About the book
The “notes from the trunk” included not only letters and diaries, but also
advertising materials for textile machinery, business records, school records
and old books and photographs. Marian Gowan’s mother, Helene Belger
Lindblade, had saved these to be the basis for her memoirs. She died
at age eighty-one, memoirs unwritten. Using documents from the trunk
and her own research, Gowan has chronicled her mother’s early life, including
summer vacations in New Hampshire, boarding school and travel abroad.
The book offers a unique perspective on pre-WWII-Germany from the viewpoint
of a teen-aged American girl on holiday.
Diary Entry for Saturday, August 26, 1939: The war scare has started
again, and I really don’t think there will be a war. Main roads from
Berlin are all closed, food is rationed, and there is an unbelievable calm
over it all.
Diary Entry Sunday, August 27, 1939: My visit to Cottbus was terminated
on account of the Polish situation. Trains are only running on half
schedule, and even therefore very crowded...All regulars are at front.
Only reserves are here. I can’t leave now. The situation is
About the Author
Marian Gowan retired in 2001 with her husband, William, to Hendersonville,
NC after a thirty-year career with Eastman Kodak Company, Rochester, NY.
Her interests include writing, quilting, classical music, and cheering
her husband’s senior softball team. She is a graduate of Northfield
Mount Hermon School, East Northfield, MA; and Tufts University, Medford,
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