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Monday, March 23, 2009

Gleaning information from an old family letter

Carrie sent a graphic with an explanation
I am attaching a note written by a cousin perhaps or someone closely related to my Grandma Alice, it may be one of her sisters or a cousin (child of one of her parents's siblings?) Not sure. the hand-written "mess" that was confusing me even worse was on my grandmothers side which Yes...she is a Babinec but I neglected to mention that the mix-up that she wrote about is on HER side of the family which is PAUZA.

Olive Tree Answer: Hi Carrie, I've been working on your family tree questions, and hope you have seen my previous two answers Sorting Out Family Information on Ancestors and Separating Family Lore from Facts I've now tackled your family note which appears to be part of a letter and believe I have some answers for you.

If we look at the signature of the sender of this letter, we can see that it is "Gust. & Berthe Pauza" The note provides information on the recipient's father, mother, uncle and aunt. We don't know the recipient but you feel it may have been addressed to your Grandmother Alice who was the daughter of Vaclav Pauza and Antonia Vochner. It is obviously written to a child of Vaclav's as it states "your father's brother..."

The first thing you need to do is find out who the writer was. How closely was he related? When was he born? That will give you some idea when he may have written the note. Finding all this will give you a better feeling for how reliable the note is.

I found a Gustave Charles Pauza in Ancestry's U.S. Passport Applications, 1795-1925 applying for a passport on 6 Aug 1921. He states he was born July 19, 1882 He and his wife Berthe were living in Cleveland Ohio. I believe this is the man who signed your note "Gust. [short for Gustave] & Berthe Pauza". He gives his father's name as Jehe (hard to read) Domenic Pauza. He also states he arrived in USA on 12 August 1903 on Ship Augustus, that he naturalized in Missouri in 1916 and is a barber.

Since the name of his father is not the same name as the father given for Vaclav Pauza, I wouldn't jump to the conclusion that Vaclav and Gustave are brothers. It is more likely they were cousins but this is something you will have to research further. Gustave can also be found in the Wisconsin WW1 Draft Registrations on Ancestry and other records. With a bit of time you should be able to gather some good details on him and this should help you with your direct ancestry.

As an aside, in case you have not seen this, your Vaclav Pauza is found as James Pauza in the 1910 census for Cleveland Ohio so be careful to use alternate Americanized names and wildcards when using search engines. Remember too that a "u" can be misread as "n" when records are being transcribed or indexed.

1 comment:

  1. Yes, I've been keeping up with you and researching right behind ya! I wanted to thank you but I knew you had another waiting behind the last so I was waiting...shame on me! lol.
    I did find several photos with "Gustuv" and in a barber shop. I have always been told that Dominic IS my great great grandfather but the declaration of Intention and other Immigration paper shows him as having NO children and a widow. So, that got me seriously confused. I will look more into it but I have found some of the same things you have mentioned and I am going to try and put the puzzle together. I do believe the Gustav Charles is for sure in our family but maybe went by "Charles" in America more often than Gustav. I have another photo that says "grandmother Pauso showing date of 5-19-1850 and 1-6-1899. Also says "Maria Pauza" on the back of the photo. Also there is another photo postcard sent to: Domink Pauza in 1911 on Nov. 22 postmarked in Wisconsin. The picture on the front of the postcard is a barber shop with the same man in it. The signature is difficult to read but Im almost positive it is our "Gustav Pauza" and he speaks of "50 dol." towards the end of the PC. I also, which helps, have another photo of a barber shop and it says "Gustav Pauza" on the backside. Its on an old black and white photo mounted on a black stock card. The date is around 1911 based only on the other card sent because they are very close to the is a photo and one is a photo postcard. The Petition of Naturalization, which I believe you saw on Footnotes, shows Dominik Pauza as being born in 1879 and being a mechanic. Shows his intention was in 1931 and that he came on Aug 18, 1922. I was always told that Vaclav (James) was my grandmother Alice's father and her grandfather was Dominik. I am wondering if Dominik is also a different name. I've been learning so much about names changing from one country to ours.
    Also, remember the letter my grandmother wrote (we are assuming)she writes that her grandfather was named "Frank Pauza and Grandmother Pauza was Marie Prebel" Okay, I sound like I am making this more confusing...I know I am more confused by my own words...So it's time for me to think and write it out on paper to figure this out!
    Thanks SO VERY much!!! You are so awesome and such a great help to me!
    I won't give up...that's for sure!