At Play In The Archive
We begin at the beginning.
My great-grandfather Franz Georg Leopold Lessiack was born on the 17th of December in the year 1890 in Hamburg, Germany. I am reasonably sure this information is correct, because I have found 19 sources (so far) that corroborate the date. Plus, I have his actual Geburts Urkunde (birth certificate) in my possession. Check out this beautiful calligraphy, People.
Leo’s parents were Anton Ludwig Lessiack and his wife, Henriette Catharina Marie Puhlmann. While none of the photographs in my possession are labeled as such, I have come to the conclusion (based on a number of clues) that these images are of my great-great grandparents.
Here’s another photo, I believe, of my great-great grandfather Anton. At least, I think it’s the same guy–what do you think, People? The cock of his head and the shape of his eyes and eyebrows look the same to me. Isn’t that mustachio spiffy?
And, here is my great-great grandmother, Henriette Catharina Maria Puhlmann.
You might recognize her from this picture in an earlier post. She’s a bit older here.
Eight months later, on the 16th of August in 1891, great-grandpa Leo was baptized into the German Evangelical Lutheran Church at the church of St. Gertrud in Hamburg. Here is a picture of his original baptismal certificate. My scanner wasn’t quite big enough to fit the whole thing.
Notice the names of his Godparents. It’s not hard to figure out where great-grandpa Franz Georg Leopold Lessiack got his name.
I also discovered this incredibly nifty website that offers a virtual tour of St. Gertrud’s church. To “go inside” the church, click this link, and then click on the little arrow inside a circle just outside the church door (I put a giant red arrow in the picture below to help you find it). Take a look around — the site will pan 360° automatically, and it’s almost like being there. The internet is amazing, no?
We’re off and running with Leo now. Happy Monday, People.