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Edwin Nathan Ettinger
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Birth: Mar. 25, 1879
Allentown
Lehigh County
Pennsylvania, USA
Death: Jun. 26, 1944
Allentown
Lehigh County
Pennsylvania, USA

Edwin Ettinger was a brother of Charles Henry Ettinger. He was the husband of Annie E Ettinger, and they had no children. He was the uncle of my mom's father, her great uncle.

He is remembered by my mom's family as a kind man who lived well. My mom wore a large diamond ring for special occaisions, and the diamond came from a ring her Great-uncle Ed used to wear. It was rather spectacular, and the fear of robbery made her keep it in the safe deposit box until she finally sold it, much to my chagrin.

Because Ed and Annie had no children, they could spend a little more freely, and they had a lovely summer home near New Tripoli. When they decided they no longer needed their large three-story row home with six bedrooms in Allentown at 1348 W. Walnut, they gave my grandpa a sweet deal on the house so he would have more room to raise his four children. Edwin was my grandpa's much-adored uncle, and Grandpa named his son Edwin in his uncle's honor.

Until August of 2012, I thought this was all there was to the story of Ed and Annie... until I spoke with one of my moms' cousins. She told me the darker side, a much sadder one, and that was that during her life, Annie developed some kind of mental problem and ended up at the state hospital. This cousin of my mom's recalls Annie as rather normal and recalls going to visit her there regularly, and thought nothing of it as a youngster. Very possibly Annie suffered from depression, so could be very outwardly normal. This cousin says it is because of Annie's problems that the couple never had children, that Ed was afraid to have them with her. The cousin also recalls Ed visiting her there a great deal, and how he often brought nice things for her, especially chocolates. Doing the math... my mom born in 1926 can recall visiting Ed and Annie at their summer home, so Annie was out and about in the world then, and this cousin can recall visiting Annie at the hospital in about 1943, so somewhere in between is when the couple must have dealt with Annie's difficulties. This is borne out by the censuses.

I do not know what Edwin did before he joined the family firm begun by his brother. It started around 1900, and he joined in February 1908, about the time the firm had bought out a plumbing and steamfitting business. Both changes were reported on the front page of the Allentown Leader of February 6 of that year.

120 Church Street is Ed and Annie's home for the 1910 census. He is 31, she's 28, they've been married 10 years with no children. Ed works as a plumber, doubtlessly with the family firm. He must have been doing well - by October, the Allentown Leader noted he'd purchased a home (the number is illegible, possibly 110) on South Franklin street. By today's standards, the $4000 price is nothing, but it is higher than most of the other home purchase on the page.

The 1920 census shows Ed and Annie "Ettenger" living at 121 Seventh St in Allentown (whether that's North or South isn't noted). He is age 40 and a mechant at a stove store, again the family business, and she's age 37. They have no kids but are from from alone - four other ladies ranging in ages from 36 to 19 live there as roomers, and all but one are teachers.

The 1930 and 1940 censuses show Ed and Annie together as well. By 1940 they live at 134 N. 8th Street where Ed reports he is a storekeeper in his own store, very possibly a reference to the family's stove and washer store which was just up 8th street from his home. Mom's cousin recalls it as a huge building that Ed owned with apartments in it, and on the 1940 census, it's valued at $25,000. Both Ed and Annie report having gone as far as eighth grade in school. Ed reports working 52 weeks in the past year, yet reports his income as zero - was that modesty, evasion, or did he choose not to draw a salary as he was very comfortable anyway?

By 1942, 134 N. 8th Street in Allentown was Ed's home when he had to register for the so-called "old man's draft" for World War II. He was age 63. Listed as "unemployed" he was probably already retired from the family plumbing and heating business. The address was probably for an apartment because when asked who would always know where he was was on the draft registration card, he listed Raymond Schlicher at the same address, a neighbor in his building. Spouses were not necessarily noted on the card, so it is hard to say if Annie is still at home, though we know from mom's cousins memories of visiting her at the state hospital that Annie was there in the 1940's, and never got out. I wonder what my mother knew about Annie's troubles, as Mom never mentioned them to me. Was it misplaced respect for Annie or was my mom perhaps never told?

For a long time, I had wondered about Edwin's middle name of "Nathan" - it just didn't sound like an Ettinger name choice. It turns out it may not be - his mother, Rebecca Romig Ettinger may have bestowed the middle name in honor of her father, Nathan Romig, who was still alive at Edwin's birth. 
 
Family links: 
 Parents:
  Charles H Ettinger (1839 - 1884)
  Rebecca J Romig Ettinger (1845 - 1927)
 
 Spouse:
  Annie E Martz Ettinger (1881 - 1956)*
 
 Sibling:
  Charles H Ettinger (1866 - 1934)*
  Edwin Nathan Ettinger (1879 - 1944)
 
*Calculated relationship
 
Burial:
Greenwood Cemetery
Allentown
Lehigh County
Pennsylvania, USA
Plot: Vault 11, mausoleum
 
Created by: sr/ks
Record added: Jun 21, 2006
Find A Grave Memorial# 14665195
Edwin Nathan Ettinger
Added by: sr/ks
 
Edwin Nathan Ettinger
Added by: sr/ks
 
Edwin Nathan Ettinger
Added by: sr/ks
 
 
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- Diane Miller
 Added: Jun. 25, 2014

- Diane Miller
 Added: Mar. 25, 2014

- Diane Miller
 Added: Jun. 26, 2013
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