Tracing My Grandfather’s Navy Service

Tracing My Grandfather’s Navy Service

My grandparents--Tom and Janice (Zielinski) Kuznicki--celebrated their Golden Anniversary last October; they were married on October 12, 1968 at St. Hedwig's Church in Dunkirk, New York, and they moved to the city of Jamestown soon after. Gramps proposed through the mail--he was stationed in the Philippines at the time--and my grandmother accepted via return letter. [...]

Using Google Tour Builder to Tell An Ancestor’s Story

Using Google Tour Builder to Tell An Ancestor’s Story

I've shared the Marczynski family's story here before: Casimir Marczynski's wife, Mary Fabich, died of typhoid fever in 1907, leaving him a widower with six children. His mother arranged for Mary Witkowski--a young woman from Julianowo, Poland--to travel to Dunkirk that summer, and the couple were wed on August 26, 1907 in St. Hedwig's Church. [...]

In Search of Victoria Drag

In Search of Victoria Drag

My maternal 2nd great-grandmother, Victoria (Drag) Kuznicki, is a mystery. She was born on December 23, 1890 in Galicia--a historical region in East-Central Europe that is divided between Poland and Ukraine today--and she arrived at Ellis Island aboard the SS Vaderland on March 30, 1909 at the age of 18. Victoria built Kuznicki's Bar from [...]

Matryoshkas & Matriarchs

Matryoshkas & Matriarchs

Matryoshka dolls--more commonly known as Russian nesting dolls--are sets of wooden dolls of decreasing size placed one inside another. Matryoshka means "little maiden" or "mother," and the dolls have become a symbol of the babushka, a strong female matriarch and central figure in the family. My grandparents are Polish--not Russian--but my grandmother always had Russian [...]