A Valentine for Laura Dinsmore

In a box of family memorabilia, I found a valentine.

For years I’ve had this valentine and have wondered about it. Was this a valentine that Laura received; who had given it to her? Was this one she signed her name to only never gave it to a friend? Why has it been kept all these years? Was it forgotten? Was it meant to be kept and treasured?


Laura was born in 1890. She was 21 when this valentine was signed. She would marry Hans Fink a few years later in 1914. Was the valentine from him?



This isn’t just a valentine card. It’s glimpse back to the year 1911 when someone cared enough for my great grandmother to give her a heart shaped card. It’s a look back at a time when sending real cards to someone was important. It’s a look back at a time when a simple card was treasured and revered instead of thrown out with the trash or burned in the stove.

For just a moment I am holding the card as Laura might have and we are both frozen in time. She wondering about the future; me wondering about the past, wishing I knew her.

2 thoughts on “A Valentine for Laura Dinsmore

  1. Thanks for sharing this family treasure from our grandmother. I’m sorry to say that since I was not yet four at the time of her death, my main lingering memory of Laura is of my mother taking me to see her as she lay in a coma. I know I must have seen her many times before that (my parents had brought her out to visit what would be our new home the year before), but his last visit was the one that remains in my memory. Any insight to what her life was like is more than welcome, and I’d love to know how this mysterious Valentine survived. Some years ago we enjoyed with one of my cousins reading various valentines and other courting mementos that passed between my dad’s parents. It always seems to be a particularly pleasurable experience to happen upon some evidence of how our forebears met and became couples. In most cases that process remains an unfortunate mystery to us. Thanks for the memory.

    1. Thanks, Jim, for the comment! I only know what my grandpa, Glenn, shared with me about her. He loved her certainly and said she was a great mother. I wish I knew her.

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