Welcome!

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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24 August 2015

Saint Nicholas Catholic Church, in Evanston, Illinois, United States

We thought that Rosalie Wandzel and Adam Sanetra came to the US for refuge, and chose Chicago to be near other Poles starting their new life. It was quite a surprise to be told by a Catholic archivist in Chicago that Paul and Stanley were baptized by a German priest in a church that did Mass in German. We were also told that Evanston was known as a German community and everyone spoke German there. About the time of WWI, they stopped speaking German publicly there, and Mass was no longer given in German. We didn't even know Rosalie and Adam knew German! Evanston is now listed as a "suburban city" in Cook County. It's about 12 miles north of Chicago. (19 km) We know that Adam and Rosalie moved around a lot. But it is odd that Adam and Rosalie didn't continue having their children baptized at St Nicholas, even though they moved several miles away into the city of Chicago. It appears they began moving frequently after Ervin was born in 1907, and when their daughter Bronislawa arrived and never found our family in 1911. The Catholic Archivist explained to me that in this time period, just like in the old world, you picked your church, and all your religious ceremonies/sacraments were held in the same church. If you moved 3 hours away, and you were about to get married, you and your family got on a bus and went back to where you were baptized. I asked a friend who is military what she does for her family's records today. She explained to me that when her children had First Communion, that information was sent by their priest, back to the church that her children were baptized at. So the records are still kept together at the church they were baptized at.

Here is a link to St. Nicholas church, showing two pictures of the church and the history. I have two letters from the church in the 1950's, answering Paul's questions about his baptism and his brothers'. There's a nice drawing of the church as part of the letterhead. http://www.nickchurch.org/history/ The cornerstone for the church standing today was placed in 1904. First Mass was held 6 Oct 1906. Stanislaus Sanetra was baptized at Saint Nicholas in Apr 1904, and Paul Sanetra in Jun 1905. Here is a link about Evanston which is in Cook County, Illinois where Stanley, Paul and Ervin Sanetra were born. Bronislaw and Jozef were born in Chicago. http://www.cityofevanston.org/evanston-life/history-demographics/ Saint Nicholas church said they did not have a baptism record for Ervin, so we are still trying to figure out where he was baptized. 

I'm finding it's really important to understand the traditions and patterns for our families and also what was considered normal for their community in that time and place. Whenever there's a break in the pattern, it's important to ask why then go look for the answer. Asking questions of why Rosalie and Adam went to a German speaking church and community when they were Polish, led me to finding out Rosalie's family was most likely from Germany and moved to Poland, and that she might have been Jewish. I also found out that Rosalie's name (first and last name) was spelled the German way, not the Polish way, and that later in life when Paul had Alzheimer's he would count and say phrases in German. When his sons asked him where he learned that, he said his mother taught him (when he was very little).

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