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Okay, this is getting weird… This post has nothing to do with my old house, but it seemed too good to pass up and so here it is. My daughter had an appointment on the other side of the city today that left me with two hours of free time to kill. There’s an antique mall not far from where she was that I hadn’t visited for years so it seemed like the place to go. It’s only by the grace of God that I’m not on television in an episode of Hoarders when it comes to antiques, but I digress.

Along with the glassware, I went with the intention of looking at picture frames. For years now, I’ve had a photo of my great-grandfather’s farm house that needed a frame. More to come on that, but that’s where this story started. I start perusing all the oval frames with bubble glass and also other frames. For some reason, the German Victorian Christian stuff was catching my eye. One of the booths had an oak frame looking forlorn and out-of-square with what looked to be a baptismal certificate. Upon closer inspection, it was actually a confirmation certificate from 1905. The name on it was Heinrich Hansen. I smiled. There’s a Hansen that lives across the street from us, wouldn’t that be weird if it was his family?

Further reading showed that the confirmation took place at Zion Lutheran church here in town! Did I mention that this was weird? Keep in mind that we live in a smallish town (albeit under somewhat radical transformation as of late) but nonetheless, a lot of the older folks in town are descendants of the original settlers. Could this be the neighbor’s grandfather or other relative? For $55, I figured it was worth a shot. Even if it didn’t pan out, the frame and the visual appeal of the certificate made it worth the money.

I’m no poet laureate, so you can certainly tell where this story is headed. After I got home, a quick perusal of the local history book that another neighbor gave me almost certainly confirmed that this certificate is of my neighbor’s grandfather. His grandfather’s name was Henry (Heinrich) and the birth date of 1898 on the certificate is also that of his grandfather.

Of course, they were not home tonight, so I’ll find out for sure tomorrow when I take it over to him and his daughter.

As for the other frame I bought, it is intended to hold a hand-colored photo of my great-grandfather’s farm house that has been begging for a home for years now. I found many oval frames with bubble glass but I felt guilty of depriving them of their original, old family photographs. Luckily, I was able to find a nice one with some crappy print in it that I will gladly liberate for my own purposes. I went ahead and paid a bit more than I had planned for this one but the frame is in nearly perfect shape and is larger and fancier than the one I first decided to buy. I can’t wait to see it in its finished state.

Finally, on the subject of antiques, I thought I would also share the coolest darned thing that my mom bought me for Christmas–a porcelain crumb catcher/tray. I have no use for it (which is true for 90% of the stuff I own), but it’s an amazingly interesting piece. Now to figure out where to put it and display it properly.

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