Photo taken in:ProstejovCountry name at time of photo:Austria-Hungary, pre 1918Country name today:Czech Republic
This is a photograph of my father, Friedrich Stecklmacher, as a soldier of the Austro-Hungarian army. It was likely taken in Prostejov, sometime during 1917 - 1918. Father used to tell me that his father, Grandpa Jakob Stecklmacher, came to Prostejov from Boskovice when he was 13, with his brother Salomon and his sister, after their parents had died. My mother later told me, that when he was young, Grandpa Stecklmacher worked for a shirt manufacturer. I still remember Grandpa's little shop on Masaryk Square, diagonally across the church. Today the Prior department store is on that spot. It wasn't far from the Jewish streets. Grandpa founded a business that my father then inherited, despite being the youngest of five sons. Before my parents built the house at Sadky No. 4 in 1933, my father had a smaller shop on the corner of Komenskeho and, I think, Lutinovova Street, again close to the Jewish streets. What did Grandpa and my father do ? how did they make a living? In Prostejov there were many factories and workshops that manufactured clothing. I still remember how people from the town and perhaps also from the surrounding villages would take home cut clothing. Often they'd carry them on their backs. They'd sew them at home and then return them to the owner again. Later the sewing was already done in the factories. Grandpa and Father had a dealership. They represented companies and manufacturers from other places, where they made buttons, clasps, thread, silk, lining fabrics, and wadding. There were samples in the shop, and Father used to take them around from factory to factory to get orders.