Monday, September 23, 2013


I found this lovely tidbit in the Van Nuys News archives.  It was printed in the September 5, 1949 edition of the newspaper.  Clara Stachowiak Christy was one of my maternal great aunts.  Clara married Ivan Wohlk Christy (Christiansen) in 1934.  Ivan was born in Frederikshavn, Nordjylland, Denmark.  Ivan died in May of 1949 in Burbank.

A month after his death, Clara went to visit her husband's relative.  It doesn't say in this story whether or not she stayed the entire time in Denmark.  It does say that she did stay with her brother-in-law in Denmark.  The part of this story that I love (besides having a 3 month trip to Europe) is that her brother-in-law owns an oleomargarine factory.  Do they even make oleomargarine anymore?  I am thinking this must have been some sort of status symbol.  I am guessing with all those Danish pastries, one should also have some "margarine".

It was very nice of her brother-in-law to host Clara during her grief after her husband's death.  I wonder if this was Clara's first trip to her husband's homeland.  The more information I find, the more questions I have ...

Thursday, September 19, 2013


Continuing on with my "Genealogical Bucket List", my #2 place is Srebrna Gora in Dolnoslaskie, Poland. My third great grandfather Joannes Gruszka married his wife (my 3rd great grandmother) Marianna Pubylowska in this town in 1824.  Joannes was 40 years old when he got married while Marianna was 28.  I don't know whose hometown this was -- whether it was Marianna's, or Joannes' or possibly they both lived here.

My knowledge of Poland is very limited but I do know that Srebrna Gora is located in the south west corner of Poland.  It is just north of the Czech Republic border.  It is just east of a town named Nowa Ruda.

When my Grandmother Lillian's parents and older brothers immigrated to the US from Poland before Lillian's birth, they listed Ruda as their last residence.  I wonder if this is the same Ruda.  I better get back to my research ....

Thursday, September 12, 2013


For the past two weeks, I have been writing about my Genealogical Bucket List -- places that I would like to travel to experience my ancestors' history -- on my other blog  Since today I will be writing about Poland (and sorry for the delay in my regular posting) it had to be posted on this blog.  So, to start off my Polish Genealogical Bucket List is Wielkopolskie, Poland.

My 2nd great grandfather Valentin Stachowiak (on my maternal grandfather side) was married to my 2nd great grandmother Josephine Kowalczyk in Grodziszczko, Wielkopolskie, Poland in 1853.  Grodziszczko is located in Western Germany and is known for its beer and mineral water.  This town is located west of Poznan on A2 (I'm assuming this is some sort of freeway).  The above photo shows a downtown street in Grodziszczko.

My 2nd great grandfather Jacob Gruszka (on my maternal grandmother side) was married to my 2nd great grandmother Antonina Zuchowska in Lechlin, Wielkopolskie, Poland in 1847.  Antonina's parents Thomas Zuchowska and Marianna Koslakowiczowna were married in the same town in 1820.

I would love to visit this area of Poland.  I know very little about it and since the only information that I have about my 2nd great grandparents is either from my Family Bible or the Poznan Project, I probably would do some research in this area. I would love to find information on their births and deaths, siblings, occupations, etc.  I guess I need to do a lot more research on my Polish ancestry!