RSS

Tag Archives: Germany

Welcome to the World of Trudel Adler

Welcome to the World of Trudel Adler

Trudel Adler, my mother, came to the United States 1934 when she was 21 years old. She frequently wrote long letters home to her family in Germany and asked them to save her letters and they did — over two hundred handwritten pages.

Trudel was an amazing young woman who grew into a fascinating warm wonderful woman, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. She was funny, serious, forthright, and considerate. She worked hard all of her life and gave to the world more than she ever got. The tale of the rest of her life was full of challenge,sadness and joy. These early years are more than that. They reveal the strength of character, the chutspa, the love, that helped her through all those years. Preparing her letters for this blog has been like entering a conversation with her and getting to know the young woman I never met.

Trudel as in Strudel

When asked how to pronounce or spell her name, Trudel, would reply, “Trudel, as in strudel.” She always said the “s” in strudel was for sugar and she was sweet enough without it. But all was not sweetness and light. In 1933, Trudel wrote in her diary, “There is no future for Jewish youth in Germany. I think I shall go to Palestine.”

Now in Chronological Order

On May 8, 1934 she sailed for the United States. What happened next is told in her letters which are now posted in chronological order. If you are on the home page just scroll down. Otherwise, start here.

(Note: Because the usual order of posts in a blog is latest first, the navigation links at the bottom of each screen are reversed – “older posts” will take you to the next set. “Newer posts” will take you to the previous set. I’ll find a way to fix that later. An alternative method would be to use the month by month archived posts.)


Here is a link to the most recent post:

  • September 7, 1937 – The Last Letter.
  • Trudel on the ship

    Trudel on the S.S. Manhattan, May 1934

    Register to receive notices when new posts are added to this blog by completing the field below the Subscribe2 button on the side bar to the right.

    For more information about this blog visit the About Trudel’s Truth.

    News about Trudel’s Truth

     

    Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

    January 10, 1936 – It breaks Trudel’s heart that we can not help.

    January 10, 1936 –  It breaks Trudel’s heart that we can not help.

    My dear Father, and dear Lotta and Erna: LJG Letter 1-1--36 b letterhead

    I hope this letter finds you all well. Trudel worries anxiously when she does not get word from you. Sometimes we do not feel we get all the news.

    We have been very happy and she has been very brave this past year. Many millions of people are out of work in this country and those who are employed are paid so little. Trudel works very hard.

    Three thousand lawyers in Chicago are starving with no work and no office. We have 10,000 lawyers in Chicago alone. Our dollar is worth only 59 cents. Under Roosevelt and Democrats food and everything costs more and the taxes are so heavy that business has not started again since the depression, which makes it VERY HARD for lawyers to keep their offices and place in the profession.

    By working 18 hours a day I have done 20% better in 1935 than in 1934, but everything cost more this year than before. I write you because you should know if we could we would do something to help some of you come here. But this is impossible now. And it breaks Trudel’s heart that she can not help and the man who loves her can not. Everything is uncertain. Election year is 1936.

    Would you make me happy? Write oftener to dear Trudel. Every day she asks – any mail from Germany? And she looks so sad waiting so long for letters, she gets so few.

    Her throat bothers her. She has had a BAD cold and fever. She is so true and beautiful. She does not know what I am writing. She has written nothing to worry you since coming here, but everything is not easy for her and to get started in a strange country is lonesome work and very hard.

    If I have made it easier and pleasanter for her, I am glad because I love her.
    With love to you all, LJG Letter 1-1--36 b-signature

    Leonard


    This letter was written by Leonard J. Grossman, Trudel’s fiance and my father, to Trudel’s sisters and her father in the midst of the depression, as dark clouds were gathering over Europe.

     
     

    Tags: , , , , , , ,

    February 28, 1936 – Elections, Movies, and a Possible Move

    February 28, 1936 – Elections, Movies, and a Possible Move

    Trudel continued to translate her letters in an elliptical diary fashion, leaving us to wonder about the delicious (and mundane) details she omitted. But these were not uneventful times. Although there was time for movies, there were also worries about her family about what was happening in Europe as she mentions, cryptically, in the reference to “Mr. Warburg” and as her fiance Leonard mentioned in his letter to Trudel’s family earlier in the year.


    LJG Campaigns

    Leonard J. Grossman on the Stump.

    Leonard’s petition to become a judge in order to be on the ballot he has to have a certain amount of signatures from people who want him. He is running on the Republican Party. Everybody has to declare if they are going to vote Republican or Democratic. That will also be for the general election in November.

    LJG Candidate

    Candidate Grossman


    Received a very unkind letter from Mr. Warburg. I had asked for advice how to bring Doddo here.

    Trudel, Erna and Lotte - 1932

    Trudel, Erna and Lotte – 1932

    Trudel at Rose's

    Trudel at Rose La Marque’s

    Rose La Marque

    Rose La Marque

    I may move to [share an apartment with] Mrs. LaMarque in the Seneca Hotel where I work evenings and weekends. She is that wonderful dressmaker and the lady who got me the job in her hotel. We are having dinner together every night now.


    Saw Charlie Chaplin in a very funny movie that took 5 years to make, Modern Times.

    Modern Times

    Modern Times



    The reference to an “unkind” letter from “Mr. Warburg” is unexplained. Trudel must have written to a member of the famous Warburg family, also of Frankfurt, in hope of getting some assistance for her sister Lotte (Doddo). This letter from Leonard to Trudel’s family hints at the problem. Lotte eventually made it to the United States in 1941.

    See this review of the book The Warburgs for more information.


    Charlie Chaplain hadn’t produced a movie in five years at the time Modern Times was released.


     
    1 Comment

    Posted by on February 28, 1936 in diary, family, immigrant experience, Letters

     

    Tags: , , , , , , ,