Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: Your Ancestral Family Migration Map

This week’s SNGF challenge from Randy Seaver on Genea-Musings is a fun one:

)  For this week’s SNGF, make your own migration map for whichever surname or ancestral line you want.  Use a World Map or a country map.  Choose birth, marriage, death, or migration year to put the spots on the map and label them with the year.

2)  Share your map with all of us by writing your own blog post, writing a comment on this blog post, or put it in a Facebook post.  Please leave a comment on this post so others can find it.

I have been working on a one-place study for two months now – the Greek Catholic parish of St. Dimitry that serves the Rusyn/Slovak villages of Ujak (today Udol) and Hajtovka and is the home of my paternal grandmother’s family.

Nana’s father and mother, Michael Scerbak and Anna Murczko, were my immigrant ancestors.

Both came to Passaic by 1890, but Michael made several trips back and forth across the ocean.

I can’t imagine making this trip multiple times in steerage class on a ship, but Michael did just that.

1. Michael is first found on an 1890 passenger list, arriving at Castle Garden. (A distant cousin read the microfilm pages and found several persons from Ujak, as it was then called.) He was 22 years old.

2. Michael married Anna Murczko, also from St. Dimitry’s, in Passaic, New Jersey in October 1892. I believe they planned to remain in America, but it didn’t turn out that way.

Michael made a trip back to Ujak in the spring or summer of 1895. The reason is unknown – there were no deaths in the family or any other event I’ve found in my research. However, Michael is found returning to the U.S. in November 1895, arriving through Ellis Island.

3. The family – Michael and Anna, plus my grandmother, Julia, and her brother, Peter, returned to Slovakia sometime between 1897, as Peter was born in Passaic on Christmas Day 1896, and May 1899, when their next child, daughter Maria, was born in Hajtovka.

My grandmother said the family returned to Europe because her mother said the air was bad here. That was likely a valid complaint since they were working in factories for many hours each day and TB was rampant.

4. Nana returned to Passaic in 1910, when she was 17 years old and never went back to Europe. She said her father came to the U.S. to work “several times” after she came back, but I have only been able to document one trip. His brother-in-law, John Murczko, is found on a 1912 passenger list arriving in New York. The person he is going to live with is his brother-in-law, Michael Scerbak, in Passaic.

It is roughly 4,300 miles from Udol to Passaic. Michael crossed the ocean at least 6 times, which means he migrated and then immigrated/emigrated a minimum of 25,800 miles during his lifetime.

That’s not my idea of a relaxing cruise.

Thanks, Randy, for this week’s topic. This was fun.

One thought on “Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: Your Ancestral Family Migration Map”

  1. Wow, what journeys he had. I like how you documented it with the multiple arrows and different colors. It really stands out.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.