Tuesday, February 9, 2010

History Lost

Writing historical fiction takes a love for history. As an author, I find the lives of people from the past fascinating. Perhaps because they lived so differently than today. Most people had higher moral standards and faith was a part of daily life. 

I found the wording this clip from 100 years ago, December 14, in the Frederick New Post interesting. Unfortunately, people do not talk like this anymore. It is the phrases 'a call to labor', and 'the Master's vineyard', that I thought were the most profound.

100 years ago - A congregational meeting was held at the Evangelical Lutheran church last night. The resignation of the pastor, Rev. Dr. Charles F. Steck, to take effect January 31, 1910, was read and accepted. “Our beloved pastor, Rev. Charles F. Steck, D. D., having received a call to labor in another portion of the Master’s vineyard, and having announced his desire to accept that call and tendered his resignation as pastor of this congregation, to take effect on the last on January, 1910.”

I am always curious as to the history of such people. When I read these clips, I often wonder about their lives. So, I did a bit of research on Rev. Steck and this is what I found. Apparently he went on to labor at the Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Epithany in Washington, DC and was the minister that gave in invocation to the unveiling of the statue in memorial of Baron von Steuben who served Washington during the Revolution. 

There is a congressional book about the unveiling that is interesting. Here is what is printed within its yellowed pages.


German societies take part in big parade — Chorus of 1,000 
voices is heard in patriotic songs — 
Miss Helen Taft draws cord — Addresses by the President, 
the German Ambassador, and 
Representative Bartholdt, of Missouri — 
Delegations from New York 

In weather perhaps as bleak as that which enfolded 
the cheerless camp of the great commander in chief at 
Valley Forge, when barefoot Colonials tracked their 
course in blood over the pitiless snow, the United States 
of America, 133 years later, this afternoon, at the Capital 
of the Nation, unveiled the statue of Frederick Wil- 
liam Augustus Henry Ferdinand, Baron von Steuben, 
the adjutant general of the armies of Frederick the Great, 
the friend of Washington, and the great inspector of the 
Colonial Army that wrested its independence from the 
British Crown. 

Surrounding the tribute of bronze were thousands of 
Von Steuben's countrymen, proud of heart and exultant 
at the honor conferred upon their great representative, 
who, in his time, conferred honor upon their adopted 
country and gave to it all the force of his military wis- 
dom and skill in its fight for liberty. Not the barefoot 
and disorganized stragglers of the patriotic Army of long 
ago, but officers and troops of an Army and Navy second 
to none in Christendom, were gathered with them, while 
on all sides Americans to the manner born joined with 
all in the tribute to the memory of the great man who 
yet lives in the proudest annals of their native land. 

After a ringing chorus by nearly a thousand voices of 
the Northeastern Singers' Association and the invocation 
by Rev. Dr. Charles F. Steck


Annette said...

I love history also.
When I am in an antique shop I wonder about the people that owned these treasures--what was their story?
I especially wonder about all of those photographs that are in antique shops, sometimes I feel that there is a story written in their face.
Or, maybe I think to much.

Jessica said...

Extremely fascinating. I wish I could time travel and explore the past.
Thanks for sharing all this. :-)

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Rita -

It's great when you can unearth some details about a person's life. I like watching History Detectives on PBS.

Like Annette, I enjoy poking through antique shops. I'm always sad to see family photos. It makes me wonder why they were not passed down to future generations.

Susan :)

Jan Cline said...

I am a history buff. My dad used to stop at every historical marker along side the road! When Im watching TV and they talk about an historical figure - I just have to google them to see what it was all about. I only hope I can translate all that into an interesting novel.

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