Christmas Eve 1943

Christmas Eve 1943
christmas eve 1943

I have a photo which was taken in Tante Ilse’s livingroom. We were all sitting together for Christmas Eve celebrations. I gather Mrs T. took the picture since she isn’t in it. The photo is proof that my grandmother from Leipzig and cousin Renate were with us for Christmas 1943. Grandma is on the left, beside Grandma is Werner M, then Tante Ilse and cousin Renate. On the right is Mr T and beside him Mum. The children are 8 year old Edith T and my brother Bodo. I am in the picture too: You can see me holding up one of my Käthe-Kruse-Dolls. Mum had knitted a lovely new dress for this doll.

In the weeks before Christmas Mum loved to do some sewing of clothes as well as a lot of knitting for us children. When she did this we were not allowed in the living-room because she wanted the gifts to be a surprise for Christmas Eve. That meant of course that we had to be very, very patient. Naturally we thought Christmas Eve would never come!

Christmas Eve 1943
christmas eve 1943


14 thoughts on “Christmas Eve 1943

  1. Wünsche dir einen schönen Tag,mus bestimmt schön gewesen sein euer Heiligabend bei und früher war es nicht so,da ging alles so sträng zu mein Vater war sehr sträng.Ich wünsche dir ein schönes Wochenende und hoffe es geht dir gut.Lieber Gruß von mir.Gislinde

    1. Ja, Gislinde, trotz des schlimmen Krieges hatten wir doch noch einen recht schönen Heiligabend. Meine Familie war sehr stolz darauf, dass sie das noch auf die Beine stellen konnten. Mir geht es dem Alter entsprechend gut. Hoffe es geht dir auch recht gut. Wünsche dir auch ein schönes Wochenende mit viel Sonnenschein. Liebe Grüsse, Uta.

  2. I see this happy scene and think of the political turmoil that was swirling outside that room at the time. I wonder what dark thoughts and fears lay in the back of the minds of the adults that Christmas. Good that they could hide that from the innocents at the table.

    1. It seems to me, Linda, a lot of things cannot be hidden from children. I think we were all aware that it was an oddity that we had such a peaceful Christmas in the midst of turmoil.

  3. This photo SO clearly reminds me of some old black & whites of mum and Babasia (her mother), my aunty at Christmas. I so love these old captures of time, Aunty Uta. Truly, I cannot get enough.

    1. This was our first Christmas away from Berlin in this desolate country place. My family was proud at the time that despite a war going on they could still conduct beautiful Christmas celebrations same as when there was peace (wie im tiefsten Frieden!). We talked a lot about “Frieden” and what it was like when there still was “Frieden”.

    1. Hi, Bookjunkie!
      At the time these Käthe Kruse dolls were not vintage yet but they were very expensive. Right now vintage is definitely what you would have to call them! Peter has a sister who collects hundreds of dolls. I am more for collecting books.

  4. That is a beautiful, magical Christmas my friend. When I remember my childhood Christmas, it makes me smile but at the same time makes me sad knowing, most of those family I was with are no longer physically within my reach. Moving to the U.S. has a price. God bless.

  5. Thanks for the comment, dear IT. My cousin Renate is in the picture. I went to her funeral last year. She died aged 86. My brother Bodo turns 75 in June. He’s in an aged care home now. Mum died in 1994 and Aunty Ilse quite a few years before this. Well, and Grandma died already in 1957. This was before we went to Australia. These days Peter and I seem to be the oldest people wherever we go!
    My brother Peter is not in the Christmas Eve picture. Presumably he was too little to stay up for Christmas Eve. He’s 71 now and still very active. We visited him and his wife last year. They live about 100 km north of Berlin.

  6. A beautiful family picture from 1943 Auntyuta, a typical family all together celebrating Christmas. So many memories and a lifetime between you all. Even in those turbulent years, families still came together and celebrated together.
    Beautiful picture and a beautiful family heirloom.

    1. You are right, Emu, this picture should interest future generations to see how we fared during the war. Mind you, Tante Ilse’s beautiful well furnished living room was very, very tiny. Much, much smaller than the rooms the family had been used to in Berlin. And not all of Aunty’s livingroom furniture fitted into it. But still, it was ‘sehr gemütlich’!

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