Film vs. Reality: the Story that is real of Von Trapp Family

By Joan Gearin

Maria von Trapp, picture from her Declaration of Intention, dated January 21, 1944. (Records of District Courts for the usa, RG 21)

I first saw the film The noise of Music as being a child, probably within the belated 1960s. We liked the performing, and Maria ended up being therefore pretty and type! I was struck and annoyed by the somewhat sanitized story of the von Trapp family it told, as well as the bad 1960s hairdos and costumes as I grew older, more aware of world history, and saturated by viewing the movie at least once yearly. “It is perhaps perhaps not historically accurate!” I would protest, a tiny archivist in the generating. Within the very early 1970s We saw Maria asian brides von Trapp by by herself on Dinah Shore’s tv series, and kid, had been she in contrast to the Julie Andrews type of Maria! She did not seem like Julie, and she found as being a force that is true of. In taking into consideration the fictionalized film version of Maria von Trapp when compared with this really Maria that is real von, We arrived to appreciate that the story regarding the von Trapp household ended up being most likely one thing nearer to human being, and as a consequence significantly more interesting, compared to the movie led me to think.

An element of the story associated with von that is real Trapp are located in the documents for the National Archives. If they fled the Nazi regime in Austria, the von Trapps traveled to America. Their entry in to the usa and their subsequent applications for citizenship are documented into the holdings associated with nationwide Archives and Records management.

Reality from Fiction

The Story of the Trapp Family Singers (published in 1949), there were many alterations and omissions while the Sound of Music was generally based on the first section of Maria’s book.

  • Maria stumbled on the von Trapp family members in 1926 being a tutor for starters regarding the kids, Maria, who had been coping with scarlet temperature, never as governess to all or any the young ones.
  • Maria and Georg hitched in 1927, 11 years ahead of the grouped household left Austria, not prior to the Nazi takeover of Austria.
  • Maria failed to marry Georg von Trapp because she was at love with him. As she stated in her own autobiography Maria, she fell deeply in love with the youngsters in the beginning sight, perhaps not their dad. Her to marry him, she was not sure if she should abandon her religious calling but was advised by the nuns to do God’s will and marry Georg when he asked. “we actually and undoubtedly had not been in love. We liked him but did not love him. Nevertheless, we liked the young ones, therefore you might say I actually married the kids. . . . By and than We have ever liked before or after. by I discovered to love him more”
  • There have been 10, maybe maybe not 7 von Trapp kiddies.
  • The names, ages, and sexes for the young ones had been changed.
  • The household ended up being musically inclined before Maria arrived, but she did help them learn to sing madrigals.
  • Georg, definately not being the detached, cold-blooded patriarch associated with household whom disapproved of music, as portrayed in the 1st 50 % of The Sound of Music, had been really a gentle, warmhearted moms and dad whom enjoyed musical tasks together with household. While this noticeable improvement in their character could have designed for a far better tale in emphasizing Maria’s healing impact on the von Trapps, it distressed their household significantly.
  • Your family didn’t secretly escape throughout the Alps to freedom in Switzerland, carrying their suitcases and instruments that are musical. As child Maria stated in a 2003 meeting printed in Opera Information, “We did inform people who we had been likely to America to sing. And now we would not rise over hills along with our hefty suitcases and instruments. We left by train, pretending absolutely nothing.”
  • The von Trapps traveled to Italy, perhaps perhaps not Switzerland. Georg was created in Zadar (now in Croatia), which at that time had been area of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Zadar became element of Italy in 1920, and Georg had been therefore a citizen that is italian along with his spouse and children also. Your family had a agreement by having a us scheduling representative once they left Austria. The agent was contacted by them from Italy and asked for fare to America.
  • Instead of the fictional Max Detweiler, pushy music promoter, the von Trapps’ priest, the Reverend Franz Wasner, acted as their musical manager for over two decades.
  • Though she ended up being a caring and person that is loving Maria was not constantly because sweet as the fictional Maria. She had a tendency to erupt in annoyed outbursts composed of yelling, tossing things, and doors that are slamming. Her emotions would straight away be relieved and humor that is good, while other nearest and dearest, especially her spouse, found it less simple to recover. Inside her 2003 meeting, younger Maria confirmed that her stepmother “had a dreadful mood. . . . And from 1 moment to another, you did not know what hit her. We were perhaps maybe maybe not familiar with this. But we took it like a thunderstorm that will pass, since the minute that is next might be very nice.”

The true von Trapps

Georg von Trapp, created in 1880, became a nationwide hero as a captain within the Austrian navy during World War I. He commanded submarines with valor and received the name of “Ritter” (knight), and later baron, as an incentive for their accomplishments that are heroic. Georg married Agathe Whitehead, the granddaughter of Robert Whitehead, the creator for the torpedo, in 1912. That they had seven young ones together: Rupert, 1911–1992; Agathe, 1913–2010; Maria, 1914–2014; Werner, 1915–2007; Hedwig, 1917–1972; Johanna, 1919–1994; and Martina, 1921–1952. After World War I, Austria destroyed each of its seaports, and Georg retired through the navy. Their spouse passed away in 1922 of scarlet temperature. The household ended up being devastated by her death and not able to keep surviving in destination where that they had been therefore delighted, Georg offered their home in Pola (now Pula, Croatia) and purchased a property in Salzburg.

Photographs from von Trapp Declaration of Intention papers

(Records of District Courts for the united states of america, RG 21)

Maria Augusta Kutschera was created in Vienna, Austria, in 1905. She had been orphaned as a kid and grew up as an atheist and socialist by an relative that is abusive. While going to the State Teachers’ university of Progressive Education in Vienna, she unintentionally went to a Palm service, believing it to be a concert of Bach music, where a priest was speaking sunday. Years later on she recalled inside her autobiography Maria, “Now I’d heard from my uncle that all these Bible stories had been inventions and legends that are old and therefore there clearly wasn’t a term of truth inside them. Nevertheless the real method this guy chatted simply swept me personally off my foot. I happened to be entirely overrun.” Immediately after, Maria graduated from university, and for that reason of her spiritual awakening, she joined the Benedictine Abbey of Nonnberg in Salzburg as a newcomer. While she struggled using the unaccustomed guidelines and control, she considered that “These . . . 2 yrs were actually required to get my character that is twisted and overgrown self-will cut right down to size.”

Nevertheless, her wellness endured not receiving the workout and air that is fresh which she ended up being accustomed. Whenever Georg von Trapp approached the Reverend mom of this Abbey looking for an instructor for their unwell child, Maria was opted for, partly due to her training and ability as an instructor, but additionally due to concern on her wellness. She ended up being likely to remain aided by the von Trapps for 10 months, during the end of which she’d formally go into the convent.

Maria tutored young Maria and create a caring and relationship that is loving all of the kids. She enjoyed performing them involved in outdoor activities with them and getting. During this time period, Georg fell so in love with Maria and asked her to keep with him and start to become a 2nd mom to their young ones. Of their proposition, Maria stated, “Jesus will need to have made him term it by doing this because if he had just expected us to marry him i would not need said yes.” Maria Kutschera and Georg von Trapp married in 1927. That they had three kiddies together: Rosmarie, 1929– ; Eleonore, 1931– ; and Johannes, 1939–.


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