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Luwik_NJ



Joined: 26 Nov 2023
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Location: New Jersey USA

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Post Posted: Sun Nov 26, 2023 10:46 pm      Post subject: Help needed for Polish church records in Latin
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I found this forum a week ago and have been reading posts to see if I could find some answers to questions I have. It's helped me but some questions remain and I'm sure new ones will pop up later. So far I can only find birth records in Podkarpackie, Parish of Lutcza from 1890 onwards. The other records for my ancestors and their cousins (who also immigrated to America), all born in the 1870-1889 time frame, cannot be found. Am I to assume they just haven't been scanned yet or that they may be lost to history?

The three birth records I did find are confirmed by the marriage certificates of my grand uncle and aunts in America. Their US certs show the father and mother are Franciszek Szurlej and Anna Pitera. The Polish baptism records show the same. Unlike the U.S. birth certificates, it looks like the Polish ones also show the grandparents. I also see the words that look like fil and filia in birth records I've looked at for babies other than my ancestors. Does this signify the "tree", i.e. lineage of the parents?

I had to compare the three birth records to make out the names, sometimes the text is faded or it's very hard to interpret the cursive writing. I'll post the best image of the three, it's #33 for Adalbertus born 16 April 1892, is the baptism date the 18th? The father is Franciszek Szurlej agr fil Josephi & Francisca Przygoda are his parents? The mother is Anna fil Martini (or Martinus) Pitera & Catharina Nowak. Marcin and Katarzyna are Anna's parents?

Words that look like "agr", "et" and I think I see "&", and the letters after sponsor Agatha's name, can't be made out by me. I see another name between Agatha and Mazur, might that be her maiden name. It could be Joannes but I simply cannot make out the writing.

My grand aunt Anna Szurlej has been a mystery for the family. One of my aunts who met Anna said that Anna's first husband died, we have no idea when or where. I still can't find Anna's name on a ship's manifest and that could be due to how they spelled the surname. I've seen some really crazy spelling, even on U.S. birth, marriage and death certificates. What I did find in Poland was a misspelled maiden name for Anna's mom, perhaps by the transscriber of the church record. It's Pitera not Putera.

I've never looked at a marriage record before and don't know where to begin deciphering it. The indexer says they married on 1 July 1909. Does the writing at the top of the page pertain to this record or is it the writing below the marriage info. At least the document image is crisp and clear, easy to read. I think Gregory's father is Joseph Najwer and his mom is Mar-a- Kaczano-ska (I'll leave this one to the experts). The witnesses might be Andreas (Andrzej) and it could be an A, P or an R to start the next name. I can find no birth or death records for Grzegorz, maybe he was born outside Poland.

Any questions for me, just ask. Also, not sure if everyone already knows this but in the U.S. there is a web site that is using freedom of information requests and threatening States with lawsuits to obtain birth, marriage and death records. I only found it a few months ago. They usually only get index records but that's a start in your efforts to identify where State certificates may be found. https://www.reclaimtherecords.org/ TIA for any help you can give me!



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dnowicki
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Post Posted: Mon Nov 27, 2023 10:12 pm      Post subject: Re: Help needed for Polish church records in Latin
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Luwik_NJ wrote:
I found this forum a week ago and have been reading posts to see if I could find some answers to questions I have. It's helped me but some questions remain and I'm sure new ones will pop up later. So far I can only find birth records in Podkarpackie, Parish of Lutcza from 1890 onwards. The other records for my ancestors and their cousins (who also immigrated to America), all born in the 1870-1889 time frame, cannot be found. Am I to assume they just haven't been scanned yet or that they may be lost to history?

The three birth records I did find are confirmed by the marriage certificates of my grand uncle and aunts in America. Their US certs show the father and mother are Franciszek Szurlej and Anna Pitera. The Polish baptism records show the same. Unlike the U.S. birth certificates, it looks like the Polish ones also show the grandparents. I also see the words that look like fil and filia in birth records I've looked at for babies other than my ancestors. Does this signify the "tree", i.e. lineage of the parents?

I had to compare the three birth records to make out the names, sometimes the text is faded or it's very hard to interpret the cursive writing. I'll post the best image of the three, it's #33 for Adalbertus born 16 April 1892, is the baptism date the 18th? The father is Franciszek Szurlej agr fil Josephi & Francisca Przygoda are his parents? The mother is Anna fil Martini (or Martinus) Pitera & Catharina Nowak. Marcin and Katarzyna are Anna's parents?

Words that look like "agr", "et" and I think I see "&", and the letters after sponsor Agatha's name, can't be made out by me. I see another name between Agatha and Mazur, might that be her maiden name. It could be Joannes but I simply cannot make out the writing.

My grand aunt Anna Szurlej has been a mystery for the family. One of my aunts who met Anna said that Anna's first husband died, we have no idea when or where. I still can't find Anna's name on a ship's manifest and that could be due to how they spelled the surname. I've seen some really crazy spelling, even on U.S. birth, marriage and death certificates. What I did find in Poland was a misspelled maiden name for Anna's mom, perhaps by the transscriber of the church record. It's Pitera not Putera.

I've never looked at a marriage record before and don't know where to begin deciphering it. The indexer says they married on 1 July 1909. Does the writing at the top of the page pertain to this record or is it the writing below the marriage info. At least the document image is crisp and clear, easy to read. I think Gregory's father is Joseph Najwer and his mom is Mar-a- Kaczano-ska (I'll leave this one to the experts). The witnesses might be Andreas (Andrzej) and it could be an A, P or an R to start the next name. I can find no birth or death records for Grzegorz, maybe he was born outside Poland.

Any questions for me, just ask. Also, not sure if everyone already knows this but in the U.S. there is a web site that is using freedom of information requests and threatening States with lawsuits to obtain birth, marriage and death records. I only found it a few months ago. They usually only get index records but that's a start in your efforts to identify where State certificates may be found. https://www.reclaimtherecords.org/ TIA for any help you can give me!


Austria was a Catholic country and its Empire contained regions of various ethnicities where the inhabitants spoke one of several languages. The Austrian authorities decided upon Latin as the common language in which records would be kept throughout the Empire. In some ways it is similar to how Latin became the language of scholarship during the rise of the University’s in the early middle ages. Students who attended universities came from any one of a number of countries and had no one common language. Latin, although it was no longer a language spoken by any national group, became the choice of common language in the universities. It was not only the language in texts and lectures but also became the common language of the students as they did what university students still do so well— hanging out together, especially in taverns, gambling and singing songs and reciting poems and satires and telling stories and having a good old time and noting caring about the future—“In taberna quando sumus non curamus quid sit humus.”

The entries are in Latin with the exception ,of course, of the surnames which, naturally, are entered in their Polish form. Given names are entered in their Latin form.

In these columnar format records there is very little to translate with the exception of names and occupations and a few other details. The Austrian government mandated that Parish priests keep the records in this columnar format and that those records would serve as vital state records. The government was interested in keeping those records for military purposes, conscription into the army, and for purposes of taxation. The Austrian government dictated the format and content of the registers. Multiple copies of the parish registers were made and one remained in the parish itself where it served as a sacramental register and others were sent to the government where they were kept in state archives. The registers which are to be found online with a civil copies and it appears that the only accident records exist from about 1890 to the beginning of World War I. Since earlier records our housed in the parish itself it would be necessary to contact the parish to obtain the records. Here is a link which contains Parish contact info https://parafie.genealodzy.pl/index.php?op=pr&pid=4502
The following link contains information about the Parish Church as it existed during the early 20th century: https://pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ko%C5%9Bci%C3%B3%C5%82_Wniebowzi%C4%99cia_Naj%C5%9Bwi%C4%99tszej_Maryi_Panny_w_Lutczy

To answer your questions regarding the B&B record of Wojciech...The abbreviations fil. is for filius (male) and filia (female; agr. is for agricola (farmer). The names which follow fil. Are the parents of the father and of the mother. Et is and; The word which follows the name of the female sponsor aka godmother is uxor. The entry reads “Agata, the wife of Jan Mazur”.

For your convenience attached is a list of Latin given names with their Polish and English equivalents in PDF format. Also attached as a map of the districts in Galicia in 1914.

Here follows a template which contains the translation of the marriage record.

Wishing you success in your research,

Dave

Marriage Record: Austrian Partition Marriage Template:

The entry above this record is part of the previous marriage entry which should be found on the pevious page.

C1a: Nu(mer)us positionis = number in order: lacking
C1b: Anno 190 Dies et Mensis = In the year 190 Day & Month: July 11, 1909
C1c: Numerus Domus = House Number:lacking

C2: Sponsus = The Groom
C2a: Nomen = Name: Grzegorz Najwer, a butcher, the son of the late Józef and Maria née Kaczorowska from ???arye in the district of Lwów (now Lviv in Ukraine)
C2b: Religio = Religion
C2b1: Catholica = Catholic: Checked (R.C.)
C2b2: Aut alia = Or another: Blank
C2bc: Aetas = Age: 26
C2d: Coelebs vel viduus= Bachelor or widower: Bachelor

C3: Sponsa = The Bride
C3a: Nomen = Name: Anna Szurllej, the daughter of Franciszek and Anna née Pietra born in Lutcza district of Strzyżów, residing in Lwów (Lviv) at #23 Syk??nska Street
C3b1: Religio = Religion
C3b1: Catholica = Catholic: Checked (RC
C3b2: Aut alia = Or another: Blank
C3c: Aetas = Age: 28
C3d: Coelebs vel Vidua = Maiden or Widow: Maiden

C4 Testes = Witnesses
C4a: Nomen et conditio = Names and Status/Condition/Occupation:Andrzej ???, a bursar; Antoni Najwer, a butcher

Final Entry: Deals with baptismal Centificates and the announcements of the banns and that no impediment had been discovered.



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Luwik_NJ



Joined: 26 Nov 2023
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Location: New Jersey USA

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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2023 3:59 pm      Post subject: Re: Help needed for Polish church records in Latin
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Thank you Dave for your reply. I'll follow up on your information about contacting the parish for records as soon as I can find a friend or a family member who speaks Polish and have them request those church records. I had found some info on the forums about the forms that may be required for requesting records, not sure if that's for the parish or the gov't records. If you have any advice on this, let me know.
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Sophia
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Post Posted: Fri Dec 01, 2023 9:23 am      Post subject: Re: Help needed for Polish church records in Latin
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Luwik_NJ wrote:


The three birth records I did find are confirmed by the marriage certificates of my grand uncle and aunts in America. Their US certs show the father and mother are Franciszek Szurlej and Anna Pitera. The Polish baptism records show the same.


Hi,
This may or may not be connected to your family, but here is a death record from 1943 for Stanislaw Szurlej, in Ruda-Huta. See record #9 in the image below. His parents are given in the record as Franciszek Szurlej and Wiktoria Pitera. It is possible that the person providing the information simply did not know that his mother's name was Anna rather than Wiktoria. Otherwise, it may be a coincidence that two Franciszek Szurlej's married two different Pitera's. See what you think.
The Lubgens website shows very few entries for the surname Szurlej:
https://regestry.lubgens.eu/viewpage.php?page_id=1057
But that is where I found the death record. Here is how you use this: in the "nazwisko" box, type in Szurlej. Then click on "szukaj" ("search").
Best regards,
Sophia



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Luwik_NJ



Joined: 26 Nov 2023
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Location: New Jersey USA

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Post Posted: Mon Dec 04, 2023 8:38 pm      Post subject: Re: Help needed for Polish church records in Latin
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Hi Sophia,

Thanks for the information. Info like this is added to my notes because you never know when it will fit into your family genealogy. One of my earliest finds was a Franciszek Pitera married to an Anna Szurlej, compare that to my G-grandparents who are Franciszek Szurlej & Anna Pitera. What are the chances of that happening? What are the chances that the 2 Pitera's are brother and sister, ditto the 2 Szurlej's?

Back then town populations were small compared to today. And people didn't move around as easy as we can now. I wonder how likely it was that you might have married your 6th cousin, 3x removed as opposed to marrying someone who is not a cousin. I will be looking into the social aspect of life of our ancestors. Any good books or web sites I can turn to for that information?

The birth records I've found show the Szurlej & Pitera clans closely connected by marriage and births. I'm slowly documenting every one of them in the hopes I'll find my great grandparents brothers and sisters and cousins as well as 3x-great-grandparents to help me fill out my family tree. All I know about the Szurlej side of the family is what one of my aunts told me as she met all of her aunts and uncles who came to America. The rest of my cousins have contributed some stories but we had so little to go on until I spoke to that one special aunt who enjoyed telling me about our families past.

The Witoria Pitera name might indeed be an error. The baptism record I posted here shows my great grandfather's parents are Josef Szurlej & Franciszka Przygoda, so does one other baptism record. But a 3rd record shows Josef Szurlej & Franciszka "Szurlej". The priest made a mistake in his entry on that record. I've learned to pay attention to even the most minor of details, both to learn and to try and prevent my own mistakes. I used to live by, "leave no stone unturned when seeking information". Now my moto is, "I'm not just looking under the stones for clues, I'm looking under every grain of sand".

Thanks again for thinking of me and posting that info.

Rgds,
Ludvik


Sophia wrote:
Luwik_NJ wrote:


The three birth records I did find are confirmed by the marriage certificates of my grand uncle and aunts in America. Their US certs show the father and mother are Franciszek Szurlej and Anna Pitera. The Polish baptism records show the same.


Hi,
This may or may not be connected to your family, but here is a death record from 1943 for Stanislaw Szurlej, in Ruda-Huta. See record #9 in the image below. His parents are given in the record as Franciszek Szurlej and Wiktoria Pitera. It is possible that the person providing the information simply did not know that his mother's name was Anna rather than Wiktoria. Otherwise, it may be a coincidence that two Franciszek Szurlej's married two different Pitera's. See what you think.
The Lubgens website shows very few entries for the surname Szurlej:
https://regestry.lubgens.eu/viewpage.php?page_id=1057
But that is where I found the death record. Here is how you use this: in the "nazwisko" box, type in Szurlej. Then click on "szukaj" ("search").
Best regards,
Sophia
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Sophia
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Post Posted: Tue Dec 05, 2023 5:33 am      Post subject: Re: Help needed for Polish church records in Latin
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Luwik_NJ wrote:
Hi Sophia,

Thanks for the information. Info like this is added to my notes because you never know when it will fit into your family genealogy. One of my earliest finds was a Franciszek Pitera married to an Anna Szurlej, compare that to my G-grandparents who are Franciszek Szurlej & Anna Pitera. What are the chances of that happening? What are the chances that the 2 Pitera's are brother and sister, ditto the 2 Szurlej's?

Back then town populations were small compared to today. And people didn't move around as easy as we can now. I wonder how likely it was that you might have married your 6th cousin, 3x removed as opposed to marrying someone who is not a cousin. I will be looking into the social aspect of life of our ancestors. Any good books or web sites I can turn to for that information?

The birth records I've found show the Szurlej & Pitera clans closely connected by marriage and births. I'm slowly documenting every one of them in the hopes I'll find my great grandparents brothers and sisters and cousins as well as 3x-great-grandparents to help me fill out my family tree. All I know about the Szurlej side of the family is what one of my aunts told me as she met all of her aunts and uncles who came to America. The rest of my cousins have contributed some stories but we had so little to go on until I spoke to that one special aunt who enjoyed telling me about our families past.

The Witoria Pitera name might indeed be an error. The baptism record I posted here shows my great grandfather's parents are Josef Szurlej & Franciszka Przygoda, so does one other baptism record. But a 3rd record shows Josef Szurlej & Franciszka "Szurlej". The priest made a mistake in his entry on that record. I've learned to pay attention to even the most minor of details, both to learn and to try and prevent my own mistakes. I used to live by, "leave no stone unturned when seeking information". Now my moto is, "I'm not just looking under the stones for clues, I'm looking under every grain of sand".

Thanks again for thinking of me and posting that info.

Rgds,
Ludvik



Hi Ludvik,
Since you are interested in the tiny details, I will point out a few things about the death record of Stanisław Szurlej. First, it is a wartime record, 27th of February 1943. With all that was happening, having an error creep in to the records would not be surprising. However, you should note that one of the two witnesses who reported the death might well have been Stanisław's brother. Stanisław's age is given in this record as 31. The first named witness is Jan Szurlej, age 35. So perhaps the mother's name is rendered accurately.
I wish you good luck in obtaining church records. That will open up a wealth of info for you. Might I suggest you look at the Polish Genealogical Society of America's guidance on how to write to Poland for records:
https://pgsa.org/education-writing-poland/
Best regards,
Sophia
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Sophia
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Post Posted: Tue Dec 12, 2023 8:07 am      Post subject: Re: Help needed for Polish church records in Latin
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You wrote:

"I will be looking into the social aspect of life of our ancestors. Any good books or web sites I can turn to for that information?"


You may find something of interest in this Polish Origins Blog entry from 2018:
https://polishorigins.com/blog/10-great-books-about-poland-that-will-give-you-the-new-perspective/

Best regards,
Sophia
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