[Ger-Poland-Volhynia] Roots Report From Ukraine

Don Miller dnmiller at whiz.to
Mon May 26 14:47:24 PDT 2008

May 26, 2008
Zhitomir -- I have just returned from the Kiev airport where I dropped off
the last of our tour members of another wonderfully successful Volhynian
Village Adventure Tour. We had twelve people on our tour, a number of whom
were born in Volhynia, which really heightened the expectation.  I am
pleased to report that they were not disappointed.  A number of our tour
members made significant discoveries in their villages.

Adolph Sonnenburg, Kitchener, ONT. found the grave stone of his great
grandfather in Karlswalde.  Magda Kemp,from Edmonton, AB. discovered that
the table and bench in one of the homes we visited in Gruental was made by
her grand grandfather.  It was quite a thrill for her to sit on the bench
at the table and enjoy the hospitality of the hostess.  A few days later
she stood at the edge of the pond on her father's farm in Zelanka.  She
was three years old when the family was resettled to occupied Poland, so
she didn't remember much, but it was a very emotional moment when she
stood on the land where her cradle once hung.  Glenn Auchtung, Fort Wayne,
IN. found the windmill of his great grandfather in Mokliaka.  He rounded a
corner by the school and suddenly there stood the impressive windmill at
the top of the hill, built over a century ago.  It was totally unexpected
and absolutely breathtaking.  Adolf Hill from Edmonton, AB., also found a
grave stone in the German cemetery of Kuraz, his village.  Though it
didn't relate to his family, it was nevertheless significant in that it
was that of one of his friends.  In addition, Giesla Taber from Sequim,
WA., had the privilege of speaking in the old German Baptist Church in
Neudorf (the mother church)which her grandfather, Eugen Mohr served at the
turn of the century, when the beautiful red brick building was

Others made some worthy finds in the archives in Zhitomir and Rovno.  I
found some important information on Ernest Fritz, a pastor, that I had
been looking for some time.  All in all, it was a good trip.  Much
more than was expected, as one tour memory was told before he left on
tour, "Why are you going there?  There's nothing left!"  His significant
findings proved his friend wrong.    A more detailed report will appear in
an upcoming issue of the SGGEE JOURNAL.

PS. Nancy (my wife) and I are staying on for an additional three weeks to
help complete the construction of our Widow's House in Pulin.  Its been
quite an experience undertaking a $300,000 construction project in a
country that is just beginning to enter the 20th C in this area

More information about the Ger-Poland-Volhynia mailing list