Kashubian Connection Quest
I am back for the moment, due to my maddening quest to connect all the Wierzbas in the lower Kashubian area of Poland (mainly centered around the city of Kościerzyna). This quest is more of an obsession or addiction. Every time I come back to genealogy, this project rears its head with something similar to magnetism….and pulls me back in. No matter how I slice the project, I never get much further. It’s almost like chasing for fool’s gold or Bigfoot. But, I cannot help myself and that is what makes genealogy projects so enticing and interesting. It’s what brings me back for more.
With that said, I’ll move on to my research. I’ve tried pursuing this project from various different angles: tracking my Wierzba family back as far the records will let me; tracking other “non-related” Wierzba families (backward and forward); trying to find connections between neighboring parishes; researching thoroughly through the following parishes – Lipusz, Kościerzyna, Stężyca, Sulęczyno, Parchowo, Wiele, and Leśno; starting to comb through the following parishes: Stara Kiszawa and Sierakowice; and also relying on the PTG Pomorskie Towarzystwo Genealogiczne indexing project to help find records that I may have missed or give insight on parishes that I have not pursued.
This is not the “be all, end all” approach and is not even close to being 100% accurate, or cover all possible record avenues. But, this does give me a quick and dirty way to chip away at this massive project. These days I don’t dedicate the amount of time that I previously could or would like to, so I must make it work for my project to move forward (even if it’s at a snail’s pace).
Based on the information that I’ve gathered and the record information that is available, the farthest back the Wierzbas can be traced in the area around Lipusz (my Wierzba families parish) is the Kościerzyna Parish. Specifically the village of Korne in 1656. Here is the record:
Baptism of Dorota Wierzba (1656)
Kościerzyna Catholic Parish (Kościerzyna, Pomorskie, Poland). Chrzty, 1642-1672. Diecezja Pelplińska, Pomorskie, Poland. Stanley Frymark, CD: Kościerzyna W47 Chrzty 1642-1672; W47, Skan. Kościerzyna Parish Baptism Records. 1656. Korne, Kościerzyna, Pomorskie, Poland.
Quick translation: The Baptism of an infant named Dorothea to the honorable parents of Michael and Agnes Wierzba, from the village of Korne.
The available church records for Kościerzyna, per the PTG website, are as follows:
|Kościerzyna||Available||Birth: 1642-1693, 1724-1746, 1763-1784, 1799-1815, 1826-1913||Marriage: 1668-1697, 1798-1913||Death: 1760-1963|
The first Kościerzyna Parish Wierzba baptism occurred roughly 14 years after the first available parish records were recorded.
Another available source of records comes from the Lipusz Parish. The book is called the Brotherhood of the Rosary, which was dedicated to the Virgin Mary and starts in 1715. This fraternity listed a number of events in a ledger. The ledger events contain names of the participants and/or members. The first entries for a Wierzba are Adalbert Wierzba and Marianna Wierzba in 1722. The listings appear to be either “new” members or “current” members to the fraternity.
Again based on the available records, the next unique parish that records a Wierzba birth, marriage, or death (BMD) (with consistency – not including “one off” outliers) was the Stężyca Parish in 1728, with the marriage of Adalbert Wierzba and Magdalena Piechowska.
The available church records for Stężyca, per the PTG website, are as follows:
|Stężyca||Available||Birth: 1691-1913||Marriage: 1714-1787, 1797-1913||Death: 1714-1729, 1743-1746, 1768-1804, 1806-1885, 1889-1963|
As you can see, the project can appear overwhelming in its magnitude. In my next post, I’d like to list out the available records/resources that I am using in a bit more detail.