December 10, 1937
Handwritten letter of John from Saltair to his niece, Hilda Scheffler [Nikl].
Saltair Dec 10 - 37.
Dear Hilda - First we have to ask your pardon that we haven't written earlier. We received your much appreciated letter of Oct. 22, so it came three days after Nephi's birthday - We would also like to congratulate you after the fact on your birthday and wish you happiness and health and everything good for the coming years. We send our sympathies to Erich on his illness and hope he is healthy again now. It would be nice if you could visit us sometime and make the great journey to America. You would be astonished at all the things you would see; it is really fantastic all the things there are to see. Everything is much different than in Germany; there are fantastic bridges - ships - rivers - buildings - streets - cars. There really aren't horses and wagons anymore - only in rural areas are there some.
I've read a lot about the jubilee celebration of Elbing; Nephi brought a book back about Elbing which describes the city from its beginnings up to the present time. So that's the way I attended the celebration in my thoughts as well as joining you in your home to see what you're doing. Nephi brought a lot of photo pictures back and has had some of them developed, but there are still a lot that haven't been developed yet. I'll include a few from Switzerland, of our city Berne and of our relatives. Among them is the city fountain - called the Children-Eater-Fountain (Kindlifresser-Brunnen). Earlier, many hundreds of years ago, at the city limits the children couldn't go past or they would be caught and eaten by the Kindlifresser. You can see in the picture that the man has a sack over his back with children inside. That was only to scare the children so they wouldn't go too far and get lost.
We haven't had any snow here yet, even though there's a lot of it everywhere in the mountains. But today is rainy and cold, so snow is likely to come. I would like to do more research on the Galka family, but I'd have to go to Poland to look any further and everything in Germany has already been researched. Now I have 70 names from the Galka family and there are still many more to be found, and with time it will be possible. We are both healthy; the hay fever is gone now: it usually goes away around Oct. 15 or when the first frost comes. We hope that you're all healthy and well, and we wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
A thousand greetings from Nephi and Rudy.