Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Wednesday's Child: "A Lamb of the Upper Fold"

In the 1900 U.S. Census, young Ethel Holderbaum was age 6, and she resided  in Ward 4 of Sandusky, Erie County, Ohio, with her parents, George and Mary Holderbaum. Ethel's  father George died in 1902, when he was only 37 years old. Below is a transcription of a letter that Ethel wrote to Santa, which appeared in the December 20, 1902 issue of the Sandusky Evening Star.

Dear Santa,

I am going to hang my stocking by the fire. I want a lamp and a story book. I wonder if you are coming on a wheel or in a sleigh. And I want a game. I am in the second grade. I guess that will be all.

 Ethel Holderbaum, age 9
 921 East Adams Street

Sadly, Ethel Holderbaum died from tuberculosis on May 14, 1905. She was buried near her father's grave in Block 90 at Sandusky's Oakland Cemetery. Her tombstone is adorned with a lovely lamb, and the inscription at the base of her stone reads: A Lamb of the Upper Fold. Ethel had a short life on earth, marked by illness and the loss of her father. In spite of these obstacles, her letter to Santa shows that she had hopes and dreams of a wonderful Christmas in 1902. May she rest in peace.

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