20061111

Adam Block

Did some messing around on acestry.com this morning and found a ship manifest with record of an Adam Block (same name as Gradma S's Dad). It's the manifest for the S.S. Patricia leaving Hamburg Germany on April 1, 1901. All that sounded right to me.

So if that's him, he was 34 at the time traveling with his wife Catha (27), younger brother Johanna (30) and his wife Elisabeth who's age I can't make out. They would have arrived in the port of New York and their final destination is listed as Oshkosh, Wisconsin. They were farmers. Then the part that really interested me. It says they were Russian. I admit it's hard to read some of the stuff on that form. So if you're in the mood, have a look for yourself. His name is on line 9. If you want me to email you the high-res JPEG so you can zoom in and stuff, just ask.



The closest thing I could find to the city Adam listed as his last residence is Podh√°jska. It's a small village in Slovokia that's been around a while. In 1901, it was in Hungary. The Hungarian ethnic assimilation policies of that time (refered to as Magyarization), may have been the reason Adam left his homeland. Though if you read the discussion on that wiki article, someone argues that economic reasons were why Hungarians emigrated at the time. Still, why isn't Hungarian listed as his nationality? Perhaps rather than Russian, the nationality he named was Rusyn. The short lived independant Rusyn state formed after WWI was Podkarpatsk√° Rus. That also has some similarity to the last residence listed on the manifest. Though he could have been Russian.

This is all conjecture on my part of course. So help me out - let's solve this mystery. Why did Adam Block emigrate? Where in Hungary did he live? Who were his parents?

7 comments:

kippur said...

That's some great info. I don't have time to develop my own hypothesis right now though. Ill work on that later. Geez, I just got used to being Hungarian and now I have to be Russian?

Anonymous said...

We're Hungarian???

kippur said...

dang, when'd you join the family??? We've been Hungarian for like 2 months now geez.

Anonymous said...

We'll brother-in-laws and husband -
this Adam Block is not your grandfather. Your grandfather was around 17 years old when he arrived here in America without a wife. She came over a few years later. I still can't find any info on either of them coming over. Sorry your not Russian anylonger.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, about the incorrect spelling of well -

kippur said...

Dang, guess I better send back the furry hat and autographed poster of Yakov Smirnoff.

Way to go Steve.

Anonymous said...

We're still Hungarian, though, right? Cuz I've already bought my outfit for the Hungarian Harvest Dance.