Re: Caroline nee Gwiazda Nowak from Debska Kuznia, Poland
As you know by now, Nowak is a very common Polish surname.There are approximately 205,536 adults with that surname in Poland today, 10,101 in and around today’s city and county of Poznan.
As Tad indicated in his posting, the key to locating vital records (births, marriage and deaths) in Poland is to first identify the name of theEXACT location (village/town city) where your subjects were born or resided.This is because all of the Polish vital records were kept by the churches within that EXACT location.
It appears that members of the Frank Nowak family have done extensive research and documentation for the family.Much of this information can be found on the Ancestry.com Family Tree site.Unfortunately, none of the published research has determined the EXACT location of Frank Nowak or Caroline Gwiazda’s ancestral home in Poland.
Here is what was published about Frank and Caroline:
Frank Nowak, born in July 1855 in Germany/Poland, died November 21, 1925 in Minneapolis, Hennepin County, MN, immigrated around 1873, married Caroline Gwiazda around 1878.
Caroline Gwiazda, born in October 1856 in Germany/Poland (Silesia), died August 29, 1924 in Minneapolis, Hennepin County, MN, immigrated around 1879?, married Frank Nowak around 1878.
They had thirteen (13) children of which five (5) survived.
Their first child was Rosele born around 1879 in Minnesota.
The family lived in various places in Minnesota:
1880, Hale Township (Silver Lake)Mcleod County, MN.
1895, Ripley Township, Morrison County, MN.
1900, Pulaski Township (Belle Prairie), Morrison County, MN.
1905, Pulaski Township, Morrison County, MN.
1920, Little Falls Ward 4, Morrison County, MN.
1924-25 Minneapolis, Hennepin County, MN.
Since Frank and Caroline were such early immigrants, there are not many documents that recorded their place of birth or last residence in Poland.The U.S. documents that may contain information about Frank and Caroline’s ancestral home would be their church or civil marriage record, Frank’s U.S. Naturalization documents and/or their ship passage records.
It is unclear at this point where Frank and Caroline were married.The only thing we know for sure is that they were in Silver Lake MN in 1880.
There was one (1) Roman Catholic Parishes in Silver Lake MN around 1880.St. Adalbert’s was established in 1879.There are microfilmed church records on file with the Family History Library (FHL)(aka Church of the Later Day Saints/Mormons) for St. Adalberts.
St. Adalbert's may have a marriage record for Frank and Caroline.
You may also want to try contacting the McLeod County License Center to try to determine if Frank and Caroline were in fact married in that county.
You may also try contacting the McLeod County Court Administrator to see if they have Frank Nowak’s U.S. Naturalization documents on file
Now for some possible ship passage records:
There is a Hamburg departure and corresponding New York arrival record for a Caroline Gwiazda.She left Hamburg on April 18, 1877 and arrived in New York on May 2, 1877.She was 21 years old (dob 1856) and single when she arrived in the U.S.According to the Hamburg record, her last residence was Dembiohammer Schlesien now known as Debska Kuznia, Opole, Poland.
There is a Hamburg departure and corresponding New York arrival record for a Franz Nowak.He left Hamburg on September 6, 1876 and arrived in New York on September 21, 1876.He was 21 years old (dob 1855) when he arrived in the U.S.According to the Hamburg record, his last residence was “Shlieg Wehr”.Sorry, I cannot decipher the clerk’s handwriting.I will send copies of the Hamburg images to our friend Tad to post on his web site so that others on this Forum may view and possibly decipher them successfully.
The New York arrival records do not contain any information about Frank & Caroline’s last residence.
If you will send me your email address to email@example.com, I will furnish you with copies of the documents discussed above.