Welcome to my Polish blog! My Polish great grandpa was orphaned during the Chicago flu epidemic of 1918 & spent his life looking for all of his siblings. Some family stayed in Chicago & some returned to Poland. Some family was Catholic, & some are believed to be Jewish. I post the things I learn in efforts it may help someone else in their research. I also hope this blog helps me connect with others that know about the people I'm learning about. Digital images of records or links are put inside most postings so you can view records full screen. I encourage comments. Feel free to sign the guestbook, stating who you're looking for. Maybe we can all help each other out this way, because there are many challenges with Polish research. I hope you enjoy learning with me. And I hope to be taught more about my Polish heritage.
I have added a few languages to this blog through Google translate. I hope that it may be accurate enough with the communication of ideas.
Thanks! -Julie

Witam! (Polish translation of Welcome)

Witam w moim polskim blogu! Mój pradziadek został osierocony w czasie epidemii grypy w 1918 roku i spędził wiele lat poszukując swojego rodzeństwa. Część rodziny pozostała w Chicago a część wróciła do Polski. Część rodziny była katolikami a część, jak przypuszczam, wyznania mojżeszowego. Piszę w moim blogu o rzeczach które odkrywam i o których dowiaduję się mając nadzieję, że pomogą one wszystkim zainteresowanym w ich własnych poszukiwaniach. Wierzę, że ten blog pomoże mi w skontaktowaniu się z ludźmi którzy wiedzą coś na temat osób ktorych poszukuję. Zdjęcia cyfrowe lub linki umieszczone są w większości moich komentarzy i artykułów, można więc otworzyć je na cały ekran. Gorąco zachęcam do komentarzy. Proszę wpisać się do księgi gości i podać kogo Państwo szukacie. Może będziemy mogli pomóc sobie nawzajem, ponieważ nie jest łatwo znaleźć dane których szukamy. Mam nadzieję, że zainteresuje Państwa odkrywanie ze mną tajemnic przeszłości. Mam rówież nadzieję poznać lepiej moje polskie dziedzictwo.

Dodałam do mojego blogu automatyczne tłumaczenia poprzez Google. Ufam, że będą wystarczające w zrozumieniu o czym jest mowa w artykułach i komentarzach.

Dziękuję! - Julie

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23 July 2015

DNA testing, my experience

It has been a crazy time for me lately. Thankfully I have found some really big helpful things in my personal life. I have a rare genetic disease that has baffled medical specialists for decades. Dr. Lehman-Horne is my new hero! He has worked really hard for years with people around the world to identify genetic mutations for the problems I have, and to make information accessible to patients and doctors. Most people funding research aren't interested in rare diseases like mine, especially because no medications work for me (or most people like me). I often have violent reactions to medications.

There are lots of good choices for DNA testing. There's one DNA test that only profiles periodic paralysis, but it's 500$ which I couldn't stomach right now. Especially after many years of enormous medical expenses trying to keep safe and for life threatening issues, (like seeing if my episodes were TIA's) which the hospitals didn't even address correctly anyway. (So frustrating!) Also, I knew that if I did DNA testing that I wanted the family history part too! So I chose 23andme because I was told it showed several genetic markers for my problem. I posted a tree on My Heritage to connect with my 23andme DNA profile. My grandfather previously did an Ancestry.com test. Two of my children are also now showing symptoms, so I just had one child complete the Ancestry.com DNA test and mailed it in yesterday.

The last few years it has been extremely difficult to regularly see, type, walk and speak. I was also plagued with very frequent complicated migraines that completely incapacitated me, which would then be followed with no ability to walk. Periodic Paralysis is an ion channelopothy, so basically every cell in my body is affected. I've always fought really hard to keep walking, and to keep trying to live a somewhat normal life. Now I know what to fight back with! (potassium, 70% alkaline diet, avoiding sugar and lots of carbohydrates, balancing electrolytes. Then of course avoiding my food allergy issues like gluten, dairy, soy and nightshades. I still have to take it easy, which does try my patience, and I have to really think things through to prevent daily episodes. (Example: Now I know that popcorn and soda will guarantee no walking for me for 24 hours!) Now I am better able to reply back to people, and do what I love, family history: learning family stories, get back to researching, and finding new records. If you have messaged/emailed me and not heard back from me, then I have not seen your message. Please re-send it.

I've digitized all my records now. I have a small bookshelf that's my archives which contains original records and letters in archival safe boxes. Otherwise I am paper free. Hooray! I've been re-reading stories passed on to me, to prepare for some upcoming interesting posts. Right now I plan to post every 2 weeks, and I have reminder alerts set up. If I can get things even calmer in my life, I'll post once a week.

I've already heard from several people with DNA matches. There are a few I'm still not seeing where the connections are. Some people have found matches to me 200 years back. If you think you might be a match to me, send me a message and I can direct you to various places I have posted trees. I do hope this will help us piece together Polish families and other connections we've had "brick walls" with. I'm looking forward to the future of how DNA can help with research and health!

Another post I did about me and Periodic Paralysis:

15 May 2015

Julia Kwiatkowski Janik Drechny

I have done other posts on Julia. Please click on her various surname tags of Kwiatkowski, Janik and Drechny to see more. In 1923, Adam Sanetra stated on the Ellis Island manifest that he was going to see his brother in law Karol Janik. He could have said anything, even "friend". I still haven't found a relationship link yet. In 1923, Adam was living with Julia and Karol Janik. Julia was first married to Wladyslaw Kwiatkowski. After he died, she married Karol Janik. After Karol died, Julia was married for just 4 years to Peter Drechny before he died.

I called St. Adalbert's cemetery to confirm Julia was buried there, as her death certificate states. There are 5 plots in the family plot, which is lot 349, section 19:
1) Karol Janik 1878-1928
2) Julia Kwiatkowska Janik Drechny 1873-1947
3) ?
4) Joseph Kwiatkowski 1895-1952
5) Wladyslaw Kwiatkowski 1868-1910

My grandparents went to visit St. Adalberts. Only Julia's stone was visible. They cleared some grass off the edges to get a picture. They could see spaces for other tombstones. But they could not tell if stones weren't ever put up, or if the grass has completely grown over them. Above is a short video clip they made for me, to show me the family plot. This visit was September 2010.

Dziennik Chicagoski newspaper obituary

23 April 2015

Update to post 23 Apr 2015 about Ludwig Sanetra's sister, Anna.

 See this Tumblr link, for a scanned image and info about Anna's calling card! (And even a note about her and her husband!) http://warnerprintingcompany.tumblr.com/post/111005881028/for-wm-e-boehner-1323-byron-st-chicago

Here is Anna on findagrave.com. She is buried with her daughter Franciszka who died young. http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GSln=beneker&GSfn=ann&GSbyrel=all&GSdyrel=all&GSob=n&GRid=66780841&df=all&

Here's a time line summary:
1890's: Anna was first married to an Anthony Mason or Missen. They had daughter Franciszka in 1898 in Poland, and immigrated about 1905-1907. Different records spell the surname both ways. Franciszka's death record states her mother was Anna Sanetra and father Anothony Missen.

1920: Anthony has died by 1920, and so had Franciszka. On the 1920 census it was Anna, widowed, her widowed son in law John Schauderna (who was married to Franciszka Missen), and grandson Francis Schauderna.

1930: On the 1930 Census, Anna was married to Fred Beneker a shoe maker. His house was owned, and they lived at 3809 Ward st, in Chicago. The calling cards were made about then. Fred died in 1936. Note, she was not a citizen by the 1930 Census.

1950's: In May 1952 she is listed as living, and a sibling of Ludwig Sanetras on his obituary.

1960's: She died 4 Mar 1966. Anna has the maiden name of Sanetra, married name of Beneker, and shows she used to have name of Missen, being buried by her daughter with that maiden name.
(Note, in 1967, sister Franciszka died, who outlived all her siblings, so they were not mentioned on Franciszka Sanetra Nasluchasz' obit.)

The records, names, dates and places all line up, so I am confident this is all correct and added Anna and her family into my Ancestry.com tree. I am still searching for immigration, a second marriage in Chicago for Anna to Fred Beneker, and hopefully I can get a death certificate to prove my links completely that her parents are indeed Jozef Sanetra and Regina Wojcik.

Found another sister for Ludwig Sanetra

Ludwig Sanetra, with siblings
Today I was reading through Ludwig Sanetra's obituary and realized he had a sister I never heard of before! I'm not seeing her in initial database searches yet. Her name is Anna, and she had the married name of Beneker. I will post an update when I find it.

Here's Ludwig's parents and siblings as I now know it:

Jozef Sanetra married Regina Wojcik (They were in Zablocie, Zywiec, Poland):
1) Franciszka Sanetra (1886-1967) married Karol Nasluchasz (1884-1958) They both immigrated to Chicago area and married in Chicago in 1910.
          1. Antonia Nasluchasz
          2. Frederick Nasluchasz
          3. Aloisa Nasluchasz
*2) Ludwig Sanetra (1887-1952) married Karolina Szczaia/Strawi (1893-1975) in Chicago in 1915. (Picture in this post)
          1. Franciszka Sanetra
          2. John Sanetra
          3. Karol Sanetra
          4. Anna Sanetra
          5. Mary Sanetra
3) Marianne Sanetra (3 children). Marianne lived part of her life in Germany. Dates not known. (Did not immigrate to United States.)
          1. Agnes Sanetra
    Marianne Sanetra married a Mr Stachon (picture in this post) and they had two children:
          2. Joseph Stachon
          3. Marta Stachon
4) Anna Sanetra married a Mr. Beneker.
Ludwig Sanetra and Caroline-Chicago 1915
Dates and places unknown, except that Anna was alive in May 1952 for her brother Ludwig Sanetra's obit. Also unknown if she was in the United States or Poland. 
5) Mr Sanetra. Brother unknown, but pictured with Ludwig above. Ludwig far left, brother believed to be far right. I believe Franciszka is center with husband Karol Naszluchasz standing behind her, based on pictures I have seen from the Nasluchasz family. Will work on conforming this. 

Please note: The photographs of Ludwig and Marianne Sanetra are from Dirk Varnholt's family pictures. We are sharing in hopes others may recognize and help us piece this family together. 
Ludwig Sanetra's obit

Marianne Sanetra and Mr Stachon


09 March 2015

Exciting FamilySearch explanations at Rootstech 2015

This month I have been busy enjoying watching Rootstech videos and preparing for our local Family History Day conference, which will be this Saturday. I'm giving a presentation (locally) on how to get around in the FamilySearch Family Tree and how to do searching on FamilySearch. Like using the filters, FamilySearch wiki etc. I really loved watching Dear Myrtle's Ambush cams at Rootstech. They were so fun to watch, I felt like I got to meet people.

One of the first things I loved about FamilySearch is how it's really worldwide oriented. (Not just the United States.) And how we're all connected, the bigger picture. One of the early record collections on FamilySearch was the 1895 Argentina Census, where I saw some Cabitto relatives. Most databases before, were based on the English soundex systems. Which really doesn't help you if you have a Russian (or really any Non-English) surname. On FamilySearch.org, if you type in a residence or birth place outside the United States it searches similar spellings to the that ethnicity. For example, when I searched "Sanetra" and typed "born in Poland", it looked up spellings like Szanetra, Scanetra, and Zanetra.  I got a lot more search results that were real possibilities. Mazurkiwicz and Wandzel had a lot more variations which was very helpful because I never would have thought clerks or other record keepers would spell it those other ways. English soundex spellings and pronunciations would just not work for these types of names!!

Here's some impressive things I learned watching Rootstech videos this week. I watched these sections of the videos a few times to make sure I wrote the numbers down correctly: FamilySearch CEO Dennis Brimhall talked about the benefits of the partnerships with FamilySearch (Thurs keynote). Currently FamilySearch is partnering with: Ancestry.com, Find My Past, My Heritage,  American Ancestors (New England Historical Genealogical Society), family me, and Global Family Reunion. Brimhall told about a project he was excited about, saying this was a great example of benefits to the partnerships and he thanked the CEO of Ancestry.com. FamilySearch did a project of filming 80 million church and civil records for Mexico in 1952. He explained there are not enough Spanish speaking indexers for this project. It would take 40 years for FamilySearch volunteers to complete this project. But Ancestry.com has asked to help do the indexing for this project and they said it will be done and available by the end of this year! FamilySearch and Ancestry.com also made 545 million records available and visible on both sites this year. FamilySearch will always keep their site free, even with their partnerships.

Ron Tanner, a lead developer for FamilySearch gave these amazing numbers in his presentation called: FamilySearch FamilyTree 2014 and Beyond:
  • They do updates 3 times a day.
  • approximately 2.5 million new persons added to the tree every month
  • approximately 2.6 million conclusions that are changed/written every month
  • 4.5 million sources added to the tree each month
  • 1.1 billion persons in the tree with 89 million sources
  • In a year FamilySearch went from 12 million to 89 million sources!
In Feb 2011, a pilot version of FamilySearch was released. I'm happy to say that I was one of the beta testers! In March 2013 it was released to the public. It's really exciting to see all the record collections continuously added from around the world. On 27 Feb 2015, 19.2 million record were added from Canada, Brazil, Puerto Rico, and the United States. Dennis Brimhall said during the Thursday Keynote address that FamilySearch partnered with Genealogy Bank to do over 100 million names from obituaries last year. 319,000 volunteers worked on these obituaries last year. That was 1.3 million names every day going into Family Search. Pretty amazing things are happening! One thing I liked though, with all this cool hi-tech stuff I was seeing, Joshua Taylor (at RootsTech) talked about the tech things he couldn't live without, yet he said he still needed his library card. A good balance I think. One last partnership with FamilySearch that I'm personally excited about, wasn't actually part of Rootstech. It's a partnership with the country of Italy. Familysearch is indexing and making accessible the Italian civil records. Below is today's status on the familysearch indexing page. (9 March 2015) Also below is 1 of 3 indexing collections our Italian Cabittos need and are looking forward to. No matter your ethnicity or nationality, if it's not there yet, it's coming!