10 great books about Poland that will give you the new perspective.

March 27th, 2018

 

Are you planning to travel to Poland?  If yes, you would most certainly want to get the most out of your visit.  Do you wish to really immerse yourself in the ambiance of the country and to understand its history, culture and traditions? To also gain an insider’s perspective?

This is exactly what we are trying to achieve during our tours. But, before you arrive, there are so many things that you can do on your own! One of the best is to get to know some Polish literature. Do not stop at reading some of the travel guides, like Rick Steeves books or Lonely Planet…

 

 

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Paris Township Land Purchase-Date Comments

March 26th, 2018

By Charles Ciechanowski-Chinoski-Chase

 

Accepting a document at face value sometimes causes erroneous dates to be used and thus seemingly accepted by a researcher.  As many of the Parisville, MI researchers know, Mr. Harry Milostan edited a fine book entitled: Parisville Poles First Polish Settlers in the U.S.A.?

This book provides a wealth of important information about the circumstances leading up to Polish migration to Michigan and the efforts of many hard working pioneers to establish the town of Parisville in Paris Twp., Huron Co. in the “Thumb” of Michigan.

I have used this book many times over the past 20-years to help guide many of the avenues I have taken in my research on my ancestors:  Francis and Josephine Slawik-Polk; and Ambrose and Frances Polk-Ciechanowski.  One of the key areas of my interest in their early life in Paris Twp was when did they purchase land.

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Solving the Confusion of Two Parisville Surnames: The Ciechanowski vs Smielewski Puzzle. Part 2.

March 26th, 2018

By Charles Ciechanowski-Chinoski-Chase

 

Coming to North America

The following is a translation of a Polish document of which I have a copy. This document was obtained by Francisca Dobecka in April of 1854 as a precursor for obtaining the necessary documents for passage to North America—the ship’s destination was most likely Quebec.

 

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Solving the Confusion of Two Parisville Surnames: The Ciechanowski vs Smielewski Puzzle. Part 1.

March 26th, 2018

By Charles Ciechanowski-Chinoski-Chase

 

My great grandfather was Ambrose Ciechanowski (often mis-spelled as Cichanowski, Chucknowski, Chickenowskie, etc.).  He was one of the founders/pioneers of Parisville, located in Paris Township, Huron County, in the “Thumb” region of Michigan.

During my early research, I reviewed the June 24, 1880 Census for Paris Twp., Huron Co, Michigan.  The primary part of the listing (along with its mis-spellings) for the residence of Ambrose is shown below:

 

SURNAMEGIVEN NAMEAGERELATIONSHIP
CichanowskiAmbrose47Head
Francis37Wife
Peter (1)16Son
Victoria14Daughter
Ludwig12Son
Simon10Son
Mary7Daughter
Frank4Son
August3Son
Julanna13 daysDaughter
SmielewskiCasper80Father
Francis82Mother

(1) Peter was my grandfather

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Anton Slawik—Polish Pioneer in Michigan’s Huron County

March 9th, 2018

By: Charles Ciechanowski-Chinoski-Chase & Evelyn Osentoski-Clor

Anton Slawik (1824-1899) was the 3rd child born to Johann Slawik and Francisca Wiatrek. He was born in Boronow, which is an old historic town dating back to the 13th century. Boronow is located in south-central Poland about 20 miles southwest of Częstochowa (home of The Black Madonna) and about 70 miles northwest of Krakow. Boronow is a village (today’s population about 2,500) in Lubliniec County in Śląsk Voivodship on the Liswarta River in Silesia, Poland.

It is believed that Anton’s father, Johann, was the brother of Valek Slawik who was the son of Bartholemew (Bartek) Slawik and Marianna Warczokin. Valek (Valentin) married Francisca Borón and together they had several children, one of whom was Josephine (Josefa) Slawik who was born in Dembowa Gora, Lubliniec, Poland in 1819. Josephine, a 1st cousin of Anton, later married Francis Polk who was also an important pioneer in the founding of the town of Parisville in Paris Township, Huron County, in the “Thumb” of Michigan.

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Francis Polk: A Founding Father of Parisville, MI

March 7th, 2018

By: Charles Ciechanowski-Chinoski-Chase and Evelyn Osentoski-Clor

The following tells some of the history of the great-great grandfather of Evelyn Clor and Charles Chase.

 

At the tip of the “Thumb” of the Michigan’s Lower Peninsula can be found Huron County. Within this county is Paris Township which contains the historic town of Parisville. Parisville is, arguably, the first Polish community within the United States. One of the founders of Parisville was a Polish farmer by the name of Francis (Franz) Polk who left the tyranny of Poland to provide a better life for his family.

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One of Michigan’s Polish Pioneers—Ambrose Ciechanowski

March 6th, 2018

By his gr-grandson: Charles Ciechanowski-Chinoski-Chase

 

Ambrose was born December 8, 1833 in Sliwice (Gross Schliewitz in German)–Tuchola, Bydgoszcz, Poland to Thomas (Tomasz) Ciechanowski and Francisca, nee, Dobecka. Ambrose had four siblings: Thomas (b. December 20, 1830), Josephine (b. March 16, 1832), Johannes ( b. May 5, 1835) and Theodora (b. May 14, 1837). Within a few years after the birth of Theodora, their father, Thomas, died. With a family of active young children, Francisca needed someone to help her raise these children and serve as a father figure.

 

Old postcard from Sliwice.

 

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Tad Strójwąs – Rożnowski In Memoriam

February 16th, 2018

 

Below there is the beginning of autobiography of Tad Strójwąs – Rożnowski ‘I am Australian. Of Polish Descent.’ who passed away a few weeks ago.

“I was living in Starachowice Poland when World War 2 broke out. German stukas (aircraft) were roaming over the sky and dropping bombs here and there, creating panic amongst the civilian population. Hours later, we were informed over the radio that Poland was at war with Germany and general mobilization was at hand. As Starachowice had an armorments production factory the civilians were panicking that it would be heavily bombed so they began collecting their belongings and moving to outlying villages. Of course as a thirteen year old boy I joined them and took the road to Pakoslaw where my mother lived and guess what happened next …..I ended up in the biggest battle! The Germans completely destroyed the village and yet only one bomb fell in Starachowice.

I think I should have stayed put.

Once the Nazis moved in with their regiments, requisitions started where local residents were moved out of their houses and occupied by German officers. At the age of thirteen I had finished public school and was enrolled in high school, but found myself on the street since the Nazis had closed all high schools and did not allow the higher education of Poles.

Jewish cleansing commenced and I sawJews being forceably loaded into cattle trains. Anyone who resisted was beaten. Since the autumn weather was not favourable many people where being knocked down into the mud and not given any help and generally mistreated.

Once the Nazis finished this task, they began rounding up girls and boys and loading them onto passenger trains to take to Germany as forced labourers. I was one of them and that was the last time I saw my family. (…)”

(Full text of Tad’s autobiography available at https://polishorigins.com/pdfs/tad_strojwas.pdf in a pdf format.)

Tad and Linda contacted me for the first time in 2005. They asked me if I could help them to find Tad’s family. They made several attempts in the past but without much success. Tad was on the stage of his life that he wanted finally to learn about the fate of his parents and sibling and, hopefully, find out how they had lived in the last 60 years when was the last time he was in touch with his father…

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Poland Ancestry Tour in September 2017. Part 3.

February 14th, 2018

This is part 3 of a blog based on the photo presentation by Bonnie Lewis travelling with us in 2017.

Bydgoszcz

 

Former historic check post for Russia, on the way to Bydgoszcz.

 

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Poland Ancestry Tour in September 2017. Part 2.

January 19th, 2018

This is part 2 of a blog based on the photo presentation by Bonnie Lewis travelling with us in 2017.

Konin archives genealogy research

 

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