For over 150 years, Milwaukee has been home to a large community of people of Polish descent. The Milwaukee Polonia Project hopes to show the interweaving, intertwining family trees that resulted in this community. It is hoped that, eventually, all the families can be connected to one another. The Milwaukee Polonia Project is also a means to explore our common history and celebrate our shared heritage.


Sunday, February 24, 2013

Featrued Profile #23 - Teofil Szukalski

Teofil Szukalski  (1864 - 1913)

From Memoirs of Milwaukee County, edited by Jerome Anthony Watrous, pages 236:

Relation to Nearest Featured Profile (Charles Stachowiak, Featured Profile #22):  Brother-in-Law.

Path From Nearest Featured Profile:  Charles Stachowiak > wife, Anna (Szukalski) Stachowiak > brother, Teofil Szukalski

Saturday, February 16, 2013


New Features Available on Database!

The settings on the database (which can be found at the Milwaukee Polonia Project Tree) have been modified.  You can now use the "Reports" feature to view (and print) an Ancestor or Descendant Chart for any deceased individual in the database.  (Those charts show only the names of deceased relations.)  Want to know who your Milwaukee relations are?  Find a deceased ancestor or near relative on the database and click on "Kin" for a Kinship Relationship Report.  You can view the Kinship Report either grouped by family relation (which can create duplicate entries) or ungrouped.  The Ancestor and Kinship reports can be modified to show more or less generations.  The Descendant Report can be modified to either show the spouses of descendants, or not.  (However, if the spouses are not shown, the chart can be more difficult to read correctly.)  Clicking on a name shown in an Ancestor or Descendant chart will take you to the corresponding chart for that individual. Clinking on a name in a Kinship Relationship chart will bring up more information about the individual.

We hope you find these new features informative (and fun!).

Note:  This Project is far from complete.  We have much collected information that has yet to be entered and much data yet to be collected.  So, the information on the charts will likely be less than perfect.  We apologize, but we're working as hard as we can to correct that.  Come back later, and there may be more information for you. If you would like to receive a fortnightly newsletter that details the changes made in the database during that time period, please e-mail me at

Sunday, February 10, 2013

St. Valentine's Day and the Law

Today, I have two items that are unrelated other than that they both deal with St. Valentine's Day and crime.

First, an article that appeared in the Milwaukee Journal on February 14, 1925 about the unusual Valentine given to Stanley Janis after he married Clara Jasnewski (possibly Jansniewski) :

I wish I could learn what happened to this couple, but I was unable to match up any families in the 1930 or 1940 census records that matched the specifics given in the article.

That was all I had planned for today, but then today I ran across a possible connection between our community and the much more famous interplay of the law and February 14th:  the St. Valentine's Day Massacre

I was entering information from the Pedigree Resource File of Frances (Lukaszewski) Cesarz when I noticed a probable match between this family and the family of Leo* and Frances Cesarz that is part of the Sweeney and Allied Families Tree on RootsWeb World Connect.  A little investigative googling fleshed out the following story.

Leo and Frances Cesarz had one daughter, Irene Alice Cesarz who was born in 1906 and baptized at St. Hedwig's.  Unfortunately, Frances appears to have died just a year later in 1907.  The 1910 census finds Leo and daughter Irene living with Leo's in-laws, Joseph Lukaszewski and Catherine (Prill or Pryll) Lukaszewski.  Tragically, it appears that Leo, succumbs to tuberculosis in 1913.  In the days before Social Security, perhaps the only thing Irene then had to live on were her family connections and the $150 she received from Leo's membership in the Wood, Wire and Metal Lather's International Union.  I do not know when either Joseph or Catherine Lukaszewski passes away, but I cannot find them in the 1920 census, so it may have been before that date.

According to the Sweeney and Allied Families Tree, Alice makes her way to Chicago.  1926 finds her as a back-up vocalist at the notorious Green Mill Cocktail Lounge in north Chicago.  There she meets and marries Milton Neul, a jazz musician.  They have one son together.  I do not know what became of this marriage, but in about 1932, Alice marries again, this time to John Edward Moore.

The occupation of John Edward Moore on the Sweeney Family Tree is given as "Bootlegger; owner: Circus Cafe, Chicago; Labor Union Racketeer."  Of course, there is more to this than that one statement would imply.  John Edward Moore, a.k.a. Claude "Screwy" Maddox was born in St. Louis, Missouri in 1900 and he may have been a member of the gang called Egan's Rats.  He eventually makes his way into the Chicago crime scene.  He was the owner of the Circus Cafe night club, and more notably, the leader of the criminal gang of the same name.  The Circus Cafe gang was the only gang on the North side of Chicago that associatedwith the organization of Al "Scarface" Capone, infamous leader of the Chicago Outfit (and, reputedly, part-time resident of Brookfield, WI.)

Moore may have been involved in the Massacre in a couple ways.  First, Moore's previous association with Egan's Rats mat have played a role because the Rats were eventually implicated in the crime.   Second, the location of the Circus Cafe on the North side made it an advantageous spot from which to hit the Irish north-side gang of Bugs Moran.  After the St. Valentine's Day Massacre, the police searched the back of the Circus Cafe.  They found a drum filled with bullets for Thompson sub-machine guns.  They also found numerous overcoats strewn about.  Were these the overcoats of the killers?  Or, perhaps, the victims of the Massacre?  One of the overcoats held a .45 caliber pistol in the pocket. Moreover, it is speculated that the garage next door to Cafe was used to cut up one of the get-away cars.  However, it caught fire and burned before this could be fully investigated.

Moore himself was never implicated in a direct involvement in the St. Valentine's Day Massacre.  He had the best of alibis:  he was already in jail on that day for an unrelated offense.  But, he may have been involved in other gangland killings.  Needless to says, he seems an odd choice in husband for a nice Polish girl who had been baptized at St. Hedwig's.


Binder, John J., The Chicago Outfit

The Lather,

My Al Capone Museum:  When, Where and How Did They Die

The obituary of Milton Neul, Jr. on

*Shifting from Leo Cesarz to his brother, Teodor connects you with another published family tree:  the Balliod Family Tree, also on the RootsWeb World Connect Project.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Status Update - February, 2013

Family Names Added Since Last Update:


Profiles Added Since Last Update:  282

New Intra-Connections  (Lucht to Fons):

108) …. Frances (Domachowski) [Grosz] Jagodzinski > mother, Marjanna (Radomski) Domachowski > sister, Catharina (Radomski) Wenta > son, Frank Wenta > daughter, Alice (Wenta) Stanioch > husband, Harry Stanioch > sister, Harriet (Stanioch) Mazurkiewicz > husband, Edward Mazurkiewicz > brother, Chester Mazurkiewicz ....

109) ....  Anastasia (Domachowski) Zeniecki > son, Maximillian Zenieki > wife, Jennie (Ulezelski) Zeniecki > father, Theodor Ulezelski > sister, Martha (Ulezelsk) Stachowiak > husband, Joseph Stachowiak > sister, Petronela (Stachowiak) Jankowski > daughter, Mary (Jankowski) Ruszkiewicz > husband, Albert Ruszkiewicz > brother, Wallace Ruszkiewicz ....

110)  .... Theodor Ulezelski > sister, Florentyna (Ulezelsk) Stachowiak > husband, Albert Stachowiak > sister, Petronela (Stachowiak) Jankowski > daughter, Mary (Jankowski) Ruszkiewicz > husband, Albert Ruszkiewicz > brother, Wallace Ruszkiewicz ....

111) .... Joseph Domachowski > daughter, Wanda (Domachowski) Jeske > ex-husband, Harry Jeske > “half-sister” Delores (Unknown) Stasiewicz > husband, Ray Stasiewicz > brother, Joseph Stasiewicz > wife, Patricia (Piszczek) Stasiewicz > brother, Frank Piszczek ....

112) ....Walter Celichowski > sister, Prakseda (Celichowski) Gapinski > husband, Dominic Gapinski > brother Valentine [Walter] Gapinski > wife, Cecelia (Kasprzak) Gapinski > brother, Stanley Kasprzak > second wife, Jennie (Tarkowski) [Jankowski] Kasprzak > sister, Eva (Tarkowsk) Sikora > husband, Anton Sikora > Mary (Sikora) Michalek ....

113)  .... Cecelia (Kasprzak) Gapinski > brother, Walter Kasrpzak > daughter, Bernice (Kasprzak) Andrae > husband, Ervin Andrae > mother, Mary (Kapczynski) Andraszczyk > brother, Andrew Kapczynski ....

114)  .... Florence (Perlaczynski) Jarorsz > sister, Esther (Perlaczynski) Krueger > husband > Daniel “Bud” Krueger > sister, Florence (Krueger) Gralak > husband, Robert Gralak > sister, Sophie (Gralak) [Rotta] Zabinski > husband, Stanley “Charley” Zabinski > sister, Alice (Zabinski) Marciniak ....
115)  .... Andrew Kapczynski > brother, John Kapczynski > wife, Esther (Stachowiak) [Kapczynski] Mooney > father, Joseph Stachowiak ....

116)  .... Petronella (Stachowiak) Jankowski > brother, Lawrence Stachowiak > daughter, Helen (Stachowiak) Piasecki > daughter, Arlyn (Piasecki) Gigowski > husband, Ralph Gigowski > father, Edward Gigowski ....

117)  .... Lawrence Stachowiak > daughter, Ella (Stachowiak) Ratkowski > husband, Stephen Ratkowski > brother, Stanley Ratkowski > daughter, Eleanor (Ratkowski) [Kitzke] Meyer ....

PCN:  2.1
(For an explanation of the PCN - "Project Completeness Number") see Status Update - February, 2012 and Status Update - March, 2012)

Historical Numbers:

February, 2013 : 2.1
January, 2013:  8.0
December, 2012: 3.29
November, 2012: 6.0
October, 2012:  12.25
September, 2012:  6.4
August, 2012: 3.89
July, 2012:  4.57
June, 2012:  7.75
May, 2012:  9.33
April, 2012:  16.67
March, 2012:  16
February, 2012:  12.8
January, 2012:  19

Newly-Discovered Changed Names:

Stachowiak to Stack
Stroinski to Stronke
Zeszotarski to Stefans and/or Stevens

New Alternate Spellings

Czeske Czeski Jeske
Blochwitz Blowicz Blockowitz Bochowicz
Hanizewski Haniszewsky
Kasprzak Kasprsak
Kendziorski Kendzierski
Kowalski Kowalczyk
Kujawa Kujawiak
Olzewski Olszewski
Skonieczny Shonieczny
Ulezelski Ulezielski Olezelski
Woydal Wojdal