September 7, 1943: “My dear, dear parents…”
What’s the first thing that caught my eye about this postcard from September, 1943? The unusual emerald green ink, of course!
This card, written by a man named Gaston, was mailed to his parents in Belgium. I don’t know as much about forced labor in Belgium as I do about forced labor in France, but I’m guessing Gaston was sent to Germany to work at the Daimler plant in Bad Cannstatt. A huge Daimler assembly plant still appears to be located in Bad Cannstatt; streets in the area are named “Daimlerstrasse” and “Mercedesstrasse.”
Gaston’s postcard does not contain any major revelations. But what I’ve come to learn is that sometimes these postcards were simply proof of life. And if Gaston suspected he might be transferred to another location, it might have also created a trail for his loved ones to follow.
Bad Cannstatt (Stuttgart)
September 7, 1943
*Translator’s note: I wonder if this is a code word referring to the Germans