In keeping with this week's Sepia Saturday theme of Peace, the following is a brief excerpt from my great-grandfather David Blumenfeld's long-lost memoir, written in South St. Paul, Minnesota.

Sunday, November 10th 1918 was a grand day, [my eldest son] Albert’s wedding day. ...The honeymoon of their marriage passed in a glow of warmth and joyous discovery beyond any power of words to set down. There was never in the glittering realm a sound of joy like this.

[Meanwhile, Albert had, against his parents' wishes, enlisted in the Army and was about to leave for the European front.]

Albert Blumenfeld in uniform
On the very next day, Monday, November 11th, before dawn, wireless messages announced to the world [that] an Armistice was signed in the presence of General Pershing, Marshal Foch, and many other notables and military dignitaries. ...There was celebration all over America. Factory whistles screeched, church bells tolled; at 8 a.m. the Swift and Company ... stockyards employees laid down their tools and began celebrating.

The stockyards
... The mobbing, the pelting of roses, the kisses from suppressed, hot-lipped women who were perfectly respectable. The little flasks of whisky and cognac from many good-natured men’s pockets. Wavy lines of factory girls arm in arm, some of them half drunk, swayed along amidst the crowd, jostling men and squealing pert coquetries. There hovered about sundry lecherous looking males, much attracted by this throwing down of the outer earthworks of sex. Arms were thrown around strange necks in tight embraces. Girls shrieked endearments or words of immodesty or abuse like cats at their amorous cries on roofs. Men fanned their erotic fires with jests and buffoonery.

Minneapolis, Armistice Day 1918
An unmanageable excitement took over the nation. With uplifted arms all began to shout, “The war is over! The war is over!” while thousands laughed and wept. A combination of tumults. What joy or heartbreak was in their cry, God only knew. People were shouting that “the boys got the Kaiser” and crowds laughed, for a man moved into the light carrying a scarecrow on a long stick and yelling, “Here, here, we got the Kaiser.” The war was ended as suddenly as it [had begun].

...Two days after Albert’s wedding David received a telegram from his youngest daughter Helen [who was visiting] in Trenton, New Jersey, stating that she was married to Arthur Singer and that Moshe Rosen acted as best man and witness for them.
Helen and Arthur


Flag Day

Spinning off of this week's Sepia Saturday flaggish theme...
Mad as hell

Wrong way


Quality fence builders

Captains of industry

Freedom of speech



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