Collection 00/MS.148 - Lucy Goldschmid Knittel Papers

Identity area

Reference code

US BCMLA 00/MS.148


Lucy Goldschmid Knittel Papers


  • 1900-1930 (Creation)

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Extent and medium

0.45 Cubic Feet

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Name of creator

Biographical history

obituary from Evening Kansan-Republican, vol. 45, no. 110, June 14, 1938, p. 4 “Death came to the Bethel Home for the Aged this morning at 8:45 a. m. taking one of its residents, Mrs. Lucy Knittle [sic] who had made her home there for two years, since the death of her husband, the late George Knittle. “The funeral service will be held at the Bethel Hospital chapel Thursday afternoon at 2:30, the body being taken from the Sprinker Mortuary where it is being care for, to the Home on Thursday morning. “Mrs. Knittle was born October 17, 1887, at Zurich, Switzerland, and had had a most interesting life. She was a woman of culture and refinement and was ever ready to be of service in every way possible. Her church affiliation was with the First Methodist church and the pastor Rev. S. W. Keller, and Rev. James Rayburn will conduct the services. “Interment will be in Greenwood Cemetery.” excerpts from a biographical article in box 1: “Mrs. Knittle [sic] was born in Zurich, Switzerland, 67 years ago. Her name was Lucy Goldschmid. Her father was a native merchant of Zurich who spent part of his time as an importer in Singapore. Her mother was English, the granddaughter of an English Army Surgeon who had been stationed at Sarawak in Borneo. Lucy Goldschmid was one of seven children - five girls and two boys. She was educated in Zurich and when in her twenties she became much interested in Red Cross. “. . . After the Red Cross was launched in 1863 and 1864 the man who had lighted the Red Cross torch [Henri Dunant] was forgotten while new leaders carried the torch ahead. Henri Dunant went into seclusion and in 1896 he was ill and in a sanitarium at Heiden in Appenzell. His physician made known his whereabouts and over all Switzerland he was again acclaimed. Red Cross organizations in Switzerland became eneergized. May 8, which was his birthday, was set aside in honor of him and Lucy Goldschmid was appointed one of a delegation to call on Henri Dunant at Heiden. Illness at the last minute prevented her going, but she now possesses a picture of a banner presented to him by the delegation on that occasion. . . . “After having some Red Cross training in a course which apparently approximated a combined First Aid and Home Hygiene course, she went to Singapore, where she always spent part of her time with the rest of the family. A Swiss friend had been taken ill in Bangkok, Siam, and she set sail from Singapore for Bangkok to visit and aid this friend. It was on board this ship that she met Henry Linn, an American mining expert, who was returning to his work in the interior of Siam. He had been ill and was returning to duty after having spent some time recuperating in Manila at the home of ex-President Taft who was then Governor General of the Phillippines. Some time after this, Lucy Goldschmid married Henry Linn and he took his bride into the heart of the Siam jungle where his work in the mines kept him. “In recalling her seven months in the jungle Mrs. Knittle described an epidemic of fever during which she labored night and day to save lives - using what she had learned in her Swiss Red Cross lessons in Home Nursing. In this jungle her dog was killed by a ferocious beast, and tarantulas and scorpions were common. She described the visit of the Crown Prince of Siam who, as King Prajadhiopk of Siam, visited the United States in 1931. A reply from the King of Siam to her letter of invitation to him at that time to visit her in Newton is among her treasures. “After seven months in Siam, some catastrophe destroyed the mines in which her husband was interested and eventually Mr. and Mrs. Linn came to American and in 1912 Mr. Linn died in Oklahoma City where the two had been living. “Later Mrs. Linn married George Knittle of Newton and for twenty-one years this woman of so many lands has lived contentedly in a middle western town. “Although Henri Dunant never married, he had two nephews, Maurice Dunant and Paul Des Couttes, both of Switzerland. Before his death Henri Dunant asked Mrs. Knittle to translate Un Souvenir de Solferino into English, but Mrs. Knittle had forgotten so much of her French, she did not feel equal to it. It was after this that the material compiled from Henry Dunant’s notes and comments was translated and this manuscript with photographs of Henri Dunant as well as of the nephews and Swiss haunts of Dunant are at present in the hands of a Newton publisher. After compiling the material and translating it into English the work was sent to Paul Des Couttes in Geneva for revision and Mrs. Knittle is still corresponding with this nephew of Dunant.”

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Scope and content

Chinese language item(s), photos, biographical material, correspondence, school certificates, Red Cross history manuscript, art print

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open for research

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Language of material

  • Chinese
  • English

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