Eller Chronicles Feb 1991-p-2a

The Eller Chronicles


From Dr. Rose Eller - Austria

Gröbming,, 2 Sept. 1990

Dear Eller Families!

Thank you for the letter from Dr. Gerald and the enclosed pages from which I learned a lot and which interested me very much.

Furthermore, I thank you for the Chronicle which is very informative. I thank -you also for the invitation to the Eller Family Conference in Estes Park, Colorado, which arrived today, If I remain in good health, I would be happy to come. Until then much water can flow down the Rhine and the Danube into the sea. I am very happy. in any case, for the Invitation.

What I read about the Allgägu Ellers is new to me. I did not know until now that Ellers were there. I have, however, a connection in that region and I will inquire. Only I can't do it immediately. If that is correct, then the Ellers came out of the South Tyrol into the Allgäu., for the connection between these two regions has been very diverse in earlier times. The poor children of the South Tyrol and the Vorarlberg wandered during the spring days into the Allgäu where they herded cattle, cows and sheep for the farmers. The adults who were better off moved as craftsmen from the South Tyrol and Vorarlberg into the Allgäu; they were mainly carpenters and masons, or builders. In the Bregenz Forest.. an area in the Vorarlberg, there lies a small town called. Au, the birthplace of a great Vorarlberg poet., Natalie Beer, who wrote a novel, Jubel der Steine [Jubilation of the Stones], about her ancestors who were employed-as builders in the Aligäu. Natalie resided in her lifetime in Rankweil. She had only to climb over the mountain to be in the Allgäu, She was over 80 years old when she died three years ago.

Tomorrow I am going to Algund in the South Tyrol where I have already stayed a number of times. There I will meet the family of Franz Eller, a machine dealer; in his house there hangs an Eller coat of arms from 1620. When I saw it the first time I wrote to the Innsbruck Archives and requested a photocopy. The answer was distressing: since the end of the First World War the Archives have been forbidden to give out copies. I can explain the reply only by saying that the Austrian Constitution contained the ban when the Republic was founded after the breaking up of the Danube monarchy. In the Constitution the titles of the nobility were abolished and with them the family symbol, or the coat of arms. Now there are not only coats of arms for the nobility, but for the citizens and peasants as well. To possess them is a privilege, a sign of merit for which one had to petition the Emperor, who conferred the coat of arms, Since Hans Kelsen was a Jew who wrote the Austrian Constitution in 1918, he understood nothing of German names,


and above all did not know that the whole name, not just part of a names empowered a person to rank, Thus the Austrian nobility may no longer be called "von," as, for example, the just-named State Chancellor of the Czech State President Schwarzenberg, who will be zealously intent upon winning back his vast estates in Czechoslovakia, in other words, Bohemia, which were expropriated by the state; I do not think this possible. He is actually Prince Schwarzenberg and stems from the famous family of von Schwarzenberg, who for centuries produced generals, the most famous of whom conquered Napoleon I at Leipzig together with the Prussians and suppressed the Prague and. Viennese uprising in the Revolution year 1848. These Schwarzenbergs still have their estates in Austria, Switzerland, and France,, but no longer where the Communists seized power for themselves In 1945.

But back to the Eller coat of arms. This time I will ask about the Eller coat of arms in the Museum in Bozen, and perhaps I will have more luck there. It is: the field is quartered, and in each there are two jumping animals, I can't remember whether they are lions or ibexes, and each has two bands of Luther roses. This is for me the proof that the Ellers were Lutherans, and that they were not permitted to practice it, for the ruler prescribed the religion. Thus the migrations already in the 18th century out of the Rhineland which was arch-Catholic with the Bishoprics of Mainz, Cologne, and. Trier.

Eller instead of Erle is only in North Germany and also along the Rhine; it is a dialect word the way the German language has many dialects as its basis, and from these dialects Luther created. the common German language. Thus Luther is not only the founder of a religion., but the creator of a language, a man of immense intellectual and spiritual achievement. The present-day Lutheran Church bespeaks Luther daily, hourly. I myself am Lutheran and have studied Luther very closely, The South German Ellers who all emanate from the Tyrol and today are widespread, derive their name from the Gothic. That was what the Family Research Institute in Leipzig wrote to me before the war, I adhere to that, for in our dialect the Erle is called Edlen. The diffusion of this name goes up to the Main which as a river is a noteworthy linguistic boundary, Even the Palatinates are permitted to belong to the South German line. The Düsseldorfers certainly not.

Georg Eller surely belongs to the North German Line, for his ancestors came up the Rhine. I am in constant contact with him. This past summer he was in a bad way with a bronchial ailment and attempts to find a cure in the Black Forest. In any event, he sent greetings from there. It is really splendid that there is a book in the U.S. about the genealogy of the various families.


If the soldier Eller really carried on research in Europe, he should put the results on paper so that comparisons can be made here and over there. He must have been a soldier of the occupation in the Federal Republic of German, for we have not had an occupation army in Austria since 1955. Only Mr. Wiesenthal is guarded by Israeli troops, but just a few Austrians know that. Research is best done on the spot. The parish offices are always duly qualified with their baptism, marriage, and death registers. Little is accomplished by writing to these places.

Eller Ritter [knight] is a mistranslation. I have never come across the name in the ranks of the nobility. Besides that, we put the title in front of the name and write Knight von Eller. Perhaps it has been confused with Richter [Judge] (one who stands in front of the court); perhaps it is a first name, such as Richard. Precisely Düsseldorf, as I know it, is no region for knights, but rather a city of citizens. In Vienna and other Danube cities there were in the Middle Ages town citizens [burghers], for example, the Pilgram [?] in Vienna, but no longer in the 16th century. And not the younger city, to which I count Düsseldorf. That the occupation of the Ellers changed. in 250 years lies in the nature of things. As immigrants they had to provide for their daily bread by clearing the land. That Is still the case in South America today. Concerning settling the land we say: the first generation suffers death, the second suffers deprivation, the third gets the bread. [This rhymes in German: Tod, Not, Brot,] Thus when it comes to land grants a good 100 years is reckoned. One gives what bears fruit, If their ancestors also worked with wood, then they are of South German origin, for the North German states produce no building timber. The Viennese Herbert Eller is also town master carpenter. His grandfather was the same in Moravia, surely given orders to go there for service in the army and then he married and remained there. His father was driven out of Moravia in 1945 and settled in Vienna. I am also writing my family history, but am always interrupted by other projects. I am bound to a greater circle of friends which does not let me rest academically. I was supposed to have finished a paper on the Slavic question a year ago, a burning German question since the Poles and the Slovenes claim German territory--see all of East Prussia and East Germany--which we don't want to give away.

I am sending along the Bulletin about my literature prize which describes some of my activities.

In November I will be in Dortmund for 8 days, where I have to give a lecture at a fairy tale convention. I have written about the fairy tale, and in May I met an astronomer in North Germany who in his way came to the same conclusion as the age of the fairy tales. Some 5000 years before Christ. I was very happy about that.
I greet everyone very cordially, and will keep my eyes open for these things. I wish you good health! We are happy that on October 3rd the two Germanys will be reunited. Much is still not good. But it is very important, Only now is the ruin of the land and the people made manifest.

Rose Eller


Dr Rose and German text

Bulletin of the Dr. Rose Eller Prize for Literature
Information enclosed. in box, p. 1.
The Dr. Rose Eller Prize for Literature was first announced in 1988 and on April 18, 1989 it was first awarded in Gröbming. The prize will be advertised every five years, and every two years after the awarding of the prize, the winning entries will appear in book form. This literature prize is endowed by private means, without any public support. Any German author, no matter what age, may compete for the prize. The submitted works can be published or unpublished, The judging takes place in complete secrecy, and submissions are blind. Any form of favoritism or rigging of results is thus ruled out. No influence from political or ideological groups or lobbies is tolerated. The Dr. Rose Eller Prize differs in many important ways from many other prizes and competitions and from all official awards,

From Dr. Eller's speech, p. I

The prize was advertised from January 1 until June 21, 1988 in all major and current German newspapers both domestic and foreign and overseas.

The official applications came from Southwest Africa, Argentina, England,, Norway,, The Federal Republic of Germany, unfortunately none from Central Germany [The German Democratic Republic] although the prize was announced in 12 newspapers there, from Switzerland, Italy,, Romania,, that is Transylvania, Israel, and Austria including the South Tyrol. 371 submissions arrived, from which 306 were examined and. judged. 65 entries did not comply with the stated and published requirements and were disqualified. The entrants were free to express themselves in poetry or prose. 180 decided, for poetry, the rest, 126, chose narrative prose, The highest possible score was 50 points; no one achieved that, 41 entrants had a score from 25 to 40, or 13%. 49 entrants scored between 20 and 25, or 16%….

Summary of the Konrad Windisch speech, P. 3

The closing speech by Konrad Windiseh has as its theme the definition and meaning of art. He singles out Dr, Eller for praise in that she founded and endowed a literary prize that is completely independent and fair; only the work is Judged and neither the influence nor any special interest of the author plays a role. Windiseh states that many more people entered the competition than they had expected. He says that in the future people will be able to look back and say, much was underhanded and rigged in those days, but not the Dr. Rose Eller Prize.

In the entire bulletin there is no mention of any of Dr. Eller's personal accomplishments or activities other than her work with the prize.


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