Tabs for Maternal Side

Thursday, August 10, 2017

The Ancestral Places Geneameme challenge

Another Geneblogger called Lonetester HQ posted on this topic or challenge on their blog. And describes it as:
 I wanted to focus on the places. The countries, the states, the counties or provinces, as well as the parishes, the towns and villages. Our ancestors have a connection to these places.
What places do your ancestors come from?
Using the alphabet how many letters can you name ancestral places for? Some you will no doubt know well, some you may not … at least not yet (see my letter ‘I’ and ‘N’ examples below). I still have more research to do on those lines.
It doesn’t have to be where your ancestors were born, but it does have to be a place that they were associated with. For instance they lived or worked in that place.
Name the letter, followed by the place (town/parish/county/state/or country), and the surname/s associated with that place
C – Cudlee Creek, South Australia, Australia (Kelly, Hannaford)
H – Helsingfors/Helsinki, Finland (Winter)

 So geneabloggers, the challenge has been set, who’s up for the Ancestral Places Geneameme.

This is going to be a major challenge for me. Why? Because my ancestors just didn't move around too much. Some people have gypsies in theirs - mine? Not so much. Yes, they left Europe to go to the US, but before this they basically were born, maybe moved to the next village when married, and then died there. Even now, my father's side was pretty stable. My mother's too, until you get to my mother who had the wanderlust with needing to move every 3-5 years since I was born. It really annoyed me and I had no idea why until I started researching of the family. Now I know. As my husband says, "Your lot were bloody stayers!" and now I laugh because indeed we were stayers. 

Getting back to this really is going to be a challenge, but here we aware, I'll keep adding to this post as I find out areas where they lived, worked, born, and died.

A- Alrup, Denmark (Larsen)
B - Belgium (Gauquie)
C - Charleroi, PA (Ostryscki)
D - Denmark (Alrup - Larsen)
E - East Dunkirk (Loones)
F - Forest Hill, NY (Gauquie/Nill)
G - Germany (Koblenz - Schmitz)
H - Hamilton, Ohio (Gauquie/Lehmkuhl)
I  - Iseghem, Belgium (Verhaeghe)
J  - Jefferson County, Kentucky (Ostrzycki/Wagner)
K - Koblenz, Germany (Schmitz)
L - Linden, NJ (Wojtkowski/a)
M - Malkinia Gora, Poland (Wojtkowski/a) & Minnesota (St Paul - Larsen, Gauquie)
N - New York/New Jersey - (Schmitz, Gauquie, Larsen, Jagodzinski) 
O - Orange County, NY (Schmitz, Gauquie, Larson, Jagodzinski)
P - Poland (Wojtkowski/a, Jagodzinski, Ostryski, Wyrzyskowski )
R - Rahway, NJ (Wojtkowski/Holley)
S - South Carolina, USA (James, Wojtkowski)
T - Turza Wilcza, Uluchowo, Poland (Gauquie/Galloway)
U- USA (Wojtkowski/a, Jagodzinski, Ostryski,Schmitz, Gauquie, Larsen)
W - Warsaw, Poland (Wyrzyskowski) & Wojtkowice Dady (Wojtkowski/a)
Z - Zaduszniki, Kujawsko-Pomorski, Poland (Rutkowski, Michaelski)

And here it is...I did this almost without looking up anything. It did shock me as I didn't think I'd get anywhere near this many entries. I will add more, which I probably have. I stopped doubling up on the letters as it was getting too confusing. 

Update - I looked through my tree and found more to fill in. However with 3 letters left, I can't find anymore. Still I'm shocked that I got this far. 

How many of the letters can you place? I dare you...

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Blog Challenge- Poor Man's Orange - Making do and my relatives

In an earlier post, I mentioned a challenge thrown out among one of my genealogy groups. The challenge, mentioned in Family Tree Frog's blog, used the movie Poor Man's Orange which centers on a Catholic Irish Family.

When I went through ideas regarding a post, One of them was a post regarding the small statement "Have you got a tale of making do?" which ties in with the Curator’s notes which I quote "The title Poor Man’s Orange refers to having to make do with second best." Again this would be interesting to see the differences in the many generations within my family of doing exactly this - making do.

Both sides of my family just had to make do. This includes things from surviving with food and a roof over your head to being able to speak your own language and even to to school. However, I'm a true European as all of my ancestors can be found directly there and my DNA even shows this to be true. 

On both sides we are Polish. On my maternal side, from back grandmother backwards until the 1700's we are Polish and come from Poland. On my paternal side, my grandmother there backwards until the late 1800's (I haven't been able to go back any further due to limits to budget and language barriers, but as soon as I can I will!) again all come from Poland. I'm leaving this as generic due to the many different attacks and border changes that happened within its history. 

During my grandmother's time, Poland didn't exist - it was Russia or USSR with Polish towns. When she was first born, there was no school and, during her growing up years, there were times she couldn't speak her own language - she had to speak Russian or German depending on who occupied the neighborhood - and there was no school. In fact, they hung on to what they could for owning a farm and having her grandmother, at least, owning a business in town (Mill). However, when soldiers came into your house, stole whatever food they wanted, and sometimes had your women and killed your husbands/sons/workers, you had to hold your breath to see what they left you with when they left. Sometimes as they were leaving they would set your house on fire and would leave you with nothing. 
Newspaper Article from 1905 regarding rights of Polish people

Again, we are fighters. People would hide anything of value or food by burying some of it, so you could eat at least. However, if you were caught, you or family were killed or again would lose your house. This was why when my grandmother and great grandmother arrived in NY, in September 1920,  they were in sad shape. I've been told by my father his mother (my grandmother) was in such bad shape she had to relearn how to walk
The Minneapolis Journal on March 18 1905

The family they left behind still did fight the evil that was in Europe - with Hitler. My great grandmother's family, paid for many children to be put in the orphanages with fake papers. The adults would come to them as well for papers due to them being part of the resistance in Poland. If they were found, everyone could have been killed in the family, but thankfully no one was. I have found that side of the family a few years ago now. 
Letter of thanks to my great aunt's family who helped the Jewish in WW2

Note given to my great aunt's family who helped the Jewish in WW2

My maternal side, faced just as much as my paternal side, but they were workers and didn't have land. They were part of the workers that were mad about how they were being treated and those types were finding themselves killed, so they left Poland for NY in 1905. 

On my maternal side, we come from Belgium/France. This is my mother's grandfather's side backwards until the early 1700's. I had to make this duel due to the border changes back in time. The family moved around a bit over the generations but still live throughout the countryside today. 

Taken from Wikipedia

With Napoleon attacking, it seemed like between him and the French armies, they railroaded right over the land to get to the rest of Europe. Belgium is a small landlocked part of Europe compared to some of the other countries. Even after Napoleon, there were struggles. 
From the Belgium Archives regarding my 2x great grandfather's draft into the service

One of them was when Belgium wanted its own military and they drafted people - a huge consequence in my family. Why? Because my 2x great grandfather was drafted into it (he was number 8) and served. Along his way, he met up with my 2x great grandmother and left her - pregnant after probably 1 night. She was a servant back in the late 1800s and lost her job when it was known of her condition. That condition was my great grandfather Jules, who was born without a family and illegitimate. Once my 2x great grandfather and 3x great grandparents found out, they were married - about 9 months after Jules was born. By the time Jules was almost an adult and would be put into the draw, along with some political views changing where the church was losing its political hold, they left Belgium for the US in the late 1800s. 
Again from the Belgium Archives about my great grandfather's birth and his parents marriage

It doesn't sound like much, but I believe Jules being born illegitimate was huge and had huge fallout within my family which goes to today's generation. Jules met, married, started a farm and then a family. However, at least two of his sons he had major fights with and kicked them out. My grandfather was 14 years old. His brother was thrown out too but was a year or two older. Within a few years, my grandfather was back on the farm with my grandmother and son with him. This didn't last long and they moved out and my grandmother was doing everything and anything to raise their children while he did everything in his power to spend the money he made and give his wife and children not much. This had major impact my mother and my uncles with the way they act and do things even to this day. In fact, some of the things my mother did when I was growing up are because of her upbringing. Like I said, we are all fighters. 

Last bit on my maternal side and this was in a tiny town called Alrup in Denmark. This is my mother's grandmother. I haven't had time to look into this side of the family - much. I did find something within the family happened quickly as I have found the family of father, mother, Annie, her sister, her brother and her grandmother. However, within 10 years herself and her brother were servants on a farm. Within a year after the census, I found she was on her way to the US. 
1880s census with the family listed in Denmark

Annie was fighting even before she arrived in the US with her being a servant. Now add to this arriving in a foreign country with everything different and she ends up in the Midwest - St Louis. She then meets up with my great grandfather and they go to NY and start a farm and a family. 
1890s census in Denmark listing Ana or Annie as a servant.

When my great grandfather is sick, too busy or back in Beligum visiting, the farm is left to her - including the milking which she got hurt at and getting sick even ended up costing her her life. Upon talking to my cousins, I found my great grandfather wouldn't allow her to have a coat so she didn't
Newspaper article in 1917. 
have one and ended up coming down sick even after her daughters put money together and bought one, but it was too late and she was too sick. Annie even had a daughter which contracted polio and wouldn't allow her to grow up mentally. Instead Annie had her follow her around the farm and help her out where she could. 

However, after Annie's death, she was sent away to a home and within 6-9 months, she too, was dead due to mistreatment because my great grandfather sent her to the cheapest place he could find. This too, sounds like something my mother has done - get the cheapest thing even if it wouldn't fully do the job type of thing. 
Annie's daughter's headstone who had polio. She was shipped off to a home where she died 6-9 months later.

My paternal side was from Germany. My grandfather left Niedermendig or Mendig and came to the US in the 1926. He did go back a few times to visit, but he lived and died in the US. This is a bit more of guesswork due to not having the time to go and research this as yet. Add having little to no knowledge of the language and its an added complication but not a big one as its basis language hasn't changed like others in the family has. 
From his Naturalization papers - notice the eye?

I think my grandfather was a bit of a fighter as one of this pictures for his naturalization papers he has a black eye in it.  On one of the manifests, it lists him with a stub on his left middle finger and left ring finger missing. It does say he was a carpenter so I'm thinking this was a work accident. 
From his ship manifest in 1930s reporting this injury

Today's family
My father was kidnapped when he was a baby and was slated to be in Hitler's next generation of fighters. Thankfully the Department of State came in and brought him back to the US, so even as babies we were still fighting. 
My father before he was kidnapped

My generation fought to survive through what I will term the social norm differences. We grew up in a military household and back in the 1950-1970s households were different than what they are now. Then add the military to them and you can imagine what our lives were like and it certainly wasn't an episode of "I Dream of Jeannie" that's for sure. But we managed and moved on even with the scars. Again, you did want to had to do to survive and you did it the best ways you could. 
My siblings growing up
Today's survival is more financial due to my job loss from budget cuts over 4 1/2 years now. I've been looking for work, but no one is willing to hire or even letting people temp. I have tried everything I can think of to get back into to work - to no avail. I'm frustrated and mad, but am still fighting - barely. 

As you can see, there's been a lot of just making do to survive. I do have to admit, even with out stubbornness to do right and stay put, we do have the will to figure out how to survive. 

In some societies they might call us scrappers, but I just call them my family. And we survive.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Blog Challenge- Poor Man's Orange - Religion within the family

In an earlier post, I mentioned a challenge thrown out among one of my genealogy groups. The challenge, mentioned in Family Tree Frog's blog, used the movie Poor Man's Orange which centers on a Catholic Irish Family.

When I went through ideas regarding a post, One of them was a post about religion within my family.  Then I thought about religion within my family and I have to admit, I never really think about it when thinking about my research on my family. I've always been told we're Catholics and no more or no less.

Hubby's Family
With my husband's family? This was a major hurdle due to the family's background on both sides and there's been many ideas and reasons why parts of his family have flip flopped. It makes from some really good debates and ideas which have been batted around each time its brought up. Think of a cat with a mouse on a rope - its the same idea as here. I'm not sure if hubby has blogged about it yet, but you can look to see if he has here.

My Family- Paternal
Anyhow, getting back to my family. My paternal side I knew was Catholic because of the crosses in my grandmother's apartment she had when I was growing up. Further, my Uncle John, went to church every weekend hail or shine. I think the only weekends he hadn't gone was when he was really sick or they closed the roads. I still remember when I would stay with my grandmother, she would always say "John will be here after he goes to church." and she looked forward to those times. Sometimes I would even get to see my cousins if they were with him.
Part of St. Patrick's Church (Credit Picture: FB Group)

When it came to my grandmother and uncle's funerals, they were at the same place - St Patrick's in Newburgh, NY. I knew my uncle would have his services there, but to my knowledge I never saw my grandmother go to church which shocked me when I learned her services would be there too. It was only when I started doing my research I was told they allowed my grandmother to have her services there because of my uncle. She hadn't been to a service in years prior to her passing. Again, this was new to me.

Further, when I started to dig back into this part of my family history, I found my father had made his communion when I was sent a picture of him when he was a little boy from his cousin who had it in some family pictures. I didn't know who it was until I sent it to my father asking and he replied back "Its ME!" and my mouth dropped open.
My Father in the late 1930's or Early 1940's (Credit: Cousin Krzysztof)
Then when I found out the population of Polish people that were Roman Catholic I knew it had to be true. Add this to my finding my grandparent's 2nd marriage certificate in St Monica's Catholic Church in NYC, and my great grandparent's marriage certificate, in Russian, in a Catholic Church. This one talks about church banns and how my great grandfather was of a different parish, but still had the banns done in BOTH churches. This was very unique apparently. This meant our association with the Catholic Church went back centuries on this side of our tree!
My Great Grandparents marriage record in Russian (Credit Polish Archives)

My grandfather's side, even though he and my grandmother got married in a Catholic Church, could have converted over to Catholic. I haven't done much research on this side as yet, but it should be interesting to find out more.
St Monica's in NYC (Credit & Google)

My grandparents wedding certificate with Church name (Credit NYC Archives)

My Family- Maternal
Jules and Annie's headstone (Credit: Findagrave)
Now onto my mother's side. On my mother's paternal side, her grandmother, Annie Larsen, I'm not sure what religion she was growing up, although  Evangelical Lutheran Church of Denmark  was and is the main one in Denmark - the country she comes from. Her and my great grandfather Jules, were married by a Justice of the Peace, so this wouldn't be a clue either. Lastly, I would like to add, while these were all facts, I know Jules was Catholic and they were both heavily into the church AND are actually buried on the church grounds - St Mary's Church in Washingtonville, NY. It could be she converted or just started to follow the Catholic ways after they married.
Picture of St Mary's from their FB Page
As I said, Annie married Jules in a civil ceremony. Jules has always been an interesting creature in my opinion. He was raised in Belgium until he was 1 by his mother who was a servant when she became pregnant. His father was drafted into Belgium's army as a rifleman. However, when he found out about Jules' mother having Jules, he married her. The documents were recorded like they were Roman Catholic and the main religion in Belgium is Catholic. Besides, the documents I found going back to the 1700s all were Catholic in wording. Add this to him being heavily into the church in the USA and being buried with Annie and on the grounds of St. Mary's Church in Washingtonville, NY and I could say the whole line is Catholic.
Jules' Birth Record and info on father from Belgium Archives

Although, some of the cousins off of my line, were either in Catholic or in different religions which was interesting when I was looking at the different people. Some of these are below from a my cousin Jacqueline in Belgium.
Bertha Emma Barbara Verhaeghe known as Sister Maria Rufina
Jean Amand Verhaeghe in his office at church before his death
Picture of Oskar Verhaeghe as priest
Pic of Remi Eugene Verhaeghe as priest
Pic of Remi Leon Julien
Lon Ostrzycki's Church where he is the pastor. Lon's sons, cousins are all priests and/or ministers.

My mother's maternal line is a bit easier. I found my mother had made her communion when we went through her box of papers. Inside a small bible was the picture of her as a little girl and I asked her about it. She didn't remember where, but confirmed it was at her communion. Then when I would go back and ask about her mother, she didn't or wouldn't say much at all. Talking to my cousins and other relatives, I found my grandmother - her mother - was committed in part because of her going around blessing everything she could see, touch, feel, etc. and this was every day and all day.

Then when I went back to my grandmother's mother, I found they were Roman Catholics and Polish. As I've already mentioned above, this was normal to the people of Poland in religion. As I found other cousins, we agreed with the Roman Catholic religion aspect and they had gone back farther - to the 1700s - and found the religion had gone back that far as well. What's even better, is with my grandmother's other siblings, they are still keeping with the religion - my cousin Jason goes, and a few of my mother's cousins and their children all go and are reverends and priests in the south of the US.

With my mother's grandfather, the questionable Apolonius Jagodzinski/Leo Barry/Leo Berry (among other names) I found he came from the Galicia region of Poland. This is one of my brick walls as he changed names, and disappeared for periods of time which I found when I had is alien file pulled and sent to me.

My Takings
Growing up, mainly under my mother's care taking, I was told I was baptized (at St. Patrick's) but never had really gone to church. Growing up, I called myself a Roman Catholic but was mainly a community religion type of person. If someone I was around was going to church, I'd go with them not caring which religion it was.

If asked if today I go to church, I would say honestly - No, I don't. Why? Mainly because when the times for service are on, I'm usually busy doing other things. If they were easier to get to (the churches are only here and there and I'd have to travel to get to a Roman Catholic one) and have times when it would be better for me to attend I would. I do try and catch the Pope's online services for main holidays though.

I never take or put anyone's religion against them. However, if they decided to try and use it as an excuse to do something bad or unjust, then that's something else altogether. However, religion is NOT to blame - the person is.

I learned this by doing research of countries histories in Europe - Like Poland. Before it was attacked, Poland was one of the places on earth that it didn't matter what religion -if any- you had and accepted your unconditionally. This is how it should be no matter what.

September 11th
I do have to put this in here as most people put religion in with this event.

In fact, when September 11th happened, I was working with a Muslim on a few problems we were having at work with a computer program. He stayed away about a week as everyone was having problems with emotions. I as just glad my family was safe and felt for others who weren't. Anyhow, he came in one day and I sat down and I went back to working with him just like before. He sat there and I could tell he wasn't comfortable. I asked what was going on and he told me he felt like I was blaming him.

I looked at him straight in the eye and asked him if he had anything to do with what happened even though I knew he hadn't. He said No. Then I asked him what the problem was then? His mouth dropped open in shock. I told him I knew he hadn't had anything to do with it and whatever was/is going on there would be figured out there, but didn't have anything to do with us and what we were doing. I could see he still wasn't convinced and I asked him what else I could do to make him more comfortable and he couldn't answer. I told him when he figured it out to let me know, but I didn't - and still don't - blame him. In fact, I felt bad for him because of what others did made him feel like he had to stay away from people. That's just wrong.

In Conclusion
Religion can be many things to all of us.  Some people take the book, whichever they are using, and can use it for good or bad - just like anything. People use this for an excuse and that's all it is. An excuse.
You can read one thing and disagree with it and that's fine. However, what I'm seeing more and more is people disagreeing and then things turning nasty with name calling and being verbally attacked. That's just not something that should be done. Its not right. Different views on things (religion, political, taxes, traffic) makes us all different, but just because someone thinks or believes different things shouldn't make them a target for hate that's exploded in the last year.

And that just isn't right - at all. For anyone.

Monday, July 17, 2017

A Chat about My Interpretation on Poor Man's Orange

Recently, there was a challenge thrown out among one of my genealogy groups. The challenge was put this way:
Poor Man's Orange - take what you will from this title of Ruth Park's novel published in 1949.  Poor Man's Orange was set in Surry Hills Sydney about a Catholic Irish Family.  Perhaps there were Irish Catholics in your family.  Perhaps your ancestors lived in Surry Hills or Sydney.  Have you got a tale of making do?  Take the theme as laterally as you like or ignore it altogether.  We just want to see you blogging.
Credit: Family Tree Frog
Credit Wikipedia
I never even heard of Poor Man's Orange and found a Curator's Notes on it. What I did learn was this was a 1980s movie made in Australia. I can only put these facts down as to why I've never heard of this movie before.

After reading all of these, I could take this post into a few different directions. I could:

a) Talk about religion within my family. This would be interesting since I found much of my family in different parts of the world.

b) I could talk about my husband's family who, when they immigrated to Australia, landed in Sydney. Again, this could be interesting, but it would probably be more for husband's blog on his genealogy.

c) Or we could take the small statement "Have you got a tale of making do?" which ties in with the Curator’s notes which I quote "The title Poor Man’s Orange refers to having to make do with second best." Again this would be interesting to see the differences in the many generations within my family of doing exactly this - making do.

As you can see, I could go more than one direction with this post. However, because I'm good at multitasking, I think I'll do one post on the religion and one of the statements. This way I get 2 posts out of the one challenge. The other post, as I noted above, would be best left for my husband and his research and blog.

Would it also be worth noting, I've been working with a friend on some fiction writing as well. Her name is Tam Desire and we've just finished a class together about fiction writing, which was a great course. I'd like to add, if I don't seem to be posting here, I'll be working on something - from a temp job assignment, to genealogy, to helping Tam, to working on some of my own stuff. Again, I'm good at multitasking.