Mission & FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

The goal of this website is to develop resources (mostly indexes) for genealogists doing research on Polish ancestors here and abroad. Genealogical societies, sadly, often do not provide the vision and leadership to initiate and sustain projects of this nature. Ideally, the resources of this site will include records of Polonia nationwide.

Finding Ancestral Villages in Poland

It can be difficult to find the ancestral villages of our ancestors in Poland. The first difficulty is finding documentation that even attempts to provide the place name. Some church records and immigration/naturalization records provide this information, but not always. The next hurdle is the spelling. The person who filled in the record probably did not have knowledge of the geography (or maybe even the language) to complete the record correctly. While we may have some familiarity with our own city or state, few of us know all the cities in all the states.

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Early Dziennik Chicagoski Issues Online

Newspaper death notices are very useful for establishing family relationships. A death notice index for the Dziennik Chicagoski is on this site. If your relative had a death notice published from the newspaper from December 1890 through March 1913, you can now look it up online. Some years and months within that range are missing. Death notices are usually set off in black lined boxes.

Using the Castle Garden Index

I have used the Castle Garden Index to find information on immigrant ancestors. Over the years I have encountered several oddities which will be treated separately.

Diocese of Buffalo, NY

The Diocese of Buffalo consists of Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Niagara, Orleans, and Wyoming Counties in New York.

Digital Access to Replace Microfilms

The FamilySearch.org has announced that after August 31, 2017, you will no longer be able to order microfilms at your local Family History Center. The good news is that they are attempting to make their collection available via digital access. The bad news is that they don't anticipate having their collection completely digitized until some time in 2020.

Archdiocese of Chicago Cemetery Records 1864-1989

Family Search has made available online an index of burials in the Archdiocese of Chicago Cemeteries. The index was prepared from microfilmed records made in 1989. In that regard, the index does not include records beyond 1989. If you find someone of interest in the index, you can click on the name and be taken to the image of that record. You will need to be logged-in at familysearch.org to see the image. The images are of the index cards that reside in the cemetery offices.

Website Security and the Chrome Browser

I was contacted by the web hosting company (the one hosting this site) to say that Google Chrome will be updated in January 2017 to be more proactive in its efforts to provide for a safer browsing experience. Chrome will begin to expect that the more secure HTTPS server be used rather than the simple HTTP server used by this site. As a result, the browser may display some sort of "Not Secure" message on some pages where some sort of login field or fill-in form is used.

St. Boniface, Chicago, IL

Polish immigrants from the German occupied regions of Poland were arriving in Chicago in greater numbers during the 1860s. Some of them joined the German parish of St. Boniface because the Poles had no church of their own in 1865. St. Boniface was founded in 1865 in the West Town neighborhood of Chicago. The Polish parish of St. Stanislaus Kostka was founded in 1869 and most of the Poles became members there. The indexed portion of St. Boniface records includes only the years of 1865-1870 when the Poles were more likely included.

Dziennik Związkowy Death Notice Index 1930-1949

This online index is a compilation of death notices appearing in the Dziennik Związkowy, one of Chicago's Polish daily newspapers, for the years 1930-1949. It is similar to the Dziennik Chicagoski death notice index. The index was compiled by James J. Czuchra.

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