A 'Swenglish' journey through family photos, notes and postcards from the early 20th century.


G.015.3 Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument, N.Y.

Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument, New York
The Leighton & Valentine Co., N.Y. City.
Printed in the United States.

The Soldiers' and Sailors' Memorial Monument in New York commemorates Union Army soldiers and sailors who served in the American Civil War. It is located at 89th Street and Riverside Drive in Riverside Park in the Upper West Side of New York City.

Ground was broken for the monument on September 21, 1900. Mr. Guggenheimer turned the first spadeful of dirt. About 200 people were present at the ground breaking ceremony. The first stone was laid in January 1901. On the cornerstone was a simple inscription saying that the monument was erected by the citizens of New York. It was finally dedicated on Memorial Day in May 1902 with Governor Theodore Roosevelt officiating. During the dedication, the monument was unveiled following a parade of Civil War veterans up Riverside Drive. The memorial bears the simple inscription: "To the memory of the brave soldiers and sailors who saved the Union".  [Wikipedia]


Date: Unknown – probably 1902
To: Herr Gustaf Ekman, Storegården, Fristad
From: Gerda


Jag glömde skrifa adressen för Mullsjö. Det är Alfhem Mullsjö. Kanske det är bäst om du sänder böckerna hit till Sörby i alla fall. Kära hälsningar, syster Gerda.

Texten visar att kortet uppenbarligen sänts från Sörby även om bilden är från New York. Poststämpeln har inte lämnat något avtryck. Om vykortet sänts 1902 måste det ha varit på hösten kort innan syskonen emigrerade, eftersom monumentet på bilden inte invigdes förrän i slutet av maj 1902. (I så fall måste kortet antingen ha ingått i en samling nyligen importerade kort; eller ha skickats till Gerda av någon vän som redan emigrerat.) Alternativet är att kortet inte sändes förrän ca tio år senare när båda syskonen var tillbaka i Sverige igen.

In English

I forgot to write the address in Mullsjö. It is Alfhem, Mullsjö.* Maybe you had better send the books here to Sörby after all. Best wishes, sister Gerda.

*Mullsjö is a locality near Jönköping.

The postcard was obviously sent within Sweden even if the view is from New York. As the monument itself was not finished until May 1902, this means the card was either sent in the autumn of 1902 before either of the siblings left for America (but must have had started making plans). If the card was sent in 1902, it must have been in a collection of recently imported ones, or sent to Gerda by some friend who had already emigrated. The alternative  is that this card was not sent until about ten years later, when they were both back in Sweden again. There is not enough left of the postmark to give a clue.


  1. These fascinating cards leave just as many questions as they answer, don't they.

  2. "Greeting from the Past" has been included in the Sites To See for this week. Be assured that I hope this helps to point many new visitors in your direction.