Cape Town, Wednesday, November, 1900

To my dearest wife, Taube Kretzmar, May she live in much joy, and my dear children, David and Noah, and my daughters, Leah and Freda, may they grow up in wealth and comfort.


Your letter of 18th September I have received safely. I thank God for His mercy, that He grants you good health. I was very happy with the news and I can tell you that I myself am TG in good health. May God grant us always good health and prosperity.


What you write about Mendel Arenhoff, I can tell you that I see him every day, but the gerus must have got lost on the way somewhere. Maybe it got mislaid by the first hand that got it in Russia. I would have written to you in case, in a letter about his arrival in South Africa, so that you should not say that when I have some news I do not write it.


But you, from your side, can write me something, too, and not to postpone it until we meet personally. The story is as follows, your letter arrives c/o Lipman Rubin, and afterwards, when I open the letter and read it, when it is in my hands, you could also have a few stamps ready. Write me where you are dealing and with whom and how was the crop in the fields and if you are doing business in the shop, please write me everything in detail.  And when you finish your writing and you close your letter, my brother Yaacov will go to Simberig, he will post it and I will receive it, so you have no excuse and you can satisfy me and write something new, and for myself I may also find something of interest to write, and with this I close my writing and when you receive this letter please write me how my son David is getting on in cheder this winter, and how far is he in his studies. Please write everything about each child, and everyone should sign the letter by himself. Adieu, live well, as is the wish of your loving and true husband, Tuvye Kretzmar


And you, my brother Yaacov, I ask to write me what you are doing in business – business on your own? Or if you are working for someone else, like a minor officer in the army. And what’s news about the klezmorim – an orchestra – are they still so stubborn that they don’t want to play? Please write me everything as is the wish of your brother and your son, Tuvye Kretzmar

© Kaplan Centre
Letters courtesy of Phil Kretzmar