Louisa Sends Carnations to Her Cousin – Kiel, Wisconsin (circa 1910)

Louisa H. Lived in Kiel, a city on the Sheboygan River in east-central Wisconsin.

Although settled by German emigrants in the 1850’s, Kiel became the center of the wooden shoes industry.


Louisa sent a colorful postcard to her cousin, Miss Josephine Burkard, in St. Nazianz, Wisconsin.

Because the postcard was mailed “in care of Egnatz Burkard”, we assume that Josephine lived at home.

(St. Nazianz has a fascinating history as one of few Roman Catholic communal societies that flourished in the US during the 19th century.

Father Ambrose Oschwald led a group from the Black Forest near Baden, Germany to an uncleared tract of land in east-central Michigan.

From 1854- 1896, the community of St. Nazianz (called “The Association”) held goods in common and all members worked for the commune without pay.)


Louisa’s postcard bears a fine image of carnations and a pious verse proclaiming the “simplest flowers” as signs of “God’s ever-watchful care”.

The postmark on this card is so faint as to be unreadable – the embossed surface may be partially responsible for the illegibility.

On the reverse, Louisa’s message references Thanksgiving as a recent event, so we might assume that the postcard was mailed at the end of November in a year near 1910.

Louisa reports that she is well and hopes that Josephine is the same.

To the end of her message, Louisa adds the address of Ida – who is in Milwaukee.

One hopes that the cousins remained friends and correspondents for many years.


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