Dorothy Palmer

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bread, Reading Eagle newspaper, folk cures, powwowing, healing remedies, Pennsylvania Dutch dialect


A handwritten letter from Dorothy Palmer addressed to Alfred L. Shoemaker, dating from circa 1950. Within, Palmer expresses her enjoyment of Shoemaker's column in the Reading Eagle, and provides folk cures from her grandmother.


Dorothy Palmer


Alfred L. Shoemaker

Corresponds to:

Packet 174-1 to 174-3


Reading, Pennsylvania


712 Sch. Ave.

Reading, Pa.

Dear Sir:-

In Wednesday night’s Eagle you had a verse that you said was untranslatable, well my grandmother often said it to me - Heele, heele, hinggl drek Bis Mayre frii is ales vek. And then she would blow on the injury and it would seem to get better. It means -

Heal, heal, chicken dirt till tomorrow morning all will be gone.

She also had one she said -

Fire, forbrent mere net - “With fire we won’t burn”

brote forhungert mere net - “With bread we won’t starve”

Wasser, fordostch mere net - “With water we won’t thirst”

In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost - Amen.

I can’t write it like I can say it but maybe you can understand it. I enjoy your column very much as that is all I could speak until I went to school. I still talk it.

Thanking you

Mrs. Dorothy Palmer


English and Pennsylvania German

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Letter From Dorothy Palmer to Alfred L. Shoemaker



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