December 13 – Happy Birthday Grandma

With the death of Emperor Friedrich II on December 13, 1250 the time of the Interregnum starts for the Holy Roman Empire. This period without an emperor went on until 1273 when Rudolf I. took the throne.

And on December 13, 1810 Napoleon I. passes a decree for the annexion of the Northern German costal areas to increase the Continental System. Among others the Duchy of Oldenburg, and the free Hanseatic Cities Bremen, Hamburg and Lübeck are becoming parts of the French Empire.

And on December 13, 1921 my Grandma Waltraut Veronika TILINSKI is born in Korschen, East Prussia (today’s Korsze in Poland). She is the only daughter among five brothers of Albert TILINSKI and his first wife of which I only know her last name PETZ.

This is a picture of her I found in a box full of family pictures back home. Unfortunately, it only states “Summer 1942” on the back, nothing more. My grandma is the woman on the right.

Summer 1942

Summer 1942

On May 27, 1944 she married my grandfather Wolfang Albert NICOLAUS in Korschen. This his their wedding picture:

wedding picture Tilinski - Nicolaus

wedding picture Tilinski – Nicolaus

The couple had 4 children, only girls born between 1945 and 1949. Taking a look at their birth places (Kamenz, Leipzig and then finally Lübeck) you can follow the way of the family moving west fleeing from East Prussia after WW II.

Nobody could remember anymore when, why and how, but during the War it was decided by the TILINSKI family in East Prussia that if they would get seperated they would meet in Lübeck, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. My greatuncle once said that he thinks it was his father spending a vacation in the Lübeck area and he loved it there, so that should be the place to start a new life since they had to leave everything behind. And this is what they did. One after another the surviving family members arrived there, living in refugee camps in the beginning.

Unfortunately my grandma died way too young of cancer on May 18, 1977. I was only 3 years old and I have no  memory of her at all. I only know her from stories my parents and my older siblings told about her.


One thought on “December 13 – Happy Birthday Grandma

  1. Pingback: December 19 – Gatzemann & Tilinski wedding | Barbara Schmidt

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