1881: Jack of all trades

By then the time had come for the Farmer to prepare for his longer hunting trip in order to shoot enough game and stock up the meat supply for the long winter. On a gloomy fall day – it was the 23rd of September – Gottschalk and Rudolf Wolferts prepared everything for the hunting trip. Early the next day, both left with the two-horse covered wagon in order to be absent for two to three weeks. Mrs. Kopp had already returned to town one weeks ago.

On the farm, I kept the young Mrs. company after I finished my work, and helped her with the house work since she still had to rest. Already from the beginning I had milked the two cows daily, churned the butter, cut the wood, and often slaughtered roosters. Now, I also took over taking care of the two-year-old girl, helped with the cooking, washing and drying the diapers – in short, I was well-nigh the jack of all trades.

On the long nights we chatted about the mountainous homeland, during which she talked a lot about her time as a girl in Solingen. We should soon find out that we had met briefly already four years ago – it was the 30th of September 1877 – when my cousin Emil Höfinghoff and I undertook a hike to Solingen and stopped at the saloon of the gunsmith Böntgen – her father.

translated by Julia Strehlau-Jacobs

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