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Zelem family - Southeast poland

wozzy 8 | 206
12 Jul 2006 #1
HI I'm new here.

I'm from Manchester England...born of polish parents who landed as displaced people after WW11.

Hoping to visit Poland in late October this year and go on the ancesral trail of Mothers family name of Zelem...This will take me to the Gorlice district of Bodaki, Malastow and Bartne, where according to Dziaducz Zelem " the world like the road ends."

From what I'm told most of the family were dispersed during 1947, although at least two homesteads still remain, I hope that this is true.

Any help with the district or the family whereabouts would be greatfuly apreaciated.

Dziekuje Genek.......
13 Jul 2006 #2
Hmm - do you know the provice (Poland's - "Wojewodztwo")?
OP wozzy 8 | 206
14 Jul 2006 #3
Yes Marek..
as far as I know and from what I've managed to google...were in Malopolskie, east south east of krakow about 160km to the Gorlice district. Bodaki,Malastow and Bartne lie South of Gorlice 15/16 km at the foot of the Beskid Niski's.

Would need to know where to stay, how would be best to get arround?. Is there suitable places to stay arround Bartne area?. Is English spoken, I speak a little Polish and I'm trying to study more, but my wife none at all.

As you see any help at all is good...Thank you
14 Jul 2006 #4
Here is the main page of the Gorlice town:

You will find hotels, accommodation, etc. there. The site is only in Polish though.. :|
OP wozzy 8 | 206
14 Jul 2006 #5
Thanks Tlum...

Have you been there??
14 Jul 2006 #6
Nope.. but I'm sure it's a nice region...
OP wozzy 8 | 206
14 Jul 2006 #7
I'll tell you all about it when I get back...Make a change from krakow reviews......

Merged:Tracing the Zelem family members
I'm tring to trace family members living in the Beskid Niski region of south east poland.
The family name is Zelem and I'm led to believe that at least two homesteads still remain in this area. Would like make contact with them on a trip to Poland in October.

Is there a dometic telephone directry online for this region ?? if so that might help.

Would be greatfull for any help..........
22 Jul 2006 #8
you can check here:
22 Jul 2006 #9
Are you back yet? :)
bolo 2 | 304
22 Jul 2006 #10
The site is only in Polish though

I wonder why most of tourist sites have not been available in the English versions yet. I can see lost business opportunities there...
OP wozzy 8 | 206
23 Jul 2006 #11
Ok. Ok! Nice one..:)..

Hi Tlum..I haven't been yet, looking at going in late october. I know its getting cold but my youngest son will be off school then. Just got accomodation sorted out in a pention house on the outskirts of Gorlice, at 40zl per person per night find it very reasonable. In fact there is a whole range of cheap accomondation in this area from hotels in the big towns to cottages, guest houses, farm and pensions, hostels, camp sites and mountian shelters in the villages and countryside. Im realy looking forward to it.

As bolo sugests it is a pity this area is not offered in English more. From what I've managed to gleane from the host of internet sites, of which have very few have english versions, it is a very beautiful area to visit , especialy if you like hill and forest walking, lake sailing and horse treking and more. Perhaps its meant to be a Polish secret, "dont want stag and hen parties "

Does anyone know what the name ZELEM could mean. It is a Lemko name as far as I know , but it does have a Hebrew ring to it , don't you think.
12 Sep 2006 #12
Hmm - it doesn't mean anything in Polish for sure.. The close word I could come up with it "Zielem" (of herb) -- but don't think it's relevant..
OP wozzy 8 | 206
12 Sep 2006 #13
It is as I said a very old Lemko name goes back to at least early 18th century, would like to know what it could mean ..
10 Mar 2007 #14
Hello, I am a Zelem and my Grandfather was born in 1899 in Ropica (about 10 KM from Gorlice) Later after he had some children he and the family lived in Gorlice, until he had urgent reason to leave Poland along with his wife two daughters and a son, which would be my grandmother, father and two aunts. We all now live in the US except for Grandma and Grandpa they passed away some years ago. We are all Ukrainian Lemkos we have no Polish background whatsoever, other than the fact that the Poles took Gorlice from Ukraine long ago. We have been maintaining our Ukrainian language I am first generation American and I speak Ukrainian. We have also been maintaining our culture , go to a Ukrainian Greek Catholic church in which the liturgy is in Ukrainian. As far as the history of the land that Poland acquired from Ukraine, the land was first seized by the Austrio-Hungarian empire, then after WWI the Allies cut off that land and gave it to Poland. We have an accurate genealogy going back to the times of Napolean. Let me know if your interested and also any information you might have.

Stephen Zelem
OP wozzy 8 | 206
11 Mar 2007 #15
Hi Viddanuy....................Stephen I'm more than interested in what you have said, even though we cirtainly don't share the same grandad Zelem.
My Granfather was called Tadeusz born C1895 and Grandma was called Paraskiewia, both now lie in a Wroclaw cemetry. My mother is the last remaining of four sons and two daughters. Two of my uncles landed in Canada after WW11, one uncle and my aunt along with my Grandparents were relocated in Wroclaw district during Operation Vistula in 1947. My mother who was taken for forced labour to Hungary at the age of 17, eventualy resetled here in England.

The eldest sibling managed somehow to remain in Bodaki and the homestead still remains. I was there in late October last year and managed to find my cousin who runs the farm along with his wife and daughter, his two sons now work as haulage drivers in Germany, one is about to build a new house on the farm, so it seems that Chata Zelem has a future in the Gorlice district. There is another daughter who I didn't meet that has lived in the US for about fifteen years.

My Mother did mention in the past that Grandad Zelem did travel to the US on two occations but cannnot remember what the purpouse of these visits were. Also she said that she has a cousin who has lived in America for as long as she can remember, but sadly she do's not have contact with her. I shall go to see Mother this afternoon as usual and see if she can remember more details, She's 84 now and gets annoyed with too many questions.

On the Lemko issue I have recieved mixed opinions, Mother and Father spoke Polish and I was brought up as Polish. My uncles in Canada fell out with each other over the issue, one being Polish and married a Polish girl, the other was Lemko and proud of it and married a Ukrainian girl aparently some bitterness involved between the two ladies fueling the issue even more. My cousin in Bodaki when I asked say he's Lemko but speakes Polish and goes to a Roman Catholic church, as did his Father before him.(this is the old wooden built one in Ropica. )

The family in Wroclaw I haven't met as yet, but I shall make a visit this year and meet the rest of the Zelem Family and perhaps piece together more family history......

So Stephen any information you are willing to share I shall be glad of, and will gladly run it over with my Mother to see if she reconises any of the facts........... Genek.....
2 Apr 2007 #16
I am a Zelem (Natasha Zelem).
As far as I know, we have Zelem family in Poland, Ukraine (was Poland then) and America.
Would love to know more about its heritage
OP wozzy 8 | 206
9 Apr 2007 #17
Hi Natasha ....where are you living now?
11 Apr 2007 #18
Leeds, Yorkshire (UK)
The Zelem part of my family (dad's side) are in and around cheshire, hampshire, yorkshire and chester.
My grandparents came over to England in the war, in the resistance.
OP wozzy 8 | 206
11 Apr 2007 #19
Wow ! ..........that sounds interesting, how much more do you know about your Grandads Polish you know what regeon he came from / town or village ???
11 Apr 2007 #20
Nope not that much... I know my grandma zelem came from a part of Poland which is part of the Ukraine.
I also know my grandad has a brother who lives in missisipi, us.
I didnt think there was that many Zelem's in the world...
they escaped the nazi's and made it to italy where grandad was in the polish resistance, made it to south africa and finally to the uk.

I need to do a proper family tree to map the origins!
12 Apr 2007 #21
Wha t parts of poland are ukraine my grand fathers name is smush he specks ukraine but was born in poland.
14 Apr 2007 #22
I'm a Zelem and i would like to know about the Zelem name. My grandfather family is from the Ukraine.
OP wozzy 8 | 206
15 Apr 2007 #23
I didnt think there was that many Zelem's in the world...

Yes we've been around for centuries and probably came from the Lemko regeons of the Carpathian Mountains, Lots emigrated to the America's in the 1890's, more were displaced during the two world wars and the depopulization of the Lemko's in 1946-1948.

here are some links........

There is such a lot of US sites , but little or no UK based info. if anyone knows more please let us know............:)
16 Apr 2007 #24
Did you know that there's a little village in Belgium that goes by the name 'Zelem'. I happen to live there :-) The ethymological roots of your surname and my village might be connected. History teaches that before is was written 'Zelem', we got 'Zeelhem' which comes from Salighem (not sure it's written this way). In the end the meaning is something like 'heavenly place to live'. Don't know if this information is at all interesting for you, but anyway now you know!
OP wozzy 8 | 206
15 Jul 2007 #25
Latest search on this name makes it likely to have Hebrew conections.

Zelem Elonim - " In the image of god" Gen.1. 26...
Grzegorz_ 51 | 6,161
15 Jul 2007 #26
Looks like a real invasion of Zelems in this topic :)
helewa - | 2
21 Sep 2007 #27
My mother born at about 1906, was from the Carpathian Mt area. In the mid 1930 she went to Cannada, then to Tory, NY where some of her villiager's were. She then went to Yonkers, NY and finaly to Ringoes, NJ. She passed on in 1993.

My fater Joseph Hlywa was from Krakow, Poland.

I don't have much more information but would like to know more. JOE
23 Sep 2007 #28
I am also a Zelem with roots in SE Poland. My grandmother came over in apx. 1912 from Macyna Velika... Her brother, Theodore (Fedor) came over a few years earlier. They both first went to Philadelphia where I think they had cousins. Theodore married in Philadelphia. I have research some and found that Zelem was a popular name in SE Poland. They were not Polish but Rusyn/Lemko. If you have any information, I would like to hear from you.
OP wozzy 8 | 206
13 Oct 2007 #29
Well folks I shall be going to Poland in 10 days for a 2 week vist to various places and will be staying for a few days in Pstrazne, Chata Zelem to me.

Mecyna Wielka is just a short walk through the forrest, if you give me some more info I'd kick up some dust for you.

btw family first names are,

Tadeusz and Paraskiewla.......Grandad and grandma (maiden name Lysak)
Piotr, Paulo , Theodore, Jan, Micheal ........Uncles
Theodora .....Aunty and Mother.

Of all those only my uncle Piotr remained in the region the rest were diplaced by the war and Operation Vistula in 47....
helewa - | 2
3 Nov 2007 #30
Hi. My name is Joseph Helewa (my father changed the name from HLYWA) when he came here in 1939. He was from Krakow, Poland. His full name was Joseph John Hlywa.

He had seven brothers

I am 61 years old and am trying to trace my history if possiable. I live in New Jersey, USA.

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