Wednesday, November 30, 2011


I'm kind of disgusted with the whole house thing right now, so we're gonna try something a little different today.

It's time for me to lay a little family history on you.

Growing up, I never really knew much about my relatives.  I'd get a few tidbits here and there, but on the whole I was oblivious to who they were and what they did.  It didn't really bother me at the time, but now I really wish that I'd investigated a bit more before all of these interesting people passed away and their stories were lost.  There really were quite a few oddballs.

Take my great grandfather, for example.  After emigrating from Germany to the US just prior to WWI, he started his own meatpacking business, which quickly expanded.  As his enterprise grew, he also opened several subsidiaries, one of which is pictured below (Look at those retro delivery trucks!).  

Most people might have a ribbon cutting ceremony or something to celebrate the opening of a new factory.  He bought a whale and brought it up the Mississippi. 

Yes, that's right, a whale (of the Baleen variety).  Apparently it was a big to-do in St. Louis at the time.

The more crazy stories that I hear about this guy, the more it makes me wish I would have met him.


  1. I thought I had some interesting family members, but bringing a whale to St. Louis trumps anything my family...or any family I know...ever did. Great story!

  2. I know I've had some pretty quirky relatives but that takes the cake! Thanks for sharing...

  3. It is very touching Nick...thanks for sharing...coming from india where we live in joint families..i always had people around me and three generations lived under the same roof. there were times when i wished we all lived miles away..silly me...and I miss them after coming here..and yes i totally agree with you about knowing our prior gen. Its such an honour to know more about them

  4. People back then seemed a lot more willing to work hard and take big risks. Hopefully the young people of today will learn to emulate them.

  5. Hey Nick, that is the most incredible true story! Your grandpa had vision, that's for sure.
    Many thanks for sharing this with us!