The search for Frank Cygan (part 3)

The other Frank Cygan….

A few months ago, while poking around on Family Search, I made a great discovery…Polish Baptism Records.  And who did I find?  My great grandfather Nicholas.

Name: Nicolaus Cygan
Event: Baptism
Event Date: 01 Mar 1885
Event Place: Borowa, Borowa, Rzeszów, Poland
House Number: 25
Gender: Male
Father: Joannes Cygan
Mother: Helena Drzewicki
Volume Beginning Year: 1860
Volume Ending Year: 1887
Page Number: 131
Entry Number: 6
Film Number: 1959124
Digital Folder Number: 004645737
Image Number: 00244
Collection: Poland, Tarnow Roman Catholic Diocese Church Books, 1612-1900

I then did a little quick thinking and searched for Nicholas’ siblings by searching by his mother’s name:  Helena Drzewicki…and I found three more siblings:

Adam, Mary and Frank!

Here is Frank’s baptismal information:

Name: Franciscus Cygan
Event: Baptism
Event Date: 29 Sep 1887
Event Place: Borowa, Borowa, Rzeszów, Poland
House Number: 25
Gender: Male
Father: Joannes Cygan
Mother: Helena Darewicki
Volume Beginning Year: 1860
Volume Ending Year: 1887
Page Number: 142
Entry Number: 27
Film Number: 1959124
Digital Folder Number: 004645737
Image Number: 00257
Collection: Poland, Tarnow Roman Catholic Diocese Church Books, 1612-1900

 And here’s a Frank Cygan, living in Chicago with a birthdate of September 24, 1887.

I think I may have spent alot of time and research looking for the wrong Cygan.

There is also a Frank Cygan in the Social Security Death index with the birth date of September 24, 1887.

First Name: Frank
Middle Name:
Last Name: Cygan
Name Suffix:
Birth Date: 24 September 1887
Social Security Number: 340-05-2963
Place of Issuance: Illinois
Last Residence: Cook, Illinois
Zip Code of Last Residence: 60650
Death Date: January 1967
Estimated Age at Death: 80
Collection: U.S. Social Security Death Index

So now I’m off searching for Frank Cygan.  Date of birth September of 1887….

A Century of Progress : a visit to the World’s Fair

This past weekend I spent some time scrapbooking some treasured family photos, and discovered a part of my family’s history that is worth sharing.

This photo of Harry and Bessie Firmiss was taken in 1934.  The back of the photo reads:  “Harry and Bessie, Starrie Rock”  I assumed that the significance of the photo was the location at which it was taken.  Boy was I wrong. While trying to determine the location of Starrie Rock, I googled “1934 : A Century of Progress” and discovered that this photo was taken at the 1933-1934 World’s Fair in Chicago

The 1933-1934 World’s Fair celebrated the Centennial History of Chicago.  It’s theme was technological innovation, which means that Harry and Bessie possibly witnessed the “Homes of Tomorrow Exhibit” or the “dream cars” that the American automobile manufacturers presented.

For Harry and Bessie, the exhibits may have seen far-fetched or unbelievable.  Yet Bessie herself witnessed many of those innovations come to life.  One can only imagine how she felt the first time her daughter’s microwave was put to use during Thanksgiving dinner!
 
Don’t Harry and Bessie look young in this photo?  In fact Harry is 40 years old, and Bessie 38.  Which means they weren’t alive when the famous 1893 World’s Fair was in Chicago.  Harry’s parents were still out East in New Jersey or Pennsylvania, but Bessie’s parents, Henry and Stella Beauchamp, were in fact living in Chicago, or the White City, as written about in Erik Larson’s book Devil in the White City.  Did they attend the 1893 World’s Fair? Were they able to afford a ride on the original Ferris wheel?  Did they have their picture taken at the Fair?

Maybe someday another treasured family photo will lead me to discover that and more…

The Grocery Store Business

Going grocery shopping is not one of my favorite things to do.  I always forget my coupons, I can’t find what I’m looking for and more than likely one of my two children will snub their noses at the selections in my cart.  Yet the  grocery store has played an important part in my family’s history.  At a young age I remember my grandfather telling me the story about how he came to be in the grocery store business.  According to grandpa, his family was able to survive the great depression better than most in Chicago, because his family was in the grocery store business.  “And people always have to eat.  People can go without new clothes or new shoes, but people always need groceries”.  –Bud Reilly

So how was grandpa’s family involved in the grocery business?  Turns out that his uncle, Daniel Reilly, listed his occupation in the 1910 and 1920 census as “Grocery Store Clerk”  Was this the same store that Grandpa at one time owned?  Further research into Daniel Reilly and his neighborhood is needed.

Recently we discovered the following picture of my grandfather.  It’s possible this is the store he at one time owned.  A better scan of the picture will be forthcoming, as well as the name of the store and the other two people photographed with my grandpa.  But until then, enjoy!  (And don’t forget to pick up the milk on your way home!)

Naming Patterns

In today’s society naming patterns aren’t as obvious as they once were.  Sure my oldest son is named for his grandfather Sam, but many times the parents of today pick a name for many different reasons.  However, when doing family history, researchers must be on the lookout for naming patterns as sometimes it will help move research along. 

For instance, my great grandmother’s marriage record states her name as Beatrice Beauchamp, and her early census records list her as Bessie.  {Which is of course how I knew her} However, in the 1930 census we finally find her as Elizabeth.  It turns out that Bessie Beauchamp’s grandmother was also named Elizabeth.

In the 1900 census the Henry and Stella Beauchamp family can be found living at 173 W. 16th street with their children Fred, Frank, Bessie and Lillian.  Henry is listed as a French-Canadian and it was always assumed that he was the immigrant ancestor.  However, a recently found death certificate for Elizabeth Bouchamp, age 65, with the place of residence at 173 W. 16th street, adds another branch to the Beauchamp family tree.  I believe this Elizabeth to be the grandmother of Bessie and the mother of my great, great grandfather Henry Beauchamp.

And while the relationship is not yet 100% proved, there are three documents that help prove it:

#1.  The death certificate listing the same address as the 1900 census two years later;
#2.  The marriage index listing for Henry’s second marriage that lists his mother as Elizabeth;
#3.  The 1920 census that lists Bessie as Elizabeth…[otherwise known as the naming pattern].

And if your wondering who Henry’s second wife was…that’s for a different day~!  Before I go there, I must also tell you about my grandfather Andrew Reilly being named after his grandfather, my son Jeremy’s discovery of a “Jeremiah”, and my nephew Nicholas’ discovery of another Nicholas!

I’m having fun!