Wednesday, February 18, 2009

A Love Story Told On Napkins

As I was going through my grandparents' 50th Wedding Anniversary Album the other night, my mom and I got to talking about them. She told me the stories she's heard from when they first began dating.

My grandparents both lived in Seattle in the late 1920s and early 1930s. My grandparents met through the catholic church that they both attended.

Margaret Harney (my grandmother) was nearly ten years younger than Max Doerflinger (my grandfather), but that didn't stop Max from trying to get her to go on a date with him. After a few months of resisting, Margaret finally agreed to one date. She was 16 and he was 24.

However, one date quickly turned into two, then three, and soon, Margaret found herself out with Max nearly every weekend. He would take her to underground clubs (which they called speak-easies) every weekend so that they could dance.

But the courtship turned to more intensity as Max began falling more in love with Margaret. He began writing her love poems on the napkins during dinner at the clubs. He began bringing her flowers and new ribbons for her "gorgious blonde curls".

She saved every single napkin that he wrote on and saved every ribbon he ever bought her. She even pressed the flowers he gave her in a book and kept all of this stuff in a medium sized box with two bronze doves kissing eachother, which he made.

After my grandparents died, the box was given to my aunt, Diane. Unfortunately, no one knew that Diane would soon be diagnosed with schizophrenia...and now the napkins are gone.

So while I've never seen these napkins, I know about the love that my grandparents shared during their "honeymoon stage".


Kathryn Lake Hogan said...

Greetings Elyse,
What a shame the napkins have disappeared. But, it's great that you now know the story of how your grandparents met. Sounds like Max was absolutely "head over heels" in love with Margaret. What a wonderful story.

Deb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Deb said...

What a sweet story on your grandparents! It's stories like that, that will make your genealogy so much more than just dates & will make it a true family genealogy & unique. I hated to hear about the loss of the napkins though. Maybe someday they will turn never know.

Thanks for sharing....

Later, Deb

(((FYI: I totally messed up my origin post, so I deleted it & tried again.)))

Gini said...

Hi Elyse~
My husband makes my lunch everyday, inside I get a napkin that has something wonderful written on it, I have save each and every one of them! Somedays the message is longer than others, somedays, it's just "I heart you" or Love, me but I always look forward to seeing those napkins with the notes on them! I wish you had those napkins, what a wonderful love story, thank you for sharing with us.

Gini said...

I re-read my comment, I didn't say it like I wanted! I mean that I wish you had your grandparents napkins to have and read and I agree with Deb, they may show up, you never know.