Plenzler


I’d never met any of my grandparents, I was born well after all four had died. I have a faint, out of focus, and oddly-angled picture of my dad’s parents, and some lovely photos of my mom’s mother. So I had an idea of how they looked. But for everywhere I’ve looked and asked, no picture ever seemed to exist of my mom’s father, John Plenzler. I imagined he looked like his mother or father, and I have my great-grandparents’ wedding photo. But you can never be too sure if one does favor one parent or the other. I have a daughter who does not look like me or her sisters, she favors her father’s side of the family greatly. She definitely resembles her father’s sister in a striking manner in my eyes. On first look, she does not seem to be my daughter. But she is (and she inherited much of my personality). Sometimes, genes mix in unique ways to present a new version within the family.

I had always been curious about John’s appearance, so imagine my surprise when I received, thanks to the efforts of a cousin and his son, John Plenzler’s “Descriptive Book” that records elements of his enlistment in the Marines. I was mildly surprised and also began to see that it was possible that my mother resembled him much more than her mother.

According to a description based upon a physical examination of John dated August 4, 1909, he was described as having a ruddy complexion, dark brown hair, light brown eyes, about 5′ 7″ tall, and it seemed slender–he was described as having a mean circumference of 35″, with a 3″ expansion and a weight of only 139 pounds. I suspect he may have been a fairly muscular man–he was a street paver prior to enlisting in the Marines, that would have meant hours of physical labor. Based on this, he may have resembled his father–who in his wedding picture seemed to have met these descriptions as well. My mother was not a tall person, perhaps 5′-2″. I would not have described her complexion as ruddy, but fair and she had dark hair. But she had blue eyes. So I’m going to guess my grandmother Anastasia had blue eyes.

John also had some minor physical marks or distinctions noted on his record–a deformed small toe on his left foot, a scar on his hand, and a few moles. He also had 20/20 vision.

Seems as if I got few Plenzler genes reading this! I have poor vision (have had since I was a small child), light hair, blue eyes, and about as tall as my grandfather. I know in reality, I have half Plenzler and half Mierzjewski genes. But it just looks as if the Mierzejewski genes are dominant. Still, I wanted to find a way to “connect” with my grandfather, and this was an interesting document to read to do so–he died when my mom was quite young, so she didn’t have many memories of him and didn’t seem to have any photos of him when asked.

I think what I did find more interesting about John was his history in the Marines. There was no bravado, no battles he participated in that I know of, but within his history of good conduct one incident stood out. He was court marshaled for being AWOL for a day after liberty and returning to duty drunk. By virtue of a plea, he was sentenced to loss of 18 days’ pay and to perform extra police duties for the period of a month. The loss of pay equaled $10.62. I haven’t calculated what that would be worth 100 years later, but I suspect it to be considerable.

John Plenzler Duty List

John Plenzler Duty List

John was discharged with a notation of “very good” character and had made up the loss of one day to AWOL status. Upon his discharge, his commanding officer noted “character very good instead of excellent because of two trials by court marshal and not recommended for good conduct medal.”

The document is scanned and posted here if anyone is interested in reviewing it.

Happy New Year! May your year be blessed, peaceful, and filled with contentment.

So…today, I make up for lost time with an additional post. I apologize, but I just haven’t had the time to keep up with the genealogy work this year. I don’t foresee the next year providing me with much time, either. But I intend to make the most of the time I do have available!

While visiting Calvary Cemetery this past July, I did some row mowing with the camera. I had found a Jankowski grave that I cannot identify. I am related to some Jankowskis through my mother–two daughters of Martin Plenzler, Edna and Florence,  had married Stanley Jankowski. Florence had married Stanley first, they had three daughters. Then after Florence had passed away and Edna was widowed (Edna’s first husband was Danny Sieja), Edna and Stanley had married. So when I encountered this stone in Calvary, I was intrigued. However, no matter how hard I tried, I could not identify the persons buried there. It seems the stone sunk enough to cover the names of those it is memorializing.

The grave is located in Section 25. If you can identify these persons, please feel free to contact me here.

unknown_jankowski

Unknown Jankowski grave, Calvary Cemetery Toledo, Section 25

For quite sometime, we had been waiting for my parents’ gravestones to be placed. For quite some time, my father never had a gravestone–his original military stone had been broken and removed and when mom passed, we had planned to put matching stones on their graves. Well, time passed and the family had ordered the stones and we had never followed up with the cemetery. The stones had been delayed being placed, bad weather, warehouse mix ups, and a few other things occurred. So, this summer, when I had gone up to Toledo for a quick visit, I thought I would stop and check whether the stones had been placed and they had. I had taken photos but somehow neglected placing the photos here. Communication with a possible Mierzejewski contact this afternoon had reminded me that I had never placed the photos here.

Here are the photos of the stones. For me, it’s a sense of peace knowing my parents have a small reminder of their presence in this world.

Image

Edward B. Mierzejewski

gr_virginia_mierzejewski

Virginia Plenzler Mierzejewski

Going through my Calvary photos has been at times tedious (verify the location, name and maiden name), tiresome (crop, color balance, re-size), and irksome (get the photo loaded in my editor, get halfway through the edits, I get distracted, cat walks over computer, crash).

But sometimes, it produces some interesting information that I wouldn’t have found otherwise.

My 2nd great-grandmother’s name was Mary Lesiecki, who married Joseph Plenzler. There is no small amount of information available on the Plenzlers–but never yet have I found a Lesiecki. As near as I can tell, from her marriage record to Joseph, she was very likely born around 1825 or 1826.

I’ll admit, I haven’t spent much effort yet attempting to trace the Lesiecki name. But a very curious thing occurred today while I was going through my photos. Whenever possible, I verify the burial by trying to locate a death record and then cross-referencing Calvary’s burial records. So, I had a photo for a John Jagodzinski’s grave. My due diligence provides me a bit of interesting information from John’s death certificate: His mother’s name was Veronica Lesiecki!

Another connection? I don’t know. A clue, and perhaps a valuable one! I may not be remembering correctly, but it seems to me that when I was much younger, there was a Jagodzinski Funeral Home? Does anyone remember such?

and I know you’re out there–I’ve communicated with a few of you. (Paul Jankowski at jankowskis.com!)

I recently corresponded with Fr. Tom Extejt who kindly leaves tidbits of knowledge here in the comments. He’s filled us in with a bit of his family. So I thought perhaps this post may connect a few others researching the Jankowskis. I’m not related to many, mainly through marriage (two of Martin Plenzler’s daughters, Edna and Florence, married a Jankowski).

I thought however that I would share Fr. Extejt’s story of his Jankowski connections and of his great-great-grandmother, Dorota Jankowski. If anyone has additional information, let me know here via comment or via email and I will pass it along to him.

Fr. Extejt’s great-aunt on his mother’s father’s side, Katarzyna Rejent, married Marcin Jankowski.

They are buried in Section 33 of Calvary. She died in 1937; he died in 1943. Their children were Florian (Jonesey), who never married, and Martha Jankowska Kaczorowska. So far, there is no known husband’s name or if there are any children or what their names could be.

Father also recently learned that the maiden name of his great-great-grandmother, Dorota Extejt, was Jankowska. Her place of birth is not known, nor are her parents’ names known. But per Fr. Extejt,

“she was born 2-5-1796 and died on 2-2-1902. So she almost made it to her 106th birthday, having lived in parts of 3 centuries, from the last days of George Washington’s second term to the early part of the Theodore Roosevelt administration. She was 80 years old when the came to Toledo, and liked it so well she stayed for almost 26 years! Her obit was the headline story on Page 1 of the Blade; it mentioned that she went to the January ’02 Rosary-Altar meeting at St. Anthony’s, went to Mass the Sunday before she died, and helped with the housework until 48 hours before she died. Talk about an iron constitution!”

What a wonderful story! If you have details, please feel free to share. If you email, I will follow up as soon as possible, usually within a few days.

I’m trying to dig out from an overwhelming amount of information I’ve received over the summer on the Plenzlers as well as still work through the backlog of Calvary Cemetery photos I have. So, today, we’re revisiting an earlier post about my 2nd great-grandfather’s father, that of Joseph Plenzler (husband of Mary Lesiecka). Bear with the wordy sentences when I describe these relationship, but my great-great grandfather and his sons and grandsons all had the same names as well as named their offspring similarly.  So it gets tedious at times.

Long story short, this is a follow up to an earlier post, located here:

https://kuschwantz.wordpress.com/2012/07/16/marianna-lesiecka-and-andreas-hirsch-more-puzzle-pieces/

Bartholomeus married a Barbara Hirsch in Czapury, Wielkopolskie, Poland, on 14 July 1850.  Marriage was witnessed by Andreas Plenzler, who likely is a brother to Bartholomeus and Joseph and Gregorious Demel, both of Wiorek.  Barbara is noted as “vidua” or widowed. Age of the groom is 25, age of the bride is 30. This is Bartholomeus’ first marriage.

Pertinent snippets from the marriage record are below. Click to enlarge.

Bartholomeus Plenzler and Barbara Hirsch marriage record 14 July 1850

Bartholomeus Plenzler and Barbara Hirsch marriage record 14 July 1850

Bartholomeus Plenzler and Barbara Hirsch marriage record 14 July 1850

Bartholomeus Plenzler and Barbara Hirsch marriage record 14 July 1850

Many thanks to Jim and Cinny Sobieski for their hard work and efforts with the Plenzler family! Time and again, I’m awed at the generosity of genealogy community.

Ah yes, I’ve been away again. I’ve been overwhelmed with genealogy goodness this summer. This time, more Plenzler researchers, actually a married couple, digging into the depths of Plenzler history have aided. Jim Sobieski, and his wife, Cinny have been researching their branch of the family and have happily shared their mother lode. So, I have a treasure chest of LDS scans to pour through, and for me, it’s slow going but valuable information.

Information I’ve received from Jim and Cinny include the birth record for my great-great grandmother, Marianna Lesiecka, wife of Joseph Plenzler. She was born 11 September 1825, and the birth/baptism was recorded in the parish in Wiorek. See snippet below. Click it to enlarge.

Marianna Leseicka birth record from parish in Wiorek, 11 September 1825

Marianna Leseicka birth record from parish in Wiorek, 11 September 1825

Looking at the record, we now know Marianna’s father was Adalbertus (Adalberti in Latin) and Barbara. However, I cannot read Barbara’s maiden name easily to transcribe. Also, Marianna’s godparents appear to be Ignatius Leseicka and Marianna Heigelmann. I’ve highlighted Barbara’s maiden name and part of the godparents’ name. Perhaps someone can take a stab with the transcriptions, I give up on Barbara’s maiden name and there seems to be a phrase I am unfamiliar with after Ignatius’ name, nor am I certain of the last name of the godmother.

The phrase behind Ignatius’ name appears to be “ovilis,” Latin for “sheepfold” (according to William Whitaker’s Latin translator). I am puzzled by this phrase, perhaps because I was hoping it would indicate the exact relationship of Ignatius to the family. However, this could be interpreted as he is only a member of the parish. I have never seen this phrase prior in a church record. It would be interesting to learn what this phrase indicates.

On the same page for the birth record of Marianna, I noticed an interesting entry. I believe Wiorek must have been a very small village. There is a birth record for a child named Andreas Hirsch, born 31 August 1825. What makes this record interesting are several things, and not all are apparent.

Andreas is the son of Joannes Hirsch and Marianna Aumiller.

Here is the snippet for Andreas Hirsch. Again, click to enlarge.

Andreas Hirsch birth/baptism record, Wiorek 31 August 1825

Andreas Hirsch birth/baptism record, Wiorek 31 August 1825

The first two items of interest are apparent — the name of Marianna Aumiller. Eva Dauer’s mother’s name was Maria Aumiller. I do not know if this is Eva’s mother; however, Eva married the son of Marianna Lesiecka and Joseph Plenzler. Also, in this record the name Plenzler is mentioned as a godparent to Andreas. I cannot transcribe the first name.

What is not apparent in this record, and I neglected to highlight it, is the name, Andreas Krych. It appears in this record, the child’s lineage is noted and Andreas Krych is his grandfather, the father of Marianna Aumiller.

Additionally, I have not mentioned this previously, but through Jim and Cinny’s research, I have come to believe that my great-grandfather, Joseph Plenzler had a brother named Bartholomeus. Bartholomeus married a Barbara Hirsch. in the future, I’ll post a bit on this Bartholomeus.

The Krych name is of interesting in that that my great-great grandfather, Joseph Plenzler (husband of Marianna Lesiecka), had a brother name John. John married a Mary Krych. John Plenzler and Mary Krych eventually settled in Middle River, Minnesota.

How does this all fit together? Every piece of the puzzle creates more mystery!

Two obituaries today. One I was actually seeking, the other happened to be, quite coincidentally, published the same day and of some interest to my family tree. I often go back through the archived newspapers on Google to backfill my data with obituaries. So I purposefully went to seek Victoria Przybylski Sieja’s obit, I hadn’t located it before. However, published on the same day as hers — October 21, 1937 — was the obituary of my aunt’s (Celia Mierzejewski Starzynski) husband’s brother, John Starzynski.

Both obits are below and are transcribed.

Obituary, Toledo News Bee, Victoria Sieja, 21 October 1937

Obituary, Toledo News Bee, Victoria Sieja, 21 October 1937

Mrs. Victoria Sieja

Mrs. Victoria Sieja died Wednesday in her home at 1451 Avondale Avenue of a stroke suffered while working in the yard of her home. She was 53.

Mrs. Sieja was a member of St. Anthony’s Church. She leaves her husband, Frank Sieja; three daughters, Mrs. Clem Plenzler, Mrs. Casper Roman, and Miss Alice Sieja; six sons, Roman, Chester, Andrew, Daniel, Edmund and Norman, two sisters, Mrs. Anastazia Plenzler and Mrs. Eva Hejnicki, two brothers, Frank and John Przybylski, and seven grandchildren.

Services will be at 9:30 a.m. Saturday in the residence and at 10 a.m. in St. Anthony’s Church. Burial will be in Calvary. The body is in the residence.

John Starzynski, Obituary, Toledo News Bee, 21 October 1937

John Starzynski, Obituary, Toledo News Bee, 21 October 1937

STARZYNSKI SERVICES FRIDAY

Services for John (Starr) Starzynski, 27 E. Pearl Street, who died Wednesday, will be at 6:45 a.m. Friday in Stanley Urbanski Mortuary and at 7 a.m. in St. Adalbert’s Church. Burial will be in Calvary.

Mr. Starzynski, who was 29, had been ill a month. He was employed by Willys-Overland Motors, Inc. He leaves his wife, Mrs. Helen Starzynski; his parents, Mrs. and Mrs. Marion Starzysnki, and three bothers, Walter, Joseph, and Edward, all of Toledo.

Still sifting through miles of information that I have and still receiving plenty of new information daily.

While sorting through all of the information that has piled up and that I haven’t sorted through is another photo my cousin John had sent to me of St. Hyacinth’s 8th Grade Graduation in 1932. I previously posted one from 1933. Click the photo to download a high-resolution larger copy and to be able to read the caption beneath. Possible follow ups for me in the future are the names Zielinski, Siwa (one of my dad’s best pals was Bernie Siwa), Kaminski (my kids’ paternal great-grandmother was a Kaminski). Amazing that it took me this long to take a long hard look at this photo and realize there were new angles to look into!

1932 St. Hyacinth 8th Grade Graduation

1932 St. Hyacinth 8th Grade Graduation

Yes, I’ve been away. Yes, I know I’ve been negligent. It’s March Madness. Not much else needs to be said! Since it’s Selection Sunday and is quiet before my team is announced an automatic first seed, I thought I’d catch up a bit — but way to go Kentucky!

The past few weeks have been producing some offline conversations and email exchanges. One of these email exchanges surrounds a photo with the name of Figmaka attached to it–I have two copies. Each photo is exactly alike, but one scan has the name of Figmaka written at the bottom. I’ve provided the scan without writing on it.

I am unfamiliar with the name of Figmaka, but this photo was provided to me by John Plenzler. The gentleman in this photo is also in this mystery photo that I like to refer to as the GQ 7. No Przybylski or Plenzler brother married a Figmaka as far as I have been able to document, but it may be possible. So this is a real mystery.

Possible Figmaka Wedding Photo

Possible Figmaka Wedding Photo

If you can identify either the bride or groom in this photo, please let me know. Drop me an email or leave a comment here. There likely would be a Plenzler or Przybylski connection.

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