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forest109



Joined: 03 Feb 2017
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Post Posted: Fri Feb 03, 2017 4:23 pm      Post subject: Passport birth date per Julian or Gregorian calendar?
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I have a question regarding the birth date entered on a ca-1900 Russian Empire passport (I have my grandmother’s original from when she emigrated from Russian Poland in 1904). Would the date have been per the Julian calendar or the Gregorian calendar? I have been told that the other dates entered in her passport (the date it was approved and the date she was temporarily assigned to a “government house” in Warsaw prior to emigrating) would definitely have been per the Julian calendar, because that was the official calendar in use in Russia until 1918. But, would her birth date be just whatever she told the officials (presumably according to Catholic church records, which would have used the Gregorian calendar), or would she have been required to convert that date to the official Russian (Julian) calendar? The difference is not insignificant, as her birth date (according to her passport) was 13 February, 1884, meaning not just a 12-day difference but a 1-year + 12-day difference (25 February, 1885), since the Julian New Year began in late March. Has anyone else encountered this?
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Elzbieta Porteneuve
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Post Posted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 5:44 pm      Post subject: Re: Passport birth date per Julian or Gregorian calendar?
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forest109 wrote:
I have a question regarding the birth date entered on a ca-1900 Russian Empire passport (I have my grandmother’s original from when she emigrated from Russian Poland in 1904). Would the date have been per the Julian calendar or the Gregorian calendar? I have been told that the other dates entered in her passport (the date it was approved and the date she was temporarily assigned to a “government house” in Warsaw prior to emigrating) would definitely have been per the Julian calendar, because that was the official calendar in use in Russia until 1918. But, would her birth date be just whatever she told the officials (presumably according to Catholic church records, which would have used the Gregorian calendar), or would she have been required to convert that date to the official Russian (Julian) calendar? The difference is not insignificant, as her birth date (according to her passport) was 13 February, 1884, meaning not just a 12-day difference but a 1-year + 12-day difference (25 February, 1885), since the Julian New Year began in late March. Has anyone else encountered this?


Hi,

Did you read http://stevemorse.org/juliancalendar/julian.htm ? Consider FIGURE 6. January/February 1918 in Russia, the year they moved from Julian to Gregorian.
Poland moved to Gregorian calendar on 4 October 1582, at the very beginning. Part of Poland, under Russian partition, had to add Julian date, often called Russian one.
Any date before Jan/Feb 1918 could be expressed in Julian and Gregorian. It is only in 1918, when 13 dates (1 to 13 February) are lost - Julian is joing Gregorian.

Your grandmother told the officials her birth date as 13 February 1884. Assuming it is Russian date, the Gregorian (Polish) one was 25 February 1884. In 1884 there was no dates "removed" from calendar.

Best,
Elzbieta
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forest109



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Post Posted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 9:24 pm      Post subject:
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Yes, I've read Steve Morse's article on the Julian calendar, and I'm familiar with the dates that it was in effect in Russia (and Russian Poland). However, I can't assume that the birth date entered on my grandmother's passport was according to one calendar or the other without some evidence. My question is, would she have been REQUIRED to enter the equivalent Julian calendar date for her birth date, or would they have just accepted whatever date she gave them. I assume the date she would have known as her birth date would have been the one recorded by her local Catholic church (which would have been per the Gregorian calendar), but I'm not certain of this. What I would like to know is, what would have been the customary procedure on a passport document. According to the Steve Morse website, the Julian calendar date of 13 February 1884 corresponds to the Gregorian calendar date of 25 February 1885, and the Gregorian date of 13 February 1884 corresponds to the Julian date of 1 February 1883, so either way the difference is 1 year + 12 days.
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Elzbieta Porteneuve
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Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 3:25 am      Post subject:
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forest109 wrote:
Yes, I've read Steve Morse's article on the Julian calendar, and I'm familiar with the dates that it was in effect in Russia (and Russian Poland). However, I can't assume that the birth date entered on my grandmother's passport was according to one calendar or the other without some evidence. My question is, would she have been REQUIRED to enter the equivalent Julian calendar date for her birth date, or would they have just accepted whatever date she gave them. I assume the date she would have known as her birth date would have been the one recorded by her local Catholic church (which would have been per the Gregorian calendar), but I'm not certain of this. What I would like to know is, what would have been the customary procedure on a passport document. According to the Steve Morse website, the Julian calendar date of 13 February 1884 corresponds to the Gregorian calendar date of 25 February 1885, and the Gregorian date of 13 February 1884 corresponds to the Julian date of 1 February 1883, so either way the difference is 1 year + 12 days.


Oh, I see the reason for your confusion - it is Steve's Morse note on the page "Converting between Julian and Gregorian Calendar in One Step" for 13 February 1884, he adds "1884/1885 (explain this)" - it is very much England and US perspective (see quotation below)!

But even Steve Morse on his page, under "The Start of the Year" states:
Russia from 1700 CE: January 1

Poland moved to Gregorian calendar on 4 October 1582, at the very beginning; You can observe double dates on thousands Polish records from 1800s, it is always 12 days difference, and the year is changing on 1st January.

See also https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicolaus_Copernicus
Some of the observations that he made in this period may have had a connection with a proposed reform of the Julian calendar made in the first half of 1513 at the request of the Bishop of Fossombrone, Paul of Middelburg

So the bottom line is 13 Feb 1884 Julian = 25 Feb 1884 Gregorian in Poland, Russia (and most of Continental Europe).

Best,
Elzbieta
==
Confusing Steve's Morse note:

Under the Julian calendar, the year number did not necessarily change on January 1. In fact, the year number changed on different dates depending on the country and the year. In England and the United States, the year number changed on March 25.

Under the Gregorian calendar, the year number always changed on January 1 in all countries and in all years. This led to confusion since countries using the Julian calendar could have a different year number from those using the Gregorian calendar.
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Sophia



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Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 8:16 am      Post subject:
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Hi forest109,
First, let me say that you are very lucky to have your grandmother's passport. What a treasure!
I hope that Elzbieta's explanation has helped you with the issue of Julian date vs. Gregorian date.
Not that I want to confuse things further, but I would caution you that you really will not know your grandmother's date of birth for sure until you see a baptism record. Perhaps this is at the root of why you are asking for clarification on the date, so that you know a nice narrow window of time in which to search for that.
In the case of one of my own ancestors (also from Russian Poland, and a contemporary of your grandmother), finding church baptismal records corrected what the family always "knew" about his birthdate. The church record recorded both Julian and Gregorian dates of his birth, and Julian and Gregorian dates of his baptism. In every post-immigration record that asked for his birth date, it was actually the Gregorian baptism date that was used. It was a real surprise.
Best of luck in your search,
Sophia
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forest109



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Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 11:38 am      Post subject:
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Thanks to both of you for the explanation. I had also seen that in Russia the new year began on 1 January at that time, so when the auto date converter on Steve Morse's website kept adding/deleting a year for dates in the January-March range, I wondered if I had missed something. Part of the problem is that the date her passport was approved was 4 January 1903, and the latest date entered in her passport is 11 February 1903 (when she was approved for temporary relocation to a government house in Warsaw - I still haven't figure out exactly what that was all about, but it looks like it was pretty routine), and yet in later US census records her date of immigration is always 1904, so I assumed that a 1-year jump between the calendars explained that. Ironically, I have not yet been able to locate her in a passenger manifest or port record, so I still don't know exactly when she arrived and what happened in that missing year. The first record I have for her in the US is her marriage in February 1905, so I only know she arrived before then. Also, the dates on her grave marker says just "1883" for her birth, not 1884, which also made me wonder if there was a 1-year jump between the calendars for someone born in February. Anyway, you are correct that I'll only know the correct date when I am able to access the church records in Poland, which I plan to do. I just wondered which calendar birth date the Russian government would have used on her passport. And, yes, I'm lucky to have it. My cousin inherited it several years ago (although I did have photos of all the pages), and recently gave it to me.
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Elzbieta Porteneuve
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Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 12:38 pm      Post subject:
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forest109 wrote:
Part of the problem is that the date her passport was approved was 4 January 1903, and the latest date entered in her passport is 11 February 1903 (when she was approved for temporary relocation to a government house in Warsaw - I still haven't figure out exactly what that was all about, but it looks like it was pretty routine), and yet in later US census records her date of immigration is always 1904,


Without Polish vocabulary it's hard to figure out. I do not know what might be "government house in Warsaw". My guess is that the date of 11 February 1903 is the day she obtained a permit to stay in Warsaw - miejsce zamieszkania or miejsce stalego zameldowania // place of residence or place of permanent residence. One could not move at his will, without obtaining a permit of reside, recorded in ID and in the city registry; the permit of permanent residency was required to obtain a work. My guess is also that she needed some time to get all necessary papers and tickets for her travel to the US, one year is not an absurd estimate.
Another option is that born in 1884, she became 20 years old adult in 1904, and then could travel?

Quote:

Also, the dates on her grave marker says just "1883" for her birth, not 1884


That is the date given by her survivors. Mistakes happen all the time. The date of birth on the grave of my Uncle in the US, captain of the Polish Army, who left Russia with Anders through Iran, is mistaken by 1 year. I am sure of hist date of birth, because my Aunts and his sisters made his name, date of birth and date of death graven in stone in late 1960s, in Przemysl Cemetery. And no, I do not have any paper certificate yet.

I wish you success in your search.
Elzbieta
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Sophia



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Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 1:38 pm      Post subject:
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If you would like some assistance in looking for her passenger manifest, post her name and, if you know it, what town/city she was headed to.
Best,
Sophia
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forest109



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Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 2:09 pm      Post subject:
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Sophia wrote:
If you would like some assistance in looking for her passenger manifest, post her name and, if you know it, what town/city she was headed to.
Best,
Sophia


Sophia,

Would that need to be posted in another forum, or just continue with this thread? Her name was Anastasia Wisniewska (could also have been listed as "Anna"), born in Zamość, Sochaczew, Warszawa, Russia, her final destination was Norwich, CT, to the home of her brother Jozef/Joseph Wisniewski. I have not yet found any passenger manifest for him either, although I do have that information for two other younger brothers who immigrated after Anastasia.
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Sophia



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Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 2:13 pm      Post subject:
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I think it is just fine to leave it here in this thread. I will take a look for Anastasia and see what I can find.
Best,
Sophia
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forest109



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Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 2:46 pm      Post subject:
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Thanks. If it helps, her father's name was Jan Wisniewski and her mother's name was Veronica Sznajder. As far as her destination being her brother's residence, I am assuming that, because he arrived before she did and lived in Norwich for the rest of his life. She was married in Norwich in 1905.
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looking for clues



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Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 4:16 pm      Post subject:
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I have been having some positive experiences finding some of my relatives on http://geneteka.genealodzy.pl/ I found an index to 4 children of Jan Wisniewski and Weronika Sznajder at including a Jozef and Anastazja in 1884 http://geneteka.genealodzy.pl/index.php?op=gt&lang=pol&bdm=B&w=07mz&rid=B&search_lastname=Sznajder&search_name=&search_lastname2=wisniewski&search_name2=jan&from_date=&to_date=&rpp1=&ordertable= Unfortunately there are not links to all of the records.

Click on the other tabs to see more records including an 1880 marriage record for Jan Wisniewski and Weronika Sznajder

Let me know if you have problems accessing the link.

Diane

EDIT - forest109 - WOW - I went back and hovered over the i on the right in Anastazja's record - it says Data: 13.02.1884r - although it doesn't solve what calendar her birthday was based on, it that matches a date you have.


Last edited by looking for clues on Sun Feb 05, 2017 5:05 pm; edited 2 times in total
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forest109



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Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 4:47 pm      Post subject:
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Thanks, Diane. I looked at the site (I'm glad they have an English language version). I think what you found is correct. There was another brother Stanislaw (one of the other two brothers who emigrated). The other child, Ignacy, was unknown to me, but it looks like he died at a young age in Poland. The other brother I mentioned was Felix (b. 1888), who eventually moved to Milwaukee. I don't know why he is not listed here, but I'll look into it.

I think there has some question in the family as to whether this was his second marriage after his first wife died. I'll look into this. Meanwhile, thanks again for the link, and if you find any other connections please let me know!

Chuck
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looking for clues



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Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 5:02 pm      Post subject:
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Chuck - see my edit to my original message for the date of birth for Anastazja

Also, I'm assuming you saw Ignacy's death under zgony.

Just found what may be your great grandmother Weronika's birth and death - both in the same parish, Brochów, where Jan Wisniewski and Weronika Sznajder married.

birth in 1859 - http://geneteka.genealodzy.pl/index.php?op=gt&lang=eng&bdm=B&w=07mz&rid=2877&search_lastname=Sznajder&search_name=Weronika&search_lastname2=&search_name2=&from_date=1859&to_date=1859&exac=1

death in 1894 - http://geneteka.genealodzy.pl/index.php?op=gt&lang=eng&bdm=D&w=07mz&rid=2878&search_lastname=Sznajder&search_name=Weronika&search_lastname2=&search_name2=&from_date=1894&to_date=1894&exac=1

Note the second record has a scan and show the death date by hovering over the i
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forest109



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Post Posted: Sun Feb 05, 2017 7:15 pm      Post subject:
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Thanks again! So, Veronica (Weronika) Sznajder was born and died in Famulki Krowlewski, which also happens to be where my grandfather (Anastasia's husband), Adam Zielinski (1879-1924) is from. Adam's father was Walentius Zielinski and his mother was Josephine Glowacka, although I have no other information at all on them or anyone else in his family. As far as I know he was the only one to immigrate (and I've heard an interesting story as to why, possibly necessitating a quick exit, although I don't know if it's true). I do have the passenger manifest record for Adam (but no passport, unfortunately), with "Samulki" (no such place in Poland, but "S" could also be an "F", so Famulki) listed as his home town. Anyway, I've always heard Famulki Krolewski. There are at least three other families that I know of from the same area (Lasocin, Sochaczew, etc., all within a few mile radius) that also had members immigrate to Norwich, CT and marry into these families. It's going to make researching them (and visiting, which I plan to do) easier.

I have also heard that there might have been another Wisniewski brother named Michal, and another sister Zofia, in Poland, but I have found nothing to substantiate Michal, and my information on Zofia consists solely of an old photo my cousin recently gave me that has her name on it and an inscription "Anastasia's sister, according to (one of my aunts)" in English on the back. I don't think Michal actually exists, but whoever Zofia is, she does.

Is the Geneteka Genealodzy site a member- only forum? It looks like it. And, although there is an English translation button, it only appears to translate the screen captions, not everyone's comments and the actual information text . Bottom line, there is a lot of text in Polish, which is beyond my ability to translate (quickly, anyway!), although I wish I could. How do you manage navigating it? I also need to look at how to cite this website as a source, but at least I have a copy of "Evidence Explained" to help me with that. I let nothing go uncited.
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