I have arranged a site for our memorial that is even better than any we had previously considered. The City of Regina is developing a park at 11th Avenue and Montreal Street, right in the heart of old Little Zichydorf. The community association has the major voice in the park’s design. They are planning four formal entrances, each honouring one of the ethnic groups that has predominated in the area over the years. Of course, one of these groups is Germans. The organizers have indicated enthusiasm for making our plaque part of the German theme entrance. A first draft text for the plaque follows. Please make any comments or suggestions to Glenn.
“In memory of the pioneers from Zichydorf and GyÃƒÂ¶rgyhaza in the Banat province of Austria-Hungary who constituted a large proportion of the German-speaking population of Regina and area in the early 1900s. Several dozen families left their homeland seeking peace, freedom, and opportunity in an unknown hinterland. They struggled through poverty, drought, and pestilence to become pillars of the growing community and contributed to the building of a strong foundation for their thousands of descendants.
Erected by the Zichydorf Village Association, Georg Kurzhals, Federation of East European Family History Societies, and Victoria Club Ltd. June 15, 2000.”
The last portion recognizes major contributors. If you would like to make a special contribution to this project, send it to Glenn and mark it “Memorial”. We will recognize as many contributors as space allows, beginning with the largest contributions.
NEW AT THE LIBRARY AND ON THE WEB
Robert Bujdosa, our Plandiste friend who now lives in Sweden, has sent us a 20 minute home video of his trip to Plandiste in June, 1998. It is a home video, not an award-winning travelogue, so have realistic expectations. There are views of the town, but most importantly, a visit to the cemetery. Contrary to some reports, at least some of the old German headstones are still intact, although not well cared for. With Robert’s help, I have prepared a short printed guide to go along with the video. Available at SGS.
Mike Kleisinger wrote a paper titled The Forgotten Fathers: The German Canadian Experience, 1900-1918 for a history class and has contributed it to our library. It deals with the experiences of his ancestors in Regina before and during World War I, particularly the prejudices they faced due to the war.
During World War II, most Donauschwaben drafted into the German army served in the Prinz Eugen Division. Thanks to Harold Miller for discovering a profile of this unit. Point your web browser at http://www.csd.uwm.edu/~jpipes/7ss.html.
Laura Grzyb had an idea that we have been developing for the last few months. We propose to scan as many old Zichydorf and Zichydorfer pictures as we can find and copy them to a CD, creating a permanent digital record of our Zichydorf heritage for future generations! If you don’t have a computer, there is bound to be someone in your family who does. Those who contribute a certain level of content would receive a free CD in return. Those who do not contribute could buy them for a nominal fee. Content would include pictures, family trees in GEDCOM or text format, stories, indices that we have created for the web, etc., etc. The only limits are our imaginations. A CD stores so much data that we would probably never fill it. We will discuss the potential for this project at our spring meeting. If you are unable to attend, give me a call if you have any comments or suggestions.
A MEMBER’S SUCCESS STORY
Last fall I received an email from Ray Borschowa that demonstrates how hard work, imagination, and technology paid off for him:
“October was a very exciting month. Last summer I used the internet to search all possible European phone directories for Borschova and Borschowa. I found 3 and sent a letter to all of them inquiring if they were related to the Borschova’s from Zichydorf. One family from Germany replied and told me that their name was spelled wrong in phone book, a lady from Hungary did not answer and the third family telephoned me from Germany the day they received the letter. Their father is from Zichydorf and they are related to me. They are ecstatic about this, they did not know about Borschowa’s in North America. After their father dies the name will no longer exist in Germany; he has three daughters, all born in Germany. I sent them a 7 pound box, full of Borschowa information, have written about 10 pages in letters and talked to the oldest daughter three times. One of the daughters has been to Zichydorf. I will keep you informed if I learn anything new.”
FEDERATION OF EAST EUROPEAN FAMILY HISTORY SOCIETIES CONVENTION
FEEFHS, host of our web site, is planning its 2001 convention for Regina. There are sure to be many speakers that would be helpful to those researching our corner of the world. They will be searching for speakers and volunteers in the months ahead. Give some thought to whether you could present a topic or spare some time to help out with planning or execution of the convention. As the time approaches, I will be recruiting volunteers.
The German Canadians 1750-1937 by Heinz Lehman is a thorough and well-researched accounting of Germans who came to Canada. It covers all the major geographic concentrations and all the different time periods. It has many pages dealing specifically with Saskatchewan and mentions Zichydorf several times. One of the highlights is a long letter by Peter Kleckner on the occasion of the death of Johann Bolen, one of the first Zichydorfers in Saskatchewan. It describes how they decided to immigrate, what they found, and how their lives improved in their new homes. Other passages describe the Zichydorf influence in the settlements at Vibank and at St. Elizabeth, west of Gravelbourg. I strongly recommend that any Zichydorf researcher read the applicable sections of this book.
Leidensweg der Deutschen im kommunistischen Jugoslawien lists all the Donauschwaben in Yugoslavia who were killed during and after World War II. It is organized by village, usually specifying which villagers died in which concentration camps, their birth and death years, and often specifying their cause of death. Fortunately, the Zichydorf research is among the most complete. There is a separate listing for Georghausen/GyÃƒÂ¶rgyhaza. There is also German text describing the events and numerous statistical tables and graphs. We will work on translating the text in the months ahead. It is very sad skimming a 1,000 page book that is mostly columns of names of murdered people. It gives some insight into the troubles in the Balkans today.
Nemesis at Potsdam by Alfred M. de Zayas is an account of the Allies’ complicity in the expulsion of Germans from captured territory at the close of World War II. It describes how factions within the US and British delegations wanted a severe result for the Germans “to teach them a lesson”. Some of these people advocated completely de-industrializing Germany and turning it into one huge farm. Fortunately, cooler heads prevailed and recognized that it was the harsh conditions imposed after World War I that led to World War II and that it would be counterproductive to go down that road again. Unfortunately, too many concessions had already been granted to the Soviet block concerning resettlement of ethnic Germans. Although some people raised their voices about inhumane treatment, the die had been cast and the Soviets implemented their plans without direct interference. There is some detail about events in Prussia and Poland, but very little detail about Banat.
ACHTZENER BOOK TRANSLATION
Liz Hugel has completed her translation of Achtzener’s second book. She will need a couple of more weeks for some final proofing and another few weeks for production. With any luck, the two volumes combined should be ready by early June. Pricing has not yet been set. This is an absolute “must have” for any Zichydorf researcher. It contains the history of the village, many pictures, and a roster of the residents in 1944 with birth dates. If you are on email, I will send a message when the book is ready and the price is set. If you don’t have email, I will mail you an order form.
ST MARY’S CHURCH RECORDS
John Hugel has encountered some trouble with his back and is unable to sit for very long, so his ambitious project to extract these records has been delayed. He has completed a list of names to search for and he has settled on his methodology, but has not yet begun the actual extractions. He has recruited one helper, but if you can also help out, call him at 789-1643. Good luck John.
Please add the following to your list:
Joe Novak, Box 334, Bismarck, ND, 58502-0334, 701-255-4410 (Novak)
Dean Haack, Box 87, Meyronne, SK, S0H 3A0, 306-264-3748 (Haack)
Jeannette Miller, email@example.comÃ‚Â (Reslein, Niedermayer, Schneider, Hochbaum)
Fred Koenig, 5515 Belva Place, Lanham, MD, 20706-2145, 301-577-0053, firstname.lastname@example.org, (Koenig, Ferentz)
I will print a complete new list for the September newsletter.
MEMBERSHIP AND DUES
We welcome all members, dues paying or not, for the knowledge they share with all of us. However, we hope members will voluntarily contribute to the cost of maintaining the group (website, mailings, etc.). We suggest a one-time donation of $25 CDN to the library fund plus an annual donation of $10 to run the association’s affairs. Canadian members will receive a tax receipt for the library donation from the Saskatchewan Genealogical Society. Please contribute your 1999 dues in the near future.
Paid so far for 1999: M. Kainer, N. Stetner, M. Kleisinger, G. Schwartz, L. Grzyb, P. Niedermayer, C. Johnson, B. Anwender, C. Ortman, T. Novak, S. Osborn-Ryan, D. Connelly, R. Borschowa, A. Ritter, P Eichof, J. Novak, G. Gleisinger, D. Haack, J. Dash, S. Gibbard.
I now have over 10,500 names in my database. Have you sent me your family tree? I may be able to link you with others and save you a lot of work.
REGINA BRANCH MEETING
Regina Branch will meet at 2pm on Sunday, April 25, at St. Timothy School, 280 Sangster Blvd. Mark your calendar and please join us. Bring some Zichydorf friends. We will plan production of our CD.
Zichydorf Village Association News
edited by: Glenn Schwartz
2274 Baldwin Bay, Regina, SK, S4V 1H2
Zichydorf Village Association
If you are not already on our researcher list, please complete and return the following. Please Print.
Surname:__________________ First name: __________________ Maiden name: ________________
Searching these names: _______________________________________________________________
Address: ________________________ City/Town: _________________ Prov/State: _______________
Country: _______________ Postal code: ______________ Phone: _____________ Fax: ___________
Email address: ____________________ Genealogy computer program you use: __________________
Resources: Please list books, microfilms, skills, connections you have that could help other researchers.
There is no obligation to pay dues to the ZVA. The primary contribution of each member is information. We hope, however that you will also contribute financially. We suggest a one-time donation of $25 to our library fund plus an annual contribution of $10 to help with expenses (web site, mailing, etc.). If you are Canadian, you will receive a receipt from the Saskatchewan Genealogy Society (SGS) for the library contribution.
PURPOSE, GOALS, OBJECTIVES
Gather, share, and preserve information about Zichydorf and the surrounding villages and the families whose history is associated.
A. Complete each member’s family history.
B. Put these histories in context – pre-Zichydorf, Zichydorf, post-Zichydorf, relationship to other families, fate of those who remained behind.
C. Create a legacy of information for future generations.
OBJECTIVES – methods of achieving goals
1. Search out information about Zichydorf and its families. (Internet, email, mail, telephone, media)
2. Create a database of what information is available and who has it to facilitate sharing and avoid duplication of effort. (Available on Internet and on paper)
3. Accumulate physical resources. (Microfilm, books, maps, family histories on Internet and in SGS library)