From the letter of Lina Zeising: [Comment by J.H.: The writer is the sister of Adolf Zeising. The letter is addressed to Margarethe Wecklein, nee Zeising, daughter of Adolf Zeising and Grandmother of Werner Heisenberg]

Bernburg, June 29, [18]76


My dear good Marge!

It was with great pleasure when I saw the great quartets in our parental home  mentioned in the obituary [for Adolf Zeising], they slipped my thoughts even though they were not forgotten. Well, these were also for us children joyful days; during winter they took place inside of course, and frequently numerous listerners assembled under the windows. That also happend when our late father in the mornings played for himself improvising full of soul.

In the summer the quartets frequently took place in the woods at a beautifully chosen location.

Then the maid had to come with a basket packed with dishes and food since the three invited Gentelmen were our guests naturely. The maid also had to carry the instruments. Once arrived at this location we kids had to collect wood while the maid was building a hearth from stones and soon the most wonderfull smells were spreading since these for our late father were a must.

For our late mother these were really holidays as well; she loved music and since she was proud of our late fathers accomplishments she had developed a really good taste; and that she was interested in his art gave the father lots of pleasure. One event in that respect is quite well in my memory; he was also interested in violin making, of course only in a theoretical sense. He recognized immediately when with a few changes a lesser violin could be made to a good one, and that he proved. On several occasions he bought cheap violins and at a skilled instrument maker in Ballenstedt he had them modified in his presence and according to his instructions; and two of them, I remeber exactly, he sold in Hamburg for quite a hight price. At one time when he had two of such violins in his house and in the morning as usual his musical studies conducted, he came to mother into the kitchen and asked her to listen very carefully to his playing to begin next. He would play two different violins and after a little pause he would play the second one. Then she should tell him which she would consider the better one. And when she really recognized the right one he declared her beaming as a deserving wife of a musician. However, even though I gave it much thought, I do not remember that he supposedly travelled with an artist from Vienna (Seidel) for performances. By digging hard into old memories it appears to me that he mentioned once a friend whom he met in Amsterdam who cheated and decieved him later, but all of this is so vague that I can not make a connection. Also about newspapers I have no memory; well, at that time it was not as it is now that a lot is written about art; how few newspapers exited then and thos contained  almost exclusively political and states matters. Your good late Papa probabely meant the validation certificate and the reciept made out in French which he brought back from the West Indies. Those Katchen took with her back to Glasgow when she was here in 1868.
You probabely can use some of what I write to you for the Family Chronicles. Today I want to add only one thing: When in Leipzig the big Guttenberg-Festival was celebrated in memory of the invention and art of book printing - maybe the year 1837 or 38 - all owners of printing presses in Germany submitted poems to glorify that event; and the only one in Bernburg, HE Gröning, turned to your late Papa with the request to write a poem for this occasion; maybe it is in his edition of poems. After a short while when this was almost over HE Gröning came with a letter that he had received from a Geheimer Hofrat Reich in Dresden in which he asks if the writer of that poem, Ad. Zeising, could possibly be a son of the late Chambermusician Z. formerly living in Ballenstedt. He has still tremendous interest in the latter since at his time he had to thank him for many enjoyments of his art. If this one is his son, as he is suspecting, then he would be the worthy son of his father since what the former gloriously produced in music the son is now producing in poetry. If so he should let him know his letter.
These are happy and pleasant memories, that way you love to remember those that passed away.
The dates quoted in the obituary about Papa's finishing the high school and the university confirm with my own estimates which I made before I received your letter; thus they must be right.

Petris came back 14 days ago happy and thank god much better than last year from the rehab in Karlsbad. This time the rehab was more effective than last year with the uncle; also it was beneficial with cousin Hermann. Petris are happily back in their lovely home. But I, your decrepid aunt Lina, you'll be surprised, plans to travel early July, 5th or 6th to Stuckberg near Zuobst. Pastor Schmidts invited me gracefully; in earlier times I visited there more frequently, and I think, so God will, I will accept their invitation once more and make this short journey. I look forward to being together with lovely people for a few weeks. I can't even tell you how often these days I had hoped to have a real talk with you. ...


Your loving and caring aunt Lina