Randy Seaver’s SNGF challenge this week is all about the ancestral home:
1) Tell us which ancestral home (an actual building, a village, a town, even a country) you would most like to visit. Which ancestors lived there, and for how long?
There are several ancestral homes that are on my bucket list, but there is one country with four villages not far apart that I would most like to visit: Slovakia, home of my Carpatho-Rusyn paternal side of the family, the Kuchariks and the Scerbaks.
Nana’s family was from Udol and Hajtovka, two villages about one mile apart in the western part of Slovakia with the Tatras Mountains separating them from today’s Poland.
Source: Google Earth
St. Dmitry’s Church serves both villages. Udol has but 700 or so residents and Hajtovka has even fewer. However, both the paternal and maternal sides of Nana’s family appear in the church registers back to the 1820s, when the records begin. Only the Greek Catholic, also called Byzantine Catholic, Church serves the parishes in this area of Slovakia.
As the crow flies, her two villages are due south of Kracow, Poland and near the Poprad River, a bit northwest of Presov.
The Sabos, aka Kuchariks in Slovakia, were from two towns east of Presov, today called Vysna Sebastova and Ruska Nova Ves.
Source: Google Maps
The Kuchariks attended the Greek Catholic Church in Vysna Sebastova, formerly called Also Sebes, while my grandfather’s maternal family, the Kacsenyaks, were Roman Catholic.
When a bride and groom of each religion married, the marriage typically took place in the bride’s church, so Stephen Kucharik married Maria Kacsenyak in the Roman Catholic Church, but the children were baptized in the father’s home parish, so their five children were christened in the Greek Catholic church.
George Sabo, aka Kucharik, and Helena (Julia) Scerbak met and married in Passaic, New Jersey and neither ever returned to their homeland.
I would love to visit Slovakia and each of these four villages. It’s still a possibility, but I don’t want to take any more long haul flights. That means I need to find a ship sailing from the east coast of the U.S. to Europe, spend some time on land in Europe and find a repositioning ship back to the United States.
It’s now possible with Cunard making transatlantic trips through the summer so I will have to get busy and see if I can work out an itinerary!
Thank you, Randy, for this week’s challenge. 🙂