Barre Plymouth Edwardsville PA
Perth Amboy, New Jersey
From the Ellis Island records, I found this to be
the first destination of the Kotlar/Kotlarz,
Wdowiak and Warcholyk lines of
the family. My grandmother, Anna Kotlarz, who arrived on March 30,
1910 aboard the ship Neckar from Bremen page, #186 of the manifest,
line #13, claimed as her destination the residence of her uncle, Jan
Kotlarz whose address was 713 Charlie [Charles} Street, Perth Amboy.
I tried to search the 1910 and 1920 New Jersey census for this person
but currently the census is not indexed and after searching line by
line until I was nearly blind I decided not to continue.
The Warcholyk and
Kotlarz lines spent some time in this
town. Antoni Warcholyk a half-brother to my grandmother, Anna
Kotlarz, married Anna Ambicki in this town before moving on to Wilkes
Barre, Pennsylvania. Antoni arrived at Ellis Island on Feb 16, 1906
at the age of 22 destined for the residence of his uncle, Jan
Kotlarz, living at #8 Wayne Street, Perth Amboy, New Jersey.
me at Carpatho_mts@hotmail.com
The Dran and
Chomyk/Homik lines made Hazleton their
home about 1890. Anna Chomyk my grandmother arrived in the town
first (the date and with whom, not confirmed, but I speculate that it
was with Chomyk family members). She and my grandfather, Michael
Dran, were from the same village, Swiatkowa Wielka, in Galicia.
Michael arrived in December 1890 as stated on his naturalization
papers. They applied for a marriage license in January 1891 and were
married on Jan 24, 1892 at St. Mary’s Greek Catholic Church in
Hazleton by Rev Gugasat Volksy. Click for church Web Site
Mary's B.C.Church, Hazleton, PA Their
witnesses were Michael Ruscinyak,
Andreas Jawkevics, Anastasia Ruscinyak,
Anastasia M_uba and Maria Lombichovc.
Michael worked in the coalmines as stated on his marriage entry in
the church record, but he later worked as an orderly at the Hazleton
State Hospital for Injured Persons in Coal Regions.
Anna and Michael had six children, Barbara (aka
Bertha), Julia, John, Fred Theodore (my father), Michael and Emlyn.
Barbara, Julia and Fred and Emlyn married. John left home at an
early age and was last known to be in Newark, New Jersey in 1931, but
never contacted the family afterwards. Michael never married. He
was a career army/air force member, joining in about 1920. Emlyn
worked in Detroit, Michigan. His death certificate noted that he had
married Florence Skinner there. I have
no other information about this marriage. Emlyn was a lithographer by
trade and also served in the army and in the war industry during
WWII. He then returned to Hazleton residing there until his death.
Anna Chomyk Dran
died in 1906 at the age of 41. Michael Dran, my grandfather, married
a second time to Julia Yankowicz Grazcon,
a widow from Swiatkowa. There were no children from this marriage,
but Julia had Graczon daughters, Barbara and Anna Gracon/Graczon,
who remained in Hazleton and raised their families there. Barbara
married John Popiak and Anna married
Konrad Skimbo. Descendants still live
in the Hazleton area. Julia also had a daughter named Milka Graczon
who lived in Jersey City, N.J. This connection was found in
the Ellis Island immigration records of Julia and also in a travel
diary notation of my father, Fred Dran, when he traveled from
Hazleton to Swiatkowa Wielka via New York City.
Houses the Dran family owned and lived in were
located on Muir Avenue, Samuel Avenue and Samuel Avenue Rear.
Churches they attended were St. Mary’s Greek Catholic Church
and St. Michael’s Greek Catholic Church in Hazleton and also
Marys Ukrainian Catholic Church McAdoo PA Other
surnames associated with this family by marriage are Sirak,
Tresh and. Sharwarko
Barbara Dran Tresh (older sister to Fred Dran, my
father) her husband, Nicholas, and their three children, Michael,
Anna and Margaret, left Hazleton, PA for the Detroit, Michigan area.
For most of his life, Nick worked for the Hudson Motor Company.
Descendants still live in that area. Other surnames associated with
this branch of the family are Tima, Palahnuk
and Pollick. The churches associated
with this family are, St. John’s Ukrainian Catholic Church,
Detroit, Michigan and Our Lady of Perpetual Help Ukrainian Catholic
Church, Dearborn Height, Michigan,
Michael Dran (b.
1860) and his sister Julianna Dran
(b.1868) were the only members of their immediate family to immigrate
to the USA. Julianna had married Wasyl (Basil) Nestor/Nester
in Swiatkowa W. Wasyl was from the nearby village of Desznica.
After they immigrated, about 1901, they established themselves in
Salem, MA. Wasyl opened a grocery store in the “Polish”
section of town on the corner of Hardy and Derby Streets. There is a
candy store located on the spot now. They soon purchased a house on
Hardy Street, which a member of their family still owns. Wasyl died
an early death in 1917 at age 45. Julianna was left with 6 small
children, Michael, Paul, Nicholas, Mary, Anna and Amelia. All grew up
in Salem and descendants still live in the area. Their first child,
Daria, was born in Swiatkowa prior to her parents’ emigration.
Daria remained in Swiatkowa and married there. Wasyl Nestor’s
brother, John Nester also immigrated to the USA. He and his
descendants lived in the Binghamton, NY
area. Other surnames, associated with the Salem Nestor family by
marriage, are Orzeckowski, Gary,
Surnames associated with the Binghamton Nester
family are Sosenko, LePay, Holda,
Jablowski, Tellup, Klimash, Latture, Michalek
me at Carpatho_mts@hotmail.com
Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania
and surrounding areas of Plymouth and Edwardsville
The Siry/Sirak, Slota,
Warcholyk and Kotlarz lines
established themselves in the greater Wilkes Barre area. Catherine
immigrated (possibly with Slota
relatives) between 1890 (death of her husband in Hrabovcik) and 1893.
She married, in the USA, a man surnamed Martin.
No family member now living remembers anything about this man.
Neither does anyone know where Catherine is buried. She brought her
three children to the USA, one at a time between 1893 and 1897. Her
children were named Mary, Michael (my grandfather) and John Siry.
The children took the surname of the stepfather and were known in the
community as the Martin children.
Michael was 10 years old when he immigrated to
his destination, which was Plymouth PA.
Catherine, his mother, may have died by 1900. According to the 1900
census, all the children were living “on their own”.
Michael married Anna Kotlar in 1912 at SS
Peter & Paul’s Greek Catholic Church in
Plymouth. They established a household in Breslau, a suburb of
Wilkes Barre. They produced ten children, Mary, b. 1913, Michael
Jr., b. 1915, Anna, b. 1918, Steven, b. 1917, Olga, b. 1920, Julia,
b. 1922, Theodore,b. 1927, Peter,b. 1925, Joseph b. 1923, and John,
b. 1931. Michael began using a variation of his birth surname by the
1920 census. The surname Siry became Sirak for whatever reason, but
still the family and his children were known in the community as the
Martin family. In 1922 the family bought property and built a house
in the Buttonwood section of Wilkes Barre. Mike and wife Anna
resided there until their deaths. Five of six sons would serve in
the military, either in WWII or the Korean War. Many descendants
still live in that community. Other surnames associated with this
family by marriage are Uhas, Yuhas, Dran,
Zeveney, Olex, Rowe, Rock,
Gruber, Lenar and Flynn.
The church associated with the family is SS Peter&Paul’s
Ukrainian Catholic Church, Byzantine Rite, Plymouth PA. In 2010, one
of their descendants completed and published a history of the church
and a survey
of its cemetery. Anna Kotlar and Michael Siry/Sirak
were married in this church and their children were baptized there.
Anna and Michael are buried in St.
Mary's Cemetery, Hanover Twp PA (map)
Mary Siry was my grandfather Michael’s
older sister. She immigrated in 1893 at the age of 9 years. By 1900
she was recorded as Mary Martin, according to the census, and was
working as a domestic in a hotel in Plymouth, PA. She eventually
married Andrew Mazur and lived in
Edwardsville, PA. In 1910 her brother
John, who was still single, was living with her family. Mary and
Andrew Mazur produced five children. They were Anna b. 1907, Leo
b.1908, Eva b. 1910, Elizabeth b.1915 and Olga b.1917. Mary Siry
Martin Mazur died between 1920-1923 and Andrew, her husband, married
again. I have lost contact with this line of family. A surname
associated with this family by marriage is Fera.
The church associated with this family is St. John the Baptist
Orthodox Church, Edwardsville PA.
John Siry, Mary Siry Martin Mazur’s
brother, immigrated in 1885. He lived as a single man with his
sister’s family and then he married the sister of brother
Michael’s wife. He married Eva Kotlar
who was the younger sister of Anna Kotlar Sirak. Are you confused?
Two brothers married two sisters. John’s marriage produced two
living children, Margaret b. 1915 and Elizabeth, b.1917.
Unfortunately, John was not healthy and succumbed to tuberculosis
about 1923. His wife Eva married two more times. Her second husband
was Milan Krlic with whom she had six
children and raised them in Breslau, PA, a suburb of Wilkes Barre.
Some are still living. Her third husband was Philip Lenio.
There were no children from this marriage. A few descendants of Eva
reside in the Wilkes Barre area. Surnames associated with this family
by marriage are Zematoski, Rembish and
Michael Siry/Sirak’s wife was Anna Kotlar.
Anna’s mother was Maria Wdowiak
from the village of Dudynce. Maria had two marriages in Dudynce, the
first was to Stephan Warcholyk.
That marriage lasted two years and produced one child named Antony,
before Maria was widowed. She then married Stephan Kotlarz
in Dudynce and had three daughters, Margaret, Anna and Eva. Seeing
no future for his children in Dudynce, their father sent Antony, Anna
and Eva to the USA. Through family story, Margaret immigrated to
France (Paris area) and married a Jewish jewelry merchant. They
lived at one time in the Sampigny area.
Another immigrant relative in the Wilkes Barre
area was Nick Wdowiak. My family is not
sure whether he was an uncle or cousin to Maria Wdowiak Warcholyk
Kotlarz of Dudynce. He married Amelia Pstrak
in the U.S.A. and had eight children. Some are still living. Nick
and Amelia resided in the Breslau section of Hanover Township near
Wilkes Barre until their deaths. There are a few of his descendants
still living in the area.
Almanac 1940 to read about
events in Luzerne County PA
Mountain Childhood to read an online book about the
life of a Carpatho-rusyn family living near Wilkes Barre in the
1920s. The introduction contains historical information about the
homeland and origins of Carpatho-Rusyns. There are some very
interesting personal interviews with Rusyns who were deported to the
Ukraine during Operation Vistula in 1947 (all worth reading).