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Links to letters written by Art or mentioning Art & family: Letters


Arthur Louis Wachdorf

3-18-1915 to 10-21-2002



  1910-Edward Wachdorf Jr.

  1912-Irene H. Wachdorf

  1917-Harry Wachdorf

  1919-Jerry Wachdorf

  1923-Frank Wachdorf

  1926-Larry Wachdorf

  1929-Dolores Wachdorf





Irene Safranski




current generations

not listed

to protect

their privacy


Art parents:

Edward Wachdorf


Irene Pfleger

Irene's parents:

Anton Safranski



His maternal grandparents:

John Pfleger & Maria Grimm


His paternal grandparents:

Anton Wachdorf & Anna Klein


His maternal aunts & uncles:

c.1878-Henry Pfleger & Louise; 1880-Oscar Pfleger & Annie; 1883-Lou Pfleger & Gert; 1884/5-Dell Pfleger & Harry Wachdorf


His paternal aunts & uncles:

1883-Clara Roster & Henry; 1884-Kitty Hochertz & Tony; 1886-Harry H. Wachdorf & Dell; 1892-Joseph Wachdorf & Jessie; 1895-Lettie Myers & Harvey; 1897-Mae Wachdorf; 1899-Frances Stevens & Frank; 1902-Madge Wachdorf


His great-grandparents: Frank Grimm & Katerina Lukner

Jean Pfleger & Katharina Walter

John Klein & Christina Alberg

(Wachdorf ancestors unknown)

His great-great-grandparents & more in Pfleger Family tree

Click on image to enlarge. Once enlarged, to zoom, move cursor to right of image, back onto image, and click again. More photos and info to be added later.

Art front & center with his Aunt Mae Wachdorf, brother, sister, and his cousins, the daughters of Clara Roster

Edward Wachdorf holding his son, Art, c. 1916

Wanting the unknown woman to give him that dog

Wanting Ed to give him that dog

Lizzie Murray, Art, Ed and that elusive dog

Ed, Sis, Art strangling her, their Mom, Irene Pfleger Wachdorf, looking pregnant

same group, pregnancy more apparent (makes it 1917)

Sis, Art, and Harry being held by their father 1917-18

Irene, Ed, Dell, Sis, Art, Dell's friends and Harry in arms

Art and Sis with their parents on the left Aunt Dell on the right

Art, Sis and the one that looks like a girl is Harry

Sis, Art, Harry and unknown on left (Weinhober=Harry)

Sis and Art

Art, Ed, Sis

Art's Grandma Pfleger holding Harry, same day

Sis and Art, with their grandmother behind them

same group, different moment

clockwise from left: Sis (Irene), Art, Ed Jr., Harry (with banana curls), Jerry (born 1919)

1st row 3rd from left

Art on far right in his band uniform, his brother Ed 2nd from left, other two unknown

Art 12 from left 1931 St. Martin's School Orchestra (Sis two to his right)

Art in his band uniform

Art and unknown in front of unknown background

Art in St Martin's School Orchestra

maybe his senior portrait?

Art on left at 1934 wedding of his brother Ed to Marge Kary, with Sis on the right

Art on the left at the June, 1935 wedding of Sis Wachdorf and Dick Heagberg (seated far right is Coletta Wachdorf, standing 3rd fr right Chris Wagner)

1-7-1939 Groom & bride Art & Irene, his sister Irene "Sis" Wachdorf & her brother Ted Szafranski

working for a Sinclair gas station

Irene Szafranski Wachdorf & Marge Kary Wachdorf

from left: Harry, Charlotte, Millie & Dick Heagberg, Irene & Art, Ed & Marge, Bunky (photo courtesy of Dick Heagberg)

Close up of Irene from previous (enlargement made decades ago)

Wilbur "Peanut" Schuch flanked by Art on the left and Ed on the right with Jerry behind him

Larry on the left and Art on the right, setting up a putt

Art on the front porch swing, 58th St, with his father, c. 1950

12-8-1959 Art with the son of his brother Harry

THIS PAGE IS UNDER CONSTRUCTION. Letters & photos to be added

Baby calendar of Irene Pfleger Wachdorf lists: Thursday, March 18, 1915, Arthur Louis Wachdorf born at ten to 7 a.m. weight eight and a half pounds. Sunday, April 11, 1915, Arthur Louis was christened at St. Joachim's church by Father Woulfe, godparents Lou Pfleger and Clara Roster. Nov. 24, 1915, Arthur Louis cut his first tooth on left side of mouth found by Ma (presume she means her mother, Maria Grimm Pfleger, living with them at the time) (Note: Thursday's child has far to go. Note also: all of Irene's children except Larry and Dolores were born at home.)

Cook County birth certificate (only Art, Harry, Larry and Dolores have birth certificates, which I think means they are the only births attended by a physician.) Arthur Louis Wachdorf 3-18-1915, third child, third birth, born at 649 E. 87th Place. Father Edward Wachdorf, age 26, born in Chicago, residing at 649 E. 87th Place. Occupation: agent for Sinclair Refining Co. Oil. Mother Irene Rose Pfleger, born in Jackson Michigan, occupation: housewife. Attendant Mr. C. Muller (Mullin?) MD of 5900 Wentworth (same doctor will deliver Harry).

1920 census, 649 87th Place, 9th Ward (Township: tract Ag. 5 bounded by 84th St. Cottage Grove 88th Place and precinct line State St.--this was out in the country at the time. They even raised chickens):

Edward Wachdorf, 31, office manager for oil manufacturer

wife Irene, 32

Son Edward, 9

Daughter Irene, 7

Son Arthur,4

Son Harry, 2

Son Gerald, 4 months

mother-in-law Mary Pfleger, widow

sister-in-law Adele Pfleger, 35, dress maker in a general merchandise establishment.


1930 census, 334 W. 54th St.:

Edward J. Wachdorf owns home value $6000, has a radio. 41, married at 21, occupation: agent for Sinclair Refinery.

Wife Irene, 42, married at 21.

Son Edward, 19, shipping clerk

daughter Irene, 17, doing bookkeeping for a stationary company

son Arthur, 15, no occupation

son Henry, 12

son Gerald, 10

son Francis, 7

son Lawrence, 4

daughter Dolores, 11 months

sister-in-law Adele Wachdorf (no longer Pfleger), age 45, married at 40 (though husband Harry Wachdorf is living down the street with his parents), occupation: seamstress for Dept. Store.


Reminiscence by his brother Larry:

Dolores was a young girl when she essayed her first cake--a 3 layer effort, and it flopped. It stood 4" high at the edges but only 1" high in the center. She was almost inconsolable until our kind-hearted brother Art came home. "It'll be okay, Boop--we can fix it." And they did. They filled the center with bananas and they piled the whole thing high with frosting. And as each of the other brothers came home he told us we had better not make fun of her cake, or else. And we didn't. In fact it was just about the best cake ever, all bananas and frosting.


Art never sent a single birthday card when he could send five. The cards always had bright yellow smiley face stickers on them (not the standard ones, slightly goofier ones) and silly jokes inside. He sent little bits of sunshine, and was a cheerful and deeply considerate person. He was so good-natured that the only time I ever saw him without a smile is in the photograph above, "Wanting the unknown woman to give him that dog." I have an audio recording from the early sixties that transcription will not do justice, as he does Elmer Fudd blustery imitations of everyone getting false starts trying to record, and then goes breathless with laughter.

Social Security Death Index:

Irene S. Wachdorf 9-1-1916 to 8-30-1999 Dundee IL

Arthur L. Wachdorf 3-18-1915 to 10-21-2002 Dundee IL

Chicago Tribune 10-23-2002: Arthur Wachdorf, 87, of East Dundee, beloved husband of the late Irene,; loving father of ***; dear grandfather of ***, *** and ***; great grandfather of ***, ***, and *** and ***; fond brother of Frank "Bunky" (Jinny), Larry and Dolores (Les) Hardison. Funeral Mass 10 a.m. Friday at St. Catherine of Siena, 845 W. Main St., West Dundee...

Links to letters:

Six of the 1932 letters beyond those hyperlinked here also mention Art, but those he wrote (or at least wrote a few lines in) are: 9-9-1932 Wachdorfs; 9-16-1932 Irene; 9-1932 circular letter; 11-17-1932 Art

Still to add: letters from his parents 1954-1969 and letters to his sister.

Letter by Art: 4-13-1967 Art; 1969 April 15 Art

He, wife, daughter, mother-in-law mentioned 1955 Apr 1 Irene; 1956 Oct 18 Irene cites his daughter as a better letter writer than him; 1957 Jan 2; 1957 Feb 21 (refers only to his daughter); he, wife, daughter & her family discussed briefly 1968 July 25 Harry; removal of cyst from back 1969 Feb 5 Harry

Also have an audio tape from the late 1950s/early 1960s.