“Family Archaeologist” explores a century of family letters, diaries, and artifacts, and how they illuminate history and our shared humanity. To get an overview of the blog, click: “Welcome to Family Archaeologist”
LATEST BLOG POSTS
On Martin Luther King Day, let's celebrate his legacy by looking back at what he was fighting for and against. I make suggestions for a few books that helped me to gain a clearer perspective on the history of Black Americans.
A tribute to my Dad, Fred, who died thirty years ago today.
30 years ago today, my Dad died. Please read this tribute to his life and death. If you didn't know him, you'll get a short overview - and lots of vintage photos. Note: if you received an unworkable link earlier, so sorry. The program got wonky!
On Veterans Day, I always think of my beautiful, young, handsome Uncle Frank Ebner, whom I never met in person, yet I feel I know intimately. Why? Because I have nearly 300 letters written to and from him from January 1943 to the end of September 1945. Then the letters stopped coming home.
Twenty-five years ago today, August 12, 1994, Mom was lying in a hospital bed in the room we call "the sunroom" in our home because it has eight windows, most facing east and a couple on the south and a window and glass door on the north side, which looks out onto my garden. I wanted Mom to be able [...]
My uncle, Frank Ebner Gartz, known to the family simply as "Ebner," [ABE-ner] was a "prince of a guy," my dad said often. He was also a crack navigator on the B-17 Bomber during World War II. In one of Ebner's letters home, he speaks forthrightly of how he coped, facing death from the carpets of FLAK surging toward him over and over, as German fighter planes buzzed the B-17 to shoot it down. Then a tribute to the 75th anniversary of D-Day, which Ebner also wrote home about.
In May we're called upon to honor our mothers and to increase our awareness of mental health for ourselves, our families, and others. With this post I hope to do both: honor my mother for the anguished choices she alone, as an only child, could make about her mentally ill mother, and bring the choices she had to make at that time into focus in our own time.
Notre Dame Cathedral fire on April 15, 2019 Notre Dame burned just days before my flight to Europe. April 19th, I’ll hop on a jet to cross the pond, flying to Germany to visit two special people. (More on this later.) I had no plans to visit Paris, but any trip to Europe sweeps me back to my [...]