17 January 2012

Treasure Chest Thursday - Irony in a 1922 Prayer Book

My maternal grandfather was cleaning out the house of his recently deceased sister, and found a prayer book belonging to his father, John Martin Nestel (1901-1972).

I have been dissecting this page over the past couple days, trying to figure out what everything means.

  • First we find the obvious, the name and address of my great-grandfather, John Nestel.  I wasn't positive if this was his home address, or the church address, of another random address.  However, the 1920 U.S. Federal Census provided me proof that this was indeed his home address, 2103 S. 66th St, West Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA.
  • The prayer book was blessed by Father Eckert, a priest of the Dominican Order.  What was Father Eckert's first name?  What church did he belong to?
  • We know it was blessed in November of 1922, and it appears that it was on a Saturday.  But why was the actual date left out?!  Based on a calendar of 1922, it could have been the 4th, 11th, 18th or 25th.
  • The top right corner is written, Woodland 0728 W.  That I am clueless to.  Woodland was a street name, and a trolley station.  Everything else was written in what appears to be pen, while this writing in the top corner appears to be in pencil.  Were these written on a different date?  Was this the trolley station he had to meet someone?  Was it the street his church was on?  The 0728 W I can't even begin to figure out.  This is why I enjoy blogging, hopefully I can get some answers from you!
So where does the irony appear in this prayer book?  Well, my last name is Eckert, and my mothers maiden name is Nestel.  This was happening in 1922..  An Eckert and a Nestel wouldn't meet again for over 50 years.  Is this Father Eckert a distant cousin of mine?  Ironic.. I know!

1 comment:

Unknown said...

when i first saw the number in the top right corner it actually looked like it said 07:28 am, just a thought with my first glance but this is totally cool Brian, great job