Thursday, February 18, 2010

Postcards Graffigny-Chemin, l'eglise de St Elophe and St Christophe de Graffigny

 L'eglise de St Élophe et St Christophe a Graffigny

church of Saint Élophe and St Christophe in Graffigny, 1909

This 1909 postcard celebrates the beatification and festival of Jeanne d'Arc  by Pope Pius X. Pictured is the church of Saint Élophe and St Christophe in Graffigny, two unidentified girls stand watching a group of men.

The church is named for the saints, Saint Élophe and St. Christophe. The statutes to the left and right of the entrance are respectively, St. Elophe and St. Christopher. Saint Élophe was a French martyr of the 4th century who was decapitated. St. Christopher is remembered for his act of carrying Jesus across a dangerous river, and, so became the patron saint of travelers. The church is located on the ancient Roman Way (Voie Romaine), travelling north toward Toul, one arrives at the way-station, Soulosse-sur-St-Elophe.

My grandmother was French and she grew up in the village of Graffingy-Chemin, in a house across the street from the church of St. Elophe and St. Christopher. Marguerite Chevallier Meine and her sister Paula grew up in Graffigny.  I am not certain about the birth year, but think that Maurguerite was born in 1890 and Paula in 1888.[Check this.]

The First World War came to Graffigny-Chemin in 1914. My grandfather Madison Pearson came in January of 1918 as part of the American Expeditionary Force and the Second Division. He was billeted in the village, injured near there, and nursed back to health by my grandmother.

They fell in love, married, and returned to the United States.