Tag: Troka


I’ve decided to start putting the descriptions with my Wordless Wednesday posts instead of posting them the next day. I feel it’s sometimes confusing and more work to post the same thing twice rather than just saying it all on one day. I will still call it Wordless Wednesday, since that’s the name that everyone uses, but it will have words. Sue me.

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This is a photo of my great-great-grandother, Clara (Szulta) Troka and her two daughters, Francis & Emily. Emily is my great-grandmother who married Joseph Zalewski. Francis was better known as Sister Mary Clarentine when she joined the convent. There is no exact date written on this photo, but if I would have to guess I would say it was taken around 1910-1911 since Francis looks very young.

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This is one of the new photos I found this weekend when looking through my grandmother’s collection. This is the best photo that I have of my great-grandmother, Emily (Troka) ZALEWSKI. She passed away pretty young in 1941 at the age of 45, so there are not a lot of photos of her. This is her and my great-grandfather, Joseph ZALEWSKI on their wedding day in about 1919, since Joe had recently returned from World War I. I have yet to get the exact date of their wedding. I guess it’s one of those things I keep forgetting to dig for.

The other people are mostly unknown to me. The only other person that was labeled was the 2nd man in the back, Leo TROKA, Emily’s younger brother. The other three are not labeled. Though, strangely, there was a 1998 obituary taped to the back of the photograph inside of the frame for an Agnes (Binczak) MAJESKI, who seemed to have lived in that area of Milwaukee according to census records. The obituary was not specifically pointing at any certain individual, but it is possible that this woman is one of the women in the photo.

There are many more wonderful photos in this collection, so besides getting a treasure trove of great family photos, I shouldn’t run out of Wordless Wednesday/Tell Me Thursday posts for awhile.

January 24th

1789 – Died – Maria TRUIJEN – Maria is my 7th-great-grandmother on my mother’s side. She was born 12 May 1725 in Genk, Limburg, Belgium. She married Paulus VAN CREYBECK in 1748. She passed away at Genk, Limburg, Belgium.

1850 – Died – Friedrich Ernest MUHM – Friedrich is my 5th-great-grandfather on my mother’s side. Friedrich was born 22 Nov 1774 in Schwbendorf, Landkreis, Maurburg, Hessen, Germany. He married Gertrude OPPERMAN in 1795. He passed away at Schwbendorf, Landkreis, Maurburg, Hessen, Germany.

January 29th

1894 – Married – Joseph TROKA & Clara SZULTA – Joseph and Clara are my great-great-grandparents on my father’s side. They were married at St. Hedwig’s church on the east side of Milwaukee, Wisconsin by C. ROGOZINSKI. They had 4 children, including my great-grandmother, Emily TROKA. Clara passed away in 1959 and Joe passed away in 1962. They are buried at Holy Cross Cemetery in Milwaukee.

Today’s surname is another one from my Polish side. SZULTA is presumably pronounced like SCHULTA. This surname first shows up in my ancestry with my great-great-grandmother, Clara SZULTA, who was born in Poland (or Prussia or Germany, I’m not sure yet.) I can only trace it back to Clara’s father, Ignatius SZULTA, who brought his family to America from Europe.

Ignatius SZULTA was born 1 Feb 1849 in Poland (Austria, as it’s noted.) He married Nepomuncena “Annie” SYLDAKT (I’ve also seen it written as SOZAK) in 1875. Together, they had 9 children with the first 3 born in Poland; Clara, Valerian, and Martha. These three children are listed on the passenger list along with Nepomuncena. Ignatius probably came over first, but I have yet to find his record. They settled in Milwaukee. I first find an “Ignats Szulta” in the Milwaukee City Directory in 1883 living at 943 Sobieski St.

Clara was born in Poland 6 Jan 1876. She married Joseph TROKA at. St. Hedwig’s Church on the east side of Milwaukee on 29 Jan 1894. They had 4 children, including my great-grandmother, Emily M TROKA, where it finally connects to my ZALEWSKI family. Ignatius passed away 25 May 1922 and Annie shortly thereafter on 22 Dec 1925. They are both buried at Holy Cross Cemetery in Milwaukee. Clara lived until 19 Jul 1959, only a few years before her husband was killed by a drunk driver on New Year’s Day in 1962.

It’s one of those surnames that is somewhat uncommon, so finding ancestors is usually simple. I search and if I find results, it’s usually a family member. I do run into some issues when it shows up under SCHULTA or SCHULTE since it usually groups names like Schultz and Schulz along with it, which makes it hard to browse. Googling SZULTA usually just brings up links to my sites and a few general Genealogy surname sites. It doesn’t seem to be very common. I have another researcher that I am in contact with that has been researching this family, as she is descended from one of Ignatius and Annie’s children. One of those lines that I get a lot of searches from is the URMANSKI family that branches out from their daughter Leocadia “Lilly” and her husband, Ignatz URMANSKI. That one seemed to spread out pretty far from the SZULTAs.

I need to spend some time searching these names but replacing SZULTA with either SCHULTA or SCHULTE and see what I get, though most sites include those using Soundex.

Joseph Troka and his wife, Clara.
Joseph Troka and his wife, Clara.

November 17th

1853 – Died – Marie Josephe BERO – Marie is my 4th-great-grandmother on my mother’s side. She was presumably born in Belgium, but her info is unknown. She married Constant Joseph LAURENT in 1809 and had 4 children, including my ancestor Jean-Baptiste LAURENT. She passed away at Biez, Chaumont-Gistoux, Wallon Brabant, Belgium.

1871 – Born – Joseph TROKA – Joseph is my 3rd-great-grandfather on my father’s side. He was born in Poland/Prussia and immigrated to America in 1888 or 1889 settling in Milwaukee. He married Clara SZULTA at St. Hedwig’s Church in Milwaukee on 29 Jan 1894. Joseph was tragically hit and killed by a drunk driver on his way to church on New Year’s morning 1962. You can see a partial transcription of the story on his family page.

November 18th

1872 – Died – Johann Peter FIRMENICH – Peter is my 4th-great-grandfather on my father’s side. He was born about 7 Jul 1794 in Koeln, Rheinland, Prussia. He immigrated to America with his family in 1847 settling just north of Milwaukee. He passed away at Brown Co., Wisconsin.

November 19th

1863 – Died – Friedrich MUHM – Friedrich is my 4th-great-grandfather on my mother’s side. He was born on 20 Feb 1801 in Schwbendorf, Landkreis, Maurburg, Hessen, Germany. He married Sophia Elizabeth STRASSMAN in 1844. They moved to the Germantown, Washington Co., Wisconsin area where Friedrich passed away.

1903 – Died – Janneke DEES – Janneke is my 4th-great-grandmother on my mother’s side. She was born about 1817 at Biervliet, Zeeland, Netherlands. She married Jacobus Bernardus VAN PARIJS in 1835 and had 5 children, including my ancestor Charles Ludovicus VAN PARIJS. She passed away in IJzendijke, Zeeland, Netherlands.

November 20th

1818 – Died – Gertrude OPPERMAN – Gertrude is my 5th-great-grandmother on my mother’s side. She was born about 1782 in Germany. She married Friedrich Ernest MUHM and had 2 children. She passed away in Schwbendorf, Landkreis, Maurburg, Hessen, Germany.

Randy Seaver at Genea-Musings came up with this fun post on Saturday. I thought I’d give it a try.

Here is your SNGF assignment for the evening (if you choose to accept it – this is not stump the genealogist or even Mission Impossible):

1) List your 16 great-great-grandparents in pedigree chart order. List their birth and death years and places.

2) Figure out the dominant ethnicity or nationality of each of them.

3) Calculate your ancestral ethnicity or nationality by adding them up for the 16 – 6.25% for each (obviously, this is approximate).

4) If you don’t know all 16 of your great-great-grandparents, then do it for the last full generation you have.

5) Write your own blog post, or make a comment on Facebook or in this post.

Some of this was tough due to the fact that a lot of my ancestors were born in either Prussia or Pomerania, which touched into both Germany and Poland, but I estimated as close as I could. Here are mine:

16. Frank J ZALEWSKI Sr. was born on 4 Sep 1858 in Prussia. Frank died on 8 Aug 1941 at the age of 82 in Milwaukee, Milwaukee Co., Wisconsin. Anna A LINDNER and Frank J ZALEWSKI Sr. were married in Jan 1885 in Poznan Province, South Prussia (Poland). [POLISH]

17. Anna A LINDNER was born on 27 Nov 1865 in Prussia. She died on 11 Apr 1939 at the age of 73 in Milwaukee, Milwaukee Co., Wisconsin. [POLISH]

18. Joseph TROKA was born on 17 Nov 1871 in Poland/West Prussia. Joseph died due to being hit by a drunk driver on his way to church on 1 Jan 1962 at the age of 90 in Milwaukee, Milwaukee Co., Wisconsin. Clara SZULTA and Joseph TROKA were married on 29 Jan 1894 in St. Hedwig, Milwaukee, Milwaukee Co., Wisconsin.  [POLISH]

19. Clara SZULTA was born on 6 Jan 1876 in Poland/West Prussia. Clara died on 19 Jul 1959 at the age of 83 in Oak Creek, Milwaukee Co., Wisconsin. [POLISH]

20. Thomas J CORRIGAN was born on 3 Mar 1855 in Mara Township, Brechin, Ontario, Canada. He died of a stroke on 25 Jul 1915 at the age of 60 in Ashland, Ashland Co., Wisconsin. Emma Jane FIRMENICH and Thomas J CORRIGAN were married on 18 Apr 1892 in Sanborn, Ashland Co., Wisconsin. [IRISH]

21. Emma Jane FIRMENICH was born on 23 Jun 1873 in Wrightstown, Brown Co., Wisconsin. She died on 28 Apr 1941 at the age of 67 in Ashland, Ashland Co., Wisconsin. [GERMAN/FRENCH/UK]

22. Frank F BRAATZ Sr was born on 17 Apr 1867 in Germany. Frank died on 10 Jul 1948 at the age of 81 in Ashland, Ashland Co., Wisconsin. Margaret K STEARNS and Frank F BRAATZ Sr were married on 4 Jun 1891 in Bear Creek, Outagamie Co., Wisconsin. [GERMAN]

23. Margaret K STEARNS was born on 30 Aug 1866 in Württemberg, Germany. She died in 1943 at the age of 77 in Ashland, Ashland Co., Wisconsin. [GERMAN]

24. Johann THIELKE was born on 26 Oct 1843 in Schwerin, Mecklenburg, Germany. He died on 24 Apr 1927 at the age of 83 in Grafton, Ozaukee Co., Wisconsin. Wilomene C “Minnie” RATHKE and Johann THIELKE were married on 21 Jun 1891 in Milwaukee Co., Wisconsin. [GERMAN]

25. Wilomene C “Minnie” RATHKE was born on 1 Sep 1857 in Pommerania, Prussia. Minnie died on 26 Jun 1929 at the age of 71 in Wisconsin. [POLISH/GERMAN]

26. Carl F H “Charles” LAST was born on 26 Sep 1851 in Doeringshagen, Pommerania. Charles died on 5 Jun 1926 at the age of 74 in Port Washington, Ozaukee Co., Wisconsin. Augusta Johanna Wilkelumire LUEDTKE and Carl F H “Charles” LAST were married on 25 Feb 1883 in Milwaukee Co., Wisconsin. [POLISH (Doeringshagen is in current Poland)]

27. Augusta Johanna Wilkelumire LUEDTKE was born on 3 Jul 1863 in Storkow, Pommerania. She died on 14 Jul 1963 at the age of 100 in Grafton, Ozaukee Co., Wisconsin. [POLISH (Storkow in is current Poland)]

28. Joseph DEBROUX was born in May 1865 in Grand Chute, Outagamie Co., Wisconsin. Joseph died in 1918 at the age of 53 in Wisconsin. Mary Philomene LAURENT and Joseph DEBROUX were married on 8 Sep 1891 in Langlade Co., Wisconsin. [BELGIAN]

29. Mary Philomene LAURENT was born in Dec 1865 in Little Chute, Outagamie Co., Wisconsin. She died on 18 Sep 1956 at the age of 90 in Wausau, Marathon Co., Wisconsin. [BELGIAN/FRENCH CANADIAN]

30. Pieter Franciscus VAN PARIJS was born on 21 Jan 1874 in IJzendijke, Zeeland, Netherlands. Pieter died on 22 Sep 1962 at the age of 88 in Kenosha, Kenosha Co., Wisconsin. He was also known as Peter Van Price. Minnie M MUHM and Pieter Franciscus VAN PARIJS were married on 17 Jan 1898 in Shawano Co., Wisconsin. [DUTCH]

31. Minnie M MUHM was born on 12 Jul 1879 in Norwood Township, Langlade Co., Wisconsin. Minnie died on 6 Jul 1959 at the age of 79 in Port Washington, Ozaukee Co., Wisconsin. [GERMAN]

So, doing the math, that makes my ethnicity: Polish – 40.625%, German 30.1875%, Belgian 9.375%, Dutch 6.25%, French 6.25%, Irish 6.25%, Unknown UK Area (Scotland/England/Ireland) 2.0625%

Well, that comes to 101%, but it was a pretty random estimate so I’m glad it was even close to 100%. As far as I know, I have no English ancestry. One ancestor is listed as being from Ireland, Scotland and England in multiple census records, so it may be possible.

Joseph Zalewski - WWI - Click for larger
Joseph Zalewski - WWI - Click for larger

August 9th

1671 – Married – Nicolaes van CRAYBECK & Helena WAGEMANS – Nicolaes and Helena are my 9th-great-grandparents on my mother’s side. They were married at Kuringen, Belgium.

August 10th

1732 – Died – Louise DEGUITRE – Louis is my 8th-great-grandmother on my mother’s side. She was born 5 Aug 1667 in Cogne, Aunis, France. She married Jacques Robidas dit MANSEAU in 1692. She passed away at Baie-du-Febvre, Yamaska, Quebec, Canada.

August 11th

1692 – Married – Alexis RICHARD & Claudine LANGLOIS – Alexis and Claudine are my 9th-great-grandparents on my mother’s side. They were married at Neuville, Port Neuf, Quebec, Canada.

1736 – Died – Vincent DUCHARU – Vincent is my 8th-great-grandfather on my father’s side. He was born about 1660 at Menoux, Haute-Saône, France. He married Claudine HANRYOT in about 1670. They had 6 children, including my ancestor, Anne Françoise DUCHARU. He passed away at Menoux, Haute-Saône, France.

August 12th

1697 – Died – Guillaume PEPIN – Guillaume is my 10th-great-grandfather on my mother’s side. He was born about 1607 at St. Laurent, Saintonge, Xaintes, France. He married Jeanne Mechin dit DE FRONTIGNY in about 1645. He passed away at Trois-Rivieres, St. Maurice, Quebec, Canada.

August 13th

1715 – Died – Marie Madeleine ROUSSEL – Marie is my 8th-great-grandmother on my mother’s side. She was born 23 Nov 1676 at Trois-Rivieres, St. Maurice, Quebec, Canada. She married Gabriel BENOIT on her birthday in 1693. She passed away at Baie-du-Febvre, Yamaska, Quebec, Canada.

1715 – Married – Pierre LAFOND & Marie Jeanne LEFEBVRE – Pierre and Marie are my 8th-great-grandparents on my mother’s side. They were married at Batiscan, Champlain, Quebec, Canada.

1977 – Died – Sister Mary Clarentine TROKA – Sister Mary was born Frances TROKA on 31 Mar 1910 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin to Joseph and Clara (SZULTA) TROKA. She is my 3rd-great-aunt on my father’s side. She took her first vows on 2 Aug 1935. She passed away in Wisconsin in 1977.

August 14th

1782 – Born – Pierre-Jean QUINET – Pierre-Jean is my 5th-great-grandfather on my father’s side. He was born at La Paroisse de Contréglise, Département de Haute-Saône (Franche-Compté), France. He married Marie-Francoise GRANGIER in 1811. They had 9 children including my ancestor, Claude-Françoise, who was also known as Francesca. They immigrated to the United States first settling in New York. They made their way to Canada where their daughter, Emilie-Francoise was born. According to research, they made their way to Wisconsin in about 1844. They are found in the 1850 census in Mequon, Ozaukee Co., Wisconsin and then in 1860 they are found in Fredonia, Ozaukee Co., Wisconsin. Pierre-Jean passed away on sometime between 1860 and 1870, presumably in Wisconsin.

1872 – Died – Johann W G LAST – Johann is my 3rd-great-grandfather on my mother’s side. He was born about 1820 in Prussia. Between 29 Mar 1865 and 14 Jun 1866 he was stationed with Company K, 50th Infantry Regiment Wisconsin during the civil war. He passed away in Ozaukee Co., Wisconsin and is buried with a soldier’s headstone at Union Cemetery in Port Washington, Ozaukee Co., Wisconsin.

August 15th

1853 – Born – Nepomuncema SYLDAKT – Nepomuncema, also known as Annie, is my 3rd-great-grandmother on my father’s side. She was born in Poland (Austria) according to census records and also wins the strangest name award in my family tree. She married Ignatius SZULTA in about 1870. Her name always confused me until I ran across this entry at Wikipedia on John of Nepomuk, whom I assume the name comes from. She passed away on 22 Dec 1925 at Milwaukee, Wisconsin and is buried there at Holy Cross Cemetery.

1981 – Died – Joseph Frank ZALEWSKI – Joseph is my great-grandfather on my father’s side. He was born October 1892 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the first boy of his parent’s 5 previous children. In 1917 he registered for World War I and was stationed with the 86th Division, Company B, 331st Machine Gun Battalion as I found out in my previois research. When he returned he married Emily TROKA and became a Milwauke City Police Officer until he retired in 1951. He passsed away at Cedarburg, Ozaukee Co., Wisconsin and is buried at Holy Cross Cemetery in Milwaukee.

This is a headstone photo I found in my grandmother’s photo album. It’s the headstone from my great-grandmother, Emily (TROKA) ZALEWSKI in 1959 at Holy Cross Cemetery in Milwaukee. It’s unique because this current headstone no longer exists. My great-grandfather, Joseph ZALEWSKI, remarried later on and his new wife is now buried in that plot also. A new, flatter headstone is now in it’s place.

1959

Clara Szulta
Clara Szulta

July 19th

1959 – Died – Clara (SZULTA) TROKA – Clara is my great-great-grandmother on my father’s side. She was born 6 Jan 1876 in Poland and immigrated to Milwaukee with her parents in 1881. She married Joseph TROKA in 1894. She passed away in Milwaukee three years before her husband.

July 20th

1817 – Born – Charlotte (STRASSMAN) LAST – Charlotte is my 3rd-great-grandmother on my mother’s side. She was born in Germany. She married Johann LAST in Germany before immigrating to Ozaukee County, Wisconsin. She passed away on 20 Apr 1900 in Grafton, Ozaukee County, Wisconsin. She is buried at Union Cemetery in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

July 22nd

1845 – Died – Leonardus CRAYBECK – Leonardus is my 5th-great-grandfather on my mother’s side. He was born 25 Oct 1782 in Genk, Limburg, Belgium. He married Florentina Francisca KNUDDE in about 1812. He passed away at Hoofdplaat, Zeeland, Netherlands.

July 23rd

1737 – Died – Francois GRIGNAC – Francois is my 9th-great-grandfather on my mother’s side. He was born about 1657 in France. In 1688, he married Marie Anne Carignan DUCLOS. He passed away at Cap Sante, Port Neuf, Quebec, Canada.

July 25th

1634 – Married – Noel LANGLOIS and Francoise GRENIER – Noel and Francoise are my 11th-great-grandparents on my mother’s side. They were married at Quebec, Canada.

1915 – Died – Thomas J CORRIGAN – Thomas is my great-great-grandfather on my father’s side. He was born 3 Mar 1855 in Orillia, Ontario, Canada. He married my great-great-grandmother, his second wife, on 18 Apr 1892 in Sanborn, Ashland Co., Wisconsin. There is a story going around about the day Thomas died. The rumor is that when he was having a stroke, the doctor was riding by on his horse to deliver a baby. One of Thomas’ children ran out a started waving their arms at the doctor, but thinking it was just a friendly wave, he just waved back and kept on going. Who knows if this is true. What is true is that his wife, Emma Jane, was at the hospital getting ready to have their last child, Sadie, when Thomas died.

June 1

1996 – Died – Irene (ZALEWSKI) LUTZENBERGER – Irene is my great-aunt, sister of my Grandpa Zalewski. She was born 17 Jul 1920 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I know I met her sometime in my life, but I really don’t remember ever meeting her. She is buried with her husband Ervin at Holy Cross Cemetery in Milwaukee.

June 3

1704 – Died – Marie Anne (DELEUGRE) ST. LOUIS – Marie is my 8th-great-grandmother on my mother’s side. She was born 14 Jun 1665 in Chateau Richer, Montmorency, Quebec, Canada. She married Gilles Gadious ST. LOUIS. She passed away in Montreal, Ile de Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

1910 – Died – Paulina Henrietta (THOMPSON) FIRMENICH – Paulina is my 3rd-great-grandmother on my father’s side. She was born 5 May 1849 in Granville, Milwaukee Co., Wisconsin (which is now the Brown Deer area.) On 11 Apr 1867 she married Mathias FIRMENICH and together they had 13 children. She passed away at Morrison, Brown Co., Wisconsin and is buried with her husband at St. Agnes Cemetery in Ashland, Ashland Co., Wisconsin.

June 4

1891 – Married – Frank F BRAATZ & Margaret K STEARNS – Frank and Margaret are my great-great-grandparents on my father’s side. Frank was born 17 Apr 1867 in Germany and Margaret was born 30 Aug 1866, also in Germany. They married in Bear Creek, Outagamie Co., Wisconsin. Margaret passed away in 1943 at Ashland, Wisconsin and Frank followed 5 years later, also at Ashland. They are buried at Mt. Hope Cemetery in Ashland.

This is also my father’s birthday. Happy Birthday, Dad.

June 5

1926 – Died – Carl F H Last – Carl (also known as Charles in some records)  is my great-great-grandfather on my mother’s side. Carl was born 26 Sep 1851 in Doeringshagen, Pommerania. He married Augusta LUEDTKE on 25 Feb 1883 in Milwaukee and (amazingly) had 16 children. He passed away at his home in Port Washington, Ozaukee Co., Wisconsin and is buried at Union Cemetery in Port Washington.

June 6

1974 – Died – Roman J TROKA – Roman is my great-great-uncle on my father’s side. He was born 1 Feb 1897 in Milwaukee, Wisconson to Joseph & Clara (SZULTA) TROKA. He is buried around the rest of the Troka family at Holy Cross Cemetery in Milwaukee.

Wow, doesn’t seem like a happy beginning on the month. A lot of deaths at the beginning of June. It’s a big change from May where we saw a lot of births.