The Von Trapp Way

The Von Trapp family grew up with music in  their household. Their father played several instruments; their children’s first mother played the piano and violin.  The children learned to play music as well, “Sometimes our house must have sounded like a musical conservatory”, says Maria Von Trapp, one of  the children of this family made famous on the 1960s movie “The Sound of Music”.

The Von Trapps became famous entertainers in Europe in the 1930s. When they fled Austria in 1938 because of Adolph Hitler’s annexation of the country, they carried on their work in the United States.  They were immigrants, but they were able to make a life for themselves as a family in their new country.  They worked together not only in music, but in supporting the family financially.

Maria Von Trapp applied for U.S. citizenship in 1944 with this declaration. Her family, working together, went on to do very well in their new country.

As de facto immigrants to America (my family and I just  came back to the States after spending much of the decade overseas), I have been wracking my brain concerning how to make a go of it back here financially.  There are six of us under one roof, and my job as an adjunct university instructor isn’t going to pay the bills.

The Von Trapps provide a model for me.  They kept their family enterprise intact when they came to the USA . They still operated as an economic unit.

Families have worked together economically for much of the history of mankind.  It is only  in modern times that forces have entered in to spread us around like so many fleas on a dog.

I hope to implement what I am calling the “Von Trapp Way” in my family soon.  In these difficult times, it would behoove other Americans to consider doing the same.


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