Tag: Milwaukee


itchys @ FlickrAfter running out of gas on trying to find more online records about my great-great-grandfather, Frank Zalewski, and his brother, Jacob, I decided to work the other way. I’ve read about people making awesome discoveries by connecting with distant cousins and finding out that they have some amazing record or photo that breaks down a wall. That sounded like something good to shoot for.

I was going to try to work my way down their trees, from Frank & Anna and then Jacob & Pauline’s families, and see what I could find using tools from early 20th century newspapers all the way to Facebook. With a few tools at my disposal, I was actually able to get much more information than I thought I would in only a few days.

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Troka Family

Troka FamilyThis is a photo from my paternal Milwaukee line. I don’t know the names of everyone in the photo, but there are a few I know. My great-grandmother, Emily (TROKA) ZALEWSKI, is at the top-left. Her mother, Clara (SZULTA) TROKA, is right below her. Clara’s mother (and my 3rd-great-grandmother), Nepomuncena (SYLDAKT) SZULTA, is to the right of her. The only other name I know is that of Nepomuncena’s son, John SZULTA, in the middle of the back row. The remaining people are either part of the SZULTA family or TROKA family. I have other photos from this day that include other family members. Click photo to enlarge.

Nepomuncena & Kids

A photo from 1921 that includes my 3rd-great grandmother, Nepomuncena (SYLDATK) SZULTA, in the middle. This is a photo of her with a bunch of her grandchildren. Since it seems to be sometime in Summer or Spring 1921, my grandfather would not have been born yet. Though, the little girl in her lap on the right looks an awful lot like my grandfather’s sister, Irene, who was born in 1920.

My Aunt and Uncle let me scan this photo from my grandfather’s collection. It’s a photo of his 8th grade class at St. Casimir’s School in northeast Milwaukee in February 1936. As you can tell by the names, if you can see them, it was a very Polish-heavy area. I’ve magnified my grandfather’s photograph. The original image is very large, so I didn’t want to put the whole thing on the site. The girls got the top area of the photo, the boys on the bottom, and the teachers in the middle.

St. Casimir's School

On a side note, I plan to start posting more often again. I’ve been busy recently, with a new baby on the way and all, and have also not had the genealogy bug for a bit.

Richard, Irene, Jerry Strelka
A photo of my grandfather, Richard Zalewski, in the middle with his sister Irene on the right and their cousin, Jerry Strelka, on the left. Based on the ages of Richard and Irene, I would estimate the date of this photo to be 1923 or so. It was more than likely taken in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

The TONEY surname shows up in my wife’s family tree starting with her great-great-grandmother, Idona (TONEY) POWELL. The surname is also her connection to the American Revolutionary War. So, if all data is correct she should be a proven Daughter of the American Revolution. There is much paperwork to get that finished. Maybe we’ll work on it someday for her (or my future daughter.)

The line than extends to her father, Jesse TONEY, who is known to have fought in the Civil War. Next is his father, William TONEY, born in Virginia and later died in Wisconsin. William’s father is Carey TONEY, who not only lived to 101 years of age (depending on which info is correct), his wife lived to be 100. Carey is my wife’s TONEY ancestor who served in the Revolutionary War. This was written some research that we had found:

He joined the American Army in the Revolution, passed through several campaigns; was present and took an active part in the siege of Yorktown and was an eye-witness to the surrender of Cornwallis in 1781, saw Gen Washington and Lafayette a great number of times during the siege; recollects and describes the personal appearance of Lord Cornwallis, his staff & etc.

The TONEY line than continues on to Carey’s father, William. Then it’s William’s father, Alexander William TONEY and his father William TONEY. According to the info we have, which may or may not be correct, William was born in 1660 at Buckingham County in Virginia. There is a lot of other research out there for the TONEY family, as they must have spread their seed far and wide from Virginia.

Joseph & Richard

This is a photo of my great-grandfather, Joseph ZALEWSKI, and my grandfather, Richard ZALEWSKI. Date is unknown, but Richard looks to be about 2 or 3, so this is probably somewhere around 1923-25. I’m assuming it was taken in Milwaukee, Wisconsin as that was where Joseph and his family lived at the time.

Troka/Zalewski/Szulta

This is a picture of the men of the Troka, Zalewski, Szulta, and other families. The photo includes both my great-grandfather and his father-in-law, my great-great-grandfather. Also included are some great uncles and some other family members. Here are the names of everyone in the photo. Back row: Joseph Zalewski (my great-grandfather), Leo Troka (my great-granduncle), Steve Kolasinski, John Szulta (my great-great-granduncle), Roman Troka (my great-granduncle) – Front row: Barney Kuszewski, Jos. Malzewski, Joseph Troka (my great-great-grandfather), Ignatz Urmanski.

Zalewski Wedding

Zalewski Wedding

This is from my grandparent’s wedding, Richard & Mary Jane (CORRIGAN) ZALEWSKI on October 11, 1947 at St. Gall’s Church in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I particularly enjoy the two kids on the sides of the church. I’m not even sure if they’re part of the family.

Click the photo for a larger version.

I received this photo from another researcher that is also looking into some of my Polish family. They also just happen to cross with my ZALEWSKI family. This is a photo she sent me that is from July 1941 that includes my great-grandfather, Joseph ZALEWSKI, on the right and my great-uncle Robert ZALEWSKI in the middle. I’m not sure who the other man is at the moment, but he looks sorta familiar. It says it was taken at “the lake” but I’m not sure where that is. There are a lot of lakes around here. My grandfather, Richard ZALEWSKI, is probably away at Navy school in Florida around this time. Robert and Richard’s mother, Emily, would have just recently passed away unexpectedly in May 1941 from a stroke.

I like how my great-grandfather looks like he just stepped out of The Sopranos with that big ol’ cigar in his mouth. Well..a Polish version, like The Sopranskis or something.

Click the photo for a larger version.