Pollei Family History
I have spent many years researching my Pollei ancestors. Someday I will figure out exactly where August Pollei is from and hook into some Polish Prussians. The biggest problem is that 80% of the church- and civil registration records of this region were lost as a result of World War II.
[2018 - One possible match is August comes from village Rzecko (German: Rietzig) in the administrative district of Gmina Choszczno, within Choszczno County, West Pomeranian Voivodeship, in north-western PolandRietzig, County Arnswalde].
Neal Ekengren - 2017
Pollei in Wisconsin
HISTORY and ANALYSIS
1848 - August Pollei is born in Prussia. Probably the Province of Posen based on various relationships and evidence I have uncovered.
The "Po-" prefix is usually an indication of an eastern Slavic heritage.
1848 - The Greater Poland Uprising was smashed by Prussian and Russian forces. The Posen area had been taken by Prussia in 1772 during the Polish Partitions that ended the 400 year existence of the historic Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth. This area was returned to Poland in 1945 after World War II.
1848 - Princeton, WI is founded in the USA.
1867 - August emigrates to USA.
Did August emigrate to avoid the Austro-Prussian War and its economic impacts?
The actual port of entry, fellow passengers and family, and timeline into Green Lake County, Wisconsin is not known.
Baker oral history says that August emigrated through England with a brother. The brother ended up in Kentucky.
I have found August Bernard Pollei in Kentucky and maybe someday I can document the connection.
[yes same first name and children with given names strikingly parallel to brother August in Wisconsin]
The closest immigration info I can match.
1865 - The USA Civil War ends
1866 - Austro-Prussian War
Otto von Bismarck aimed to unify the northern German states. Denmark had been defeated and now Austrian possessions (especially Saxony) were targeted in an alliance with Italy.
Most German family names in central Wisconsin can trace their origins to Prussia's Netze River (Polish: Notec) valley marshlands region. In Green Lake County, most Prussian immigrants were from County Arnswalde (Polish: Choszczno), in Province Brandenburg's Neumark region (which became part of Poland in 1945).
These included German Lutherans and Polish Slavic Catholics. In Green Lake County the Germans made up roughly one-third of the population, outnumbering all other ethnic groups.
1871 - August marries Wilhelmine “Minnie” Kopischke in
St. John's Lutheran Church [founded 1864] in Princeton, Green Lake County. This is the first record found of any kind for August Pollei.
St. John’s church of Budsin was named after a small village in Posen, Prussia
August is listed as railroad section laborer in census records. He likely immigrated to work the labor gangs and stayed in labor camps.
Did August get married after finishing the railroad projects which have just ended?
Was August of Polish heritage as indicated by his surname? Or was he Germanic heritage as indicated by his church affiliation and as indicated by numerous records found in the German language?
1869 - 1871 - A massive amount of railroad construction is being completed in Green Lake County.
1873 - 1893 - August and Minnie have 11 children including our Otto Pollei ancestor.
1890 - The family has moved to Milwaukee. Some of the children are born here. By 1900 August has separated from Minnie.
1923 - August dies and is buried in Forest Home Cemetery in Milwaukee.
Forest Home Cemetery
1930 - Minnie dies and is buried in Forest Home Cemetery in Milwaukee a large distance away from August’s grave.
Pollei in Minnesota
Otto August Pollei
HISTORY and ANALYSIS
1875 - Otto is born in Princeton, Green Lake County, Wisconsin. He moves to Milwaukee as a child with the family.
1898 - Otto marries Alvina Knack.
1899 - Otto and Alvina moved to New Ulm, Brown County, Minnesota. He is a miller at the Eagle Roller Mill Company.
His older brother Reinhart “Fred” Pollei also moves here with his wife Amelia.
Otto is certainly following the Netzelander narrative.
Many of the Prussian Netzelanders would go on to the flat prairie lands across southern Minnesota, especially Brown and Blue Earth Counties.
1899 - 1912 - Otto and Alvina have 5 children including our Elmera Carrie Pollei.
1955 - Otto dies and is buried in the New Ulm City Cemetery.
HISTORY and ANALYSIS
1908 - Elmera is born in New Ulm, Minnesota.
1931 - Elmera marries Cornelius “Neil” Isaac Baker in 1931.
Neils first wife had died shortly after giving birth to Vivian Baker in 1929.
1932 - 1935 - Neil and Elmera have 3 children.
1933 - The family moves to Chicago, IL, later to Texas, and finally to Knoxville, TN. Neil works in a meat packing plant.
1935-present – Patsy Baker
Patsy and her twin brother Pat are born in Knoxville, TN
She marries Alvin Ekengren and they have 5 children.
1957-present – Neal Ekengren
Neal is born Independence, MO.
He marries Matilde San-Andres and they have one child.
|Descendant List of August Pollei||29 June 2018|
|Index of Names||29 June 2018|