Lecture descriptions Ceil Jensen, FEEFHS 2021

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The Long and Winding Road… the History of Antoni Przytula - How DNA and Databases Deliver Success (DNA track)

The journey to find my grandfather's paternal birth family has taken decades. The careful pairing of DNA testing and online databases with parish and civil records have provided the long-sought connection. Learn how the research started with a vague family story and was solved with the use of autosomal testing and a Polish paper trail.


Genealogy Societies - A Survey of Genealogy Societies in North America and Poland (Polish track)

Online commercial databases are built using “low hanging fruit” databases that are useful to the largest group of researches. Many unique Polish communities exist in North America. This presentation will identify societies, archives, and libraries that hold useful unique collections for family historians. Most of these societies publish helpful periodicals, transcripts, and compiled genealogies and may have special indexes, collections, and projects. Many publish queries about Polish ancestors or maintain a list of members’ research interests. Some specialize in the immigrants to a specific area. I have either presented to the following societies or used their services during my own research and that of my patrons.


Advanced Polish Genealogy - Sto Lat: A Modern Guide to Polish Genealogy (Polish track)

Author and researcher Ceil Wendt Jensen, MA presents practical examples from her book on how to use records, databases, and archives to advance your genealogy research. She dispels the myth that records were destroyed during the World Wars and that language barriers make Polish research difficult. A survey of record sets beyond birth, marriage, and death are featured.


Coral Beads and Poppy Seeds (Closing Session)

Ceil Węta Jensen will read from her new novel, Coral Beads and Poppy Seeds, a tale of four Polish women who meet on their voyage to America in 1890 and whose lives become entwined beyond their youthful imaginings. Anna from Russian Poland, Julia from West Prussia, Marianna from Posen, and Agata from Galicia navigate their way in Detroit, a thriving hub of commerce and industry. As they find jobs and husbands in the ethnic community, birth their babies, and bury loved ones, they straddle the mores and prejudices of the old and new worlds, facing myriad challenges with faith, hope, and courage.