The fifth ancestor in my 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks is my 3rd-great-grandmother, Nepomucena (Ne-po-moo-see-nah) Susanna (SYLDATK) SZULTA. I am related to her via my father → his father (Richard ZALEWSKI) → his mother (Emily TROKA) → her mother (Clara SZULTA) → her mother (Nepomucena SYLDATK).
Based on records, she was normally known as “Annie.” According to a few name definition websites, her name is derived from the name Nepomuk. It was usually given in honor of the medieval saint John of Nepomuk (c. 1345-1393). There is some confusion as to what exactly the name means outside of the saint. All in all, there is some uncertainty and ambiguity surrounding the etymology of Nepomuk. The only thing that we can truly say for certain, is that the name is of Czech (and therefore Slavic) origin.
Some sources claim that Nepomuk literally means “from Pomuk” or “born in Pomuk” in Czech, but this is probably incorrect, as “from” is z in Czech and “born” is narozený in Czech. Instead, Nepomuk probably literally means “not Pomuk” in Czech, derived from ne meaning “not” or “no” and Pomuk meaning “Pomuk”.
The SYLDATK surname roughly translates to “woman soldier” in Russian.
According to the church records of the area, she was born on 7 August 1853 in what is now Gowidlino, Sierakowice, Kartuzy County, Pomeranian Voivodeship, Kashubia, Poland. She was baptized a week later on 14 August 1853. Not much is known about her early life in the area, but on 3 February 1875, she married Ignatz Peter SZULTA (Shool-tuh) in nearby Sulęczyno Parish.
Their first three children, including my great-great-grandmother, Clara, were born in the Sulęczyno area. It seems Ignatz emigrated first, spending some time in the Milwaukee area before the rest of the family, Nepomucena and her three children, arrived in November 1881. It looks like they lived on Sobieski Avenue in the highly-Polish Riverwest area of Milwaukee for the first few years.
There are few details about Nepomucena’s life besides that standard records like the census. They had at least six more children born in Milwaukee for a total of nine. It notes that in 1910, at the age of 57, she was doing housework for another family. The photo above (on the post) is of Nepomucena and some of her descendants. She is on the bottom row, 2nd from the left. Clara, her daughter and my 2nd-great-grandmother is to the left of her and my great-grandmother and her her granddaughter, Emily TROKA, is above Clara. The only other one I know off of the top of my head is her son John, in the middle back.
Three days before Christmas in 1925, Nepomucena passes away. She is buried next to her husband at Holy Cross Cemetery in Milwaukee.