Jiglau 1918

Unknown soldiers, and friend

Jiglau 1918 (Note on Back of RPPC)

For this week’s sortie into Postcard Friendship Friday, let us consider this photograph of friends.  Two of them are clearly soldiers, and the notation “1918” puts them at the end of World War I.  But whence?

I puzzled over the origin of this card for quite a while.  First there was some ambiguity as to the handwriting on the back — the only clue whatsoever on this real photo postcard.  Tig lieu, perhaps?  Researching several permutations finally yielded success after I decided that the word was “Jiglau”.

It turns out that “Jiglau” is a variation on the spelling of Iglau, which is the German name for Jihlava, a city in the Vysočina Region of what is now the Czech Republic.  Its predecessor, Czechoslovakia or the Czechoslovak Republic, was created on October 28, 1918.  Previously, it had been part of Austria-Hungary.

Let us assume that two of these young men are newly minted Czech soldiers, and that the three of them are posing to celebrate the end of hostilities and the birth of a nation.

Be sure to check out the other blogs celebrating Postcard Friendship Friday.

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16 Responses

  1. Muse Swings says:

    Perhaps the seated person was 4F. Very interesting card with a good story to tell….

  2. Marie says:

    I appreciate the depth and research of this post. You have been quite the detective Chris! This is one of the reasons that I love vintage cards:)

  3. Lydia says:

    Well I sure love this photo and what you discovered behind it. Fantastic!

  4. Sheila says:

    A nice piece of detective work there. That’s always the best part as far as I’m concerned!

  5. Daryl says:

    What a lovely postcard to choose for this holiday week …. Peace ..

  6. Great story behind this postcard and great choice for this week.

  7. Judy says:

    I too collect RPPC with unnamed people or places and it is fun to try and figure out where the picture was taken when. If nothing else you can write an imaginary story about the photo. Let us hope the war was over. Thanks for stopping by my blog.
    Judy

  8. What I really appreciate about these high-quality studio cards is the amount of detail in the background. We can learn so much about an era by examining these details. Even if it’s not an everyday room it still tells us something about the decorating tastes of the period.
    Evelyn in Montreal

  9. Catherine says:

    I get some vintage postcards representing members of my family (I’ve the same representation of them edited asd a simple picture, with the photographer’s signature). Many often they were in front of their house, or farm, or seated in the photographer’s decor.
    We can imagine the picture was taken in a private place, and that they’re 3 brothers immortalizing 3 different carreers. Two in the army, and the other, the most elegant, couldn’t enlist and made up his mind to be an intellectual : ) (I find this last explanation, because he makes me think of Oscar Wilde).
    It was a rare find though.

    I wish you an Happy Easter week-end.

  10. Pearl says:

    Terrific postcard… such somber looks on their faces.
    Really enjoyed learning about this history behind this… Hope you’re Easter is wonderful…
    ~blessings~
    Pearl

  11. Margo M says:

    Very interesting little trio. Thank you for the history. Fascinating! Happy weekend!

  12. Postcardy says:

    Good detective work. It is disappointing when photos don’t have any identification at all.

  13. Eddy says:

    Hello Chris,
    Cette carte me fait penser que, étant passionné de la WWI et de l’aviation de la même époque, je vais faire un jour un post sur l’escadrille LAFAYETTE dont je suis, actuellement, à la recherche de cartes et autres documents (j’ai déjà quelques livres).
    Joyeuses Pâques.

  14. Müge says:

    Very interesting card indeed. The young man on the left seems happier than the other two. But the uniforms of the soldiers are quite similar, so both of them should be from the same army. And since the photo was taken in Iglau in 1918, they were probably the first citizens of the new born Czechoslovakia as you said :-)

    Have a nice week-end and a Happy Easter!

  15. steviewren says:

    They look like babies….entirely too young to have to deal with a war. It makes me think of my sons. Maybe the boys are brothers and they had this card made for their mother.

  16. Rossana says:

    This is a very old post, however… my surname is Jiglau. I am Romanian, no link with Croatia that I know of but very interesting nonetheless! The happier gentleman looks a lot like the men in my family do!

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