earlier postcards of Arpad, there was a caption that said he was also a composer. So far I have found only one reference to one of his compositions, a short recital piece for violin and piano. His music may not have found a publisher. Here his name is printed in a cursive font and without any other labels. The implication being that he is now famous enough to need no additional description.


This postcard was mailed on 12.10.08 ~ 12 October 1908 to Fräulein Martha Reinländer (?) of Plettenberg, Germany. The writer makes note of the 14 year-old violinist. That would seem to be the age limit for boys in sailor suits.

Source: 1912 Wer ist Wer? Vol. 6

Evidently Kun Arpad was a gifted young musician in the first decade of the 20th century. He even rated an entry in the 1912 German version of the encyclopedia of Who's Who? - Wer ist Wer? Vol. 6. page 887, which gives his date of birth as 12 VII 94 Budapest, V: (Father) Dr. Kun Arpad Bürgermeister. Using some Hungarian terms I discovered a Hungarian website page that has the history of a mayor of Mezőtúr, Hungary who was named  dr. Kun Árpád (1865-1947). At the bottom of the blog page is a postcard of his son, the violinist Kun Arpad and a clipping from a New York newspaper of 1903. It also  says, if I am translating the Hungarian correctly, that Mayor Kun divorced his first wife in about 1899 for rather scandalous reasons. This may explain why the American newspapers described Kun Arpad's mother as a widow.

By 1912, Arpad is 18 and surely wearing long trousers. The Who's Who entry lists his address as in Berlin. But after this date he disappears. Did he survive the Great War? Did he become a successful violin soloist? His adult history remains a mystery.

>>> <<<

For contrast I present one more child prodigy of the violin. In this postcard he is also dressed in a sailor suit. He is also a Hungarian, with Budapest his birthplace too. His name is Franz von Vecsey or in Hungarian – Vecsey Ferenc, and he was perhaps the most successful of these three boys. He was born in 1893 just one year before Kun Arpad. Like Arpad, Vecsey first studied in Budapest and then moved to Berlin which had become the center for violin teaching.

In 1905 at age 12, Vecsey's musical gifts were recognized by the great Finnish composer, Jean Sibelius, who dedicated his revised Violin Concerto in D minor to him after having problems with the concerto's premiere and the first performers. Vecsey would play it many times as his solo career continued into adulthood. He was also a composer who wrote several virtuosic pieces for the violin.

This postcard was sent to William Biddle in Berlin on 15.10.04 or 15 Octorber 1904. I'm not sure if the short message on the front might not refer to a concert of the young violinist. 

One reasons that Berlin became the focal point for child violinists in this era was that it was the home of Joseph Joachim (1831 – 1907) who was one of the great figures of violin music and music pedagogy. He was one of the eminent violin soloists of the 19th century. He was also Hungarian and had once been a child prodigy. So naturally every young violinist from this era tried to study with him. However not Andreas Weißgerber who was probably too young to have taken lessons before Joachim's death in 1907. And Kun Arpad's encyclopedia entry would surely have mentioned Joachim if he had been accepted by Joachim as a student. Only Franz von Vecsey won an opportunity to play for the great Joachim and the moment was celebrated in a photograph.   

Joseph Joachim and the young Franz von Vecsey
Source: Wikipedia

There is the sailor suit again, Vecsey looks to be about the same age as the postcard photo. Maybe white was worn for spring and summer while the dark suits were for autumn and winter. Did Joachim ever wear the same naval collar when he was a young wunderkind? For a story I wrote in 2011 on another trio of German boy violinists, also all in sailor suits, click here. Some of them might have sat on Joachim's lap too. 

Franz von Vecsey toured Europe and the US (first in 1905) as a concert violinist well into the 1920s. At one point his piano accompanist was the composer Bela Bartok. But travel proved fatiguing and was not helped by a bad heart condition. By the 1930s his aim was to become a conductor, but he was overcome by illness and died in a Rome hospital in 1935.

Vecsey made a number of recordings, but this one is remarkable because of the date of the recording. It was made in London on 15 July 1904  only three months before the postcard was mailed. Franz was just 11 years old.  It is Bizet's Carmen Fantasia arranged by Hubay, op.3, no.3.

And only a few months later, he would be playing the Sibelius Violin Concerto. 

This is my contribution to Sepia Saturday
where other boys in sailor suits play in the sand at the beach. 

A Sister Act

09 May 2014

Four young musicians gaze at the camera lens. A young girl sits with a guitar, while two older girls in matching dress and hair styles hold mandolins. A small boy with long curly hair gives a salute with his violin. Behind them stand three large military band glockenspiels. They are the Soeurs Emilia, which is French for the Sisters Emilia, a typical traveling family band that played the theaters and music halls in Europe at the turn of the 19th century. The postcard was printed on pink card paper and slightly askew in Düsseldorf, Germany, but it was never mailed and has no annotation. 

One of the characteristics of images of family bands from this era is that several different photos were usually created over the career of the group since growing children are always changing. We can date this promotional postcard to about 1900 because of the postmark on another postcard of the same group.  

This image of the Sœurs Emilia shows the same four young musicians, though slightly younger I think, holding the same instruments - guitar, violin, and mandolins. However instead of glockenspiels there is a rack of tubular chimes and three tables of hand bells in various sizes. In the message space under Gruss Aus: - Greetings from:  is an enthusiastic note written in German. Any help with a translation is always appreciated.

Clearly these children were a talented bunch. Many European musical groups from the 1900s often show similar impressive arrays of instruments. The postcard was produced in Germany by the same printer - Ed. Lintz, Düsseldorf, but the children's name implies that they are French musicians. They may have come from the French Alsace-Lorraine region which was annexed by Germany after the war with France in 1871. 

What makes this postcard interesting is the postmark on the back – 19.9.99 or 19 September 1899, which makes it one of the oldest postcards in my collection. 

The postcard was sent from Crefeld, Germany, or Krefeld as it is now spelt, to Herrn Ulrich Keigen in the village of Söflingen, now part of the city of Ulm in Baden-Württemberg.

The first postcards in Germany with printed advertisements and illustrations were made in 1874. The German printing industry quickly became the dominant leader for picture postcards and produced millions for many other countries. Therefore the family home of the Sisters Emilia may have been anywhere in Europe.

A search for Sœurs Emilia did not turn up any citations, but a search for Sisters Emilia did bring one brief mention in a theater review published in the Birmingham Daily Mail, on January 17, 1905.

Birmingham Daily Mail
January 17, 1905

THE GAIETY - "The Mysterious Lilith", who supplies one of the best "turns" on the Gaiety programme this week, certainly does not belie her description. While in a hypnotic trance this lady ascends from the stage into mid-air, where without any apparent aid, she gives an exhibition of skipping. The performance is a remarkable one, and last night considerably mystified a large audience. Other attractive items include the Five Sisters Emilias, who are responsible for a really smart musical entertainment, while Rose Elliott, a favourite with Gaiety audiences, scores well with several new songs. Professor Harcourt further puzzles "the house" by a series of clever feats of magic; and the Rayfords and Harry Lynn and Co. give a couple of amusing sketches, which are well appreciated. Among others who merit commendation for their share in the programme are Miss Lilian Warren in her illustrated songs, the Sisters Oswald, song and dance artistes, and Hamilton Hill, the Australian baritone.

It would seem that there was another sister! Or maybe a brother. In any case, this report of a family musical group with an English version of the Emilia name could be a coincidence. But the date of 1905 still makes the youngest musician from these two postcards - the violinist, only 12 to 16 years old, so I think it must be the same group. What music did they play in their 18th century courtier costumes? Did the boy imitate the violin solos of Mozart or Paganini?

What we can not see of course is Monsieur and/or Madame Emilia. Imagine being show business parents traveling with 4 or 5 young children in 1899. Every week, or even every day, there would be trunks to pack with their costumes, mandolins, guitars, hand bells, and glockenspiels. There were tickets to book for the coach, the train, or the ship; accommodation to arrange at hotels and inns; and countless postcards to send to theater agents. Though the children's variety act was maybe only 15 to 30 minutes long, there were  probably two or three performances every day during a run at some provincial music hall. Any entertainment has to keep fresh to be successful so there would always be new music to learn. And being on the road meant there was no formal school for the children. Did the Sisters Emilia have a tutor or did they limit their concert tours to only the summer months? Show dates in September in Crefeld and January in Birmingham suggests they likely played throughout the year. So many questions that will never have answers but at least we know that they were "a really smart musical entertainment."

This is my contribution to Sepia Saturday
where everyone is invited to drop by for tea. 

Ladies with Brass - part 2

02 May 2014

The herald trumpet has been an symbolic icon of music since ancient times. It is often depicted as the instrument of choice for angels. Surely that is what the photographer had in mind when he arranged two young ladies and young man to point their three trumpets to the sky in this German postcard. The caption tells us that they are the -

 Oliveira Trio - Musical Virtuosen auf verschiedenen Instrumenten.
~ Musical virtuoso on different instruments.

Peter Paul Rubens (1577–1640)
Angel Blowing a Trumpet
Source: The Morgan Museum

The trio was frei, that is available, in September at the address of the Walhalla Theater in Magdeburg, Germany. The year is not recorded but this style of postcard is typical of others printed from 1905-1910.

Some lady trumpeters, like this musician named Olly Marietta, added a Renaissance fashion to the herald theme with a beautiful elaborate costume. Unfortunately in era of sepia tone postcards we can only guess the color, but I would think there is lots of gold thread. Fräulein Marietta adds a detailed caption.

Instrumental künstler und Virtuosin
Instrumental artist and virtuoso
Original Musical Ausstattungs Act auf 7 verschiedenen Instrumenten
Original musical outfit Act on 7 different instruments 
Inhaberin des Kunst Diploms und der Goldenen Medaille fur hervorragende Leistungen in der Musik 
Proprietor of Art diploma and the Gold Medal for excellence in music

If you look closely, her straight trumpet, like those of the Oliveira Trio, has three small valves to add length to the instrument which would allow more notes to be played. Essentially this is the length of a normal B-flat trumpet if it was assembled without the plumbing bends. She must have been a very talented musician to play so many different instruments, which must have been a changeable number as she left the space blank on the caption and wrote the numeral 7 by hand.

This ladies brass trio has three regular piston valve cornets, but they have dressed themselves in matching 18th century style costumes complete with powdered wigs. The caption tells us they are the

 Königs Cornet a Piston Trio
Charlotte, Margarete, and Melani 

Presumably they are sisters, but possibly not German but French, as the brass instrument tradition in Germany used rotary valve trumpets while the French used piston valves. Again we can only speculate about color, but gold embroidery on white satin would look nice.

The back of the postcard is dated 26.7.15 from Berlin Lichterfelde. There is an additional stamp for the Lazarett Johanniter Siechenhaus which was the Hospital of St. John hospice. I can't translate this but it could be the writing of a soldier recovering from wounds or illness. It also suggests that the Königs Cornet a Piston Trio performed at the hospital and if they were French they may have come from the Alsace region which was then part of Germany.

UPDATE: Thanks to the great research of Susanna Rosalie (see the comment below) I can add two more images of the young ladies of the Königs Cornet a Piston Trio and a translation of the message. The writer of this postcard was indeed a soldier and his name was Leonhard Rech. He was writing to his sister, Mina Rech. 

He wrote:
Liebes Schwesterchen!
Ich will dir doch auch einmal
auf deine beiden Kärtchen
antworten und dir viele
Grüße senden in der Hoff-
nung, daß ich bald einmal
zu Euch komme. Viele

Grüße Leonhard

Dear little sister!
I want to finally
answer your two cards
and wish to send you many
greetings in the hope
that I will come to you soon.
Many greetings Leonhard

She found his name in the list of German casualties for the war 1914-1919.  

6 January 1917: Rech, Leonhard,*7 March 1894 Stauf, until now been wounded, deceased.

Source: Wikimedia

Source:  Universität Osnabrück

Wetterfahne auf der Kirche in Nietleben

This is my contribution to Sepia Saturday
click the link for more angelic ladies.


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