Blog2018-10-01T20:14:05-05:00

“Chicago, A View Over Time” takes on subjects explored in Linda’s book: race, marriage, mental illness, and Chicago history. You can read “sneak previews” of book excerpts, and even get a peek at some scenes that had to be cut, but are still fun, poignant, or intriguing.

CHICAGO: A VIEW OVER TIME

“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

Family Archaeologist

“Letters of a World War II Airman” shares original letters to and from my uncle, Frank Ebner Gartz, from 1943-1945, tracing the course of WWII, life on the home front, and the evolution of a neighborhood kid into seasoned airman.

Letters of a WWII Airman

LATEST BLOG POSTS

Notre Dame, Earth Day, and Resurrection

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 [...]

Happy Birthday, Redlined!

Happy Birthday, "Redlined"! Today, April 3rd, is your special day. I feel like I should buy you a birthday hat, wrap you in colorful streamers, and sprinkle you with confetti! But you’re like the one-year-olds who smear cake all over their face and stare goggle-eyed at the crowd singing to them—clueless.

April 3rd, 2019|Chicago: A View Over Time|

Penguins, and whales, and seals, Oh my! Awesome Antarctica

Antarctic Journey My husband, Bill, and I, just returned from a trip to Antarctica, an other-worldly land on the "bottom of the world," traveling on a ship designed to cut through the Antarctic ice. The National Geographic ship, Orion, was a cruise ship built for just this kind of expedition, which was co-sponsored by Lindblad Expeditions. Lindblad originated the idea [...]

February 21st, 2019|Chicago: A View Over Time, Travel|

Russell Baker: A brilliant writer, human being, and influence

"Russell Baker died Monday at his home in Leesburg, Va. He was 93." That's the opening to the New York Times obituary after the death of one of the twentieth century's greatest newspapermen, memoirist, writer, and overall high quality human being. I didn't know Russell Baker personally, but after reading and rereading his Pulitzer Prize–winning memoir, Growing Up, to the point I could quote passages verbatim, I wanted to know him.

January 24th, 2019|Chicago: A View Over Time|

Landing the immigrant dream

On Jan. 11th, 1911, (1/1/11) a massive steamship, named "Friedrich der Grosse" (for Frederick the Great, a one-time Prussian ruler) pulled into New York Bay. My dad's father, Josef Gärtz, was on that ship, peering out at the Statue of Liberty, greeting him and the other hopeful and exhausted boat-load of immigrants. It was the beginning of a life entirely different from the lives of the family and friends he left behind.

New Year Nightmare

On New Year's Eve, 1910, a young immigrant boards a steamship from the Port of Bremen to head out into the unknown, across the Atlantic to America. Using his wits, Josef Gärtz overcame every obstacle in his path—and recorded how he did it in letters and diaries. That's why I can share with you today a first-hand account of what he experienced 108 years ago. Read on to find out what happened.

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