March 8, 1935 – I was very very grateful when they delivered me safe and sound at my door.

08 Mar
March 8, 1935 – I was very very grateful when they delivered me safe and sound at my door.

671 N. Dearborn
My Dear Dear-ones, golden goldchildren, dirty bums, sweet sugar cookies, and lazy no-writers! Each one of you can pick which name fits best.

It is really unbelievable how fast time goes. This week I had a wonderful time again. On Saturday, I was again at Samuels. Clem had the great idea for me to use rollerskates to go from their house to her sister-in-law’s. Unfortunately, my skirt was too tight. Maybe next time I’ll try to see if I can still rollerskate. Can you picture that?

So, anyway, we played Rummy and it was as usual very gemutlich. Afterwards, I sat in Len’s office until 3:00 a.m. While he was working, I read newspapers, worked crossword puzzles and crocheted. I am really nuts sitting there so long.

On Sunday I was (for a change) tipsy (to put it mildly). At 2:00 p.m. Gwen and Eddy picked me up with their car, to celebrate the 1st anniversary of their acquaintance. At the same time Eddy wanted to talk to one of his clients in a nearby town. But not much became of that. When they picked us up at Leonard’s hotel neither one of us had had any breakfast and were both very hungry. Leonard bought a small bottle of milk, as it is being sold here, and a few cookies which we tried to consume while riding in the car. Of course every time he or I tried to put the bottle to our mouths the car for some reason or other jumped a little. Please do not picture what we both looked like, I would really be ashamed. Well, it tasted good and we were both laughing about it.

Gwen and Eddy's Car

Eddy, who had started to drink early in the morning already, was thirsty again, so we stopped about ½ way at a real nice little tavern right on the highway. We were driving west on Roosevelt Road, to have something to drink. During the two hours we stayed there we each had six or eight whiskeys, highballs, etc. We had a real nice time there. When we left I think I was the only one who still knew at all what I myself and the other three were doing. Of course I too was in a very high spirits. Then we drove on.

Eddy stopped at a movie theater, trying to see his client, while Gwen and I went to the washroom. I cannot explain the walk from there to the car. It seemed to me three times as long as it really was. Then Eddy drove us to the restaurant which really was our goal. A beautiful place, very lovely, decorated, elegant, in a very small town, with a great bar. Gwen, who did not know any more what she was doing, sat down at the Bar with a glass while Leonard and I sat at a table nearby. Eddy kept changing between the two. We had a fantastic steak dinner, danced, drank and had a really good time. Anyway, I was very very grateful when they delivered me safe and sound at my house door at 11:30 p.m. after we stopped in the neighborhood for a sandwich and a cup of coffee.The following Wednesday, when I was at Bishops’ as usual, they asked me about several things they could absolutely not remember.

Baker Hotel

Monday I visited Aunt Henny in her new rooms, just around the corner from where she lived before. I suppose you will write to her again for her birthday. Her new address is Hotel Cerf, 3635 Blackstone, room 8. She only moved because she had no phone on the other place, which is really very important in such a big city.

Tuesday I was for supper at Gus and Marie Bing. They were really awfully nice. Marie is trying to get me in where she is working now, and if it does not work out Gus told me that Budwig (where I worked before) is starting again and I should go to him. Maybe he will take me again. Anyway, I have to wait till next week. Something will work out that I find something better. Now that the new season is starting is the right time to look.

The weather has been so nutty that one does not know how to dress. One day just ice and snow and the next beautiful sunshine.

Last night for a change I was in bed at 9:30 p.m. It was really necessary.

Tonight I will have one of those nice relaxing Shabbos evenings at the Samuels. Tomorrow at Weils. In general I am quite lazy — darn socks, only when I have no more to wear without holes, do my laundry just once a week, also started three or four letters but did not finish. I am crocheting a black skirt for Gwen and carry that with me everywhere I go even if I do not work on it.

Hotel Baker

Hotel Baker

For Aunt Henny’s birthday I will make her a brown straw hat and a stand for it. Nobody can understand that I have not had a word from my slster Lotte in three months, and even from Erna in two months. Yes, that is the way it goes. Of course I tell people, well, then I do not have to write to them either!

Last week a lady called me from the new “Immigrants’ Club” but I was not at home. She left her name and phone number. I am really not interested. I feel very happy here without their help. Only if I could get some customers for hats, but I doubt that very much.

The mysterious phone call from two weeks ago has not been cleared yet. By the way, Mr. Arthur Eggener, fiance of Clem Samuels, will probably get in touch with you in the near future. He will come here in in a few weeks and would be glad to bring me some butter cookies. With this I am ending this megilla, with a hearty kiss for each of you. Best regards to all when [they] ask for me.

Your loving daughter and sister,
Gertrude Adler
671 N Dearborn Street.
Phone: Dearborn 5425

Trudel often told of a wild ride out to the Baker Hotel in St. Charles, Illinois. I believe that was the trip she describes in this letter.


About Leonard Grossman

Writing about the online world since 1992: The ModemJunkie's Portal Taught school in the inner-city from 1967-78, Government lawyer from 1979-2010. Married to the incredible Cindy Barnard. Proud father of Sarah and grandfather of Gavin.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

9 Responses to March 8, 1935 – I was very very grateful when they delivered me safe and sound at my door.

  1. Barrie Ward

    March 8, 2012 at 1:30 am

    There is so much carefree youth in this letter it is hard to imagine such a time in ones life … a very good thing that there wasn’t the heavy enforcement of DUI legislation back then … Mind you they had not likely even drafted any yet ….Interesting how Trudel ‘grounds’ herself .. ” Tonight I will have one of those nice relaxing Shabbos evenings at the Samuels. Tomorrow at Weils.” … I was awakened by the insomnia of ‘age’ and so I thank you Leonard for the distraction of reading once more of Trudel’s adventures in 1940’s America …

  2. Barrie Ward

    March 8, 2012 at 1:30 am

    Oops … 1930’s America …

  3. natalie

    March 8, 2012 at 3:04 am

    I haven’t read many of Trudel’s letters, but I feel saddened at how quickly she seems to be losing touch with her family and her nationality. Can’t help thinking that
    she weren’t becoming “Americanized” so quickly.

  4. Leonard Grossman

    March 8, 2012 at 1:22 pm

    Natalie, I might agree if I didn’t know how the story comes out. See Butj let’s remember, at this point in her life, Trudel was only 22 yeas old, in a strange country, with few people she could rely on.

    It’s interesting that she could write such candid letters to her father and sisters, and that explains why she is so angry with them for not writing more often, in the opening of this letter.

    She was very close to both sisters for the rest of her life.

  5. David Eggener

    September 11, 2013 at 9:59 am

    I came upon this article and couldn’t help notice the last paragraph. Arthur Eggener is my great uncle who passed away in 1981. He later married Klem, who was my great aunt. What is this article from? I am very curious.

    • Leonard Grossman

      September 11, 2013 at 10:32 am

      This blog is created from the letters my late mother wrote home to Germany between 1934 and 1937. I remember my mother mentioning “Aunt Klem” many times. You can start reading the blog in chronological order from the beginning at and scrolling down.

  6. rich eggener

    September 11, 2013 at 3:28 pm

    My name is RIch Eggener. My father, Egon Eggener, came to Chicago in 1937, from Wehr, Germany. His brother was Arthur Eggener, who was married to Klemm Samuels Eggener. My mother, Trudy Baer Eggener, came to Chicago in 1936 from Bretten, Germany. She was born in Eberhardt, Germany and moved to Bretten when she was 7 years old.

    I’m wondering how the Adler family may have been related to us. Mr. Grossman, where do you live? I live in a suburb of Chicago.

    • Leonard Grossman

      September 11, 2013 at 6:05 pm

      I don’t believe the Adlers and Samuels were related but during her first year in Chicago it seems My mother went to the Samuels’ home for Shabbat dinner almost every Friday night. She met a number of lifelong friends there. There a search field on the right side bar of the page. If you type in Samuel and click you will find about a half a dozen references to Samuel or Samuels.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.