I am finally finishing the family history after four years of writing on and off (more off :-p). I wrote it for several reasons. My mother, and to some degree, my grandmother Spiegler, had scrupulously saved all of these historical artifacts: newspaper articles, letters, and photographs. I sort of felt that even though I wanted to throw all of this stuff away, I needed to write it as a book that should be shared with other people both inside and outside of the family.
The stories are not about genealogy. Rather, it is about my great-grandparents who started a general store in Des Plaines and how the family ran it as a department store for 90 years. The family not only ran the store but were very involved in civic and business organizations like the Elks Club, the Lions Club, and the Chamber of Commerce. They sat on the board of directors of the town’s three banks.
In the end, the story is not about my family but about the people who worked at the store, some for a long time, the customers, and the town of Des Plaines. The story is set in the history of the whole country for almost a century. It sort of describes an era of life in a small town.