I have been searching for family information for over 15 years with many dead ends. Here is what I know from my work with Ellis Island, Victor Kuzio (private researcher) and a hired agency in Salt Lake City. My spellings may be off for surnames. My grandfather was Johannes Zorniak - I think the Z had a "hat" on it making it a "cz" sound. He was born in Naklo, Galicia and was listed as Ruthenian. His father was also Johannes Zorniak of Naklo and his father was Pantelemonus Zorniak, also of Naklo. They apparently were not related to the other Zorniaks of the village as a recent DNA study on 23 and me that I did with several members of this family proved absolutely no connection whatsoever. Johannes' mother was Mary Wienc. My grandfather was born in 1890 and immigrated through Ellis Island in 1910 to work as a barrel maker for the Rockfeller family in the Standard Oil company in Cleveland ohio. He returned to Galicia upon receiving a draft notice and served in the Austrian army. My Baba was born Katarzyna Stecyczya (spelling?) to Stefan and Eufrozynia Cymbalko (could be Tsmbalko, Cymbalik). They had seven children, all of whom died before my Baba was born in 1898 of Typhus. My baba married in 1914 at the age of 16 and moved from her home village of Pozdziaca (now Leszno, Poland) to Naklo. They were married in the Greek Catholic church and presided over by six priests. The priests and Stefan were killed in the Thalerhof concentration camp in 1914. I recently viewed the Changed by Thalerhof documentary. I cannot find any family members with these surnames or any history of these names. Can anyone assist? Also, my grandfather Johannes had two sisters - Katarzyna (married name Chisnok) and Eva (don't know married last name). Any assistance would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. Sharon
WIENC/WIĘC: pet form of first names Więcław or WIęcesław, a form of Wacław
ŻÓRNIAK:possibly from zur, sometimes misspelt żór (sour ryemeal soup); a żurniak could have been the clay pot in which a ryeflour solution fermented in.
STĘCZYCA:: from verb stękać (to grunt, groan, give off the noise made by a constipated person trying to defecate)
CYMBA£KO: from cymbały (dulcimer); cymbałki (chimes)
CZY-NIAK (?): possibly from czyż (siskin, bird species); a nick for a bird-catcher (?)
MATEJKO: nickname for Mateusz or Maciej
The first names Eufrozynia and Pantelemonus would indicate Ruthenian origin.
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I have been looking for the correct spelling of the surname Steczycha for 15 years and you come up with in in mere minutes? Now I google that name and it's everywhere in Prussian literature, etc. While I really dislike the translation of the word lol, I'm thankful for the correct spelling. Unbelievable.
Greetings! I am referencing the emails from Sblott. Hi Sharon, my name is Wendy Glasser. I was adopted at birth but know my paternal grandmother (born in 1925 or 1926) emigrated from Poland to Canada. Her parents' surnames were Zorniak and Steczyca which makes me hope you and I might share a connection here. I hope to hear from you!!