It’s been a few weeks since the 100th anniversary of the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand and the start of WWI, but I thought I’d this postcard today, which is addressed to my great-great-grandparents from a Luxembourger in Beaufort whose name is illegible to me. Their last name is most likely misspelled because there are several variant spellings of “Eischen.” Also, the Prime Minister at the start of the war, whose sudden death in 1915 caused a government crisis, was named Paul Eyschen, which might have had influence on the spelling because of his popularity. The woman on the stamp is Grand Duchess Marie-Adélaïde. Her support of the German occupation during the war made her so unpopular with her people that, at the behest of Luxembourg’s legislature, she abdicated the throne. Her sister, Charlotte, succeeded her and would later live briefly in Dupont Circle to spend considerable time and effort imploring FDR to join WWII. My girlfriend and I took a picture in front of the statue of the Grand Duchess in the capital.
Eleanor Roosevelt said of Luxembourg in one of her columns in 1946: “Luxembourg is one of the smallest countries in Europe, and to little countries peace is very necessary. They cannot hope to defend themselves in war, and for prosperity and happiness they must depend on the cooperation of their neighbors.”