Tag Archives: Documents

Minnesota Death Certificates: Harry Kosslak and Mary Faduck

A very good source of information about an ancestor can be the civil record certificates that they leave behind – birth, marriage or death (BMD) certificates. These can be obtained by contacting the government office for wherever said person was born/married/died, either in person or by mail, electronically, by phone, etc.

The state of Minnesota is lucky to have the Minnesota Historical Society (MNHS), who offer a range of services for a very reasonable fee. I used Ancestry.com‘s Social Security Death Index (SSDI) to find out that there were two Koszlaks who died in Minnesota, then used the MNHS’s online form to order (Uncertified) death certificates for both Harry (Hawrylo) Kosslak and Mary (Maria) Faduck, my great-great grandfather Daniel (Danylo)’s siblings($9.00 USD a piece).

Though I always love to add visuals to my blog posts, I won’t post the actual certificates due to their detailed, personal nature, but I will write about the highlights of their information from a genealogical standpoint.

Harry Kosslak, husband of Maria Lewko died April 16, 1954 in Minneapolis at age 68. His death certificate is fairly vague in the areas I had hoped to find more information – his birthplace is listed as unknown, his mother unknown, his father listed only by his surname: Kosslak. He is buried in St. Mary’s Cemetery in Minneapolis, one of the city’s oldest cemeteries. He lived at 4644 Knox Ave. N in Minneapolis at the time of his death.

Mary Faduck (nee Koshlak), widow of George Faduck died more recently than her brother Harry on October 9, 1981. Her certificate is clearer and more concise – Her birthplace is listed as “Galecia”, her country of origin “Austria Hungary”. She was also buried in St. Mary’s cemetery, and lived at 4648 Knox Ave N (possibly even the house right beside her brother’s, depending on how the numbering goes on that street!). But most importantly, Mary’s parent’s names are recorded: Prokov Koshlak and Christine Finko.

In Harry’s passenger manifest from the SS Kaiserin Victoria, he lists his father as “Prokop Koszlak” from Novosilka, strengthening my belief that Prokop is my great-great-great grandfather’s name. Christine Finko, however, likely spelled her name “Krystina Fink”.

Harry is the oldest Koszlak child that I know of and can prove, born in 1888 and Mary is the youngest, born in 1895. This suggests that Prokop and Krystina were probably married somewhere between 1873 and 1887 (my guess is closer to the 1887 range) and were likely born between 1855 and 1870. You can guess that based around the fact that Krystina probably did not give birth to children younger than 18 years of age, or older than 40, and that given that they were devout Greek Catholics, they were married at least 9 months before any children were born.

So, for $18.00 USD, I discovered that my great-great-great grandparents were Prokop Koszlak and Krystina Fink, both born between 1855 and 1870 and married between 1873 and 1887 in Novosilka, Pidhaitsi, Ternopil’, Ukraine.

P.S. In Danylo’s passenger manifest when he first came to North America, he states that he is going to visit his brother Jakiv Koszlak in Minneapolis. Sometimes in those days people fudged some details of family relations and whatnot in order to gain access to North America, so I keep that in mind. Not only that, but Ukrainians are known for referring to their first cousins as brothers and sisters. Jakiv was born in 1876. Neither Harry/Hawrylo or Jakiv/Jakob are mentioned in Daniel/Danylo’s obituary (perhaps because they were both already passed away?), and I have not been able to find any further information about Jakiv. Maybe he returned to Ukraine. As of now, the only solid, 100%-for-sure sibling of Danylo’s I can link to with actual records is Mary. I’ll include Harry as well, seeing as his father is also listed as Prokop from Novosilka in his passenger manifest and numerous other hints and clues, but for now I will exclude Jakiv until can find more proof that he is indeed related.

Document: The marriage of Danylo Koszlak and Anna Bruchanska

After some postal difficulties, I received the marriage certificate of my great great grandparents Danylo Koszlak and Anna Bruchanska from the Manitoba Vital Statistics Agency. So, voila:

The penmanship is somewhat difficult to read, but here’s my transcription:

Registration Division of: Beausejour Brokenhead
1. Name of GROOM (surname first): Surname: Koschlak; Given name: Danyto Danylo
2. Rank or profession: farmer
3. Bachelor, widower or divorced: bachelor
4. Age: 23
5. Religious denomination: gr. cat
6. Usual residence: Brokenhead T. 14, R.8, m.29
7. Name and surname of father: Prokop Koschlak
8. Rank or profession of father: farmer
9. Name and maiden name of mother: Chrystina Fink
10. Name of BRIDE (surname first): Surname: Bruchanska, Given name: Anna
11. Rank or profession: farmer
12. Spinster, widower or divorced: spinster
13. Age: 19
14. Religious denomination: gr. cat
15. Usual residence: Brokenhead
16. Name and surname of father: Dmytro Bruchanski
17. Rank or profession of father: farmer
18. Name and surname of mother: Nastia Rozdobudko
19. When married: 10th day of February, 1914
20. Where married: Brokenhead Church of the Holy Ghost
21. How married (license or banns; if by license, give number): Banns
22. Names and addresses of witnesses: Name: Nykola Rostlinkski; Address: Brokenhead T.14, R.7, m.13; Name: Michal Wialogowski; Address: Brokenhead, T.14, R.8, m.31
23. Signature, address and religious denomination of person solemnizing marriage: The above-stated particulars are true to the best of my knowledge and belief. Signature of officiating clergyman: Rev. Eaudraibuim (sp?); Address: Beausejour; Religious denomination: gr. cat
24. Registered number: 14. Filed at this office this: 5th 3 4th day of Feb March, 1914

This also further confirms that Danylo and Mary Faduck were siblings, since their parental information is the same on this marriage certificate and Mary’s death certificate.

Danylo Koszlak’s Canadian Naturalization

Another resource (albeit sometimes not a particularily genealogically helpful one) are old Canadian Naturalization records. An explanation of the Naturalization process can be found at the Government of Canada’s website. All newly naturalized citizens were listed in a report published by the Secretary of State, and also published in the Canada Gazette (the official newspaper of the Canadian Government).

The Government of Canada’s website offers a searchable database of these records. You can search by name from 1915-1932, OR you can search by date from 1936-1951.

Danylo Koszlak became a naturalized citizen on July 18, 1932. At the time, he was a labourer in Beausejour. His record was published October 15, 1932.

I have not yet found Passenger or Naturalization records for wife Annie Bruchanski.

Record: The Baptism of Moise Meloche


Moise Meloche was my great great grandfather. This is an excerpt from the St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic church in Riviere-aux-Canards (Windsor), Ontario, detailing his baptism.

Moise Joseph Thomas Meloche
Le 8 juillet 1900 a de baptise Moise Joseph Thomas ne le 5 du legitime mariage de Henri Meloche et de Cecile Meloche. Parrain et marraine Remi Meloche et Charlotte Beneteau Elie Bondy et son epouse.

J. Marseille, ptre.

Document: The 1916 Census of Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta


In the late 19th century and early 20th century, Canada’s prairie provinces saw a large population boom. In addition to taking the census every 10 years(1851, 1861, 1871, etc) as was done for all of Canada at the time, it was decided to take an extra census every 5 years for Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta (1906, 1916, etc until 1956 when all of Canada was polled every 5 years) to help keep track of the blooming population.

This is the 1916 entry for the Koszlaks:

Family #97 in Brokenhead Regional Municipality (Township 14, Range 8, Meridian E)
Family head: Daniel Koslak(26 years), wife: Any Koslak(24 years), son: Mich Koslak(2 years) and son: Peter Koslak(10 months)
Birthplaces: Daniel and Any born in Austrian Galicia, Michael and Peter born in Manitoba
Family’s religion: Greek Catholic
Daniel and Any came to Canada in 1912. Citizenship: Austrian for Daniel and Any, Canadian for Michael and Peter
Family’s ethnicity: Ruthenian
Can speak English: only Daniel
Can speak French: none
Family’s mother tongue: Ruthenian
Can read and write: just Daniel
Occupations: Daniel was a farmer, none for the rest
Where was he employed: at a farm

So there’s not a whole lot of new information here on this census except for but approximate birth years for Anna(1891), Michael(1914) and Patrick(1916). Nevertheless, the more reinforcing documentation you can find, the better!

Document: SS Cassandra Passenger Manifest

I searched “Dan* Koszlak” on Ancestry.com, knowing that Ukrainians probably spelled the surname that way, and Koslak had been somewhat Canadianized, like the name Daniel. The first record that popped up was a match. “Danielo Koszlak” (“Danylo” is a common Ukrainian name).

My transcription of the record below:

Danylo Koszlak, boarded the “SS Cassandra” in Glasgow, Scotland on June 4, 1910 and arrived at Quebec, Canada on June 12, 1910. His place of birth was Nowosiolka (“new settlement”), Austria (I’ll explain why this doesn’t say Ukraine later), and his ethnicity was Ruthenian. He was 18 years old, single and unable to read or write. He left behind his father Rapko (not a common Ukrainian name) in Nowosiolka, Galicia and was on his way to visit his brother Jakow (“Jakiv”) at 419½ Aldrich Ave, Minneapolis, MN, USA. He paid $25.00 for his ticket. His complexion was fair, his hair brown and his eyes blue.

Excerpt from the SS Cassandra’s Passenger Manifest, June 4-12, 1910.

Document: SS Conte Rosso Passenger Manifest

This is the passenger manifest for my great great grandmother Maddalena DeGrandis’ trip to Canada from Italy with her four sons to join her husband Arnaldo in Windsor, Ontario.

Morianti, Guerrino - Conte Rosso Passenger Manifest

SS Conte Rosso
Passengers sailing from Genoa, Italy, June 3, 1923

Family Name: DeGrandis, sons Morianti
Given Names: Maddalena, sons Augusto, Guerrino, Elio and Bruno
Ages: 37, 11, 7, 3, 2
Sex: Female for Maddalena, male for her sons
Married or single: married for Maddalena, single for her sons
Calling or Occupation: Housewife for Maddalena, Scholar for Augusto and Guerrino, none for Elio and Bruno
Can read/write? Yes for Maddalena, Augusto and Guerrino
Language: Italian
Nationality: Italian
Race or People: North
Last Permanent Residence: Treviso, Castelfranco Veneto
The name of the nearest relative in the country whence alien came: Santa Ambrosi, Maddalena’s mother and the boys’ grandmother, widow in Castelfranco Veneto (Treviso)
Final Destination: Ontario, Windsor

Document: Maddalena DeGrandis Birth Registration

DeGrandis, Maddalena - Birth Stato Civile

Provincia di Treviso
ESTRATO PER RIASSUNTO DAI REGISTRI DEGLI ATTI DI NASCITA rilasciato completo di generalita ai sensi dell’art. 3 del D.P.R. 432/1957

il 21.06.1886


come risulta dall’atto Nr. 268 Parte 1 Serie – Anno 1886


Ha contratto matrimonio con MORIANTI, ARNALDO il 07.02.1911 nel Comune di CASTELFRANCO VENETO.

Esente da imposta di bollo ai sensi dell’art. 7, comma 5, della legge 29 dicembre 1990, no 405.

Castelfranco Veneto, 20/05/2009

Diritti: esente


My great great grandmother, Maddalena De Grandis’ civil birth registration. as provided by the Stato Civile of the Comune of Castelfranco Veneto. Here’s the jist, in English (there is a lot of official jargon I’ll leave out):

Municipality of Castelfranco Veneto
Province of Treviso

was born in Castelfranco VENETO



She entered marriage with MORIANTI, ARNALDO the 07.02.1911 in the town of Castelfranco Veneto.

Document: SS Grampian Passenger Declaration

Morianti, Arnaldo - Grampian Passenger Declaration

SS Grampian
Port: Anvers
Page: 23
Line: 16
Class: 3rd
Date: 2.11.20
Passenger’s Declaration
1. Name: Morianti, Arnaldo
2. Age: 37/Male/Married/Labourer
3. Birthplace: Castelfranco Veneto
Race or People: Italian
4. Citizenship: Italian
5. Religion: Catholic
6. Object in coming to Canada: to work
7. Ever lived in Canada: Yes, in Montreal 1912-1914
8. Why left Canada:
9. Money in posession, belonging to immigrant: 50
10. Able to read: yes
Can you write: yes
11. What language: Italian
12. By whom passage paid: Himself
13. Intend to remain permanently in Canada: yes
14. If admission refused, cause of rejection:
15. Destined to: relative, brother Vittorio Morianti in Montreal
16. Name of Railway on which passenger has order or ticket:
17. Nearest relative in country from whence passenger came: the wife DeGrandis, Maddalena in Castelfranco Veneto

2 NOV 1920