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Jon Dziedzikowski from Suwalki (immigrated to USA 1888)

mlouisehill 1 | 3
20 Aug 2012 #1
Yes, I'm in search of any type of information about one of my ancestors. He came to the United States when he was 18 (he was born in 1870). Unfortunately, I cannot name the church he came from; all our grandmother could say was that he came from Suwalki. His name was Jon (Ian) Dzeidzeikowski. His father's name was Piotr, and the family story is that Piotr owned a lot of forested land, used for lumber.

Jon (Ian) settled in Berea, Ohio, where he opened a grocery store. He also helped others immigrating from the Suwalki region.

I have found very little about the name Dzeidzeikowski in POland. I would be interested to simply know if there is such a name!

Thanks ever so much --
boletus 30 | 1,366
20 Aug 2012 #2
have found very little about the name Dzeidzeikowski in POland. I would be interested to simply know if there is such a name!

With probability close to zero - there is no Polish surname starting with DZEI. There is no such phoneme in Polish language.

However, there is a big chance that the first four letters of the surname have been rearranged and it should be spelled DZIE instead. The phonemes DZ, DZI and DZIE are somewhat different, but quite typical for Polish. There is a nasal variation of DZIE, spelled DZIĘ, which can be approximated as DZIEN and pronounced in English roughly as DJEN. Both DZIĘ- and DZIEN- could form the beginning of your ancestor's surname.

There is the same problem with the second syllable of his surname. It cannot be DZEI, but it could be DZIE, or even simpler DZI. This way we could convert the severely corrupted DZEI-DZEI-KOWSKI to either DZIĘ-DZI-KOWSKI or DZIEN-DZI-KOWSKI. Both sound more or less the same and have the same meaning, stemming from a dialectal verb "DZIĘDZIEĆ", which describes singing of a lark.

Those names are not terribly popular, but legal in Polish. Google shows 4550 results for Dziendzikowski, but 0 results for Dzeidzeikowski - not counting your posts on this forum and on

The bad news is that the original name could have been corrupted in many ways. It could be originally spelled DZIDZIKOWSKI, DZIEDZIKOWSKI or even DZIECIAKOWSKI (from the noun "dzieciak", a child).
Magdalena 3 | 1,837
20 Aug 2012 #3
It could even have been DZIURDZIKOWSKI, which is quite popular in that area (Ełk - Suwałki) (granted that it's not a very popular surname overall).
OP mlouisehill 1 | 3
22 Aug 2012 #4
Thank you Boletus and Magdalena. I'm sure it's been corrupted! I do think it's likely that I spelled the Dziedzikowski name incorrectly, too -- unfortunately, the main thing that was lost over the generations was any proficiency with the Polish language. The name was ultimately changed to "Doskey" in the USA. I figure it's close to impossible to locate folks in Poland, given the changes and the history that has occurred. The only search that is harder than this one (which is my paternal grandmother's family) is the search for relatives on my paternal grandfather's family. The name there is Gorzynski -- or at least that's the most common spelling I've seen of it. That name was changed to Hill!

Thank you again for taking the time to respond.
all the best to you!

Oh! I just found a letter written by my grandmother, where she spelled the name Dziedzikowski. So yes, I botched that.
Thank you all the same for your helpful comments!
boletus 30 | 1,366
23 Aug 2012 #5
Oh! I just found a letter written by my grandmother, where she spelled the name Dziedzikowski. So yes, I botched that.
Thank you all the same for your helpful comments!

Good for you! Just double check whether or not it is spelled Dziędzikowski [with Ę, E with "ogonek" (official Unicode name), with a tail]. The problem is there are so few references to either of them. You may try the female versions as well, ending with -SKA, rather than with -SKI.
OP mlouisehill 1 | 3
23 Aug 2012 #6
Ah, yes, and this is where it starts to get complicated. There was such a trend in the USA during the early 20th century to erase any clues of ethnicity, especially when it came to Eastern Europeans. (This was, in part, due to a fear of Communism! Poles had the added disadvantage in that a Pole shot President McKinley in 1901. One reason given for the name changes in my family was to erase any possible connections with the stereotypes that emerged after that.) My grandmother (who died about 20 years ago at the age of 92) worked very hard to become an American, and for many years refused to talk about her Polish ancestry. When she finally wrote it down, she was in her 80's, so it's likely she didn't remember or know about the characters (or she was just being lazy, or figuring it wouldn't matter to us!) There may be one other place where I can get that information, maybe ---

You are most kind with your help! I will keep digging, and be happy even if it just yields a tiny glimmer of the past of our family on Polish soil (or Russian, or German -- one thing my grandmother insisted that I remember, when she finally did talk to me about this, was how Poland's borders kept changing.)

Thanks again, ever so much --
stevendoskey - | 1
12 Mar 2013 #7
Hi Louise,
I believe we are related. My dad and grandpa are from Berea. I have a picture of the family you mention infront of their store. I believe he would be my great-grandfather, or possibly great-great. My uncle and dad said the family came from Suwalki Bierna. Said they shortened the family name because of the store. I guess it was hard to pronounce...

Note that there's a Mary Dziedzikowski buried at St. Adelbert's in Berea. search for // it won't let me post a link....

My grandfather had a brother(s) and some sisters. I'm assuming you are from that lineage?

Very Respectfully,


You may also wish to search on Pauline Doskey born about 1877. The records on Pauline may connect you to what you are looking for. My dad (deceased ) used to mention Aunt Pauline and aunt Charlotte. My grandfather is Fremont Doskey. I believe there was a brother Benny and another...


Make that Aunt Hattie, Pauline was my great-grandmothers name. She Married a John Doskey and was born about 1878.
OP mlouisehill 1 | 3
13 Mar 2013 #8
Hi Steve. I know Aunt Hattie. She was my grandmother. Nice to meet you!
27 May 2016 #9
I am researching the Pietrusiewicz family from Suwalki. Antoni Pietrusiewicz was born 1855 in Poland and he came to America about 1898 or 1899 in the company of his son Joseph who stated his home town as Suwalki. Joseph who was about 10 or 12 when they came, is buried in Saint Augustine Cemetery in Austin, Potter County, Pennsylvania, as is his father. I do know know the name of Antoni's wife, Joseph's mother. Antoni died in 1905, his widow remarried. There were 3 other men named Joseph Pietrusiewicz in the area of Austin PA and Olean NY.

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