Of Unusual & Heavenly Names

Of Unusual & Heavenly Names

Celestia is of Latin origin, meaning "heavenly," and evokes all things ethereal and otherworldly. It's a diminutive form of Celeste and, more notably, "celestial," the latter of which means "positioned in or relating to the sky or outer space," "belonging or relating to heaven" and "supremely good." My great-great-grandmother was a Celestia; she was born [...]

A Very Marczynski Christmas

A Very Marczynski Christmas

Edward John Marczynski--or Uncle Eddie, as I know him--was the only son in a family of eight children. He was born on November 5, 1915 in Dunkirk, New York to Casimir and Mary (Witkowski) Marczynski, and he was always close to his sister Hattie, my great-grandmother. My grandmother remembers Eddie as a warm and kind [...]

Feeling Grateful

Feeling Grateful

Back in May, I was a recent college graduate who started a genealogy blog in the midst of applying for teaching positions, moving out of an apartment and studying to take the Praxis. Life was hectic and stressful and confusing, and I needed to find a way to take my mind off of these competing [...]

On Trains & Tolstoy

On Trains & Tolstoy

This past week, I've been re-reading Leo Tolstoy's Anna Karenina--one of my favorite novels. Anna's and Vronsky's ill-fated affair is framed by the coming-and-going of trains: they're a symbol of their love, of ties to the "West" and, ultimately, of the tragedy at the novel's conclusion. Trains were, in many ways, at the center of [...]

Simply Meant to Be

Simply Meant to Be

Thaddeus Kuznicki and Gertrude Szwejbka were married on Wednesday, March 8, 1946 at St. Hyacinth's Church in Dunkirk, New York. "The bride wore a gown of white nylon check, with a fingertip-length tulle veil. She carried a bouquet of white roses and lillies of the valley. The maid of honor, Miss Angeline Kuznicki, wore aquamarine [...]