I bought the Wittenberg album mainly because the messages on the postcards were in German, and at the time, I was doing some research on German immigration into Arkansas. As expected, this album, like others that are kept together, helps tell the story of the life of the person who collected the postcards. In this case, the story is about a woman who moved from Dresden, Germany to Little Rock in 1911 to marry Walter Wittenberg, one of the city's leading citizens. I have written a paper about Walter and Marie Wittenberg that is posted on Scribd at this link: http://www.scribd.com/doc/83371653/Walter-Wittenberg-and-Marie-Eichhorn-Wittenberg-The-Lives-of-Two-German-Born-Citizens-of-Little-Rock
The short version of their story is this: Walter Wittenberg arrived in Little Rock in 1865 as a soldier in the Union Army's quartermaster service. Born in 1834, he had come to the United States from Germany with his parents in 1849. They had settled in St. Louis, and he had married in Annie Libby in 1856. After the Civil War, his wife and son (Frank) had joined him in Little Rock, where he made a successful career as an accountant, book keeper, and banker. In 1869, he had helped created the first building and loan association in Arkansas.
Wittenberg, who had a big house at 518 Broadway, lost his wife to illness in 1883. They had six children together, two of whom died at very young ages and one who died as a teenager. His oldest son, Frank, was a successful accountant in Little Rock, and Frank's son, George, started an architectural firm that still exists.
Marie Eichhorn was born in Saxony in 1877 and spent most of her first thirty years in Dresden. She made two trips to the United States (in 1892 and 1908) before moving here permanently in 1911. She and Walter married sometime in 1911 and had a son, Walter Jr. The senior Walter died suddenly on October 11, 1912. Eight years later, in December 1920, Marie married James E. Hogue, a Little Rock lawyer. They divorced in June 1924, and Marie reclaimed Wittenberg as her last name.
She moved from the house on Broadway to a house in the Hillcrest area of Little Rock in the middle 1920s. After a couple more moves, she settled at 412 Palm Street, where she lived until her death in 1961. For many years, she attended the First Lutheran Church in downtown Little Rock and was secretary of the women's auxiliary group. At the time of her death, she attended Grace Lutheran Church.
The stories of Walter and Marie are small additions to the history of German immigration into Arkansas. The basic facts of Mrs. Wittenberg's life are illuminated and made more interesting by the postcards in her album. Below are a few of the more interesting cards: