According to an old legend, Polish history began with a peasant
boy named Piast. He was told by two strangers that someday he would rule
the land. Years later the prophecy was fulfilled. The Piast dynasty ruled
for 500 years. Poland derived its name in the 10th century from Piast's
tribe, the Polonie.
Historically, owning land in Poland meant stability. Families tended
to be large providing many hands to do the farm work. By the second half
of the 19th century, Poland's agricultural economy was weakening. Large
families that once were viewed as assets soon became liabilities. These
poor economic conditions caused the greatest wave of Polish imigration.
These immigrants are often referred to as za chlebem or "for
bread" immigrants. Many never intended to stay in the United States. Most
planned to save their earnings, return to Poland and build a better life
for themselves and their families.
The ZALENSKI family lived in the Province of Ostroleka *
in the small village of Chiliny. The Polish spelling of the surname is
with a slash through the "l" and a little "hook" under the "e." Little
is known about the family; however, the line has been traced to PIOTR
ZALENSKI, who was probably born about 1860.
The progenitor of the BARTOLD family was FILIP BARTOLD.
He was probably born sometime around 1775 in the Province of Ciechanow*.
Research into Polish heraldry indicates that the Bartolds from the Ciechanow
area were entitled to used the Grzymala
Herbarz. At this time, little
is known about the history of the crest; however, it may have originated
with the Teutonic knights.
Filip's son, WALERY BARTOLD, was born in December 1799 in the
village of Cyty, Parish of Paluki, Province of Ciechanow. The Bartold family
also has very strong ties to the village of Bartoldy, Parish of Zielona.
Many (if not all) the Bartolds in this village seem to connect to our family.
The Bartold name is found scattered throughout the Province of Ciechanow.
A genealogy database for the ZALENSKI/BARTOLD family can be viewed
in the Reports Section of Our
Grafted Family Tree, and some early photographs are included
in Our Family
Photograph Album. To review the history of the early Bartold
family and read about the origin of the name, visit Thom Bartold's comprehensive
site, A Virtual Place
for any and all Bartold's.......
Sailed - 1888-1928 contains a brief overview and links to specific
information about our immigrant ancestors' arrivals in the United States.
* On January 1, 1999, the provinces of Poland
were restructured. The former 49 provinces were consolidated into 16. All
but three were given new names. Click on the following hyperlink to learn
more - Poland
Links to other sites on the Web:
Costumes, Customs and Crafts
of Poland - Penny Magazine, March 31, 1832
of a Polish Easter - by Judy McCann
Genealogical Society of America
List of Genealogy Sites on the Internet - Poland/Polska
© 1998 (excluding graphics