Although I do not celebrate Christmas, I always enjoy the lights and trees and music and spirit of these days, and it struck me as entirely consistent with that spirit when I received the following comment on my last post from TK, a fellow genealogy blogger:
Amy, I enjoyed your post, and I’ve staged a little concert for you based on your grandfather’s list of musical pieces. It’s on my blog, Before My Time. It’s video-intensive, so it takes time to load. I found videos for all but four of the songs. Enjoy!
You can see TK’s blog post here and listen to all the music yourself. What a truly generous and kind gift this was—a compilation of the music listed in my grandfather’s little pocket calendar. Thank you so much, TK! I truly enjoyed listening to every piece of music.
One thing that struck me after reading TK’s blog post and listening to the music was that many of these pieces of music seemed to be student pieces, fairly short and simple pieces of music that a student taking piano lessons might play. But my grandparents certainly did not have a piano in the house, nor had I ever heard of anyone in the family playing the piano.
But I then thought about my cousin Beth’s comment on Facebook that her father, my uncle, had played the violin for many years and was quite accomplished. Were these pieces that he played?
I decided to go back and examine the handwriting more carefully. After comparing the writing to that of my grandfather, grandmother, aunt, uncle, and mother, I now think that my uncle probably wrote the list. What do you all think?
Here is the music page (you will have to click and zoom to see the handwriting clearly enough):
Here is my grandfather’s writing:
This is what I thousht was my aunt’s handwriting as a child, which also looks somewhat like that on the music page: adult:
But this is her handwriting as an adult, and it’s very different, so maybe that’s not my aunt’s writing above?
My uncle wrote this page:
This is my mother’s handwriting as a young child:
And my grandmother wrote this page later in life in her 60s and probably wrote some of the entries on the page below it when she was in her 40s:
So who wrote the page with all the pieces of music listed? Anyone care to venture an opinion?
For all of you who celebrate, I wish you a wonderful and joyous Christmas. And if I may borrow and paraphrase the traditional saying, may there be peace on earth and good will to all.