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Lisa



Joined: 20 Jun 2009
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Post Posted: Thu Jul 08, 2010 7:20 pm      Post subject: Illegitimate Children in Poland 19th century
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I have two questions:

Was it common for unmarried mothers in Poland in the 19th century to keep their child after giving birth?

If the mother married after the birth of the child, but the marriage was not to the child's biological father, was it common for the child to continue to use his/her mother's maiden name as a surname? Or would the child then use his/her stepfather's surname?

Thanks!

Lisa Very Happy
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Zenon
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Joined: 28 Apr 2007
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 09, 2010 10:07 am      Post subject:
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Lisa,

If the child's father was a richer man sometimes he took care of the child who usually stayed with mom. But it wasn't also uncommon for the father to take the child to his house. In case of poor woman and poor father usually child stayed with mom.

As for second question, again it depended on the status of the father. If he was rich he could decide about giving the child his surname, or similar to his name, or similar to the village he owned, or completely new. In case of poorer parents (especially father) the child's surname was given after mother surname.


Last edited by Zenon on Fri Jul 23, 2010 6:06 am; edited 1 time in total
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Henryk
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Joined: 05 Dec 2008
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 09, 2010 3:04 pm      Post subject:
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Zenon
If the father gave his surname to the child, how would the record of the birth and baptism read?
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Arlene Vic
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Post Posted: Fri Jul 09, 2010 6:24 pm      Post subject:
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Henryk wrote:
Zenon
If the father gave his surname to the child, how would the record of the birth and baptism read?


All I can tell some of you, if father marry his girlffriend before baby come. Baby will have his father's last name.

If father is unware his girlfriend had baby, baby will have his mother's last name. Sometime girlfriend don't tell boyfriend she is pregnant. She keep it secret.

Or if father leave Poland and stay in U.S.A. or other countries. He isn't aware about his girlfriend's conditions. She will surprised him when she get letter from him.

Maybe they will get married, all they have to changes birth cerificates paper. Sometime father refused to married her and refuses let child to have his last name.

He may not want to surpport child at all. If father & child do get together later on and son get old and he can changes his last name if only he want to. That is my opinions.
Lisa



Joined: 20 Jun 2009
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Post Posted: Sat Jul 10, 2010 3:52 pm      Post subject:
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Thank you for the very interesting responses received to this post.

I guess I must assume that if the illegitimate child's mother married a man other than his/her biological father, then the illegitimate child did NOT take his/her mother's married name, nor was he/she adopted by the mother's husband.

Interesting...

Lisa Very Happy
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Arlene Vic
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Post Posted: Sun Jul 11, 2010 8:13 am      Post subject:
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Lisa wrote:
Thank you for the very interesting responses received to this post.

I guess I must assume that if the illegitimate child's mother married a man other than his/her biological father, then the illegitimate child did NOT take his/her mother's married name, nor was he/she adopted by the mother's husband.

Interesting...

Lisa Very Happy


Yes, you got it all right.

Make sure if baby's father refused to support your child and if you are married to someone else. It is okay for new father to adopt your child. You have to go to court for final approvals in case . Sometime father changes his mind later on. It is too late then.
Child already bond to stepfather. It is hard to break them apart.
dkupil



Joined: 01 Nov 2008
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Post Posted: Sun Jul 11, 2010 9:25 am      Post subject: Illegimate births - Reason why Silesia region
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My GGrandfather was born out of wedlock, Some of the reasons are religion if the father was not catholic he was not mentioned,class if the father was too poor to support a wife or possible the father was the employer and was married to some one else. My GGrandfather keep the name of his mother as did his brother who was born three years later. The info I have is from catholic church records Silesia and reading different articles on the subject and info from people knowledgable on the subject and German law which affected the region at the time 19C.
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tarkulich



Joined: 26 Mar 2010
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Post Posted: Sun Jul 11, 2010 9:31 am      Post subject: Concubina
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There are a couple of other aspects to consider here. While they may not apply to your case, with thousands of forum readers, I'd hate for others to draw incorrect conclusions.

The definition of "illegitimate" must be considered. Are we speaking of civil or religious illegitimacy? reading the ledgers must be done carefully and thoughtfully, with a full understanding of the terms during that era of time. You must be careful not to project today's customs to those of remote villages 100 years ago. 100 years ago, it was nearly impossible to keep secrets in small villages. Rapes, especially during war-times had very different outcomes, so please examine your period of time carefully and undestand the history and customs consistent to that period.

While my research expertise is Slovakia, many of the same concepts apply. I've extracted a recent correspondence of mine below from the Slovak-roots forum. It may or may not apply to your case.

Consider that of the of the Latin "CONCUBINA", which is seen occassionally in church records.

It means quite a bit more than co-habitation. It defines a relationship where one of the people cannot marry, most often because they are not of the same social class. It defines two people living together as a family, procreating and remaining committed. Under serfdom, this was socially acceptable. It is quite likely the father was in a nobleman or at least a landowner, or perhaps another social class. While the churches recognized this status, they were not particularly pleased about it.

See
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concubinage
and from The Catholic Encylopedia, written in 1914.
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/04207a.htm
It's always good to consult documents from the the time in question.

While peasant emancipation occurred in Hungary about 1848, many of the social and economic forces of serfdom remained engaged well into the 1930s.


Presumably the father was of the higher social status. He would not want to have his surname passed down to his offspring. Consequentially the boys were forced to take the mother's name. For the girls, they were all expected to marry and consequentially lose their original surname.

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Henryk
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Post Posted: Sun Jul 11, 2010 1:22 pm      Post subject:
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I have a record where a man announced the birth of a child to a widow, but did not say it was his child. The child was given his surname. The man was married to some else at the time. The year was 1815, in the Grand Duchy of Warsaw.
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Arlene Vic
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Post Posted: Sun Jul 11, 2010 1:59 pm      Post subject: Re: Illegimate births - Reason why Silesia region
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dkupil wrote:
My GGrandfather was born out of wedlock, Some of the reasons are religion if the father was not catholic he was not mentioned,class if the father was too poor to support a wife or possible the father was the employer and was married to some one else. My GGrandfather keep the name of his mother as did his brother who was born three years later. The info I have is from catholic church records Silesia and reading different articles on the subject and info from people knowledgable on the subject and German law which affected the region at the time 19C.


I alway make sure I date catholic men. It is very difficult to marry someone with other religious. I know it won't work out for me. Maybe someone don't mind marrying other outside of their religious.
Lisa



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Post Posted: Mon Jul 12, 2010 6:37 am      Post subject:
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My great-grandfather was the son of a woman who was not married at the time of his birth in 1870. She worked as a maid on an estate in Luslawice, Galicia, Poland. We never found out the identity of his father.

My great-grandfather and his mother were Roman Catholics. The records from the church of his baptism do NOT indicate the father's name.

My great-grandfather married and had 12 children, among them my grandmother. She and her siblings were told that although their father did not know the identity of HIS father, he could hold his head up high because he was of "noble birth."

My great-grandfather's mother married shortly after his birth, but not to his father. She went on to have children with her husband. My great-grandfather never took his step-father's last name. For all of his life he kept his mother's maiden name, passing it onto his children as well.

For my family, this is a 140 year old mystery with no way of solving.
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dkupil



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Post Posted: Mon Jul 12, 2010 7:20 am      Post subject: Illegimate births - Reason why Silesia region
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My GGrandfather was born out of wedlock 1853 as was his younger brother in both records LDS catholic church with no mention of the father. In translated records she is referred as the cook her occupation. The silesian region at that time fell under Prussian German law which also defines marriage. As in earlier post reasons why are religion, social class. On my GGrandfather,s death cert it has clues as to the ID of the father which I,m investagating, I believe in my case religion, and social class and I believe the father was married and her employer were factors this now is a work in progress. My GGrandfather took the name of his mother.
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Arlene Vic
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Post Posted: Mon Jul 12, 2010 1:12 pm      Post subject: Re: Illegimate births - Reason why Silesia region
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dkupil wrote:
My GGrandfather was born out of wedlock 1853 as was his younger brother in both records LDS catholic church with no mention of the father. In translated records she is referred as the cook her occupation. The silesian region at that time fell under Prussian German law which also defines marriage. As in earlier post reasons why are religion, social class. On my GGrandfather,s death cert it has clues as to the ID of the father which I,m investagating, I believe in my case religion, and social class and I believe the father was married and her employer were factors this now is a work in progress. My GGrandfather took the name of his mother.



My grandmother was dating my grandfather. But she got pregnant with his child. My Grandfather didn't want to marry her so he left Poland and lived in Chicago, IL. Grandma had son born in 1887. Grandpa stayed in Illinois for 8 or 10 years and went back to Poland. He changed his mind and married my grandmother and they had 9 more children together. 1st child never changed his last name & kept his mother's maiden last name. Others did have their father's last name. I guess they did have very strong love for each other. They had problem deciding where to live. Grandma didn't like living in America which is why.
Lisa



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Post Posted: Mon Jul 12, 2010 1:48 pm      Post subject:
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dkupil I would be interested in knowing the results of your investigation, should you wish to share them. Great-Grandpa's children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren have tried for decades to make sense out of our story, without success.
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violin75



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Post Posted: Tue Jul 13, 2010 5:08 pm      Post subject:
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So glad this subject came up because I have been searching through the Szczucin,Malopolska religious records with birth, marriage, death information and I have found my grandfathers birth!
I was very excited about it but it stated that he was of an illegitimate birth! He was born with his mothers maiden name. I was shocked because the family story was that after he came to America he changed his name because he didnt like the meaning of it. However, the truth is, he changed his last name to his fathers last name instead of having his mothers maiden name after he arrived in America!
His fathers name is on his marriage record in America and his death records but not on his birth records in Poland!
Question: A child of illegitimate birth born in 1888 was it a hard life because the parents weren't married? Was the child treated differently or badly?


Last edited by violin75 on Wed Feb 02, 2011 5:22 pm; edited 1 time in total
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