Wednesday, February 25, 2009

New Book: "Going Home: a Guide to Polish American Family History Research

This comprehensive reference book covers all facets of research that you will need to successfully trace your Polish-American family history.

Its author is Jonathan D. Shea, A.G., Reference Archivist for the Polish Genealogical Society of Connecticut and the Northeast, whose other books are owned by the Glenview Public library. This book is brand new, and updates the classic by Rosemary Chorzempa, Polish Roots, which was published in 1993.

Going Home begins with an introduction to the Polish language, including letter sounds and correct pronunciation.

Chapter 2 provides a capsule history of Poland and worldwide Polonia. It discusses emigration and settlement patterns to different countries , and ethno-cultural groups in Poland.
Chapter 3 details the sources on this side of the ocean, how to use them, and where to obtain them. Examples include local and state sources, vital records, church sacramental records, city directories, yearbooks, newspaper sources, probate and other court records, school records, fraternal organization records, records of organizations of incarceration such as hospital and police, town reports, voting records, state census records, etc..

Chapter 4 covers federal U.S. records such as census, passenger arrivals, alien registration files, passport records, military records, social security applications, consular records, etc..

Chapter 5 discusses geographical resources such as gazetteers, information about former territorial designations, church directories, etc..

Chapter 6 discusses vital records in Poland, historical background about them, the languages in which they are found, how to access them, letter-writing guides, etc.

Chapter 7 tells about additional Polish and european sources such as sacramental registers, revision lists, estate inventories, parish censuses, Nazi concentration camp records, notary and court records, nobility documents, uniquely Jewish records, archives, etc..

Chapter 8 discusses Polish names in Europe and America, including patronymic and matronymics, topographical and geographical surnames, suffixes, alterations, etc..

Appendices include lists of polish parishes in the U.S., internet links, contact addresses for archives. and an extensive bibliography.

There are pictures, reproductions, and illustrations on nearly every page.

Find Going Home on the shelf at 929.3438 SHE. There is a second copy in the Reference Room.

1 comment:

Thomas MacEntee said...


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Check out the Geneabloggers Welcome Wagon on ways that you can get involved in this free genealogy resource!