Thursday, August 14, 2008

Paternal Grandparents #1

This is a photo of my paternal grandfather and his brother shortly after my grandfather immigrated from Hungary to the United States. My grandfather who is standing was only seventeen and his brother was twenty seven in this photo. Apparently my great uncle was married when he arrived two years earlier but I have not been able to figure out yet if his wife came with him. I am still doing some research. When I was searching for information on the Ellis Island web site there are many Fuzi's who came around this era. Apparently that surname was a common name for Hungarians. 

Beginning in 1607 there was a steady flow of Europeans crossing the ocean to live in America. This flow of immigrants really became massive after 1862, when the Homestead Act was passed and immigrants could obtain cheap land to farm on, and because of the enormous economic growth that started after the end of the Civil War.  Between 1892 and 1922, 22 million Europeans immigrated to America. In that period the ones that landed in New York were registered at Ellis Island. 

My grandfather was born Mihaly Fuzi in Kapuvar, Hungary September 28, 1888. He sailed on the ship called the Zeeland for eleven days arriving at Ellis Island on February 21, 1906. He joined his brother, Istvan, who had arrived September 28, 1904 and went on to Perrysville, Pennsylvania. Both of them later changed their names to the American versions, Michael and Steven but kept the original surname.

He met my grandmother in church sometime after that and they married March 22, 1909. They stayed in Pennsylvania for the first five years of their marriage where their first two children were born. The Homestead Laws that were enacted at this time lured them to the Oregon country. They moved their family by train to Brogan, Oregon in 1914. In Brogan they secured a buggy and team to complete their journey to Malheur City, Oregon. They selected 640 acres near Malheur City to homestead. The usual procedure of clearing the land of sagebrush and establishing permanent buildings was entered into. He became a US citizen August 27, 1919.  

I never knew my paternal grandfather. In fact my father never knew his father. He was killed when struck by lightening while working on the ranch when my dad was only two years old. My grandmother was pregnant with their ninth child when this happened. 
 ~To be continued......

7 comments:

noble pig said...

Wow, that's a story with a very sad ending. But the photo is beautiful, very beautiful.

Mental P Mama said...

Wow. What a story. Can't wait for the rest.

tipper said...

So interesting! I can't wait to see what happened next. Neat that you have so many details. Although I know you wish you had more!

Jill said...

I love all the research you've done--it's fascinating and I love hearing the history about all these past relatives! Still can't get over how much Uncle John looks like Great Grandpa Fuzi!

Em said...

Wow, that's amazing. I love finding out stories of my family members from long ago. My great grandmother 'Bobci' came to the USA from Poland as a 16 year old... alone! She lived with a cousin I think for a while before getting married and opening a grocery store. She was such a sweet lady - I was lucky to know her as a child. She went to sleep each night with a hershey's kiss in her mouth - she loved chocolate! And she wouldn't drink any alcohol except for Concord Grape Manechewitz! Maybe I should do a blog post about this character!

Bob Brague said...

Hello, Vonda...you left a comment on my blog a while back, and I have been reading yours ever since. (My wife is partial to the Pioneer Woman's blog, but I like yours better.)

This post about your great-grandparents so inspired me that I dug into my personal photos and wrote a post about my mother and her parents and another one about my wife's parents.

I have nominated you for the dubiously named "Kick-Ass Blogger" award after Ruth Hull Chatlien in Illinois nominated me. Come on over and pick yours up!

Bob Brague said...

I meant grandparents, of course.